Tag Archives: Printed Circuit Board Fabrication

Drill, Lamination, and Plating of PCB Design

Understanding Drilling

PC Board drilling involves different drilling machines which can make more than 30,000 holes in an hour. The machines have built-in systems for making precise holes and consist of spindles that can drill at a high speed of up to 110,000 RPM. An automated system and laser help manage drill bits to provide high-quality vias.

Drilling Of Through-Hole Vias

Standard PCBs have a through-hole where all PCB layers are drilled together under an NC machine. Then comes the plating of the holes’ inner and outer sides, and manufacturers use the same technique for all through holes, including the mounting holes.

Blind and Buried Via Drilling

The drilling of blind and buried vias occurs before lamination. The two-layered PCB goes through lamination after drilling. Whereas a multi-layer PCB is stacked and laminated after which it needs drilling and plating.

You can also make blind vias by drilling with a controlled depth where the drill machine works through the entire laminated board. Such a technique of making blind vias is cheaper than a sequential method, however, the hole size has some limitations. Besides, the routing of circuitry needs a specific technique.

Micro-vias Drilling

The drilling of micro-vias involves a laser machine because their size has to be small which is not easy to create through mechanical drilling. Micro-vias are ideal for thick PCBs, and you can connect them vertically by stacking them in layer pairs. Such as, in a traditional buried via, you can sequentially fabricate micro-vias whereas the buried vias need copper plating to connect the stacked vias.

When it comes to component holes, the through-hole technology works well. Such components are switches or standard connectors or mechanical components that need strong mounting that’s why the through hole suits them. Some common examples of devices having such holes include power regulators, resistors, op-amps, and capacitors, as they conduct heat and current.

How To Select A Drill

Though drilling is a basic function for a PCB Manufacturer, engineers use certain techniques to have precise drilling.

  • Sometimes a board needs lots of drills of the same size, which can cause changes in the bit during drilling. Such a change creates errors in terms of tolerance between hole diameters. So, engineers use drills of different sizes to avoid the quantity of the same-size drills.
  • Drilling diameter should be minimum, like in mechanical drilling, a six to eight mils drill is ideal for a 62-mils thick board. Whereas it is hard to use the small drill sizes in mechanical drilling, and its aspect ratio also makes plating difficult. So, engineers have to use laser drilling which is more expensive than normal drilling techniques. You have to use large drills for thick PCBs which are more than 62mils thick.
  • Use blind and buried vias when they are necessary otherwise avoid them. As their fabrication involves a sequential buildup method that increases the manufacturing cost of a raw board.

Different aspects affect the drilling methods and manufacturing cost of the PCB. Even the drill size affects the quality and cost of manufacturing. Too small holes highly increase a board’s cost, whereas too large holes can make assembly harder, increasing its cost. Engineers can avoid such issues by carefully designing a PCB, and having economical manufacturing.

PCB Plating or Metallization and Soldering

You need metal pads or lands to help components in mounting or soldering. You can’t solder the bare copper and have to plate it with an easy-to-solder material. In the past, lead-based tin was a common plating material. But, these days the environmental changes call for advanced materials like gold and nickel.

Unsoldered parts of the board need materials to resist soldering, such as polymer coating that prevents the bridging of traces. Moreover, it creates short circuits in the adjacent part leads.

Fabricating the External Layers

The above etching is ideal for circuits of external layers and the process includes drilling, metallization, and photoengraving. The final finishing happens after the external layers’ metallization. In general, the process includes soldering, silk screen application, testing, as well as packaging.

PCB Lamination

PCB lamination is crucial in terms of accuracy and creating a well-finished board. The process involves lots of stress, as you have to take care of the properties of PCB materials in terms of performance and production. PCB engineers and manufacturers have to work together to develop a functional product without sacrificing production.

Understanding the Lamination Process

The lamination of individual layers involves two main steps, such as:

Laying up:  It involves the stack-up of multiple layers. The manufacturer starts it from the bottom of the base substrate. Then comes the prepreg and internal etched layers. Then all layers are pinned together to make a final board without any disturbance. Laying up prepares the PCB before pressing.

Pressing of layers: Pressing involves heat and pressure that melts prepreg to finish the etched copper layer, making the insulation layers essential for electronic layers which can work closely. Prepreg bonds the layers, getting hard after curing, and makes a PCB mold.

You need to consider different factors during pressing. Like, many PCBs can be pressed together to save time and production costs. However, manufacturers have to place a separator between the individual layers to bear high pressure and heat without changing the PCB shape.

