Top Factors Affecting PCB Fabrication Cost

The term PCB means printed circuit board. It is a special form of a dielectric plate that conduct electricity. The main function of PCBs is to help the producers with the manufacturing of different parts of electronics.

These are important for the soldering process. These also render strong connections. The price range of PCBs is not the same. There are different factors that determine the exact PCB price. 

Average PCB Assembly Cost

The average cost of production of printed circuits is up to fifty dollars. But the actual price range depends on other factors like size, type, no of layers, and materials for the production. The boards used for smaller devices can be produced with low production costs. While intense and complex circuits can be more expensive than the previous ones.

There are different types of these circuits. One-layer circuits are the most simple and typical. Two-layer circuits are a little more complex than single-layer circuits. These follow a through-hole approach, and the layers are connected by this method. Multi-layer circuits are highly complex and also follow through hole technique. 

Factors Affecting PCB Assembly Costs

The cost of printed circuits can be variable in terms of different factors. Let’s discuss these factors in detail. 

1.    PCB Assembled Material Types and lower assembly costs

The type of material used for their production matters a lot. There are different materials used for production. These are polymer inks, special solder, and others. Conductive metals like gold and copper are used for making the layers for these circuits. The response of the materials is due to heat production.

The factors of thermal and temperature reliability are crucial for the performance of these circuits. The performance also depends on the mechanical attributes. Premium conductive materials like gold and silver are for offering more conductivity. 

2.    Circuit Board Size and Layers Numbers in Manufacturing process

The circuits that have more layers are complex ones. These are important for advanced electronics and smart gadgets. These layers are for managing all the aspects of these circuits precisely. So that these won’t get damaged during the assembly process. The big circuit boards are expensive. The parts need extra space for proper positioning. The price depends on the number of layers and amount of circuit parts attached in this way. 

3.    Board Holes Size

These special circuits contain holes that affect the price range. These are for drilling the bulky and thick layers of the boards during the process. These holes firmly keep the boards in one place so that they don’t slip over each other and get ruined. These are the messaging channels between all the circuit parts. 

4.    Reduce Costs – Labor Costs 

The production process of such circuits requires seasoned technicians. Besides the human workforce, the producers also need tech-based and efficient equipment and machinery for this purpose. The price gets impacted due to the workforce, automated machinery and electric equipment. The investment in the machinery and salaries of the professionals are some factors that determine the price range and allows low cost PCB assembly

5.    Printed Circuit Boards Turnaround Time reduces overall production costs

There are some producers that quickly produce these circuits. But these ask for extra money for quick delivery. The cost can be decreased by creating a balance between the deadlines and the orders. In this way, turnaround time is a major factor that fluctuates the production process investment. Some producers will intentionally hold back the orders to boost their turnaround duration, which is unethical. 

6.    PCB Quantity in the Order volume

The number of circuits in order also matters. If there are many circuits in the order, then these would be much cheaper. But to order a single circuit can be hugely expensive. There are some companies that offer special discounts on the bulk orders of these circuits. This factor also contributes to the cash flow of this industry to a large extent. 

7.    Technology Used in PCB Manufacturing cost

Technology is also crucial when it comes to production costs. The type of technique used for the production matters a lot. An affordable method is SMT or surface mount technology since it is not automated and reduces the cost of labor as well. 

8.    Other Custom Specifications in PCB Fabrication

Some clients request custom specifications and changes. The circuits with little or no customizations are cheaper than the others. 

·       Packaging Costs

The regular shipping cost is different. These circuits are sensitive, and special attention is needed for their shipment. These are used for expensive electronic devices. There are different types of printed circuits that would be shipped along with their parts. Due to this reason, extra sophisticated packaging is done, which increases the cost of production. 

How Much Does A PCB FABRICATION Cost?

One circuit is for fifty dollars in terms of production. There are several factors that set the actual price for this single-circuit board. Small boards can also be expensive since they need more technical work from professionals. This can increase the production price. Due to this reason, it is difficult to determine the production cost based on a single aspect. 

PCB Raw Materials Price

There are also some raw materials used for the production of these circuits. These are metallic sheets and other equipment. The market undergoes different changes for these raw materials. Recently there have been reports that the cost of copper foils has dramatically increased. The size of these sheets changes their price. The sheets that contain tin coating are more affordable than the gold-coated sheets. The producers of printed circuits own a large network of suppliers. These also help with the reasonable supply of these raw materials to the users. There are also technical aspects included in this matter. These are holes, wiring, layers, and spacing between circuit parts. All of these are important to consider while estimating the production price. If the orders are delivered in bulk, then this would help decrease the cost much more effectively. 

PCB Manufacturer Cost Breakdown for Optimizing Circuit Board Development

There are many aspects of the design process of printed circuits. This process can also create an impact on the production cost and turnaround time asked by the PCB producers. There are some useful guidelines to regulate the cost and quality of printed circuits:  

  • It is better to match design complexity with all the requirements.
  • Don’t use expensive prototypes and over-budgeted layouts for the development of designs. 
  • Stick to the guidelines and regulations of CM’s DFM and DFA stringently. 
  • Prepare the circuit in time to surpass the criteria of classification. 
  • In case when a circuit part is short or missing, then only rely on the THT that will act as an SMD or installation environment as the second option. These alternatives are useful for the stoppage of shaking/vibration and resistance.  
  • Always use a CM that comes with typical and standard QA procedures. 
  • Discuss all the important aspects and always team up with your CM.

The type of CM you choose in this pursuit is important. Since it will help you with the quick turnaround, premium quality, and viable cost-efficiency of the circuits, also, the production and additional features of these circuits will be intact throughout the procedure of production. 

Things to Consider While Looking For A PCB Fabrication Manufacturer

There are important factors to keep in mind when it comes to selecting an ideal PCB producer. It is not always about the assembly pricing. Since you would want to pay more if the performance of the circuit is phenomenal. Being a client, it is better that you do deep research on the producer you want to hire and also search for unforeseen costs and startup costs. What are their services? What type of circuits are they experts in?

What are others thinking about the company? Make sure to answer these questions before coming up with a decision. It is obvious that no one wants to hire a producer whose circuits are not viable for smartphones since they are the producers of circuits that are used in radios or other electronics. So it is important to look for a befitting producer as per your requirements.

There have been several reports where the clients were unable to hire ideal producers, which led them to face huge losses later. It means after reading this post, you don’t have to be from those who faced this loss and wasted their precious time as well in the quest to find the right manufacturer. It means if you consult with the right professionals, this will give confidence to the production company, and they will be able to serve you with an unbiased quotation for their services and products. It is beneficial to hire a foreign producer that will be helpful to you in the long run. This has proved to give the clients a great edge over the others. 

Conclusion 

In this post, you got a general idea of the different aspects of printed circuits. All the components and their types and factors affect their total cost. Salient features of an ideal printed circuit board producer. So that you can make an easy choice when it comes to choosing from a large pool of producers for yourself, keep in mind that the quality of the services and products of these producers varies. So always rely on authentic and reliable manufacturers.