Sumarizing experience - Comparing manufacturers

So been ordering PCB’s off a couple of the large manufacturers at this point.
Comparing the major ones and i picked Aisler as i couldn’t find any european thinking this service would deliver faster…

So i set up to order on a 8 day rotation not raelizing the shipping would go with DHL rather than a proper express shipping for the cost of 20 euros. Which tbh is really high comparing to the others for 3 boards where you get 5-6 at the competition.

If ontop of that compare the customization on the boards at Aisler the only “benefit” ive seen so far is the ability to pull in the PCB file straight into the site not needing to deal with Gerbers…

But atm, the price - is the SAME as if it were ordered with JLCPCB - incl. tax, tolls and shipping for less boards, less options for the manufacturing processes as colors, and finishes.

On top of that… after the 8 days the boards got shipped, and so far it has taken about 14 days for the PCB’s to get from Germany to Sweden. Which is kinda funny as it would prob been faster to bicycle down to germany and pick em up and go back home again. And most likely cheaper…

As of date, i will most likely not buy or recommend anyone to use Aislers service again. Most likely discourage people from doing so publicly until there is some changes done to pricing model, shipping costs and volumes included in the price. (All of these can be balanced so).

Too bad, cuz there would be great to have a reliable prototyping source in Europe… But i wouldn’t call this reliable. or efficient.


Hi there,

thank you for this comprehensive summary! We’d love to improve further on your feedback. Could you elaborate a bit on which other manufacturers you tried and about the quality you received from them and from us?
What makes me a bit curious, is there a reason you did not wait for the actual delivery? As far as I can see your order was delivered just yesterday.

Looking forward,

I was getting it delivered… It just took ages getting from Germany to Sweden, Where it normally takes 2-3 days from China to Sweden for the same price.

But sure. I tried, PCBWay, JLCPCB, PCBPower, Lion Circuits, Multi Circuit and Euro Circiuits…
For most of them price is quite high in the comparison “what you get what you pay for”… So most are in the range ofr 30-60 euros

But for the board now that you looked at i suppose The price has been as follows
5 boards at PCBWay; 23 euros incl shipping (4 days)
5 boards at JLCPCB; 34 euros incl shipping (2 days)
3 boards at PCBPower; 63 euros incl shipping ( 8 days )
2 boards at Euro circuits; 68 euros - not even showed up, prob. eaten by the package monster.
( note that euro circuits can do PCB file import like Aisler).
3 boards at Aisler; 39 euros including shipping (13 days in totalt)

Atm, i would say JLCPCB is the winner from a Quality, finishing, shipping and total price aspect.

2 out of three boards from Aisler had shorts between the layers due to the design - that i knew is prone to it (don’t design stuff like that) :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:
No shorts at competitors.

I just had hopes, and i think you guys will prob. improve over time like most businesses. :slight_smile:

Good point! What would be the top three things you would improve at us?

Could you write me a DM with the order number of the order which had shorts? Right now I only find one order on your account but maybe I am looking at the wrong account.

It is correct, one order to compare multiple vendors.

Improvement points

  1. Shipping costs, it doesnt make sense for 3 boards weighing less than 50g to cost 20 euros to ship anywhere within europe. If you are still paying running tariffs you need to get a logistics agreement with a larger shipping provider where you can ship on bulk and daily pickups rather than by envelope. (This is ecommerce one o one, there is a reason companies can do free shipping).

  2. Point testing boards, verify designs before put in production giving it 20s before pushed out will prob. have you guys as professionals catch 90% of the weird stopping it and notify the customer. As you are panelizing it anyway (i noted the tabs) you are handling the gerber files

  3. Customizable finishes - there is nothing more boring than the standard green PCB for prototypes. Especially if you wanna sell the boards as OSHW in the future. Also being able to choose how vias is handled, filled, exposed etc is prob more interesting than a pick and place service for components that is arguable - a shit ton more expensive buying thru your checkout process than in rolls by your own… as a private consumer even.

I think overall - pricing is the major drawback, you got a polished site a polished community, but a racked up price for what is delivered which essentially can be challenged by the Asian vendors atm - and they are winning both on quality and price.

The BIG and i mean huuuge benefit… is that you are located in Europe. Leverage that fact and challenge lead times and shipping - and quality aside that is a winner. But when its faster to get more for same price in 2 days door to door - makes it hard to pick this over another vendor.

But i know, China, India is hard to compete with on the manufacturing side of things these days.
All the best… Will prob try you out again down the road. :slight_smile:

  1. I cannot comment on the specific pricing models as I am doing the engineering and not accounting etc. But I know that we have a harder time in Germany than companies in Asia getting good volume pricing. But you are right, there is room for improvements.

  2. We do automatic testing of all PCBs “Smart Tests” and display them on the project page. If we find an error, you will be E-Mailed and provided with a Test Report. Given your Overall good Layout and Clearance, we are surprised about your findings. Did you test an empty PCB using a multimeter to rule out other factors? Our probe testing found no errors.

  3. Finishes are a surprisingly complex topic. We are currently planning on extending our portfolio, but a lot of engineering and changes to our software are needed. Additionally, there is not so much demand for colors other than green and white in Europe, this would mean we would need to pool longer to achieve a competitive price.

One note from my side regarding 1), we offer free shipping worldwide with shipping times often comparable to the tracked shipping option (which you selected). So in total there are three options, free, tracked and UPS Express.

  1. Oki, yeah Germany is tough in that regard - funny enough then that DHL Express from China is faster than DHL - well from Germany, that i know is not exactly the same company as its split up in multiple entities (my background is ecommerce on the systems side).

  2. I tested both on empty pcb’s between contact pads and with a soldered up piece in a test jig otherwise i wouldnt have found it

  3. Allright! Didn’t realize - thats my bad. I just got into making pcbs thru a vendor its why im trying out all i can find. :rofl: I usually do em thru screen printing and dry films - which takes a bit of hand work…and not fun for… 200 of em :joy:

I never seen a free shipping option in your checkout? Screenshot?

All i see is Standard or UPS

It’s not required to select any of these Add-Ons :wink: I know, that’s bad design, there will be a new checkout experience the next weeks.

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hahah… yeah that makes NO sense from a UX perspective… Like unchech the standard - don’t call it standard and call it “premium / express” instead… dear lord… My clients would have my head for a thing like that… But good to know… That would have cut the - cost of a prototype testrun, drastically…

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