The laminating press also needs a vacuum to prevent the PCB voids to hinder the dielectric property, affecting its structural strength. The environment after pressing also needs consideration to prevent the STP quenching due to weather conditions. Manufacturers should store the pressed circuit boards in a press to cool them down. Cooling of the boards prevents the thermal contraction of the board.

Lamination Styles

Two styles are common in this case, such as:

  • Foil lamination
  • Cap lamination

PCB Lamination with A Foil: the foil lamination is simple and involves less hassle, as you have to foil the base and top layer. After lamination, the layers go through etching just like internal layers.  Foil lamination is more advanced than cap lamination, but you have to select the foil layer with care to remove them easily later on. The technician should work in alliance with the designer and material manufacturers to ensure precise production.

Copper Clad or Cap Lamination: It is an original method that PCB manufacturers have been using for years. There is a layer clad with copper between the base layer, top layer, and first and last inner layer. Such lamination is suitable for blind vias, however, you need a special laminate between the external and nearby layers to enhance a PCB function.

Purpose Of Sequential Lamination

You can use sequential lamination for advanced vias where drilling and plating come after lamination. However, vias other than through holes should be made before lamination, leading to sequential lamination. Such a technique involves many precautions in terms of materials and design to have a successful lamination. For like, you have to consider the z-axis CTE, Tg or glass transition temperature, and copper retention. A copper filling helps reduce copper accumulation to have a well-managed uniform CTE expansion.

The selection of the materials for PCB lamination involves great care. Besides, you should use the latest design software.

Testing a Final Product

Remember that PCB testing is very important to check damaged connectors and short circuits. Optical testing consists of layer scanning to find defects, whereas electrical tests involve a flying probe to verify different connections. It is easier to detect short circuits or breaks through electrical testing.  Whereas the optical inspection can better detect poor clearances between the conductors.

Final Thoughts

Drilling, plating, and lamination are important processes of PCB construction.  PCB drilling involves machines that can make more than 30,000 holes in an hour. The machines have built-in systems for making precise holes and consist of spindles that can drill at a high speed of up to 110,000 RPM.

An automated system and laser help manage drill bits to provide high-quality vias.  The two-layered PCB goes through lamination after drilling. Whereas a multi-layer PCB is stacked and laminated after which it needs drilling and plating.

The drilling of micro-vias involves a laser machine because their size has to be small which is not easy to create through mechanical drilling. Micro-vias are ideal for thick PCBs. Plating of the holes is also essential to provide electrical connections.

PCB laminating press needs a vacuum to prevent PCB voids to hinder the dielectric property, affecting its structural strength. The environment after pressing also needs to be considered to prevent any damage due to weather conditions.

Would like to know more about the Drilling, Lamination, & Plating or smt assembly? Email us at sales@pnconline.com

Six Basic PCB Design Principles

Six Basic PCB Design Principles

Printed circuit boards are vital parts of smart devices and several equipments as they provide current or electrical signals to run them. You need different elements to construct a PCB, such as:

  • Schematic design
  • Database login
  • Electronic component configuration
  • Design preparation
  • Wiring
  • Block division
  • Testing

If any issue happens during a process, you have to go back to the previous process to correct it. The layout of PCB components is a complex thin as it determines a board\s appearance and neatness. Moreover, it also affects the function of the end product or device. We will discuss below the six basic PCB design principles in terms of its components and other factors.

1-Components Layout and Clearance

You have to place the components evenly on the board, leaving some space on the edges. The components around the edge should be 3mm away from PCB edges. In general, designers leave 5 to 10 mm space around the edges.

The components should be only on a board’s one side. There should be a separate pad for each lead pin.

Don’t cross up and down the components’ layout and keep a certain distance between the nearby components on the board. However, this distance should not be too small as it can hinder PCB maintenance.

Components should be installed at a low height and its lead should not be more than 5mm away from the PCB, as it can affect its quality to bear vibration.

Printed Circuit Board components that reside on a pad’s both ends must be a bit larger than their axial dimensions. The pads should be located where the coordinate grid intersects. The central distance of the pad has to be more than the board thickness to have a neat layout.

According to IEC or International Electrotechnical Commission, the standard spacing of the coordinate grid should be 2.54mm, whereas the axillary spacing should be 1.27mm.

However, these standards practically impact a few processes, including automatic drilling, computer automated design, components welding, and automatic assembly. But, such a grid spacing is not restricted in the case of manual drilling.

2-Defined Solder Mask

Solder mask expansion should be well-defined as it can cause issues if you over-define or under-define it. Tombstoning may happen if you don’t define the solder mask properly. Like, one side cools down faster than another side, affecting the board. So, by following the right parameters, you won’t have to revise your design.

