Why a PCB Quote is Important in PCB Manufacturing

To commence with the PCB manufacturing process, a PCB manufacturer needs a quote. PCB quotes are important documents in PCB manufacturing. Also, a well-detailed quote enhances the manufacturing process. In this article, we will be discussing PCB quotes and why they are useful.

What is a PCB Quote?

A PCB quote is a document that describes the capabilities, cost, and time a manufacturer needs in converting a design into a real board. It is mostly associated with the circuit board fabrication. You can request a quote to get details on PCB design, PCB assembly, or PCB fabrication.

An accurate quote must have information such as the number of holes, material type, board type, individual board dimensions, minimum trace width, number of board layers, copper weight, outer layer copper finish, and minimum space between traces.

A manufacturer can’t start the PCB fabrication or PCB design process without a quote. A printed circuit board quote is general estimate on the price and time it takes to complete a project. Out allowance Usually, the quote includes the total costs of the goods or services rendered.

Prices can change because of the instability of the components market. Some factors such as PCB assembly type, services will determine your quote. The majority of PCB quotes are online. Several PCB companies have a quote online. As a client visit the website of your PCB company to get a quotation form. Simply fill in the requirements and specifications of the product.  

Documents Needed for PCB Assembly Quote

If you are preparing PCB quotes for the first time, you would be wondering what you would be needing for your quote. Basically, there are three main documents needed for preparing a quote.  In this section, we’ll be explaining the important documents for creating a quote, as well as the details they should include, and their importance in the PCB quote process.

 The main documents include:

Bill of Materials

The Bill of Materials which is commonly referred as BOM is a document that includes information like  , quantity per, an internal part number, a reference designator, and a description. Most times, a bill of materials contains information about the approved vendor list (AVL). Therefore, it eliminates any need for another AVL. Also, a well-detailed BOM will contain the revision and the fab part number. BOMs are often in Excel format.

Bare-Board Print

This print is widely known as a fabrication drawing. The bare board print or fab drawing comprises the basic documents needed to fabricate your bare board. Also, this print contains information number of holes, outer dimensions, type of finish, board thickness, all the individual layers needed, silkscreen color, material, and solder mask color among others. A bare-board print should contain revision and part number. Also, the bare-board print is usually in PDF format. PCB Images Furthermore, you will need to the design files. The Gerber files is a common version

Assembly Print

The assembly print is the blueprint of the manufacturer. It displays parts’ location, PCB packaging, as well as details on special markings. Also, the assembly print should contain the revision and assembly part number just like the bare board print.

Commonly Missed Data During Request for Quote

Some designers take precautions when providing primary data while some may miss some important information. There are some secondary information included in a quote. However, these pieces of information can be missed due to certain mistakes or forgetfulness.

Impedance details

The choice of different parameters depends on the requirements for impedance control of a PCB . Therefore, if impedance control is not provided, it may cause a delay.

Type of surface finish

The functionality of a circuit board also depends on the type of surface finish used. ENIG, ENEPIG, and HASL are examples of commonly used surface finishes. Also, it is important to specify the exact type of surface finish. Otherwise, this will affect the efficiency of the circuit board. gold fingers This crucial information is usually missed during a request for a quote.

Stackup details

These include the thickness of every layer, number of layers, the thickness of the stack-up, etc. Some people miss this information when requesting for a quote. Out allowance

Solder mask details

You need to share some important information with your CM as regards the solder mask color, solder mask sides, and solder mask type.

Cut-out

A cut-out is a hole on the circuit board not made by mechanical drilling. Also, you should provide information as regards the positions and dimensions of the cut-out when requesting for a quote.

Importance of PCB Quotes

PCB quotes offer several benefits for PCB suppliers and customers. Some of the benefits of PCB quotes include:

  • Allows comparison

PCB quotes allow comparison. Buyers can compare quotes when they get their quotes. They can compare quotes of different manufacturers and choose what suits them. Quote comparison helps buyers to go for the best.

  • Minimize time spent on negotiation

With PCB quotes, you can spend less time negotiating with your supplier. PCB quotes are usually prepared or created based on the buyer’s demands and specifications. The information in these quotes must not contradict the requirement of the buyer.

  • Ensures competitiveness between suppliers

One great advantage is that PCB quotes allow competitiveness among suppliers. This is because buyers compare quotes from different suppliers. PCB manufacturers make sure the quote contains all necessary information.  Also, PCB quotes with well-detailed information can make a possible client become an actual customer. Gold fingers

Factors to Consider When Performing a Quote Comparison

Working with the right manufacturer will help you ensure all your PCB demands are well met. There are various options to choose from. Therefore, it is crucial you carry out a thorough PCB quote comparison. With this, you can rest assured of high-quality PCBs at the right price.

The capability of your manufacturer

Some PCB manufacturers specialize in a specific PCB type. These manufacturers only cater to a particular demand or market. Also, you need a PCB company that will be able to deliver your minimum orders. Therefore, you need to find out if your company can produce low-volume orders.

Lead time

We all how stringent deadlines could be, therefore, you need to choose a company that offers the best.  PCB quote comparison is mainly about the best all-round offer. Also, the lead time is a very crucial factor. The PCB company you are working with should be able to fabricate your boards with speed without compromising quality.

It is important you make enquiry about your company’s lead time and delivery schedules. Also, you should find out the distance from your place to their facility. Even if your manufacturer offers the best quality at an affordable price, you wouldn’t want your orders to arrive late.

Certifications

Defective electronic devices can be very harmful, they can even cause death. Electrical malfunction is one of the greatest risks as it can result in a fire or an explosion. Therefore, before releasing any electrical or electronic device to the market, it must undergo stringent testing and inspection. There are stringent measures adopted by manufacturers to ensure a device functions well.

There are several certifications that indicate a manufacturer is committed to producing quality at all times. Ensure your manufacturer has the right certifications.

Advantages of PCB Online Quote

Most printed circuit quotes are available online. These online quotes provide some features. Clients usually prefer filling their quotation form online. You will need to upload Gerber file when filling an online quotation form.  

  • Cost-effective pricing: With online quote, it is easy to change the features of your printed circuit board. Also, you can easily control the cost of the final product. This will include shipping cost, number of quantities, and delivery options. Gerber file
  • Individual accounts: Also, PCB online quotes allow you to access to all individual quotes.
  • Sourcing and Purchasing: The online PCB quote portals carry out all the groundwork. With this,  you can pay more attention to your innovations and you don’t need to have any personal dealing  with suppliers.
  • Online credit card payments: When making orders online, you will be required to make payment via credit cards. You don’t need purchase orders or credit checks when requesting PCB quotes online.
  • Online Tracking: You can track your PCB project and get necessary updates via a website. Also, you can make some changes to your circuit board project without the need to email your vendors.
  • Technical support: Customers can receive technical support when they request for PCB quotes online.
  • No Minimum Orders: Another advantage of online quote is that you can get only PCB quotes for minimum orders, even for just one design. This is great for small scale manufacturers who have interest in scaling up later on. Customer panel
  • Intellectual Property: There are secure portals through which you can upload your designs. You don’t need to send any documents through email.  This is one of the best ways to protect your intellectual properties.

Conclusion

PCB quotes offer a lot of advantages. Most PCB companies upload their PCB quotes on their website which makes it easily accessible to their clients.