I have been working on a tool for a while, which converts your pcb design files to Blender 3D models and allows you to render fancy images. Blender is a free and awesome 3D design tool. pcb2blender only supports Eagle files for now but adding support for more tools won’t be an issue.
Above image is just a very ugly example you can create with pcb2blender. Blender is a very capable tool. Once you know what you are doing you will be able to create quite realistic renders. And I aim to make this completely automated for you.
So how pcb2blender works? Currently, it’s implemented as a python script which you call inside Blender. When you call Blender with below command, after a few minutes of magic your 3D model should be ready.
>> blender -P eagle2blender.py -- boardfile.brd
pcb2blender will read you pcb file, create outline of board and place components from it’s model library. And your 3D model is ready. Now you can edit your model any way you want with Blender’s tools and create very nice renders.
You can find the code at https://bitbucket.org/hyOzd/pcb2blender. Since it’s under development, it’s much likely you will have problems. And don’t expect much from it since model library is almost empty. I’m working on it.
At the moment, I’m working on the structure of model library. Because once you start to create models, it’s hard to update them all in case of a change. It’s important to set it right at the beginning. So I need to be careful.
If you can make the code work or just can’t, please let me know. Remember to read README file. And use a proper OS, such as linux ; ) .