The solder mask opening should be larger than the pad. In general, it expands 4 mils or 0.1mm. However, both can also have the same size, depending on the Printed Circuit board Fabrication.

3- Via Type& Routing Width

You must use the right via for routing as it won’t work if its diameter or ratio is not precise. The current won’t pass correctly due to fused vias. So, via styles should be considered while routing the entire PCB.

The routs should have enough width to carry the current that your device requires. You must have an impedance-controlled routing that needs various impedance profiles. You have to apply these profiles to routing widths to ensure a functional layout. Don’t have routing at an acute angle even if the signals have a low speed as acute angle hinders manufacturing. Like, an acute angle can increase the corrosion, leading to an open circuit.

Whereas it is vital to avoid the acute angle in the case of high-frequency circuits because it fully changes the track width at the corners and results in poor signals and discontinued impedance.

Six Basic PCB Design Principles
Six Basic PCB Design Principles

4-Components Installation

Different PC Board components are installed either vertically or horizontally. The horizontal components are parallel to the surface of the circuit board. Whereas in vertical installation, components are perpendicular to the PCB surface.

Vertical components allow you to have more quantity on a board’s surface. It is ideal for hearing aids, semiconductor radios, portable instruments, or devices that need a dense placement of components. For vertical installation, components have to be lightweight. Don’t install heavy components in a vertical direction as it can affect a PCB’s mechanical strength. Moreover, it causes vibration, and components can collapse, making a circuit less reliable.

On the other hand, the horizontal installation provides mechanical stability, and the circuit board also looks neat. It also helps lay down the printed wires because it enhances the elements’ span.

You can use any installation method, depending on your needs but make sure to arrange components evenly and the circuit should be anti-vibration.

5-Considering The PCB Layout Type

PCB layout has either a regular arrangement of components or is irregular. In an irregular format, the axis of the components are not aligned with each other, so it seems messy. However, it helps lay down the printed wires easily as there is no restriction of direction. Such a layout is ideal for high-frequency circuits and involves a vertical installation.

Whereas in a regular format, the component axis is aligned and either parallel or perpendicular to the sides of a PCB. It provides a neat board and makes certain processes easier, like PCB assembly, debugging, welding, maintenance, and production.

Moreover, a regular format is ideal for low-frequency circuits where the board has a few component types and its surface is loose. However, the number of components is high and such an arrangement also suits electronic instruments. But, due to the direction restrictions, such a PCB has a complex layout of wires, increasing the overall length of the wires.

6-Factors That Affect the PCB Layout

You also have to consider the factors that affect a PCB layout, like the direction of the signals, device position electromagnetic interference, thermal interference, mechanical strength, etc.

  • Generally, the direction of the signal flow is from left to right of which left is the input and right is the output. It is also from top to bottom of which the top is the input and the bottom is the output. Connectors which are in direct connection to the input and output should be close to the input and output connectors. Integrated circuits or transistors should be the core components. Whereas other components should be located according to their electrodes’ location. You should also consider the size, a number of pins, shape, and polarity of components.
  • You should adopt certain ways to prevent electromagnetic interference that occurs due to different external factors, like spatial electromagnetic ways, poor wiring, poor installation of components, etc. You can avoid these issues during the layout design. But, interference will happen if the PCB design is not right
  • You should shield the components that interfere with each other. High-frequency components should have small wiring. Similarly, the components of weak and strong currents should be separated. Wires with high potential should be at a great distance to avoid 50Hz interference. Likewise, the metal components should not be adjacent or they should be well-insulated to avoid a short circuit.
  • While designing a PCB, you must know which components are temperature sensitive and which are heat components. The heating components like resistors should be located near the shell or near vent holes to dissipate heat. Don’t place many heating components near each other. Also, use fans or radiators to prevent the rise in temperature beyond its limit.
  • Whereas the temperature-sensitive components should be away from the heat source. In general, integrated circuits, transistors, electrolytic capacitors, and thermal components are temperature sensitive. These components get affected due to the rise in temperature, especially in a circuit’s long-term operation.
  • The board should also be mechanically strong and its center of gravity should be stable. Don’t install heavy or heating components directly on the board, instead, they should be under the chassis to have a stable board. If the board size is above 200mm it will cause mechanical stress, so it should be strengthened with a mechanical frame.

Finally, many PCB design software uses the power layer to have a fast design process. You can connect more wires to ensure the current has a minimum impedance or voltage drop down, thus giving enough ground return paths.


