Finding the right PCB Manufacturer can be a bit overwhelming. With the market saturated with many PCB manufacturers and pricing varying significantly, you may be wondering if you have chosen the right company to produce your PCBs, either prototypes or high volume production. We have compiled 9 Tips to Choosing the Right PCB Manufacturer.
Tip #1) Fab Notes – Will they follow your requirements or will they simply build to a standard set of tolerances and specs? Extremely low cost vendors tend to limit what they will accept in fab notes.
Tip #2) Support – Do they offer engineering support to review your design and make sure there are no mistakes prior to spending money on fabrication?
Tip #3) Quality – Is there enough trust and credibility to believe that they will build your board correctly the first time, or is there worry that they may produce an incorrect board and cause delays?
Tip #4) Delivery Time – Will an extremely low cost PCB manufacturer require several weeks to schedule and build your PCB boards? Three-day turn arounds will cost much more with these companies.
Tip #5) Test – Will they provide 100% connectivity testing on the boards after manufacturing?
Tip #6) Capacity – Do they have the capability to take your approved prototypes and transition to PCB production orders of 1,000, 10,000 or even 100,000+ ?
Tip #7) Certifications – Are they able to provide UL 94V-0 fire resistance certification on your boards?
Tip #8) Lower-Level Materials – Are the laminate materials sourced from high quality vendors or are they using cheap substitutions that will affect quality? Will they use the same material for every lot? When using the cheapest materials, the product is likely to vary from lot to lot.
Tip #9) Capability – Do they have the equipment to accommodate the manufacture and increased detail of higher technology designs? Make sure they have the PCB capabilities to manufacture your PCB’s correctly.