PCB Assembly . . . Prototype and Small Run Options?

I'm wondering if there's a good company out there that can turn prototypes around for less than $300 per part?

As my prototypes get smaller and more complex, I've felt the pain of doing a lot of soldering. I've been looking for a company that can alleviate that pain a bit.

The last six months I've been working on a project that has growing number of parts, a lot of LQFP pins, smaller and smaller SMD parts. There have been a lot of re-designs and each time, I feel more pain of multi-day builds and tests.

Looking around for a company, I couldn't find a company that would cost something reasonable: most of the quotes were in the $500 to $1,000 per board range.  Even some of the cheaper offshore PCB assemblers require a $200 stencil (ok for a short-run, depending on how short, but not awesome for a prototype).

I was wondering if anyone knew of a company that was offering prototype assembly on the cheap. I can wait 8 days (I can wait longer), but the price of $750 per prototype is too expensive for me.

I was also wondering if anyone else had this problem and thoughts on how to solve it? I saw Sparkfun's Pit of Despair blog post a few months back and thought I might be sinking into that (http://www.sparkfun.com/news/909)

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Replies

  • ALLPCB can offer the best PCB prototype and low volume assembly services. ALLPCB is a high quality PCB manufacturing plant in China, and specialized in service for Topspeed PCB Prototype & Batches, PCB Assembly and SMT-Stencil.

    2~3 days lead time, competitive price and free shipping.  http://www.allpcb.com/T5

  • I think that Seeed Studio Fusion is a good choice.
    They don't only provide prototype pcb assembly service, they also provide cost-effective PCB prototype service.

    Hope you find this useful.

    Fusion PCB Manufacturing & Prototype PCB Assembly - Seeed Studio
    China pcb manufacturer offers PCB prototype and fabrication, PCBA service with 100% quality guarantee, quick delivery time, affordable price and best…
  • Maybe Affordable Price For Small Batch PCB Prototype & Assembly Service is what you need. They provide PCB protype and assembly service with competitive price and high quality,all under one roof ,specialized in low volume quantity. Service is great and quality is good. Sometimes they have BIG PROMITINS for special order. Hope it will help you.Thank you !

    Delmoresky

    Professional PCB Fab/PCB Assembly Service Provider From China-PCBNPI TECH
    PCBNPI specializes in high quality Printed Circuit Board fabrication and prototype assembly with competitive price.Professional NPI team support & qu…
  • Long back I got prototype done very cheaper from http://www.4pcbassembly.com, you can check with them now, hopefully it may help.

    PCB Manufacturing | 4PCB Assembly
    PCB Manufacturer UsA - 4PCB manufactures wide range of PCB such as PCB design, prototype, fabrication, assembly and more in the USA.
  • I recommend you to have a try on Prototype PCBA turnkey solution from http://www.nexpcb.com. The package is include PCB Fabrication, Components, PCB assembly, of course,   and free-shipping. 

    Its total lead time is 15 days, I think the time of PCB assembly is limited,  please raise a quotation.  hope you could wait longer :-) 

  • Multiple companies offer this...check out THIS listing.

    Another source is Element 14 community.

    Good Hunting!

    -=Doug

  • The low volume assembly services can be easily found in China. You can locate them through search engines i.e. by searching a keyword like “prototype PCB assembly in China". Most of the Small run circuit board assembly companies have their assembly facilities both in America and China. And they provide quick turnaround time.

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