1.How To Layout A Printed Circuit Board?
You have to follow certain steps to create a PCB layout. Such as making the schematic drawings, developing a blank PCB layout, creating a PCB stack-up, schematic capture, defining design principles, defining DFM, linking to PCB, placement of components, inserting drill holes, and the route traces.

2.Is It Hard To Design A PCB?
It is not hard to design your PCB if the electrical schematic is right. Besides, following the design parameters also makes the design process easy.

3.Why Is My PCB Green?
The color of the solder mask determines the PCB color. So, if the solder mask is green, you say that PCB is green. The solder mask shields a copper circuit to avoid shorts circuit or soldering issues.

4.What Is The Purpose Of Following PCB Design Rules?
PCB design rules or principles help you to develop a system to automate the testing of design requirements. You get an interface between the physical and logical sides to create a circuit board. So, you can automate the DFM tests by following the rules to ensure that you can build a PCB.
Would like to know more about Design Principles or PC Board assembly? Write us at sales@pnconline.com

Metal Core PCB Design & Manufacturing Concepts

Metal Core PCB Design & Manufacturing Concepts

Metal core PCB consists of a layer of thermal insulation, copper foil, and metal plate, and you can also call it MCPCB. The basic benefits of metal core PCB include:

  • High magnetic conductivity
  • Great heat dissipation
  • Excellent mechanical strength
  • Easy processing

The base layer of the MCPCB is copper and aluminum, and you can choose to have any of them. Aluminum PCB is cheaper than copper, and you would find them in LED lights, mobile phones, and audio-frequency equipment. However, copper is better than aluminum in terms of performance. MCPCB was developed to overcome the heat dissipation issues occurring in high-power LED lights.

Things To Consider While Designing The Metal Core PCBs

The construction of the MCPCB stack-up depends on certain guidelines that we will discuss here. Such boards consist of a specific base layer, such as aluminum, copper, or even steel. You will have to determine the layer arrangement after selecting your desired metal and dielectric laminates. The type of the layer will determine other aspects, such as components and routing.
MCPCB has different types, depending on the number of layers as single-layer, double-layer, or multiple-layer metal core circuit board.

What Is A Metal-Backed PCB?

This Printed Circuit Board has a metal layer on its back, whereas the opposite layer has electric components. You can’t route traces on the back, however, through-holes are possible for routing between different dielectric layers, bringing ground to the metal substrate.

Metal Core PCB Routing

In the case of a double-side PCB, you can place through holes for routing between the metal core’s sides. You can use the multilayer dielectric stacks on the metal core’s sides to support different layers’ routing.You should ground the metal substrate for shielding, and to prevent it from acting as a monopoly antenna.

MCPCB Applications

Metal core circuit boards are ideal for aerospace and military industries that involve mechanical shocks, as well as high moisture and temperatures. So, MCPCB helps meet such requirements because they have a strong structure and a high thermal conductivity compared to PCB having an FR4. Such highly conductive circuit boards ensure an equal distribution of temperature when there is thermal cycling. So, it does not let the hot spots make closed components.
Metal core PCBs are also suitable for electric products which should work at high temperatures, such as high-current regulators, automotive electronics, and high-power LED lighting. The design of such applications depends on a precise stack up, and the board architecture should perform high at a low temperature.

Metal Core Printed Circuit board Fabrication Process

As there is a metal substrate in the stack up, such PCB involves a specific manufacturing process.You can use the FR4 dielectric in the case of a single-layer board by pressing the layer and bonding it to the metal plate.
If it’s a stack-up with a multilayer dielectric, you should first drill the metal core to have a layer transition independent of a short circuit. In the beginning, large holes are made and plugged with the insulating gels.Then, the gel has to be cured to make copper plating like a standard PCB. After that, you have to press and bond the remaining stack-up with the metal substrate. The stack-up needs through-holes followed by copper plating and residue cleaning.
The single-layer metal core circuit board has a metal base, copper layer, non-conducting or dielectric layer, solder mask, and IC components. Most thermoelectric separation applications consist of a COB or Chip-On-Board metal core circuit board,
It has two layers of copper conductor and both are on the metal core’s same side. Whereas the 2L MCPCB also has the metal core between two conductors, and designers call it a double-sided metal core circuit board.

Metal Core PCB Design & Manufacturing Concepts
Metal Core PCB Design

How to Select the MCPCB Components

It is essential to decide what components to choose when designing printed circuit boards as it can affect the final product. Such electronic components have different shapes and sizes, different power consumption specs, weights, and several other elements.
If you know how to choose PCB components efficiently, it can prevent big mistakes during design. We will help you in selecting the right components for your metal core PCB design.

