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OrCAD X Standard vs. Professional

Key Takeaways

  • OrCAD X Standard and Professional license levels feature comprehensive ECAD-MCAD tools to meet the challenges of modern-day electronic design.

  • Fundamentally, OrCAD X Standard is intended for standalone users, while OrCAD X Professional is better suited for small teams.

  • Improvements to the OrCAD experience, like 3D flex viewing, in-design simulation and analysis, and component library management, are available with either license.

View of OrCAD X Presto Professional 3D viewer.

When weighing OrCAD X Standard vs Professional,  users can expect powerful layout functionality with a modern UI in either case.

New or returning designers to the OrCAD X design platform may wonder which license is most appropriate. While circuit designers should be confident that any license level of OrCAD X can match the requirements of modern-day circuit layouts, single users and teams may find greater value in the OrCAD X license geared toward their workflow. To ensure the best fit for your organization, consider some of the main differences between OrCAD X Standard vs. Professional.

Comparing OrCAD  X Licenses

OrCAD X Standard*

OrCAD X Professional


PSpice Basics - Simulate up to 250 nodes and components using a variety of AC/DC analyses, including Monte Carlo modeling for yield projections.

Live BOM - Users can get a real-time risk evaluation of their BOM that identifies RoHS non-compliance, production status, cost, availability, and more.


Presto - A redesigned layout environment with ease of use in mind, OrCAD X Presto accelerates layout turnaround times.


Live DOC - Automatically synchronize manufacturing documentation to the layout.


Design Review and Markup - Communicate directly to team members in project files.

Dynamic back drilling - Reduce signal reflections in high-speed designs with controlled-depth drilling.


Full Specctra Autorouter - Users can automate dense or complex board routing.


Impedance analysis - See how calculated impedance values compare to controlled impedance targets.


Coupling analysis - Observe the effects of EMI on transmission lines.


Workspaces - Collaborate remotely with team members to view or edit design files.

Workspace management - Create and manage up to ten workspaces.

*: All Standard features are also available with Professional.

An Overview of OrCAD X Standard vs. Professional

Just as designers must consider different manufacturers that are more or less suitable for their production needs, the aptness of the ECAD tool for overall board design throughput should be a substantial decision. The best tool is the one that meets the requirements of the design, but circuit design has substantially grown in complexity in recent years. Layout now often has to contend with smaller enclosures, faster speeds, and denser assemblies that multiply EMI issues and generally complicate routing. Flex and rigid-flex printed circuits also require a unique approach to the layout due to the differences in fabrication processes that can be difficult for some layout tools to capture adequately. 

OrCAD X – available in Standard and Professional licenses – has all the necessary features and functionality to meet the challenges of modern PCB design. Whether that’s HDI, flex/rigid-flex, high-power, RF, or other complex manufacturing requirements, all versions of OrCAD X build on the familiar best-in-class layout tool. To meet the needs of remote teams, OrCAD X gives team members the framework to collaboratively view and edit design files in the cloud with the new workspaces feature. 

OrCAD X Standard and Professional at a Glance



Component Information System (CIS)



Unified Search



Constraint Manager



New 3D Engine



DesignTrue DFM Basic



MCAD Codesign



Rigid-Flex Capabilities


Live BOM with Sourcengine Integration


Layer-Based Dynamic Shape Control


Impedance and Coupling Analysis


Dynamic Back Drilling


Full Specctra Autorouter


Users can expect top-notch performance, project integration, and functionality with either level of OrCAD X, as both licenses offer the same core features. However, OrCAD X Professional provides more extensive tools for in-depth layout analysis that users may find more appropriate for their design needs.

  • 3DX Canvas - Designers can visualize their flex/rigid-flex assemblies to ensure the device meets all enclosure requirements while preventing unnecessary stress/strain buildup. Greater 3D viewer sophistication and integration with standard 2D layout features heighten MCAD-ECAD integration for even the most challenging HDI designs and enclosure form factors. MCAD Codesign allows users to import and export mechanical assemblies from leading MCAD providers

  • Unified Search - Users can quickly find parts for the schematic and layout from trusted vendors by filtering MPNs, manufacturers, and general component types. Icons in the search results also indicate whether the component includes a 3D body. Once located, it’s easy to drop the component into the schematic for netlist integration.

  • Constraint Manager - Build a manufacturing-ready design with many electrical and mechanical rules. Setting and editing values is straightforward with its spreadsheet database approach to PCB design rules.

  • DesignTrue DFM Basic - Save time during layout with a live DRC of the design that ensures manufacturing issues are caught pre-production while minimizing revisions.

Cadence Solutions for All Levels of Design Teams

OrCAD X Standard vs. Professional comparisons give designers an idea of their ECAD tool capabilities before diving in; either license provides extensive design functionality and flexibility that users expect from the legendary OrCAD line of products. OrCAD X provides comprehensive modeling and analysis solutions for every aspect of board design, ensuring designs are well-vetted and optimized for manufacturing. Cadence’s PCB Design and Analysis Software gives design teams the tools to simulate and evaluate circuits for the rigors of modern electronic devices. The best part? Interested designers can experience it firsthand with the new OrCAD X free trial

Leading electronics providers rely on Cadence products to optimize power, space, and energy needs for a wide variety of market applications. To learn more about our innovative solutions, talk to our team of experts or subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Leading electronics providers rely on Cadence products to optimize power, space, and energy needs for a wide variety of market applications. To learn more about our innovative solutions, talk to our team of experts or subscribe to our YouTube channel.