Rigid-Flex Circuit Boards Pros And Cons
The early process of Rigidflex PCB board is use connector or hotbar process to connect two PCBs with flex board.This combination with the flex board and rigid PCB process is time-consuming and laborious, so customers transfer the assembly to PCB manufacturer to make rigid-flex PCB.
In addition to the price, the use of Rigid-flex Board has many advantages, listed as follows:
1.It can effectively save the space on the circuit board and save the use of the connector or the HotBar process,Because of flex PCB and rigid PCB get together, so that require the use of connectors or HotBar process space can be saved, saved space is very important for some high density board,it also saved the cost of using the parts of the connector or the cost of the HotBar process. In addition, the space between the two pieces of the board can also become more compact because it saves the connector.
2.The distance of the signal transmission is shortened and the speed is increased, and the reliability can be improved effectively.
The traditional transmission of the signal through the connector is circuit board —>connector—>flex board—>connector—>circuit board. The signal transmission of rigid-flex PCB is reduced to the circuit board—>flex PCB—> circuit board.The distance between signal transmission is shorter, and the problem of signal transmission attenuation between different media is also reduced.The wiring on the general circuit board is copper material, and the contact terminal of the connector is gold-plated. The solder joints are plated with tin, and solder paste is applied to the printed circuit board. The transmission of signals between different metal will be attenuated.If we change to rigid-flex boards, these media will become less, and the ability of signal transmission can also be improved.
3. Simplifying the assembly of products and saving the time of assembly
The use of rigidflex PCB can reduce the time of SMT process, because the number of connectors is less.It also reduces the time for the assembly of the whole machine, because it saves the assembly of the flex board into the connector, or saves the process of the HotBar. It also reduces the cost of part management and inventory, because the BOM table is reduced, so management becomes less.
The disadvantage of rigid-flex PCB:
After comparison,the biggest weakness is that rigid-flex PCB boards is more expensive.The cost is nearly doubled than flex PCB +rigid PCB.But if the price of the connector is deducted or the cost of HotBar, the price is likely to be same. Another disadvantage is that both SMT and carrier may need to use a tray (carrier) to support the part of the flex board, which virtually increases the assembly cost of the SMT.
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