For anyone interested in ordering some PCBs, I recently sampled a few PCB manufacturers to compare pricing. The sample PCB I used was from the 4-way traffic signal project. I've added some components to it, opto-isolator, bridge rectifier, capacitor and voltage regulator, in addition to existing components. The final PCB ended up being fairly large, about 80mm x 68mm (approx. 3-1/4" x 2-3/4").
| ||PCB Estimated Costs|| || || || || || |
|Qty||PCB Supplier||PCB Size (2 Layer Std)||Cost||Shipping|| ||Totals||Cost Per PCB|
|5 *||JLCPCB - 5 PCBs||80mm x 68.1mm||$2.00||$5.24|| **||$7.24||$1.45|
|10||JLCPCB - 10 PCBs||80mm x 68.1mm||$5.00||$6.48|| ***||$11.48||$1.15|
|10||SEEED - 10 PCBs||80mm x 68.1mm||$3.92||$11.08|| ||$15.00||$1.50|
|10||PCBWAY - 10 PCBs||80mm x 68.1mm||$5.00||$8.00|| ||$13.00||$1.30|
|5 *||ALLPCB - 5 PCBs||80mm x 68.1mm||$13.00||$10.00|| ||$23.00||$4.60|
|10||ALLPCB - 10 PCBs||80mm x 68.1mm||$14.00||$12.00|| ||$26.00||$2.60|
|3||OSHPark - 3 PCBs||80mm x 68.1mm||$42.40||$0.00|| ||$42.40||$14.13|
|12||OSHPark - 12 PCBs||80mm x 68.1mm||$169.60||$0.00|| ||$169.60||$14.13|
* = JLCPCB and ALLPCB are 5 PCBs as default quantity. ** = Best - Per PCB for 5. *** = Best - Per PCB for 10.
Some places offered a default quantity of 5 PCBs and others offered 10. I upped the quantities to 10 at the places using 5 as their default for fair comparison with the others. As far as I could determine, OSHPark offers PCB quantities in increments of 3 only. All are located in Asia except OSHPark, which is located in the US (I believe they also have their PCBs made in the US).
I have used OSHPark, JLCPCB and SEEED, all had very good quality PCBs and I have had good results with them. I have not used PCBWay or ALLPCB. Shipping times from the suppliers I have used are all similar and will usually take 2-3 weeks when using their standard shipping, their least expensive shipping method. The Asian suppliers also offer PCBs in several colors at no extra cost, but choosing a non-standard color adds 3-4 days to the PCB manufacturing process. They also offer Expedited DHL (or other carriers) shipping at additional cost over their standard shipping rates.
I have used JLCPCB the most. JLCs shipping prices seem to sometimes vary a bit with different quantities. I have also noticed that sometimes selecting greater quantities can actually lower the pricing, so pricing seems to fluctuate as well. I have never ordered more than 20 PCBs at one time. Pricing and shipping on my lot of 20 was inline with increases in quantity prices and shipping costs shown above.
OSHPark offers free shipping as standard, and their shipping is pretty fast once they get the PCBs back from manufacturing. One thing to watch for on the Asian PCB manufacturers is shipping selections when you check out. They usually have Expedited DHL shipping selected as the default so unless you want them faster, be sure to change that to the least expensive shipping selection.
Lastly, to be fair to OSHPark, they can be very competitive and cost much less than any of the others if you are ordering small PCBs. I didn't compare sizes to see where they became the most competitive, but I am guessing it's somewhere around one to two square inches in size. If you have small PCBs they are definitely worth checking out and can be very inexpensive at OSHPArk.
Edit: Thought of a couple more things here: Currently (as of this post) the Asian PCB makers all offer their default pricing for PCBs up to 100mm x 100mm in size. The prices start going op for anything larger.
Also, some of the Asian suppliers are offering free or discounted PCB assembly for a small quantity of PCBs, one site offered this service free for 5 PCBs. I'm not sure if this is a one time deal or what on assembly, but I suspect it might be a limited time offer to get you to try their assembly service?
I've never tried doing this and am not exactly sure how to go about it, so I didn't pursue any of the details for these services on any of the sites. However, this might be a good option if you want to use very small Surface Mount parts on your PCBs. I also believe you have to use their parts for this offer as well, but I didn't check into that either.