You have to use certain design software tools to source the MCPCB components. These tools are necessary for all types of circuit boards, including a board with FR4, a rigid-flex circuit board, or a metal core board.
The surface mount technology is suitable for placing the components because it involves a minimum shorting to the metal substrate.You can also use the through-hole components,but you have to be careful to ensure that the solder mask does not get damaged on the back of the metal-backed PCB.
PCB fabrication involves multiple steps and the right design can enhance this process, preventing unnecessary design revisions.The manufacturer should have all documents having the fabrication details of the MCPCB.
Other than using metal cores, some passive techniques also help keep a circuit board cool through thermal management.

Designing MCPCB In A Closed Environment

The design of a multilayer PCB can become complex without compatible design software. You require the layout design tools for precise placement of the components, vias, routetraces, electrical, and thermal load crosscheck, etc.
You must have a good library of materials while designing the MCPCB. Likewise, the PCB layer-stack manager is required to handle your board’s structure. A suitable stack-up manager helps you to design a stack-up with an appropriate placement of the metal core, be it symmetric or asymmetric. Once the dielectric layers are defined, you need some groundwork for route traces and components’ placement.

Choosing The Design Software For PCB Layout

Different software help develop the PC Board layouts but make sure to choose the suitable one such as Altium. It helps you to have very precise CAD features to place the components. It also makes routing simple through special routing tools, whereas the layout engine helps ensure that the MCPCB is according to the design guidelines.
Remember that suitable software includes the 3-D design features to help you to design the complex mechanical parts of the MCPCB. You can also share your design with others through Altium 365, a cloud platform

Parameters of a Multi-Layer MCPCB

The design parameters of aluminum PCB sare described below.

  • Desired Aluminum thickness is 0.8-2.0mm
  • Solder resistance should be 288℃, >180 sec.
  • Breakdown voltage should be >3000v
  • The dielectric loss angle should be 0.03
  • Flammability should be UL 94V-0
  • Thermal conductivity should be 1.5W and 2.0W
  • Peeling strength should be >9lb/in

The minimum drilling diameter should be 1 mm in the case of an aluminum core, and the final diameter can be up to 0.3mm. There should be at least 1.2 mm spacing between the drill holes to avoid any damage.
Metal core PCB is also useful in several other areas having high mechanical loads where the dimensional stability should be high. Moreover, you can use it for electric vehicles, backlight units, automotive, audio systems, traffic lights, commercial buildings’ lighting, and solar panels.

Important Note

The digital devices depend on printed circuit boards for signals transmission to help them operate. These devices need a well-designed structure and manufacturing, but you have to encounter many issues in this case that we will discuss here. Circuit boards have different types and any issue in the design of a PCB would cause delays in its manufacturing, so you must know how to avoid them.


What is A Metal Core Printed Circuit Board?
Metal core PCB has a metal base, such as aluminum, copper, or steel of which aluminum and copper are common.
Which One Is Cheaper, MCPCB with Aluminum or Copper?
MCPCB with aluminum is cheaper than copper. But, copper is better in terms of performance.
How Many Types of Metal Core Circuit Boards are there?
MCPCB has different types, depending on the number of layers, such as a single-layer, double-layer, or multiple-layer metal core circuit board.
Where Can I Use The Metal Core Circuit Board?
Metal core PCB is also useful for electric vehicles, backlight units, automotive, audio systems, traffic lights, commercial buildings’ lighting, and solar panels.

Wrap Up

There are several benefits of metal core PCBs, such as high magnetic conductivity great heat dissipation, excellent mechanical strength, and easy processing. The base surface of the MCPCB is copper and aluminum, and you can choose to have any of them. Aluminum PCB is cheaper than copper, and you would find them in LED lights, mobile phones, and audio-frequency equipment. But, copper is better than aluminum in terms of performance. Metal Core PCB was developed to overcome the heat dissipation issues occurring in high-power LED lights.
The design of a multilayer PCB can become complex without compatible design software. You require the layout design tools for precise placement of the components, vias, route traces, electrical, and thermal load crosscheck, etc.
Would like to know more about Metal Core PCB or pcb assembly services? Email us at sales@pnconline.com

Ultimate Guide to PC Board Thickness

Ultimate Guide to PC Board Thickness

Printed circuit boards are vital parts of electronic technology and you have to focus on various factors to design or buy them. PCB thickness is the most important factor in this case. However, the weight, profile, and components of PCB also matter a lot.
PCB thickness can influence its function, affecting resistance and conductivity. The application of a circuit board determines its thickness and there are different levels of thickness in this regard.

