Tuesday, January 10, 2012

pcb.laen.org review

As you have seen in the pictures of the shiny purple boards below, I am ordering boards through Laen's service, http://pcb.laen.org/ . The boards are every bit as good as he claims. Shiny, purple, the gold touch is nice. Probably the best feature is that his fab house supports 6mil traces with 6mil spacing. When you really want to cram a board tight, and all of my boards tend to end up that way, 6mil traces can make the difference between finding a routing solution and not.

Laen is not a corporation, he is a person, and as such is subject to holiday breaks and other fatigues and weaknesses of being a person, but so are we all. Also, board delivery takes two hops. Even so, his boards still nominally make it back in about 1-2 weeks, which is quicker than Sparkfun's service, BatchPCB. Plus, the boards are purple, 6mil, and don't have any extraneous silkscreen. The price structures are different too, with the breakeven at about 5 square inches of board. Below this area, Laen is cheaper.

If you need a board, and aren't willing or able to make it yourself, consider Laen.

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