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How to Choose A PCB Manufacturer

Jump To: How to Choose A PCB Manufacturer | Questions to Keep In Mind When Choosing a PCB Manufacturer | What to Consider Before Choosing a PCB Manufacturer | Types of Boards and Substrates Available | The Industries They Serve | Millennium Circuits Limited: Redefining Customer Service  How to Choose A PCB Manufacturer Your printed circuit boards (PCBs) are crucial to the proper operation of your product, so it’s essential that you find a PCB manufacturer that can reliably, efficiently and cost-effectively produce the boards you need. There are a lot of PCB manufacturers to choose from, however, which can make choosing the right one challenging. To help with this, we’ve put together this guide to choosing the right PCB manufacturer. Let’s take a look at some of the key things you should consider when making this crucial decision. Questions to Keep In Mind When Choosing a PCB Manufacturer When choosing a manufacturer, you should have some questions prepared. You can

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Copper Filling of Blind Microvias

Jump To: Copper Filling of Blind Microvias | What Are Microvias? | What Are Blind and Buried Vias? | Advantages of Copper-Filled Blind Microvias | What Are Copper-Filled Vias? | Challenges Associated | Thermal and Electrical Conductivity | The Copper Filling Process | Copper-Filled Copper Filling of Blind Microvias Vias, the holes through which stacked pads are electrically connected, are essential parts of printed circuit boards (PCBs). As electronic devices, namely smartphones and other similar products, become more popular and shrink in size, the ability to place smaller vias on the board becomes increasingly useful. You also need to be able to reliably transfer signals through the layers of the PCB — which can be accomplished by adding a copper layer to the board substrate — but filling the vias with copper provides extra capacity. Copper-filled blind microvias enable high-density interconnect (HDI) boards and also provide reliable signal transfer. While there are challenges associated with this type of via, they also come with many advantages. Keep reading

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What Is a PCB Legend?

What Is a PCB Legend? A PCB legend is a layer of text placed on a printed circuit board (PCB) to label components and provide other useful information. Sometimes called silkscreen or component identification, legend text is printed on top of the circuit board’s solder mask as one of the last steps in the circuit board manufacturing process. Though a PCB may not technically require a legend to function, this text provides information that’s vital for assembly, testing and troubleshooting by the end user. Some common pieces of information included in a PCB legend include: Reference indicators labeling component types Polarity indicators labeling the polarity of certain components Component outlines indicating where components should go Test points to assist with testing and troubleshooting Manufacturer information, serial numbers and other labeling By indicating proper orientation and placement of components and providing other information about the circuit board, a legend helps ensure

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Rigid PCB vs. Flexible PCB

Rigid PCB vs. Flexible PCB Both rigid and flexible printed circuit boards (PCBs) serve to connect electronic components in various consumer and non-consumer devices. As the names suggest, a rigid PCB is a circuit board built on a rigid base layer that cannot bend, while a flexible PCB, also called a flex circuit, is built on a flexible base capable of bending, twisting and folding. Though traditional and flexible PCBs both fulfill the same basic purpose, it’s important to note that they have many differences. Flexible circuits are more than just PCBs that bend — they’re manufactured differently from rigid PCBs and offer various performance benefits and drawbacks. Learn more about the properties of rigid PCBs versus flexible PCBs below. How Are Rigid PCBs and Flex Circuits Different? A rigid PCB, usually known simply as a PCB, is what most people think of when they imagine a circuit board. These

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PCB Lead-Free Regulations

PCB Lead-Free Regulations Until recently, lead was almost ubiquitous in the construction of printed circuit boards (PCBs). Due to its melting point and ability to form strong bonds between surfaces, a eutectic lead-tin alloy proved highly effective as a solder material. However, as electronic waste volumes increased, the use of lead in circuit boards came under scrutiny in Europe and elsewhere. Lead is a toxic material known to cause serious health and developmental problems in humans and animals. Though electronics containing lead may not pose major threats while in the hands of consumers, lead can leak into the environment after devices are discarded in landfills. To prevent excess amounts of lead from entering the ground, water and air, several governments have placed restrictions on the use of lead in printed circuit boards. What Regulations Control the Use of Lead in PCBs? Two main regulations control the use of lead in

