reverse engineering

We often hear about reverse engineering within mechanical engineering, but how is reverse engineering deployed in electronics and why?

Firstly, what is Reverse Engineering?

When we hear the phrase ‘reverse engineering’ being applied in an electronic product environment, the default assumption is that the intention is to replicate a product. It’s commonplace for companies to use certain elements of the reverse engineering process to interrogate a competitor’s design. Occasionally the unscrupulous will even clone a competitor’s design using reverse engineering techniques, extracting a schematic from a PCB being the trickiest of all the reverse engineering tasks.  However, the reality is that there can be a genuine demand for reverse engineering on your products because some or all of the data package used to create the original product has gone missing/ no longer stored. An all too common problem.


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Why would companies want to reverse engineer a PCB?

Aside from replicating a lost schematic, once a company has started this process, they then have the option to deviate from the product you are replicating.  Reasons for this may be component obsolescence issues, new agency standards that need to be adhered to or a different form factor. Those are general product evolutions either by choice or necessity. But let us focus on the missing element, missing data that is causing us to have to reverse engineer.

Give us your data, let us fill in the blanks.

Where do you start; the scenarios are many; missing schematics, missing bill of materials, missing gerber or assembly data. Quadra have the ability to extract and replace virtually any piece of missing data working from a PCB assembly or any accompanying electronic data. Our IPC CID+ qualified design team and applications specialists have a wealth of knowledge and insight into data manipulation and extraction across a broad spectrum of EDA tools.

Talk to us about your reverse engineering needs. Our real-world experience and a comprehensive portfolio of EDA tools enable us to help support your Reverse Engineering project.



The PCB Design Industry

  • The global printed circuit market size will grow by USD 20.40 billion by 2021.
  • 77% of the growth will come from the APAC region.
  • Incremental growth will be $20.4bn from 2016-2021.
  • The high adoption of printed circuit boards is the key factor driving growth.

Full report available here:


For more information about PCB Design Reverse Engineering please contact or call 01254 301 888.