PCB Basics – Important Points You Need to Understand about Printed Circuit Boards
PCB or Printed Circuit Board is the electronic board you will use in your device building process. You will need to use PCB to build any electronic device. The type of PCB you will use will depend on the electronic device you would like to build.
There are various types of PCB you can use for your device building process, and the PCB configuration you choose will determine the overall performance and quality of your device. Here are some important and basic points you need to understand about printed circuit boards:
Various Types of Printed Circuit Boards
First, there are various types of printed circuit boards you can fabricate, and each type of PCB will have their own unique qualities and characteristics. For instance, there will be some differences between flexible and rigid PCBs. Thus, these two PCB types have their own unique steps in their production process, which include how you find the right materials for them and how you check their quality during their production process. Different PCBs also have different functions, and you will use each circuit board for different purposes.
It’s also important to know that with each printed circuit board, you will use different component and connection types. With HDI PCB, you will use a complex connection type, called the high-density interconnect, to connect between each layer of the HDI board. HDI PCB also needs the special soldering method to ensure the best connection for each circuit. When compared to the regular board, HDI PCB requires more precision in its circuitry creation.
Flexible vs. Rigid PCB
What are the differences between the flexible and rigid PCB? These are two different PCB types you will often use in your device building process. The flexible or flex PCB type is the one you will use for certain connections that require flexibility, such as the case with the optical disc drive. You will also need the flex PCB for various other important connections, such as the connection between the power socket and the main board or the connection between the main board and the monitor for laptops.
Meanwhile, rigid PCB is the regular type of circuit board you will use as the primary board for your device. The rigid PCB comes in various types and sizes, and you will need to model your rigid PCB layout according to your device’s form factor. Also, this is the type of circuit board you will use as the basic board for various types of devices.
The Multi-Layer HDI PCB
The HDI PCB is perhaps the most complex type of circuit board you can manufacture, as it has multiple layers and plenty of interconnected circuitries within the board. You can add up to 24 layers for your HDI board, and each layer will have its own circuitries and components on the board. You will then connect all board layers into one using multiple micro vias, which are of various shapes and sizes. Also, you can use the blind, buried, through-hole, and other vias to connect all the layers on your HDI board.
You will need to use the HDI board as the primary board for your device if you want to build a device that offers various features and complex functionalities, such as smartphones, laptops, vehicle navigation systems, and so on. The multi-layer HDI might also be your most expensive PCB you can build from the PCB manufacturer, as it requires precision and delicate care during the assembly process.
Design Layout and How It Affects the pcb Board’s Performance
The design layout of your PCB will affect the board’s performance in the long run. A poor design layout will only cause certain issues on the circuit board, such as overheating issues, imbalance power delivery, damaged components, and so on. So, it’s important for you to design your PCB layout with the utmost care. The reason is that one mistake in the layout can make your PCB unusable.
Designing for the printed circuit board is not something that you can do just once. Most of the time, you will need to revise your design from time to time just to get the right layout for your device. Remember, the design layout of your board will also affect your device form factor. So, many companies will try to keep their board design simple and compact while still providing the various features that they need for their device.
PCB Prototyping Process
Before your printed circuit board goes into mass production, you will need to go through the prototyping process. The prototyping process allows you to perfect your board layout design and test its performance. During the prototyping process, you will need to come up with several design choices for the board, and then you will need to test them one by one for their performance. You will also need to check the other aspects, such as power usage, power delivery, heat transfer, and many others.
The prototyping process will help you determine which board design you can pick for mass production. You will need to take some time to conduct various tests for your PCB before you decide on the best configuration to use. There are various aspects of the PCB configuration that you need to pick during the prototyping process, such as the material quality, component quality, circuitry, micro vias, and so on. Different configurations will lead you to different results for your PCB quality.
PCB Quality Standards
The printed circuit boards you are producing need to meet the quality standards to ensure that you are using the best PCB units to build your device. Building a high-performance device requires you to use the high-quality PCB units that meet the international quality standards. It includes the standard for the assembly process, the material you are using, the components you are using for the board, and also how you make the layout for the board design.
With each circuit board, you will need to connect each component with certain circuitries that have their own intricacies and complexities. Each circuitry will need to get tested for the power delivery and efficiency, along with various other aspects, such as heat transfer, impedance, performance, temperature, and so on. The boards that meet the quality standards will pass the quality checking process, so you can use these boards in your device building process.
The PCB manufacturer will offer you certain PCB configuration options for you to pick before mass producing your PCB units. The configurations include the materials you will use for the printed circuit board, the delivery time for the board, the layering process for HDI board, the durability for the board in case of the flexible PCB, the number of components you will include on the board, the number of micro vias you will use, the number of connectors you will place, and so on. You will need to find your own best configuration to make sure that you get the best PCB quality for your device.
The manufacturer will process the mass production for your printed circuit boards after they confirm your configuration along with your requirements for the PCB. Also, the manufacturer will ask for your PCB layout design before they mass produce your PCB units. The mass production for the PCB units will take some time to complete, depending on the PCB type you are producing. For instance, a more complex HDI PCB will take a much longer time for the PCB manufacturer to complete.
Bulk Ordering PCB
Most PCB manufacturers will provide their clients with the bulk ordering option for their PCB. Most companies will order the PCB units in bulk, so that they can cut some costs in the PCB fabrication. The more PCB units you order from the manufacturer, the cheaper the cost of production will be. However, you might order the initial PCB units as the test units from the manufacturer before deciding to go with the bulk ordering process.
It’s best for you to pick the PCB manufacturer that provides an easy bulk ordering process for their PCB, and it’s also best for you to pick the PCB manufacturer that provides global shipping services for their PCB bulk ordering process. This way, you can order their PCB units from anywhere in the world, and they can deliver the units to you via their global shipping program.
These are the important points about the PCB basics you need to understand. Before ordering any PCB units from the PCB manufacturer, it’s best for you to check the manufacturer’s website about the various PCB production services they are offering.
Hemeixin PCB provides the PCB manufacturing services that can meet your requirements. We also provide various PCB types for your device production needs. You can contact us for more details about the PCB manufacturing services we provide as well as the PCB requirements you need, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.