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ENIG Black Pad

What Is ENIG Black Pad? What Causes Black Pad? How to Prevent Black Pad How to Fix Black Pad Is Black Pad Still an Issue for ENIG? ENIG Black Pad Across consumer electronics and all other industries that rely on well-manufactured printed circuit boards — or PCBs — the ability of vias to conduct signals appropriately is tantamount to a successfully designed PCB. Vias are the conduits that allow electronic signals to pass between the layers of a PCB. Oftentimes, manufacturers add a layer of a conductive metal — typically copper — to a PCB’s substrate to connect the board’s layers as the necessary layout and holes are made. For some applications, copper plating is sufficient. However, for applications that create high levels of heat and/or strong currents, plated through holes can also be filled with more conductive materials like copper. This setup creates what’s commonly referred to as copper

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What You Need to Know About PCB Assembly

Jump To: PCBA Terminology | Through-Hole Assembly |  Surface Mount Technology | Mixed Technology | PCB Manufacturing at Millennium Circuits Limited What You Need to Know About PCB Assembly The printed circuit board (PCB) assembly process consists of various steps that must be performed in the proper sequence for the finished product to function as designed. To ensure that this happens, PCB manufacturers use screen templates and controlled heating and cooling mechanisms to regulate how components are applied and fastened into place. When you assemble a printed circuit board, you must choose the right technology for the type of components at hand. All of the parts and pieces must be correctly aligned in their designated spot, as specified in the PCB design. Any deviation, ever so slight, can have huge ramifications on the functions of the finished board. PCBA Terminology To understand the PCB assembly process, you need to know the meaning of several terms: Substrate: The foundational material

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Guide to IPC Standards for PCBs

Jump To: Why Do IPC Standards Matter? | Improved Product Quality and Reliability | Improved Communication | Reduced Costs | Improved Reputation and New Opportunities | Terminology You Should Know | A History of IPC Standards | Examples of IPC Standards | Our Commitment to Quality Guide to IPC Standards for PCBs As manufacturers of printed circuit boards, or PCBs, know, ensuring quality throughout the manufacturing process is critical and requires careful attention at all phases. Adhering to standards from the trade association IPC can help. What Is IPC? IPC is the trade association for the electronic interconnection industry. It provides standards for the assembly and protection of electronic equipment, as well as training, market research and public policy advocacy. IPC is a member-driven organization and has more than 4,800 member companies around the world. Its members include companies in all aspects of the global electronics industry, including designers, suppliers, board manufacturers, assembly companies and original equipment manufacturers. The organization got its start in 1957 as

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Coin Insertion Technology as a PCB Thermal Solution

Coin Insertion Technology as a PCB Thermal Solution If you need PCBs for high-power components, a built-in cooling feature can be very important for keeping your PCB from overheating. Coin insertion technology for PCBs can be an extremely effective solution for thermal management. When it comes to embedded coin thermal management solutions, some of the most popular options are Embedded T-Coin, Embedded I-Coin and Embedded C-Coin. What Are PCB Embedded Copper Coin Thermal Solutions? The standard way to dissipate heat in a printed circuit board is through thermal vias. But most PCB material is not particularly good for heat transfer. Copper, on the other hand, is an excellent conductor of heat, which is why adding copper to your PCB is highly effective when you need to dissipate heat from an active PCB. With embedded coin technology, you can insert a piece of copper directly under the component to absorb and

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How Different Technologies Affect the PCB Cost

Jump To: Factors That Affect PCB Cost | Material Choice | PCB Size | Numbers of Layers | Finish (ENIG, HASL, etc.) | Size of Hole | Minimum Trace and Space | The Thickness and Aspect Ratio | Custom or Unique Specifications | PCB of Different Designs How Different Technologies Affect the PCB Cost PCB technologies involve high levels of intricacy. Depending on the design of a circuit board, its production could be more or less costly than the average PCB. If a PCB is intended for an everyday conventional item, the cost to manufacture the board itself should be significantly lower than the price of a board designed for high-tech machinery. Factors That Affect PCB Cost The three factors that most impact PCB manufacturing cost breakdown are the type of material, the size of the board and the number of layers. Other factors that can also impact price include the finish and the size of the holes, including these eight. 1. Material Choice The materials used in

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PCB Glossary

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