InspectAR Augmented Reality PCB Inspection Has Come a Long Way in Four Months

This tool uses augmented reality to test, debug and rework your circuit boards.

Cameron Coward
9 months agoAugmented Reality / Badges

How many times have you had to put down your soldering iron in the middle of project so that you could pull out your laptop and look up the pinout for a board? How many times have you spent hours debugging your own PCB designs, only to finally realize a trace wasn’t routed the way you thought it was? InspectAR is augmented reality software that is designed specifically to make it easier than ever before to inspect PCBs, and it has come a long way since we originally covered the software just four months ago.

The InspectAR team was at the Hackaday Supercon last month and demonstrated this amazing software at the event. To show just how useful it can be, they pre-loaded this year’s awesome FPGA Supercon badge into the free version of InspectAR. This let attendees easily pull up detailed information about the badge’s hardware to help with badge hacking. Using augmented reality, overlays are shown on your device’s screen that display information like traces, pin numbers, component part numbers, and more. Each of those layers can be toggled on or off, and the annotations move so that they’re always at the proper location on the board you’re inspecting.

Ever since the InspectAR software was first announced, the team has been hard at work adding many popular boards to their library. Those include the Arduino Uno, AudioMoth, iCEBreaker FPGA, IoFive, and more. If you want to use InspectAR with your own custom PCBs, there are paid licenses available that allow you to easily import your designs. You can, for example, use your KiCAD project files to create your overlay layers. Then when your PCBs arrive from the fab house, you can use InspectAR to test them out. If you just want to use InspectAR with common boards like the Arduino Uno, then you can stick to the free version.

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