My experience with PCBs from Iteadstudio China

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#1
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Project: LCDNAV PCB - 8x2 LCD with 5 button navigator keypad.

Sent Gerber files on 9/4/11
Received boards on 9/26/11
Cost $24.90 for 10 boards + $5.00 shipping registered mail
They actually sent 24 boards "“ 2 blocks of 12 each.
Boards look great. Built device and it just worked.

Am I happy? Yes, I'm happy!

BTW AFAIK seeedstudio uses the same PCB maker for the same deal.

Smiley

Attachment(s): 

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Was that $24.90 per board? Or $2.49 per board?

Were you charged extra for routing the corners and the cutout?

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That was $24.90 total for 10 boards + $5 shipping. But since they sent 24 boards that's about $1.25 per board. It is a flat rate for up to 10cmx10cm board size. You can get 5cm x 5 cm boards at 10 for $9.90. Yeah, I'm amazed.

They didn't charge for the corners and cutout.

So you can see why I said 'I'm happy'. I just hope they can sustain this business model.

BTW, this was a September special, their normal price is $28.00.

Smiley

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I've used them for three sets of boards, and am very happy with their service. They took from 11 days to two weeks to arrive from when the files were sent and most of that time was in the post, they typically took four days to make the boards.

Leon Heller G1HSM

Last Edited: Thu. Sep 29, 2011 - 02:32 AM
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I have sent 3 boards so far to seeedstudio...still waiting...they sayd the first batch was shipped on 20th Sept. So its been 9 days. :| Quality looks good. Cant wait to get my hands on them n start programing my chips :D

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Pretty impressive! No tool restrictions like Olimex use to do.

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I'm impressed! Perhaps I'll use them.

Is this the place? http://iteadstudio.com/

 

"We trained hard... but it seemed that every time we were beginning to form up into a team, we would be reorganized. I was to learn later in life that we tend to meet any new situation by reorganizing. And a wonderful method it can be of creating the illusion of progress while producing confusion, inefficiency and demoralization." Petronius Arbiter, approx. 2000 years ago.

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Yeah, that's the one. More specifically, this is the link to the PCB service. I had one board printed there and I am also quite satisfied with the results.

I didn't know they do cutouts and corners though! I will try it in a next order. :)

-Pantelis

Professor of Applied Murphology, University of W.T.F.Justhappened.

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They do whatever cutout you draw, with a minimum slot of 1mm and minimum inner radius of 0.5mm...
I tried castelations but they didn't clear the hole well..

Here are some examples:

http://nomidesign.net/wp-content...

http://triggertrap.files.wordpre...

krazatchu

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krazatchu wrote:
They do whatever cutout you draw, with a minimum slot of 1mm and minimum inner radius of 0.5mm...
I tried castelations but they didn't clear the hole well..

Here are some examples:

http://nomidesign.net/wp-content...

http://triggertrap.files.wordpre...

krazatchu

Can you tell me how you did those castelations? Did they plate through? What sort of connector do you use with them and where do you source them?

Thanks,
Smiley

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Those buttons appear to just be silkscreen on a soldermask on a copper pour, with thermal grid. How can those function as buttons?

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I think they function as touch (capacitive?) buttons.

-Pantelis

Professor of Applied Murphology, University of W.T.F.Justhappened.

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Smiley,

Those castellations were done by using ordinary round pads with holes, and putting the board outline over them. They are probably intended for surface-mounting the board on another PCB. The technique should work OK with a manufacturer with tighter tolerances.

Leon Heller G1HSM

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dksmall wrote:
Those buttons appear to just be silkscreen on a soldermask on a copper pour, with thermal grid. How can those function as buttons?
If you trace the switch terminals through to the bottom side you will see that one is grounded and the other goes to a pin that is pulled high by a resistor; standard configuration.

Ross McKenzie ValuSoft Melbourne Australia

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Quote:
Can you tell me how you did those castelations? Did they plate through? What sort of connector do you use with them and where do you source them?

As Leon answered, Castellations don't require any type of connector, they make the PCB into a surface mount device, very cheap alternative for module type boards.

I intersected normal PTH headers with the board outline, you will probably want to play with the restring a bit but it gets messy in Eagle...
And I wouldn't attempt them any smaller than 2.54mm pitch, but YMMV.
I suspect they didn't clear as a result of a dull endmill...

There are some heavy magnified images and a bit more info here, on my blog:
http://nomidesign.net/2011/06/19...

Quote:
Those buttons appear to just be silkscreen on a soldermask on a copper pour, with thermal grid. How can those function as buttons?

PNP is correct, they are capacitive buttons. I used the Atmel part AT42QT1070 which is a seven button i2c enabled touch sensor. In terms of price, it's comparable to cheap mechanical hardware.
The AT42QT10xx devices have a lot of features, automatically adjust to the environment and work extremely well with the default settings.

We have written an Arduino library for the device, which is here:
http://nomidesign.net/2011/08/01...

And there is an example video here:
http://nomidesign.net/2011/07/14...

Michael
http://krazatchu.ca/
http://nomidesign.net/

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krazatchu wrote:
Quote:
Those buttons appear to just be silkscreen on a soldermask on a copper pour, with thermal grid. How can those function as buttons?

PNP is correct, they are capacitive buttons.

Michael

Aahhh, so now we are discussing two board designs; smiley's that is posted and a link about which dksmall has commented without distinguishing which he was referring to .... recipe for misunderstanding IMHO.

Ross McKenzie ValuSoft Melbourne Australia

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Quote:
Am I happy? Yes, I'm happy!

Your review couldn't come at a better time for me. I just finished (today) laying out a 2" x 1" AVR RS-485 node board. If I just shrink the 2" dimension by 0.8mm (not a problem) I can take advantage of their 5cm pricing. I've been meaning to givem them a try anyway. Thanks for the comments.

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Smiley happy??? WOW!! ;)

JIm

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