Favorite PCB vendors?

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#1
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Ready to do a proto run of 10 2-layer thru-hole boards. Have used ElectroFreaks before with good success and the lowest price I could find.

Just got a quote back from SpeedyPCB in Canada. Never used them. They cost almost 2X more than EF but at least from their website it looks like they have a good process and could deliver a little faster.

Suggestions or favorites?

Thanks,
Chris B.

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If speed matter a place like ExpressPCB.

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I like Elecfreaks, but it is slow. Faster if you pay extra for DHL shipping, but still pretty slow.

Free the toes!

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Itead studio in china. dirt cheap and descent boards. using them basically for everything these days.

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I use ITead Studio a lot, as well. Quality is OK and they are very cheap.

Leon Heller G1HSM

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sparrow2 wrote:
If speed matter a place like ExpressPCB.
Me too

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I use ExpressPCB when I need it quickly.

It is very costly, however, compared to ITead Studio, which I generally used when I can afford the lead time from China.

My first set of PCBs from ITead Studio was purchased "on sale", which was essentially a give away!

They are currently on holiday. I have a PCB ready to submit, but I'll wait until they are back in their normal business mode, Jan. 6th.

JC

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I normally use Seeedstudio, they have been really good for stencils and small orders (50-250 boards).

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Great feedback. Yes the ExpressPCB prices are way more but they have nice fast service. ITead Studio looks competitive, I may give them a try on this one. ElecFreaks is cheaper for 10 boards but they're both pretty close. Seeedstudio also looks decent but I couldn't just get a quote without submitting Gerbers.

Been heads down today finalizing the PCB (been using Diptrace which has been working great). PCB order tomorrow.

Thanks for suggestions!
Chris

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microguy wrote:
been using Diptrace which has been working great)....
Chris

Diptrace... excellent

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Torby wrote:
I like Elecfreaks, but it is slow.
Is a four week turn slow?
OSH Park has a 150sq-in (minimum) "medium" run.
2 layers; 1USD/sq-in
4 layers; 2USD/sq-in
OSH Park ~ Pricing and Specifications

"Dare to be naïve." - Buckminster Fuller

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gchapman wrote:
Is a four week turn slow? ...

Most of the time I would guess 1 month would be way too long--right now 2 weeks to delivery is about the limit for me.

I looked over ~8 vendors in the last few days and have to say it's nice to have so many options. The slightly strange thing I notice is that even between the China-based shops there are some big differences in low-volume pricing for similar delivery times (and apparently for similar quality too). So it pays to shop around...

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Have used Hackvana twice now. Quality is above most the other cheap chinese vendors.

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Andrew,

I have also used Mitch's services. Unfortunately the client decided not to proceed beyond the prototype stage. Reminds me that I should organise another walk in a park with Mitch. :lol:

Cheers,

Ross

Ross McKenzie ValuSoft Melbourne Australia

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I've used OSH Park recently for small orders and have been very pleased.

http://oshpark.com

Don

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Don, I looked at their pricing and at $5/sq.in. for 3 2-sided boards and 12 business days turnaround they looked expensive to me. The boards I just ordered are 4x5" so 9 would cost me $300 + shipping and ~ 3 weeks total waiting time. A number of other vendors are much cheaper altho' I can't personally vouch for their quality except for ElecFreaks.

I'm beginning to think it might be valuable to maintain a comparison table of all these PCB vendors and post it on a Google sites web page.

As I said a few posts ago prices for these vendors are all over the place. Too bad there isn't an easy way to maintain a web page that's part of AF. Maybe a sticky thread would work. I'd be willing to keep it up to date. Just a thought.

Chris

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Chris,

I am not boohooing your idea, but... the pcb maker marketplace is too dynamic in my opinion to be able to maintain a current snapshot of it.

Cheers,

Ross

Ross McKenzie ValuSoft Melbourne Australia

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Ross, if you mean that PCB vendors come and go, and/or they change their pricing often then I suppose it would need to be updated periodically.

I'm not looking for another time sink, lord knows I have plenty to keep me busy. On the other hand I always am checking what's new so I'd be doing this for myself anyway.

I almost started another Google site for this but then figured it would be good to know what the "average" board size is first. 4x4"?

Anyway I'll wait for more feedback for going further on this.

Chris

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Quote:

I looked over ~8 vendors in the last few days and have to say it's nice to have so many options.

I've opined this before...

IME there are PCB board makers all over. At least in the Midwest--there are several within an hour of my office, and more a little farther away.

Will they be the absolute lowest cost per square inch vs. some of the suppliers mentioned? Probably not.

But (IME) they'll all have some type of "rapid turnaround prototype" deal. The actual price will depend on what you want in the prototypes--solder mask? silk screen? "odd" shapes?

Anyway, once you have established a relationship with the people, you can indeed (IME) call up and say "I'm sending Gerbers for a rush prototype project. Can you get them in this week's run? I'll come and pick them up."

I'll bet a virtual cold one that the answer would be 'yes'.

Even if the next state, a few boards mailed first-class and arrive the next day beats (IMO) the vagaries of long-distance and/or intercontinental shipping.

For your production run of thousands (which ends up to be heavy)--by all means shop around more.

You can put lipstick on a pig, but it is still a pig.

I've never met a pig I didn't like, as long as you have some salt and pepper.