Screen Shot 2019 08 27 at 5

Updated 2024: Improved KiCad Support

By Karen Kordie  |  March 11, 2024

While the initial announcement regarding our enhanced KiCad processing engine is a few years old (originally published August 2019) it's important to reiterate the value it brings to PCB design workflows. This update aimed to significantly improve the experience for KiCad users on the MacroFab platform.

We acknowledge that the tech landscape evolves rapidly, and five years is a considerable amount of time. However, the core functionalities described in the original announcement – the ability to seamlessly process KiCad files and create PCBs – remain relevant and valuable today.

Screen Shot 2019 08 27 at 5 1

Screen Shot 2019 08 27 at 5 1

Fresh News: KiCad 8 Support Arrives!

We're excited to announce even more good news for KiCad users! MacroFab's platform now fully supports importing .kicad_pcb files generated with KiCad version 8. This ensures compatibility with the latest software updates and streamlines your design-to-manufacturing process.

Key Points on KiCad 8 Integration:

  • Effortless Import: MacroFab seamlessly imports KiCad 8 project files using the .kicad_pcb format.
  • Backward Compatibility: We continue to support files created with older KiCad versions for a smooth transition.
  • Recommended Workflow: For optimal import, utilize the .kicad_pcb file type for your KiCad projects.
  • In-Depth Guide: Refer to our comprehensive help article for detailed instructions on importing KiCad projects into MacroFab.

Important Note Regarding KiCad 8

It's important to be aware of a potential bug identified in KiCad 8 that may cause silkscreen text to appear reversed on your PCB design. This issue is uncommon (affecting less than 1 percent of boards tested) but can be easily verified by checking the silkscreen layer in the design preview. If you encounter any irregularities, contact our support team at for assistance.

Original Post:

As new versions of KiCad have come out, our original processing engine had trouble keeping up with the changes in file formats and features. Additionally, due to limitations in the processing engine, KiCad users generally had to take more steps to create a new design than Eagle or Altium users had to. With our latest update, you can now do everything you need with just two files.

The MacroFab platform can now process all needed Gerber layer files, part placement, and bill of materials data directly from KiCad native files. It also handles the latest versions of KiCad without error. This means, as a KiCad user, you only need to upload the .kicad_pcband .schfiles and the MacroFab platform will automatically process all of the data necessary to build your board.


Have more questions? Reach out to our support team and we’ll help.

MacroFab is the world’s first Cloud Manufacturing company. We can take you from prototyping to full production on a single platform using our vetted North American factory network.

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