A-Thickness Of A Standard PCB

A standard printed circuit board has different types, like one-sided having one layer of copper or double-sided boar with two layers of copper. Whereas multiple layers are also in practice. The double-sided PCB has a substrate layer between two layers.
Generally, a standard circuit board is 1.57mm or 0.0065 inches as it used to be the thickness of the plywood in old circuit boards. Later, multilayered PCBs emerged and the designer had to make their thickness according to the connectors. So, the designers need a standard thickness of 1.57mm.
The board thickness also ranges from 0.008 inches to 0.240 inches, and you can select any thickness between these figures to match the PCB application. You can give your requirements to the manufacturer or can hire an engineer to evaluate PCB thickness for a specific application.

Copper Thickness Of A Standard PCB

You also have to consider the copper thickness as it helps get the desired PC Board thickness and influences its function. Like, one square foot area of the circuit board needs an ounce of copper which becomes 1.37 mils. But, it can vary, depending on your needs according to the current that passes through the board.
Most circuits come up with 1oz copper i.e. equal to one ounce. However, it can be 2oz if the circuit board needs high currents. Designers often increase the track’s thickness which results in higher current points. Moreover, they don’t add anti-welding masks because they want to reinforce the track during assembly, like with tin.
Sometimes laminate manufacturers use an intermediate thickness of copper just to lower the price, like 0.75 oz. But, such a practice is technically not so good. Experts don’t recommend this because the PCB thickness also reduces during mechanical or chemical cleaning. The popular copper thickness is 0.5oz, like in the case of two-sided laminates.

Trace Thickness In PCB

You have to specify the trace thickness while making the Gerber files to avoid overheating. Trace thickness is the trace width that can tolerate the temperature difference ranging from the standard to maximum operating temperatures. In other words, the trace width should be enough to bear increased temperatures. Besides, PCB width calculators are available to find the trace width.


Ultimate Guide to PC Board Thickness
Thickness guide of PC Board

B-FR4 Thickness Of A Standard PCB

FR4 is the flame retardant material which is a fiberglass sheet with epoxy lamination. FR4 shows the quality of the laminate in PCB. Generally, it’s the base material for Printed Circuit board Fabrication.
The rigidity occurs due to epoxy that resists fire, and engineers prefer it for its low cost. The dielectric strength of FR4 is high, moreover, it is lightweight and also resists heat and water. So, they are compatible with different environments.
The FR4 thickness lies between 3 and 10 inches, and it can cause an increase in PCB thickness. You have to evaluate the FR4 thickness by considering the board components and space.
Design Parameters of an FR4 Board Thickness
Generally, the designers prefer thick boards because thin FR4 boards get damaged faster, especially when they are large, besides, the grooves are missing. Whereas thicker boards provide more flexibility and also include grooves.
Should Be Flexible
Thin circuit boards are more flexible than heavy or thick boards, especially in the medical field’s control unit. But, thinner circuit boards cause lots of issues during soldering that results in bending. Eventually, several other components also get curved, damaging a board’s connections.
Compatible Impedance
PCB thickness is crucial while constructing multilayer boards became you have to match the impedance. Besides, you also have to consider each layer’s capacitance. The board won’t function if its impedance is not compatible.
Edge Connectors
The edge connectors also directly influence the PCB thickness, especially when there is FR4. An incompatible mating part of the connectors can result in PCB damage. So, you must be clear about materials before PCB manufacturing.
PCB Weight
More thickness means more weight and increased shipping costs. So, you have to keep in mind the weight of the circuit board that determines the weight of the final product. Experts find thinner layers better than the others, however, one should go for a standard PCB thickness.
C- Core Thickness of Standard PCB
The core is a PCB layer having FR4 between copper layers or foils. The core of a standard PCB involves certain items of which copper should be precise. It’s a fiber mesh layer having resin, moreover, it has incurred FR4 as well.
The core thickness of the standard PCB becomes hard to select during a multilayer PCB design. However, sometimes PCB remains effective even if the core thickness is not compatible. But, the end product should perform high for which PCB should have accurate thickness. The designer must consider this factor and share the right details with the manufacturer.
The weight of the core thickness goes from 1 to 3 ounces depending on the requirements. The weight also includes copper layers that can be on both sides. However, if both sides’ weight differs, it would cause additional expenses and poor results. The core thickness with the desired copper weight is also possible through pre-preg sheets.
D-Two-Layered PCB Thickness
Printed circuit boards with multiple layers are getting popular these days. They include glass fabric based on epoxy having copper coils. A multi-layered PCB can bear high loads, however, its thickness remains only 63mm.
Complex PCBs need wiring, resulting in more layers, so PCB thickness becomes up to 93mm. The thickness of a standard PCB also gets influenced by foil lamination, if the lamination consists of 4 layers, 0.031 would be the PCB thickness. The thickness would become 0.062 if the foil lamination includes 6 layers.
Likewise, the thickness becomes 0.062 to 0.125 for 8 to 10-layer PCB. Your requirements can also demand half, one, or two-ounce copper foil.
PCB Thickness Allowance
Also known as PCB thickness allowance, it is the tolerance for PCB manufacturing substances. It can be more or less than the average amount of material. Designers consider certain parameters for it, such as the IPC guidelines. Such design parameters help manufacturers have the flexibility to develop a circuit board that performs well.


