The Real Cost of PCB Design – Part 1

The year 2020 has seen some remarkable events: a world pandemic, economic uncertainty, unusual weather events. Much attention has been given to keep people safe, sound and healthy. This has presented some challenges and unique opportunities to businesses. Mobile/cloud computing, fast Internet and streamlined video conferencing allow people to connect and businesses to continue operations. … Continued

Whose Design Is It Anyway?

(Reminds you of a TV series with a very similar name?) Who owns a circuit board design? At first glance, it is obvious who owns the pcb design. However, when using a contract design service, this is an important question. (This blog covers just the actual pcb design and the data created, not the schematic … Continued

Improving Bills of Materials (BoM)

Years ago, we would create a bill of material (or parts list), BOM for short, with pencil/ink and paper/mylar, whether on an assembly drawing or separate documentation. This proved to be a painstaking process to say the least. The advent of modern computing as well as schematic capture systems has greatly improved the process. But … Continued

A Good Part Library is Fundamental

Aristotle said “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”  Mathematically speaking, this would be nonsense. But fully functioning PCB assemblies are only possible because of the “sum of its parts”.  If any “part” of the assembly, a component, design aspect, bare board, test or assembly process, were not optimum or correct, then the assembly … Continued

Design talent more important than software

Scicards, Calma, PCAD, Visula are a few names (with respects to their associated trademarks) associated with retired PCB design systems. Newer, more advanced and ever more capable systems have replaced the venerable workhorses.  DDR, HDI and Giga-bit are typical terms that indicate the level of technology, and complexity, required in modern circuit design.  For example, … Continued

Good schematics make for great boards

Remember the “good ol’ days” when and engineer would hand a designer a “napkin” schematic, basically one drawn on any available piece of paper or other similar medium? Before CAD was economical, many engineers would deliver such a schematic to the drafter or designer and have a formal schematic drawn and/or a pcb designed.  For … Continued

Why Use a PCB Layout Design Service?

With interest I perused a blog written by Max Maxfield in the online EE Times titled “Are PCB Layout Designers an Endangered Species?” (I said Yes, of course!) I commend Max for a well written blog; it was interesting to read someone else reminiscing about how circuit board layout was done 30 to 40 years … Continued