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Topic: ITead PCB Woes (Read 31911 times) previous topic - next topic

ITead PCB Woes

So ITeadstudio has got quite abit of publicity around about it's cheap PCB service I mean 0.99c for a 5x5cm PCB in minimal quantities is a fantastic price. Interesting how they state that they e-test 100% of your PCBs. I would assume e-testing means a machine probes each connection according to your gerbers and reports faults/shorts/disconnects etc.

So if all 10 of my boards are e-tested how did this happen.
[attachment=0]

The two pins are 8mil thick which is well within the specifications of the service. and they haven't been scratched off during my handling (there is still green solder mask above them).

So I know that for 0.99c I can't complain. Heck even a coffee costs more than that these days. But I just thought these were the kind of things e-testing was supposed to stop. I guess I am lucking in the sense that the other two board that I soldered up without checking thoroughly are working just fine.

Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #1
I'm surprised etest didn't catch it, though I have seen some of these types of breaks on my own boards.

Was there are mark on the side? Maybe it did fail etesting and it is not marked pass with a marker on the side of the PCB.
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Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #2
None of my boards have any marks on the edges like some one's I've received from the PCB drawer do.

It would be interesting to know what they would do if they found a failed e-test board. just leave like in my case. or mark it to show that it failed. Because I can't see them doubling the lead time to fabricate a new one, and I wouldn't expect them to.

IMO I would have liked to be shown that one of my boards had a defect, if in fact it was e-tested and it did fail.

Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #3
strange indeed. I get 50% etest. Tested boards are marked in the edge and taped together. If some fail there are few marked/taped boards. They toss em in with the untested boards (I'd rather they mark or trash it, but it is the factory and not seeed).
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Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #4
maybe the pcb house does not guarantee that there will not be flaws. if they were to guarantee that all boards were good the prices would go up.

for most of my projects i don't need 10 boards, just one. afterall this is a prototyping service. and having boards made cheaply is the biggest advantage using seeed/itead.

a board like the linux board would cost 600+ here in states for a run of 5


Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #6
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So if all 10 of my boards are e-tested how did this happen.
Mmm circuit loop maybe?

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None of my boards have any marks on the edges like some one's I've received from the PCB drawer do.
Seems you were processed before the morning coffee was finished maybe.

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It would be interesting to know what they would do if they found a failed e-test board. just leave like in my case. or mark it to show that it failed. Because I can't see them doubling the lead time to fabricate a new one, and I wouldn't expect them to.
I thought I had read somewhere (here?) failed boards are marked with red.



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I recently got some pcb's that are 100% e-tested with few pcb's that don't have more then half of via's drilled....

New policy no work before coffee finishes maybe =(

Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #7
[quote author="sqkybeaver"]for most of my projects i don't need 10 boards, just one. [/quote]
well yea. I've only used 2 so far, and I might solder up a few more eventually. compared to batchPCB which starts out charging you with a $10 fee before you've even bought any PCB space. seeed/itead are fantastic. This problem won't stop me using their service again, I'll just spend more time double checking before I solder up the next board I have fabed.

[quote author="AndThen"]
Quote
So if all 10 of my boards are e-tested how did this happen.
Mmm circuit loop maybe?
[/quote]
Well my board certainly will not function as intended without these two traces.

[quote author="AndThen"]
Quote
None of my boards have any marks on the edges like some one's I've received from the PCB drawer do.
Seems you were processed before the morning coffee was finished maybe.
[/quote]
They may have spent to much money on coffee that they couldn't afford a new black marker.


Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #9
[quote author="sqkybeaver"]a board like the linux board would cost 600+ here in states for a run of 5[/quote]
Where are you getting boards from?  I'm not terribly familiar with the linux board (is this "Robert"), but assuming it's two layers, try http://http://33each.com

$33 each (min 4 + 1 "free") + $10 handling + shipping, up to 60 in^2.

No e-test @ $33 ea, but quality is excellent - I've never had a problem with them (Advanced Circuits).

I still haven't given Seed/ITead a shot, but probably will the next time I need to have a personal project professionally fab'ed.  For the "real" stuff, I'd still rather have Advanced Circuits do it though - there's a lot to be said for being able to pick up the phone and ask an engineer minute details on spec's/fabrication.  But you pay for it - no question there. . .

Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #10
I completely agree with the quality at 33each (4pcb) being outstanding. I was very happy when I got the boards, but it is expensive and they don't tell you the shipping and handling fee in advance, and they are not cheap, as bearmos has shown.

If you want, here is a chart I made graphing where it makes more sense to go with batchpcb vs dorkbotpbx.
viewtopic.php?f=56&t=2678#p26140

I should probably make an updated chart somewhere with more vendors, heh. :P

If I were you, I'd send them an email asking what is up with this. True, nowhere did they say that all boards are functioning, but with 100% Etest and no marking indicating a failed pcb I would be upset. Is it normal that 100% E-test means that all your boards are guaranteed to be fully correct?

Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #11
[quote author="hak8or"]I completely agree with the quality at 33each (4pcb) being outstanding. I was very happy when I got the boards, but it is expensive and they don't tell you the shipping and handling fee in advance, and they are not cheap, as bearmos has shown.
[/quote]
Actually, 33$ for fully tested prototype board is still cheap :)
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Is it normal that 100% E-test means that all your boards are guaranteed to be fully correct?
Yes. The term means that the copper on the board matches the gerbers, and a tester has verified this by measuring the conductivity for each pad to pad connection. Sadly, it is also normal to claim 100% e-test and skip the expensive process. Hint: if your design is SMD, the sharp test pin leaves a tiny mark on the pad. If you don't see marks on pads even under a good magnification, you've been scammed.

My standard instructions to a factory includes 100% e-test for PCBs AND looking for the e-test marks. If not found, the PCB house is asked for an explanation. (So far, no factory has used a test method that does not leave the marks, but I think it is polite to ask first and not claim fraud as the fist step.) Any PCB factory that ships "100% tested" boards that weren't, will not get my business. Of course, those boards are not paid nor used. As said, this is far too normal occurence! I don't keep count, but that happens about one in five times we try a new PCB vendor.

Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #12
I Just check my DIY bus pirate PCB and I can see the pin marks on the pads, no marks like that are visible on my boards. I wonder what ITead would say if I quizzed them about it.

Interesting how the PCB fab does %50 and then ITead does the other %50. Since none of my board had any visible indications of e-test. (no texta mark, no tiny pin marks on the SMD pads) I just wonder how ITead knows which PCBs the factory has tested and and which one they have left to ITead.

Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #13
Your photo is clear evidence, that board was not tested.

Re: ITead PCB Woes

Reply #14
I got 10 boards from itead for SID and none of them had a mark on the side (like they used to) and none of them had traces of testing (dents on the smd pads)... I have not noticed any issues with boards not working but I found that number of ground vias are not drilled :( ... boards work but ..