While many users will want to use SPLIT274x in command line mode for batch or script based processing, some will prefer an interactive interface. GBRPREP64 provides that interface by collecting user input and then launching split274x.
Input - the RS274X file that you wish to condition. Use the Browse button to select the file. Use the View button to launch a Gerber viewer (typically Artwork's GBRVU) so you can display the file.
Output - the RS274X file you wish to produce. Use the Browse button to navigate to the desired directory and assign a file name. Do not use the same path/name as for the input file.
Log - the name and location for the log file. This file will provide a report on the changes made to the data based on the user selected conditioning operations.
Thread Num - tells the program how many concurrent threads should be used. Since many of the optimization functions can run in parallel, more threads normally means faster results. Do not specify a thread count higher than the number of cores your computer has.
Standardize LPC/LPD - when checked, the program will detect and remove LPD/LPC commands that don't have any effect on the final output. It insures that the initial polarity is positive (LPD).
Arc Resolution - used when Arc segmentation is turned on. Determines the number of segments an arc is broken into based on the angle that the segment spans. Normally this is set to 45 degrees and the Chord Error parameter is used instead.
Arc Segmentation - When checked this has the effect of breaking all arcs from the input data into segments using the Chord Error/Arcres parameters and enables the use of polygon edge compensation. (which applies only to G36/G37 polygons.) The DPI value associated with Arc Segmentation is used to compute the amount of compensation (i.e. 1/2 of the pixel diameter.) If DPI = 0, then no compensation is done but the input arcs are still segmented.
Chord Error - used when Arc segmentation is turned on. Determines how many segments are used to approximate the arc. The value specified is the maximum error between the chord approximate and the arc. So for arcs with a large radius, more segments are used to maintain a constant error. Details.
Circularize - if checked, then the output data is scanned and any series of evenly spaced vertices are tested to see if they form an arc. The parameter supplied here is the chord error for the newly formed arc. The arc will only be formed using vertices when those vertices fall within the chord error tolerance.
Macro Tolerance - when searching for "duplicate" aperture macros, this value is used to determine whether two macros are effectively the same (if their differences are smaller than this value) If set to "0" then the function searching for duplicate macros is disabled.
Format - Gerber files rely on a format statement to define where the decimal point is inserted. The user has 3 options for the format of the output file:
Auto - let the program pick the output format;
Best - please explain the difference between best and auto ...;
Specify - user specifies the desired output format using 2 digits - the first digit are the number of places to the left of the decimal, the second digit is the number of places to the right of the decimal. The sum of the two digits cannot exceed 8.
Max Points - used to determine if an area fill region (G36/G37) exceeds the maximum number of points specified. The max points value assumes that arcs have been broken into segments using the resolution/chord error parameters. If the value of a region exceeds the max points value, the region will be broken into two (or more) smaller regions that don't exceed the max.
Highest D-Code - Many plotters will only read D-code values up to a maximum - say 9999. If a 274X file defines a D-code higher than the max value, the program will re-assign the aperture to an unused D-code under the maximum value.
Remove Dup Pts - The program will examine traces and G36/G37 vertices to see if there are adjacent points spaced closer than this value. If such points are detected, they are deleted. If the value = 0, then this function is disabled.
Gerber Viewer - use the browse button to define the path and executable file name of your Gerber viewer. In most cases this will be a path to GBRVU that looks like:
Setting this will enable launching of a Gerber viewer when the View buttons are pressed for input or output files.
Mass Parameters were certain directives used by early photo plotters. They would define the two axes of the plotter (AS) and also could be used to define mirroring about either axis (MI). The parameters have long been "deprecated" yet some software tools still rely on them to control the film image.
Many plotters ignore these deprecated mass parameters.
In order to deal with them, the user has the following options:
Pass AS/MI - If either AS or MI are found in the input file, they are passed to the output file.
Ignore AS/MI - If either AS or MI are found in the input file, they are not passed to the output file.
Ignore AS - Ignores the AS parameter; passes the MI parameter.
Ignore MI - Ignores the MI parameter; passes the AS parameter.
No Macro Transform - need to put this in context with the other options ....
Set Axis Select: - ASAXBY specifies that X data shall be plotted along the plotter's A axis and Y data shall be plotted along the plotter's B axis; ASAYBX specifies that Y data shall be plotted along the plotter's A axis and X data shall be plotted along the plotter's B axis. does this put the mass parameter in the output file? Does it override the input mass parameter? Does it cause the program to do any transformation of the coordinate data?
Set Mirror Image: - does this put the mass parameter in the output file? Does it override the input mass parameter? Does it cause the program to do any transformation of the coordinate data?