What Is The Importance Of Knowing PCB Thickness?
You have to focus on the circuit board thickness because both electronic devices and boards have a tendency to shrink. So the board has to be thin and lightweight to help manufacturers place it into the device. The weight of the final product also matters as thicker circuit boards can increase the weight of the device, resulting in increased shipping costs.
How Many Layers Are There In A Standard PCB fabrication?
There are various types of standard printed circuit boards, including one-sided having one layer of copper or double-sided board with two layers of copper. There is also PCB with more than two layers called a multi-layered PCB.
What Is FR4 In A Standard PCB?
FR4 is the flame retardant material which is a fiberglass sheet with epoxy lamination. FR4 shows the quality of the laminate in PCB. Generally, it’s the base material of a rigid circuit board.
What Is Core Thickness In A Standard PCB?
PCB layer with FR4 between copper layers or foils is known as the core. The core of a standard PCB consists of various elements, including copper that has to be accurate. PCB core is a fiber mesh layer having resin, moreover, it has incurred FR4 as well.
What To Consider While Designing A Standard PCB?
Designers have to focus on various factors to design or buy a printed circuit board. PCB thickness is the most important factor, but the weight, profile, and components of PCB also matter a lot.
What is Trace Thickness In PCB?
Trace thickness is the trace width that can tolerate the temperature difference ranging from the standard to maximum operating temperatures. You have to specify the trace thickness while making the Gerber files to avoid overheating.

Wrap Up

Now, you know how important it is to consider PCB thickness in different ways. PCB thickness can influence its function, affecting resistance and conductivity. The application of a circuit board determines its thickness and there are different levels of thickness in this regard. You can have a good circuit board by choosing the board thickness wisely, depending on its application.
Would like to know more about printed circuit board assembly? Email us at sales@pnconline.com

10 Best PCB Design Software

10 Best PCB Design Software

As the electronic industry is growing day by day, the demand for better and efficient printed circuit boards is also increasing. With a massive growth in wearable technology, printed circuit boards need to be of high quality and accurately designed to perform well. As we know that every electronic device either large or small, completely relies on the printed circuit board. They function as the heart of any device. Any digital gadget you are using in your daily life, either it’s your smartphone or your smartwatch, or maybe a digital calculator or most probably a digital clock, this all is possible because of the evolution in the modern printed circuit board. The rapid growth in printed circuit boards has made it possible for engineers to decrease the size of the daily used gadgets and make them available in hands.

Complex devices such as smartphones and smartwatches and military applications, all require some specific kind of printed circuit board installed into them depending on the requirement. Testing the reason for designing a printed circuit board is a task that needs to be done carefully. Designing the printed circuit board means giving a physical existence to your idea of a printed circuit board. Engineers want to use the best software for the design sign of the printed circuit board. For a better designing experience, much software is designed to help the engineers in making the best designs.

There are several choices available once you start searching for the best software to design a printed circuit board. But you need to know certain factors before designing your circuit board. Let’s look into this.

How to choose the right software for designing a PCB?

As we have discussed before, with the increasing demand for wearable technology, the demand for the best-printed circuit board design is increasing accordingly. And this process needs to be taken care of because printed circuit boards act as the main core function of any device whether it is small or large. Now the question may arise why designing is so important before the manufacturing process of printed circuit boards. The simple answer is to avoid problems.

Once the design is not done right, it can cause several problems after and before the manufacturers of printed circuit boards. It may cause the failure of the entire system which is not acceptable. So simply means to say that the design affects almost all the aspects of the circuit board. If the design is not right for the device if the material is not according to mark if the traces are not put correctly if the vias are not connected properly then the circuit board will not work or may work in some unexpected ways.

