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16 Dec 2012


Plastic housings Tek-Berry series provide a professional look and a mechanical protection to your applications with well-known Raspberry-Pi microcomputers.

Company Teko launched on the market several versions of housings directly designed for Raspberry-Pi. It is unusual to have a possibility to buy a housing directly designed for a given PCB.

Tek-Berry housings represent such an optimized solution for a concrete type of a product, thus providing an ideal solution with minimal dimensions. Probably the biggest advantage is that all openings are already made. There is no need of laborious drilling or milling. TekBerry housings even contain a light-guide for better visibility of light from indication LEDs.

Tek-Berry housings can be found in our store in a transparent, grey and black version. Upon order, we´re able to provide you other versions too. Detailed information can be found in the Tek-Berry datasheet and the Tek-Berry press release. In case of interest, please contact us at  info@soselectronic.com.

Tek-Berry will make a coat for your Rasberry-Pi - [Link]

30 Nov 2012

photo credit: angrycamel.com

bobstarr.net has revised the default Eagle libraries to suit his electronics design work and facilitate the work flow. These library files are designed to completely replace the default Eagle library set and are updated frequently.

Cadsoft Eagle replacement Libraries - [Link]

28 Nov 2012

photo credit: myropcb.com

I decided to order a prototype PCB for my latest project in a professional fabrication company but i could’ t decide if i should order it in a company in Europe or Asia. I am located in Europe and I wanted fast and quality service so it seemed that ordering from Europe will be the best choice. But i also was curious about the quality of the cheaper Asia manufacturers. So i concluded ordering the same PCB on both an Europian and an Asian PCB manufacturer. I choose the following PCB manufactures :

Eurocircuits.com – offers a great user experience when ordering a PCB. You place your PCB in shopping basket, you choose PCB details and you get an instant quote for your order (including shipping, excluding VAT). After placing your PCB in shopping cart you are able to review you PCB in PCB Visualizer. PCB Visualizer is a great tool to test you PCB for manufacturability online. My PCB prototype (2 layers, 1.55mm FR4, 1oz copper, green soldermask, white silkscreen, Lead free HASL, 100% E-test, .. more details here) costs calculated at 85 EUR for 2 pieces including UPS shipping.

Iteadstudio.com -  offers a pretty simple billing scheme, you choose from 5 sub-categories based on your max PCB dimensions. Quantity offered for each category is 5-10 pieces and prices are reasonable. I choose the 10x10cm batch offering 10 pieces (2 layers, 1.6mm FR4, 1oz copper, green soldermask, white silkscreen, Lead free HASL, 100% E-test, .. more details here) for a price of 24.90 USD + 25 DHL shipping = 49.90 USD final value.

Order on both manufactures done the same day. Both PCBs come to our door in 10 days. What we got:

  • Eurocircuits – we received 3 PCBs in 10 days for 85 EUR. PCB quality is great, plating is more thick on bottom than top layer, pcb cut-offs from panel are visible, soldermask has a faded green color, there are marks from E-testing. Packaged on plastic bag (vacuum). Cost per PCB = 28,3 EUR

  • Iteadstudio – we received 10 PCBs in 10 days for 49.90 USD. PCB quality is great, plating is more thick on bottom than top layer, pcb cut-offs from panel aren’t visible, soldermask is shiny vivid green color, there are marks of E-testing. Packaged on plastic bag (vacuum) + silica gel.  Cost per PCB = 4,99 USD 

I can’ t figure out any significant quality details between the two PBCs. To me IteadStudio PCBs seems more beautiful and worth the money. So i give +1 to IteadStudio for quality, quantity and processing time!

24 Nov 2012

Our friend Vassilis decided to build his own manual Pick & Place machine to facilitate his work with 0402 SMD and other fine pitch parts. He used plywood, a pen microscope and a vacuum pump to build this dirty cheap Pick and Place manual machine:

If you are dealing with tiny SMD parts (e.g. 0402 resistors and capacitors), a manual pick and place machine is a helpful piece of equipment for prototyping and small-batch manufacturing. On the other side, traditional SMD placement using precision tweezers not only requires an ultra-steady hand but also becomes a tiresome drill, especially when working long hours upon fine-pitch PCB footprints.

