Here’s a quick post on PCB suppliers I’ve used. It’s not exhaustive, but I’ll try to give a brief pros and cons I’ve encountered.
Also I’m doing crazy RF grade PCBs, but also not basic single layer boards. I mostly do development boards (test circuits) at 2 layer boards or a full product solutions on 4 layer boards. My newest board (at time of writing) is actually 6 layers due to space constraints.
I’ve tried to include some images, but as a lot of my PCBs are for clients, I can’t generally show overviews, only specific components.
I’ll keep adding to the list as I try new suppliers. As I live in Australia, I’m yet to try European or American suppliers due to shipping costs. Also, the designs themselves are all done by me. Some of the boards in the photos are quite old so my layout may be not great on some of the layouts. I’m always learning and refining.
Let me know of what details I should include!
PCBZone/Circuit Labs (NZ)
- Good quality boards.
- Supporting a more “local” company
- Nice colours in solder mask
- Cheap shipping $25AUD
- Expensive for 2 layer boards.
- On the expensive side, but not crazy expensive for larger/multilayer boards
- No transparency on price per board and setup costs (PCB Zone), only one figure which depending on quantity changes dramatically
Storm Circuit (China)
- Reasonable Quality Boards
- Medium cost for PCBs
- Transparent in costs – Setup fee, plus cost per board
- Shipping cost ~$40USD
- I’ve had a set of boards come in the wrong colour.
- In their defense, they offered to send replacements, but I only needed one
- They once put on codes used for manufacture onto the silkscreen
- Very Cheap!
- Quality seems reasonable
- All online process for standard PCBs
- Have a good range of solder mask colours
- When I got a quote for a six-layer board with blind vias, they quoted one price, but hadn’t seen the blind vias. This changed the cost from ~$350US to ~$950US. I kindly refused.
A-Tech Circuits (China)
I nearly didn’t buy through A-Tech as their original shipping price was $150US but I queried this and by changing to DHL, it got reduced to $70US (its more expensive than I normally pay but seeing it has a stencil, I’ll cop it).
- Looks to be quality
- Very good communication!
- They made an extra board and tested for soldermask issues and cut a bit out to show layers
- Good accuracy
- Stencils frames are optional but no more expensive!
- One of the cheapest for 6 layers with blind vias
- 10 day standard turn-around