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Prototype PCB Assembly: Where to Begin?

Need to have your prototype PCBs assembled to receive turnkey circuit boards?  Finding the right partner for your prototype assembly is crucial.  Advanced Circuits is the leading PCB manufacturer that offers quickturn PCB prototype manufacturing and with in-house prototype assembly services for your small quantity needs with no minimum order requirements.

Why Start With Prototype Assembly?

Some design engineers choose to go straight to production after designing and manufacturing a PCB; this, however, is not wise. There are many issues that may arise in the many stages of fabrication, assembly, and testing. Here is why it is important to start with low quantity prototype assembly:

  • Cost – Prototype assembly of your first prototypes can lead you to discover ways to reduce costs in manufacturing and assembly of your circuit board; plus, mass producing a design with flaws can cost a fortune.
  • Discover Design Flaws – PCB prototypes may help you discover design flaws that can be corrected before your production run.
  • Proper Testing – Testing ensures proper functioning of your PCB design and reduces the risk of errors prior to production.

How to Choose a PCB Prototype Assembler

Before embarking on the design and production of a PCB prototype, it is crucial to select the right prototype assembly partner. Here are important questions to make the proper selection:

  • Does the PCB assembler internally manufacture the bare printed circuit board?
  • Will all or some parts of the manufacturing be sub-contracted to third-party?
  • Does the PCB assembler have technical experience and capabilities for your circuit board design requirements?
  • Does the assembler have direct and prompt access materials and components needed?
  • Can the PCB prototype assembler produce the pieces by the required timeline?

What Information is Essential for a PCB Assembly Order

Prior to a PCB prototype assembler beginning a new project, the majority will require this relevant information:

  • Amount of prototypes needed
  • PCB Gerber files
  • Bill of Material (BOM) detailing all components
  • Precise timeline of prototype turn-around

After receipt of the necessary information, assemblers can review the material and determine if they can properly meet the deadlines and specific execution of the PCB prototype.  For a complete list of PCB assembly requirements from Advanced Circuits, click here.


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