Low Budget Manual Pick & Place - [Link]

4 Nov 2012

A great online PCB verification service for free…

For added peace of mind now you can verify your PCB data prior to placing your order. PCB Visualizer is an automatic tool for data input and manufacturability analysis. Clear graphic presentation pinpoints any issues found. You can then fix them up front, helping to avoid delays to your time-critical deliveries. Upload your Extended Gerber (RS274X) or CadSoft EAGLE V6 files and let us surprise you.

pcbvisualizer.com – Free online PCB data verification service - [Link]

29 Oct 2012

Electronics are inside nearly every consumer hardware device you buy today. They are the brains and guts that make our devices interesting. If you’ re building a hardware startup, chances are good that you’ ll need to design and produce your own custom electronics. If you have an electrical engineer on your team, chances are they know how this process works. If not, then this guide is for you.

PCB Assembly 101 - [Link]

29 Oct 2012

Super Simple SMT: Stencil8 – [via]

Over the years, I’ve soldered a fair number of boards. I’ve also seen how professional factories produce their boards. This is my technique for doing it myself, and I hope it works as well for you as it does for me. :) Note: the files needed to make the fixture, custom pcb setup, and stencil are on Github – Stencil8. This whole project is OSHW.

Super Simple SMT: Stencil8 - [Link]

22 Oct 2012

Miniature PCB connectors from company Phoenix Contact bring a surprisingly simple manipulation and they occupy only a minimum of space.

Small dimensions, reliable contact, simple usage and up to 6A current are main properties of new Phoenix Contact connectors PTSM, PTPM and PTQ series from the Combicon HD family. Especially at high-volume production batches it is very important to reach a fast and precise cables assembly – and if possible – resistant to mistakes arising from lower attention of workers. New connectors meet these requirements very well and for example th PTQ series requires only to push in an insulated wire and close the lever (upper portion of the connector).

Four new series, which can be found in our portfolio are:

PTPM – (PTPM-x/x-P-2,5) a miniature, only 5mm high wire-to-board connector, consisting of 2 parts (socket + header). PTPM connects wires without stripping an insulation (IDC). It is ideal for Ethernet cables and other wires of 0.14/0.34 mm2 (AWG 22-26) diameter – depending on a type. Maximum current 2-4A/160V, 2.5 mm pitch. Number of poles is always even (2-4-6-8-10).

PTSM – a connector similar to PTPM series, but the cable termination is screwless (push-in) via a spring contact. That enables to use up to 0,75 mm2 conductors – solid but also stranded wires.

PTSM – (PTSM -x/x-2,5-H, resp PTSM-x/x-2,5-V) terminals for a direct connection of wire conductors to a PCB (THT and SMT version).

PTQ – IDC wire-to-board connector for extremely simple connection of wires to a PCB. All that is necessary is to push in an Ethernet cable or other 0.14/0.34 mm2 cable and to close the lever (upper portion of the connector – without stripping an insulation, without cutting and without any tools. No tools are necessary even to release the wire – only open the actuation lever. Maximum current up to 4A/160V, 2.5 mm pitch, 8mm height.

Plug-in connectors of PTPM and PTSM series use the same headers (PTSM-x/x-HH-2,5, resp PTSM-x/x-HV-2,5), what further increases their variability. Headers are available in THT as well as SMT versions (horizontal and also vertical). These new miniature connectors are universally usable for power supply, data and analog signals, connection of LED panels and other. All 4 series are being supplied in tapes (TR) enabling a machine insertion to a PCB.

Detailed description will provide you the overview of Phoenix PTSM and PTPM and Phoenix PTQ series, as well as datasheets at particular types. Many versions can be found directly in our stock, in case of interest in non-stock types, please contact us at info@soselectronic.com.

Don’t you want to solder leads to PCBs anymore? Mini PCB connectors will solve it - [Link]

22 Oct 2012

Circuit board assembly at SMA’s German factory - [Link]


21 Oct 2012

electronprojects.blogspot.ie writes:

Unit is based on Arduino Atmega328P MCU, with over 430 UV LEDs. The PCB board is made using Toner transfer method and isn’t perfect. It was just too big and I was too lazy to do it again. However, marker here, scratch it there and it it good enough.

The unit itself is on single sided copper clad board, no additional cables, no narrow paths (except for one for power on the MCU). Design is straight forward. It’s designed to be powered from 12V source (computer) and take around 2,7Amps @ full power which means around 30Watts.

DIY UV Exposure Unit with LED and Arduino - [Link]





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