What factors affect PCB manufacturing and assembly price?

What factors affect PCB manufacturing and assembly price?

 What factors affect PCB manufacturing and assembly price?

In electronic PCB manufacturing, PCB is the crucial component. Its cost of manufacturing and assembly is influenced by various factors. Each circuit board component you select significantly affects cost, from size and materials to the specific manufacturing process used. Knowing what factors may cause price changes can help you choose the printed circuit board that best fits your budget and requirements. Next, we will thoroughly investigate these factors to help you better understand the cost structure of the PCB manufacturing and circuit board assembly processes.

 

Delivery time

Goods delivery leads to increased manufacturing costs: Customers request shorter delivery times, and PCB manufacturers may need to schedule employee overtime or add multiple shifts to ensure that delivery requirements are met. It involves rearranging production lines, prioritizing certain orders, or speeding up production. Still, it increases labor costing and production equipment use costs, increasing rush PCB making prices.

Special logistics costs increase: For emergency orders, special logistics methods may be used to ensure timely delivery, such as air or express delivery services. Air freight is higher, which is also responsible for the rise in PCB board prices.

The complexity of the circuit is one of the main factors affecting the cost of PCB. Increasing circuit complexity increases the number of components required and requires a larger PCB area to accommodate more components and routing, which may lead to higher procurement and PCB assembly costs.

 

PCB size

Higher material costs: larger PCBS often require more substrate materials and copper foil, which can increase material costs. The larger the PCB size, the more material is consumed. The increase in material costs can be very significant.

Increased manufacturing and assembly complexity: A larger PCB may require more complex manufacturing processes and larger production equipment, such as larger cutters or larger copper-plating holes or grooves. This will increase the manufacturing complexity and the cost. Some custom processes requested by customers will also increase the cost.

Increasing transportation costs: a larger PCB may generate higher transportation costs. Due to the larger size, larger boxes or additional protection may be required to ensure the safe transportation of the product. Moreover, a larger PCB may incur additional costs during transportation, such as oversized cargo costs or higher transportation costs.

Layer

Material cost increases: with the increase in the number of layers, the consumption of substrate materials, copper foil, insulation materials, and so on also increases, thus increasing the material cost.

Increasing manufacturing complexity: the more layers, the more complex the manufacturing process. In the multi-layer PCB, additional processing steps, such as compression of the copper foil layer, drilling, and alignment of the inner layer circuit, which increase the difficulty of manufacturing and thus the manufacturing costs.

Higher technical requirements: Multi-layer PCB usually requires a higher level of manufacturing technology and equipment to ensure accurate alignment and connection between the layers and stable signal transmission. This also leads to increased manufacturing costs.

Copper thickness

The material cost increases: copper foil is one of the basic materials of circuit boards, and its price is generally calculated by thickness. Therefore, the thicker the copper foil, the more the number of copper materials used, the higher the material cost.

Increasing manufacturing costs: Thicker copper foils often require more processing steps and more powerful processing equipment to ensure processing quality. Requires more durable drills, and longer chemical etching times. These increased processing requirements result in higher manufacturing costs.

The hidden cost of the PCB

While the previously mentioned factors may have a significant impact on the price of the PCB, some often overlooked hidden costs need to be considered.

Prototype manufacturing and testing costs:

Before PCB manufacturing, prototyping and testing must be performed to ensure compliance with the design specifications and requirements. It takes several iterations to achieve the desired results, consuming a lot of time and money.

prototype PCB Assembly and Testing Costs:

After manufacturing completion, the PCB needs to be assembled and tested to ensure its proper operation.

Quality Control and Certification Costs:

Additional testing and certification may be required to ensure that the PCB meets quality standards. Especially when the PCB requires multiple certifications.

Transportation and logistics costs:

Transportation and logistics costs are also factors to be considered. This includes shipping the PCB materials to the manufacturing plant, for the delivery of the finished PCB to the customer, and any additional processing or storage costs that may be involved.

How to reduce the cost of PCB manufacturing and assembly?

Simplified circuit design: simplified circuit design is an effective way to reduce the custom PCB cost. Simplified PCB design means fewer components, thus reducing procurement and assembly costs. Furthermore, a simplified design can reduce the number of layers, further reducing material and processing costs.

Reduction of layers: As mentioned earlier, the number of PCB layers has a significant impact on the cost. By reducing the number of layers, the material and processing costs can be reduced, thus reducing the overall cost.

Using standard components: Using standard components can reduce the cost of making a custom PCB. Standard components are readily available and are generally less costly compared to dedicated components. Furthermore, using standard components helps to simplify the design and reduce the number of layers required.

Optimizing PCB size and shape: Optimizing PCB size and shape can also help reduce costs. A smaller PCB requires less material and processing, thus reducing manufacturing costs. Moreover, a PCB with a simpler shape may require fewer processing steps, thus further reducing the cost.

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