Re: Low volume PCB manufacture

Robin Szemeti - G1YFG

JLC is embarrassingly cheap.  I'd happily use PcbTrain if they could just get close to double or even triple the JLC price, as a UK manufacturer I desperately want to support other UK manufacturers, but the gap in pricing is just too large. 

Oh well, when it all kicks off over there, we'll have to use UK providers anyway ... but by the time that happens there won't be any semiconductors to glue on them as Taiwan will glow in the dark :(

On Thu, 7 Jul 2022 at 15:29, Andy G4JNT <andy.g4jnt@...> wrote:
'bout that
all priced in dollars
$2.50 for the boards,  $26 for shipping
But I then got a $10 discount for being a new customer

£/$ exchange rate around 1.14 ish, set by credit card company I assume

On Thu, 7 Jul 2022 at 14:12, Robin Szemeti - G1YFG via <> wrote:
Yep .. hard to fault really. Had you placed that order for 5 boards,  say 40mm x 80mm from PcbTrain .. to get them delivered Thursday would have been £343 ... I suspect from JLC, even with the express delivery it was hmm .. £4 for the boards, £30 for the shipping?

On Thu, 7 Jul 2022 at 13:09, Andy G4JNT <andy.g4jnt@...> wrote:
That was impressive.
The order was placed with JLCPCB on Saturday just gone, and the boards were delivered just now (Thursday), several days ahead of the original projected delivery date.
Contrary to advice here, I didn't go for the cheapest delivery, but used the default DHL which cost a few more pounds.
Ordered the minimum of five PCBs, they actually made and sent eight

The boards seem well made, nothing obviously wrong or corners cut

So if anyone  wants a low frequency DDS generating I/Q baseband frequencies in the range -3000 to +3000 Hz, and programmed either via an SPI bus (that has to be slowed down to 300us clock rate coz I software decode it) or by a parallel bus choosing one of several tones stored in memory, give a shout.  Although with the chip shortage as dire as it is, not sure I want to relinquish ANY 16F1827 PIC devices currently sitting here.

These have been delivered fast enough to include in the next RadCom Column, whose deadline is looming.

On Sat, 2 Jul 2022 at 11:57, Andy Talbot <andy.g4jnt@...> wrote:
Ok All, tnx
I've placed a test order with JLC PCB as they seem to be the one most mentioned here.   I didn't compare any of the others - that may come later with another test.
The price really was ridiculous at $2 for my 5 35x70mm boards - pity the delivery charge was very much more :-(
The speed with which the uploaded Gerbers were shown as a view was really quite impressive.   PCB Train / Newbury never offered that instant view facility
Lets see what arrives in a few days / week or so

On Sat, 2 Jul 2022 at 08:50, Dave - G4RQI <io93ir@...> wrote:
I've only used JLC PCB twice in 2021 and I thought the quality and service was excellent. My first batch of boards designed in Kicad were uploaded on a Saturday lunchtime and thanks to DHL arrived at my door on the Thursday. The 2nd batch took a couple more days but it’s still good service.

David -G4RQI

From: <> on behalf of Lou Blasco <vk3alb@...>
Sent: Friday, July 1, 2022 10:36:30 PM
To: <>
Subject: Re: [UKMicrowaves] Low volume PCB manufacture
I use Seeed and find the quality great. In batches of 10 to 20 small boards the cost of manufacture is almost insignificant compared to the shipping costs. Still, at 1-2 dollars per board landed cost I'm happy with the service.


On Sat, Jul 2, 2022 at 4:50 AM Colin G4EML <colin@...> wrote:
I have done a lot of orders, both large and small, with PCBWay and have never had a problem. 
Quality is excellent. When I have had a query the customer service has been good. 
I always opt for DHL delivery and the boards normally arrive in about 10 days. For a small order the delivery can cost more than the boards but the total cost can still be reasonable. 

Colin G4EML. 

On 1 Jul 2022, at 17:50, Andy G4JNT <andy.g4jnt@...> wrote:

As much as I prefer to make my own PCBs, it's about time I tested out the low volume low cost commercial jobbies.  So  I've laid out a test board (*), digital and audio frequencies, ready to give one of them a try.   It's double sided with plated through holes, although the underside is just a ground plane.   Needless to say, all SMT components.

What PCB manufacturers do people use when you only want a 'few' off at any time?  WHo has any experience; good or bad, delivery times, cost etc? Based on responses here I'll try out the one that looks most suitable.
This is more of an experiment to see what low cost commercial suppliers can do.

(*)  The PCB is a for a PIC used as a low frequency DDS, programmed via either a slowed down SPI bus, or generating one of up to 128 prestored frequencies using parallel addressing.  The dual quadrature sine output is generated from its onboard PWM generators.   The output is a baseband I/Q pair from [minus] -2800Hz to +2800Hz, delivered as a pair of differential lines for direct connection tio a quad upconverter chip. DC coupling is used throughout so it won't suffer from any holes in the middle of the output waveform  On board resistors are selected to optimise drive voltage levels to whichever DUC chip is used.

Being a PIC, it can of course be programmed to do anything else.   This code generates based on a 1024 bit sine lookup, with 10 bits of amplitude.   A third order opamp antialias filter removes clock and alilas components

Robin Szemeti - G1YFG

Robin Szemeti - G1YFG

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