Book Review: The Printed Circuit Board Designer’s Guide to… Producing the Perfect Data Package


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Recently, a variety of PCB industry experts have noted that the quality of data packages received from customers has never been worse. One expert at an IPC conference expressed alarm that, by his estimate, less than 10% of data packages submitted to PCB fabricators were complete and error-free. Meanwhile, many designers will do anything to avoid communicating with board shops and prefer only to use email.

Over the years, many designers have asked Mark Thompson, CID+, engineering support at Prototron Circuits, to write down his thoughts on design data packages. Over the course of his career, Thompson has evaluated thousands of data packages and delivered numerous talks to designers and engineers about how to create the perfect package. In the spirit of “garbage in, garbage out,” data packages must be perfect to create quality boards. Learn all this and more in The Printed Circuit Designer’s Guide to… Producing the Perfect Data Package!

PCB designers everywhere should read this book. Thompson’s valuable examples, tips, techniques, and tools could help save millions of dollars in scrapped boards by teaching designers how to think like a board fabricator. His insights will help eliminate common errors, such as missing NC drill files, drawings, and plating statuses, as well as count discrepancies, impedance callouts for traces that do not exist in the data, and much more.

Further, Mark explains which files are required for a great output package. He discusses some and simple tricks that can minimize the time your design spends in your board shop’s CAM department, such as eliminating IPC netlist errors, formatting files consistently, etc. Many of these issues could be minimized by a thorough design review of the output package before it is sent to the fabricator, and this book shows the designers how to do just that. There is also an excellent glossary and checklist at the end of the book.

What are you waiting for? If you are a PCB designer who wants to start saving your company time and money, and you’re serious about creating the best, most perfect data packages available today, do yourself a favor. Do not prepare another data package without first downloading and reading The Printed Circuit Designer’s Guide to… Producing the Perfect Data Package. It’s simple—the better the package, the better the board.

Click here to download your free copy of The Printed Circuit Designer’s Guide to… Producing the Perfect Data Package today!

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