PCB Prototypes: Quality in Evolving Designs

VSE Provides Experience and Responsiveness for Prototype Design and Assembly

Prototyping Icon

Customers expect great things when partnering with VSE: innovative design and manufacturing expertise combine to realize life-saving and life-changing devices. But just as “Rome wasn’t built in a day,” manufacturing requires iteration to optimize all aspects of performance and tweak the design for yield and quality purposes. VSE’s assembly processes incorporate the latest industry technology and decades of staff experience to inspire customers’ confidence for the most DFM-demanding designs. With VSE’s PCB prototypes, expect fewer revisions and faster time-to-market with an unyielding focus on manufacturing quality.

VSE Handles All Levels of Production Quantities

Proof of Concept Prototype Mass Production
Performance Low emphasis – functionality trumps performance Moderate – work in progress as design evolves High
Quality Low High Moderate (focus on per-board cost)
Volume Singular Low Moderate to High

VSE’s Quality Engineering & Manufacturing Services for PCB Prototypes

VSE brings the same manufacturing expertise to our prototype builds as we do with our production assemblies. Prototypes go through a rapid manufacturing process while receiving the same level of care and attention to detail that all our PCBAs get. What sets our prototyping service apart is how it is fast-tracked. Each prototype project receives a dedicated specialist who will walk the product through every step in the manufacturing process, from engineering and design input to the final deliverable.

VSE’s engineers are standing by to deliver real-time support if a prototype build needs additional design work. Understanding how essential your new products are, we welcome your engineers and designers to come and collaborate with us in person at our Silicon Valley facility. From consulting to complete redesigns, our engineers have the expertise to complete your build when needed. Whatever your project needs are, our entire prototyping team is ready to deliver the highest quality quick-turn PCBA.

The Prototype Manufacturing Process

VSE’s Rapid PCBA Manufacturing Process for Quick-Turn Prototypes

VSE’s prototyping service fast-tracks projects through manufacturing, meaning customers get their board back within days while maintaining all certified quality processes.

Engineering DFM Review

VSE’s engineering team begins every project assessment with a thorough design review to correct and anticipate future manufacturing challenges to accelerate turnaround times. A typical DFM review will identify end-of-life (EOL) components, layout enhancements, opportunities to maximize manufacturing efficiencies, and possible test strategies.

MRP & Kit Prep

The materials requirement planning team collaborates simultaneously with the initial engineering review. An NPI coordinator starts purchasing materials immediately and works with our component engineers on solutions to mitigate any parts issues that may impact your prototype build. Our engineers partner with you on any design changes to accommodate new components.

Board Fabrication

VSE immediately reviews bare board fab (Gerber) files for the quickest start on board fabrication. After approval, they’re sent directly to one of our local PCB fabrication partners. We partner with multiple quick-turn PCB vendors who meet our stringent quality, reliability, and timeline standards.

Assembly & Test

A dedicated prototype specialist assigned to the project follows the board’s progress through each step of the PCB assembly. This oversight continues as the board undergoes rigorous inspection and testing.

Completed Product Delivery

With a rapid NPI process, the conceptualized assembly production is completed quickly and ready for delivery. In most cases, the dedicated NPI specialist will hand-deliver the product. VSE provides a manufacturing output package including all applicable notes, ECOs, as-built drawings, test certifications and results, and other relevant documents. 

VSE’s Can Turnaround Prototype Boards in as Little as Three Days

For over forty years, we’ve partnered with customers from various industries, including medical equipment and biotechnologies, automotive, test & measurement, and semiconductors, to deliver cutting-edge PCB prototypes that work towards saving and changing lives. We’ve helped many companies rapidly develop and build innovative prototypes to get their products tested and ready for production on strict deadlines. Consult us for a quick prototype for testing, proof of concept, or larger production quantities.

If you are looking for a CM that prides itself on its care and attention to detail to ensure that each PCB assembly is built to the highest standards, look no further than VSE. Contact us today to learn more about partnering with us for your next project.

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