Finally completed laying out and ordering part for my upcoming project. I’ll release more details about what it is later, should be exciting.
I had my PCBs made by www.pcbcart.com, my current design uses a 4 layer board, so it’s impossible for me to fab them at home. Short of some communication issues, I think they are fairly good, their lead times are (at your choice) 15 or 18 days (that includes ship time to you) and the prices are pretty reasonable (my board was about 80x60mm and it costs about USD$50 for each). There’s a 1 time tooling cost to generate the artwork (they accept EAGLE files and an operator will put out gerber files for you) and create the stencils+whatnot.
Although I can’t say their command of English was perfect (I had some trouble conveying my requirements across), but eventually I got them sorted. Their email response is fast and if they encounter a problem they’ll message you straight away for a confirmation instead of producing a bad board.
Electrical testing is also provided free as well, which is a good bonus, not cool if your board arrives with an inter-layer short.
As for the parts, well I ordered this time from Digikey, www.digikey.com, instead of my usual RS-components (I use them cause they provide next day delivery, however this time they didn’t have quite a fair bit of the parts I was looking for).
From the ground up my design was based on whatever Digikey had in stock, no point trying to put in a component that’s not easily available. They also do shipping free if your order is over like USD$100 (Might not be the actual figure, gotta check again). Shipping was fast as well, parts actually came before the board.
I’ve yet to receive the boards, so I can’t comment on PCBcart’s quality, but from what I’ve heard/read they are supposed to be not bad. Will update again. Until then….