Low Volume vs. High Volume PCB Assembly Why You Need to Know the Difference

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PCBs are an important part, or you can say a necessary part of every electronic device. Without a PCB, no electronic device would work. Different devices have different types of PCBs. The assembling process will be somehow the same but in different quantities.

The assembling quantity of PCBs depends on the market's requirements. The mounting of PCB components on bare boards in a handful of quantities like 250 or maybe even less is known as low-volume PCB assembly.

On the contrary, if the PCB assembling quantity is 1000 or sometimes more than 1000, it would be called high-volume PCB assembly.

Reasons to choose low-volume PCB assembly

The following are the reasons to choose low-volume PCB assembly:

Easy troubleshooting process

When you are getting low-volume PCB assembly manufacturing going on, and if any bug is spotted in the manufacturing process, it gets easier to troubleshoot. You will be able to find the problem and sort it out. When you are not manufacturing PCBs in larger quantities, it gets easier to solve the problem than manufacturing PCBs in large quantities.

The number one reason you have to consider low-volume PCB assembly is easy troubleshooting, so you don't spot any fault in the outcome of the PCB assembly process.

Profitable option for PCB manufacturers

Well, you should know that the number of PCBs you manufacture will get sold within no time if you have chosen low volume PCB assembly option, and the price fluctuation in the market won't affect the prices of your PCBs.

You won't have to lower the prices of your product with the fluctuation in the market. It would be a profitable option for the manufacturer that they will sell their product within no time.

Make changes in the design easily

If you want to make any design in the design of the PCB, then it gets easier when you get low-volume PCB assembly. The number of PCB units will be 250, so you can change the design without worrying about anything.

The last reason for choosing low-volume PCB assembly is that whenever you want to make a little change in the design of the PCB, you can do that.

low-volume PCB assembly

Cons of low-volume PCB assembly

Following are the reasons why you shouldn't go for the low-volume assembly option:

Not an economical PCB assembly option

There is a major disadvantage of choosing low-volume PCB assembly, and that would be the manufacturing cost of the PCB. It is not going to be an economical option. You will have to do the testing and check the outcome to see whether everything has been done correctly. So, the testing will take time and more resources and experts.

Low-volume PCB assembly would be an expensive option compared to high-volume PCB assembly. So, consider before you decide which type of PCB assembly procedure you'd like to choose.

Criteria for the assembly process is difficult

The criteria before low-volume PCB assembly will take a lot of work. The electronic components you will be mounting on the PCB must go through a few procedures first. Once you get the green light from every side, you can start the low-volume PCB assembly.

Otherwise, the outcome might be flawed, and you will have to start from step one of checking the electronic components and then start the main process.

Reason to choose high volume PCB assembly

The following are the reasons to choose high-volume PCB assembly:

One-time design creation

Choosing high-volume PCB assembly will be an ideal option if you want to construct PCBs in larger quantities because you have an order. You can create the design one time, and then you can manufacture 10000 units at a time. You won't have to test the design repeatedly because you will get the same outcome for every PCB.

The first benefit of high-volume PCB assembly is that it is easy to design and manufacture PCBs.

For the best and error-free outcome

Another benefit of high-volume PCB assembly is that the technicians check every detail of the PCB design with all their focus to get the perfect outcome. So, the possibility of any error taking place in the outcome of the PCB would be minimized compared to low-volume PCB assembly.

You can consider a high-volume PCB assembly process for error-free outcomes and large manufacturing of PCBs.

Short manufacturing time

You don't have to make changes repeatedly when manufacturing PCB boards of the same design. Everything will be automated once you start the process of manufacturing. So the manufacturing time for high-volume PCB boards would be much less than low volume PCB boards.

Short manufacturing time means you can build more units and sell them in the market. Plus, you don't have to check everything unit because the outcome would be the same.

Consistent outcome of every single board

If you need the same PCB design but in a larger quantity, then high-volume PCB assembly is a considerable option. You will get a consistent outcome for every PCB if the product is manufactured in about 1000’s numbers.

It would be the best option only if you are going to complete a big consignment for a company and you are going to manufacture all the PCBs in the same design. It would take less time to manufacture the same PCBs.

Economical option for PCB manufacturing

How high volume PCB assembly an economical option for you? Well, you don’t have to test the PCBs again and again. You have to design the PCB once, and then, with the help of automation, you can complete the PCB order. No electronic components will have to undergo testing before the process starts, like low-volume PCB manufacturing.

So, consider this option if you are low on budget or want to manufacture the same PCB design in larger quantities. The technicians will have to check the design and components just once before manufacturing PCBs starts. After that, there would be no need to test the boards.

Complete orders in less period

With high-volume PCB assembly, you can go for larger orders because you can manufacture PCBs in larger quantities. It will benefit your business if you want to make good money by spending less time and money on the whole PCB assembly process. You have to prepare the design once and then go with the manufacturing procedure after getting the green signal from your client.

Cons of high-volume PCB assembly

Following are the reasons why you shouldn't go for high-volume PCB assembly:

Fluctuation in prices of PCB

When you manufacture PCBs in larger quantities, then it will take time before you sell all of them. With time the prices would go up and down. You will also have to keep changing the price of your product. If the prices go down, then you will have to sell your unit at a lower price. You might have to face a little loss.

A disadvantage of manufacturing PCBs in larger quantities is that you might not get the same price for all of your PCBs.

Demand fluctuation in the market

The demand for the product will increase and decrease in the market. What if the demand decreases, and you still have 1000 units left in your stock? So, you will have to sell them at low prices while paying for the loss. So, the market demands are unpredictable, and you should know that you would be taking a huge risk by choosing a high-volume PCB assembly option. So, you have to make the decision here wisely after considering the current market situation.

The shorter life span of PCB

The last disadvantage of getting high-volume PCB assembly would be the product's life span. The maximum you will be able to sell the product for 1 or 1 and a half years. After that, you will have to replace the older product with a newer one. So, you can imagine the loss you will have to pay if you don't successfully sell your product in that specific period.

high-volume PCB assembly

Difference between low-volume and high-volume PCB assembly

The only difference between low-volume and high-volume PCB assembly is the number of products manufactured. The number of PCB assemblies in low-volume PCB assembly will be 250 or less.

In high-volume PCB assembly then, the number of assembling PCBs will be 1000 or maybe 10000. So, there is only this number difference between these two types of PCB assembly. We have talked about these two PCB assembly processes quite in detail above.

You can go for the low-volume assembly if you want to make more profit, but high-volume PCB assembly would be a better option if you need the product in larger quantity and the outcome has to be the same.

Final Remarks:

Low- and high-volume PCB assembly manufacturing processes are used to build PCBs in different quantities. Manufacturers use high-volume PCB assembly whenever they have to construct PCBs in larger quantities depending on the order of the PCBs.

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