Production

Six things to consider while choosing a PCB

18th February 2021
Alex Lynn

PCB is an important part of any device that you can think of nowadays. So you should choose it properly, and the manufacturing and assembly should be done properly. Thus, there should be no mistakes while choosing a PCB.

Choosing a PCB for your small business is not as complicated as it appears. You will have to look into various matters and make sure that the PCB assembly should be done properly. It is the essential procedure of manufacturing a PCB.

Here, Ken G, Sales Engineer at Technotronix, has discussed six things that you should consider when choosing PCB for your small business. Let's get to business below:

Focus on the design, type, and quality of a PCB

Creating a high-quality PCB is quite a difficult task since the focus should be paid to its design, type, and quality as a whole. If the PCB is not designed properly, then there would be difficulties in the assembly process. Thus, you should focus on everything related to PCB, some of which are—

By good quality, it means that you should check whether the PCB has the right dimension, is accurately positioned, and many more.

Each component used in a PCB should be accurate and in good condition.

The quality of a fully-assembled PCB also depends on its type. You should choose its type based on the output that you wish to produce. Some of the best PCB types include HDI PCB, Multilayer PCB, Flexible PCB as well as Rigid PCB.

Check out the services are being provided

Good quality is not the only thing that matters while choosing a PCB for your small business. What else matters is the services that you are getting from the PCB manufacturers. Also, you need to check that your PCB assembly is going well or not.

Check what type of PCB they are using—whether it is a single or multilayer PCB— flexible or rigid— includes turnkey service feature or not. You should check out the company's project management skills that you're working with to ensure proper work. You should also check out a company's warehouse, shipping, and inventory management policies before the PCB assembly.

You should go to experts in the manufacturing and assembling of a PCB since they can provide better services. Experts have more experience and can make the best PCB without any difficulties. Thus, an expert with some experience and knowledge will be the best choice for you while choosing a PCB for your small business.

Go for the best assembly method

Even assembly methods matter during the production of PCB. As you might know already, PCB assembly is the last and the most important step in producing a circuit board. Thus, one should do it pretty carefully.

Now, even if there is a little bit of a mistake during the assembly process, your whole project will come to a boom. Assembly means filling up the circuit boards with electronic components to add functions without which a PCB is useless. Mostly, two types of assembly processes are used by a majority of companies which are:

  • Surface mount PCB assembly: Surface mount technology is the technique where the mounting of the electrical components takes place directly on the circuit board's surface. It is quite a cheap yet fast way to assemble a PCB. So if you want quickly and under low price, then you should go for the surface Mount technique.
  • Through-hole PCB assembly: Through-hole is one of the oldest techniques to assemble a PCB. It is quite old and expensive yet reliable and durable as well. The through-hole assembly process includes drilling holes into the circuit boards and placing leads through them.
  • Low volume PCB assembly: Low Volume PCB Assembly is the technique where the mounting of components on bare boards is small in number. It ranges from 25-5000 designed for manufacturability.

Get insights on the quality inspection procedures of the company

Quality matters more than you think. But do you know how the quality can be inspected? Well, every company has its quality inspection ways and procedures.

You can ask the company about their quality inspection methods to ensure a good quality PCB assembly procedure. If they're paying attention to quality and putting extra measures for the same, then the company is right for you. Thus, while choosing for your small business, you should also focus on the company's quality inspection procedures with whom you're going to develop your PCB.

Companies having more than one testing procedures are way more reliable than those having one or none. Thus, if your products are put through some quality tests, you will be able to make any alterations on your circuit boards if required. It will be better since you won't have to bear losses just because the quality remained unchecked.

Get a better view and measure your costs

You should also focus on the cost that you are incurring while choosing a PCB. Cost is a substantial aspect in the manufacturing process of a PCB— or as a matter of fact, anything. You need to get details on your overall cost in developing a PCB for your small business. You should also consider getting good service from the development companies in place of the costs you are getting.

If you opt for the cheapest service you can get, you are going in the wrong direction there. You should know that cheap isn't always supposed to be good. You should maintain a balance in such a case.

The balance should be between the work/services and the cost incurred. You have to consider taking those services which are good and have decent rates. It can ensure that you will get full facilities at an unsatisfactory cost.

Focus on time management for PCB assembly and manufacturing

No matter what type of work it is, time is always important. You shouldn't complete the PCB assembly process too quickly, or else various mistakes would be noticed. You should give a proper amount of time to the manufacturers and assemblers to do their best at the time without any difficulties. Also, if the production process takes much time, it can lead you to loss. Thus, managing time is an important aspect.

Conclusion

PCBs are getting loads of attention in today's times and are pretty valuable as well. Thus, one should make sure that their PCB is the best as the competition is tough. However, one should speculate several things before the PCB assembly and manufacturing.

While choosing a PCB for your small business, there are various things that you should consider, some of which we have mentioned above. If one considers all the points mentioned above properly, it will help them a lot in choosing a PCB.

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