Topic: how many layers does the Novena Motherboard have?

as in title,cursory googling revealed nothing
I'm asking because if i want to make a similar arm based board with mini-pcie,m2 and SO-DIMM slots how many layers would that take.

Re: how many layers does the Novena Motherboard have?

8 layers as far as I remember. You can use my converter https://github.com/thesourcerer8/altium2kicad to convert the Novena PCB design files to KiCad and take a deeper look at them.

Re: how many layers does the Novena Motherboard have?

I hope you're aware of the difficulties of laying out DDR3 and other high-speed traces. You've got to length- and impedance-match them, along with keeping most similar traces on the same layer, not routing over voids in the plane, keeping trace spacing sufficient, avoiding too many vias, etc. Overall no small task.

So if you've done a few reasonably complex boards, are willing to shell out for Altium (or something similar) AND to do a couple runs of prototypes ($xxxx or more each, AFTER working with a board house to get their exact stackup specs), go for it! Oh, and software/firmware expertise to do all of the low-level stuff (uBoot, kernel building, peripheral config, ...).

If you don't have the experience, I'd caution that it would likely be an exercise in frustration. Tools you can arguably work around, but I know Altium makes life a LOT easier than KiCad would (at least last time I used it; no idea on Eagle). And there's really no escaping that prototype boards are going to be expensive.

It obviously CAN be done, but it's an amazing amount of work (and money!) to get things right.