The problem may happen as lack of desired functionality and overheating which can further lead to devise failure. So, the key to success is to design the right software. But as you have seen, the market has grown up so immensely, it is not possible to choose the best software according to your requirement at once. Instead, you need to research certain factors so that you can make sure that you are choosing the right.

Easy to learn:

Well, this applies to almost every device. Even if it is not specifically electronics, it should be easy enough that it can be learned so fast. In other cases, it would overwhelm the user and the user will get distracted or lose his interest. So, the best software should be in easy language, not coding but the basic understanding should be done with keeping the user view in mind. Moreover, the learning period should be shorter as well as easy. The shorter the learning curve is, the sooner the user can start using the software. So, it is compulsory to keep the user interested in your hands.

On the other hand, a steeper learning curve means the longest period on how to do the program. In this way, the user will learn for so long without implementation and this is not the desired phase. For achieving the best experience, the user must be hitting the ground sooner by keeping the learning curve shorter. But you need to ensure that you are not compromising on specific features of the software.

Easy to use:

At first glance, the user is not looking toward the amazing features, component libraries, and automation, instead, he is looking at the ability of how easy it is to use the software. The level of its complexity will let the user decide if he should be going with a particular software or not. The developer needs to deep down the subject from user intuitiveness to accessing tools easily, this is a wide topic and difficult to handle. If the user’s interface and view of using and accessing the tool are easy then your software is the easily available choice.

The number of clicking and Keystroke should be kept as minimum as it can to avoid ambiguity in the software. Moreover, designing software by keeping the lay audience in mind is also a good approach. In this way, you will intentionally keep the software as easy as possible.


Although the features, learning period, and complexity of using software also matter in the market, the main thing that matters is how much it costs. The cost is something that a user is going to see at first. So, it should be kept in mind that your features are not crossing the cost limit. It should be cost-friendly so users can purchase it immediately for an easy design experience.

Now you have enough idea how to choose the best software in the market for designing printed circuit boards. Let us see the best available software in the market in 2022 that you can choose without thinking for a minute.

EAGLE (Easy Applicable Graphical Layout Editor)

Eagle helps in the design of electronic EDA. It helps the designers of the electronics field specifically in designing the best-printed circuit board design by allowing them to connect different schematic circuit board diagrams. The other main feature of an eagle is its user interface which is so user-friendly and designed by keeping the lay audience in mind. It also helps in transforming the vision into files with the help of stimulation and then the Printed Circuit board Fabrication process.

Altium Designer:
Altium is another best design software for printed circuit boards. It is no less than the eagle and mostly both are compared on behalf of features because both offer easy functionality. Altium offers both 2D and 3D toggles depending upon the designer’s needs. STEP model is followed for working in Altium.

Moreover, the PCB design can be improved by using the previous designs available. The 3D model is monitored by accessing mechanical data. Additionally, Altium allows the exchange of data with MCAD systems.

The best feature of Kicad is that it is open source. So new features can be added daily. Many intelligent designers are contributing to the software, and it is increasing its functionality day by day. The other advantage is its easy user interface. Its first view is so user-friendly that it helps the user in maintaining the flow. Moreover, it can be run on Windows and Linux.


EasyEda is the best designing tool which is both web and cloud base. It is zero-install integrating schematic capture and PCB layout can be designed in a seamless browser environment.


Allegro is the most reputed software available in the market and is commonly used by large companies that make motherboards. It was launched by Cadence. This software has features that help in designing large motherboards. That’s the reason this software holds considerable market shares for computer design software.


WG mentor introduced WG in 2005 and it was windows based. As the layout of the software should be great to manage the PCB design. So according to layout WG is the king of all software as it manages the layout most professionally. It is also recommended by many PCB designers.


Fritzing is also open-source software. It is designed to develop CAD software with the help of hardware design. As a hobby CAD helps designers and artists quickly move from design to prototype.


PADS Layout, PADS Logic, and PADS router are also included in the simple PADS software. It is the best for CAD layout. Its easy-to-use interface makes it the best choice for EDA.


Simply operation functions and strong stimulation make the OrCAD best for EDA development. OrCAD was developed in the 1980s and since then it is improved. It is recommended by electric designers because of its easy functionality.


Protel is also known as Altium and has the same functionality as we have discussed in Altium. It was introduced in the late 80s and since then it is ranked among highly used software for EDA designs. It is recommended because it has experience dealing with almost every design of PCB. It is released with its new features and leading the market in amazing manners.

So these are the latest software in the PCB design industry. Should you have any questions related to your design and or pcb assembly services, feel free to email us at sales@pnconline.com