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Understanding Cost Drivers

Understanding Cost Drivers

Understanding common cost drivers prior to beginning your design can be invaluable when trying to build a reliant but cost effective circuit.

Basic Cost Drivers

  • Material Utilization
  • Layer Count
  • Basic Complexity: Avoid anything less than 3/3 mil spacing with 5 mils on outer layers of rigid-flex, vias smaller than 8 mils, or lines/spacing in relation to the length of the trace
  • Multiple surface finish requirements
  • Special Material: Consider the polyimide cores you’re selecting. Non-standard core thicknesses will be more expensive along with thicker kapton or copper
  • Special stiffener materials: Standard stiffener material is FR4. There is additional costs ceramic or metal material

Cost Adders

  •  Blind/Buried Vias
  •  Via Fill and Via-in Pad
  •  Class 3 which requires serialization, multiple cross sections, coupons, and outside lab testing
  •  Laser processing needed with microvias, laser skiving, masked defined pads, and tight tolerances
  •  New Technology and Materials