You have spent many months coming up with the base design of your electronic product. You are now ready to move into the legend design and print process. This process can also take many months, sometimes year, depending on the complexity of the project. However, it is often worth it and planning ahead of time can significantly reduce the entire process time. Keep these tips in mind for a quick turn PCB process.
Organize your base design
Once you enter into the manufacturing and printing process, you will begin building your legend. Organizing your base design ahead of time can ensure that you are prepared for this part of the prototype PCB process. Before you ever step foot into the design manufacturer, ensure that you have a final copy of your product blueprint. You will still be required to make many decisions about the design process, but you will have base decisions already decided. If you are outsourcing the PCB printing and design process, having organized content will be helpful in increasing their speed.
Understand quick turn PCB specs
Some design and print specs take longer to print and manufacturer. If your final goal is a quick turn PCB manufacturer process, attempt to choose quick turn PCB specs. These specs make it easier to print and thus result in a quicker process, overall. Additionally, you will notice that quick turn specs often result in reduced quick turn PCB prices. Because there is less work and design involved in the manufacturing process, you are charged significantly less. The specific method you use to print your legend will also factor into the time and quick turn PCB prices.
There are three methods to print the legend, which contains the component designators, switch settings, test points, and other indications helpful in assembling, testing, and servicing the circuit board, silk screen printing, liquid photo imaging, and ink jet printing. However, it is not only important to consider your time constraints, but also to consider the final goal of your electronic product. While silk screen printing may be ideal for one type of project, it is not ideal for others. Always keep your final product in mind during this printing and designing process.
Outsource multiple layered projects
In many cases, multiple layers are needed. When you have final project goals that are more complex, you can only achieve this with a multi layered circuit board prototyping. To keep with your quick turn PCB process, outsource the multiple layer design. FR4 glass epoxy is the primary insulating substrate upon which the vast majority of rigid PCBs are produced. A thin layer of copper foil is laminated to one or both sides of an FR4 panel. Circuitry interconnections are etched into copper layers to produce printed circuit boards. Complex circuits are produced in multiple layers.
Keep size limits in mind
Larger legends may be more difficult to fit into smaller designs. This is usually why multiple layers are used in a project. Quick turn PCB prices may also be more expensive for larger of legends, because of the increase in materials used. Laminates are manufactured by curing under pressure and temperature layers of cloth or paper with thermoset resin to form an integral final piece of uniform thickness. The size can be up to 4 by 8 feet (1.2 by 2.4 m) in width and length. Keep this material in mind for larger of projects and reduces quick turn PCB prices.
There are many components that factor into the price and design time of a PCB circuit board. Quickly turning around a PCB design requires previous organization and careful planning. You will want to keep materials, sizes, and layers in mind for optimal turnaround times. Also, factor in the quick turn PCB prices. Using fewer layers and smaller materials can produce a cheaper cost, but requiring a faster speed of design may cost more.