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  • Writer's pictureJack Lo

What Is SMT and How Can It Help Me?

At COFAN, we don't just design and manufacture PCBs, we also assemble them too! Offering assembly is a way for us to offer you a one-stop shop for PCBs and so that there's one less headache and risk in your manufacturing/production/supply chain.

For most applications, SMT is the preferred method of assembly.

What is SMT?

SMT stands for surface-mount technology. Instead of using through holes, components are mounted directly on the surface of PCBs. Common components mounted on include capacitors, resistors, and transistors.

Why use SMT?

Using SMT assembly means lower costs, higher component density, weight savings, noise reduction, and faster manufacturing time (no drilling required).

Cost reduction: Less drilling, a simplified assembly process, and cost-efficient.

Higher component density/size reduction: SMT means that components can be placed closer together for higher density or a size reduction of the board. Components can also be placed on both sides of the board, and the lack of through holes can further reduce the size of the board.

Weight savings: SMT components are usually lighter than through-holes, which is especially important for hand-held devices.

Noise reduction: Lower resistance and inductance due to SMT's compact size means less noise and better high frequency performance.

No drilling: While you can have a hybrid with SMT and through holes, for most applications, it's one or the other, and SMT boards do not require drilling which reduces manufacturing time.

Fewer mistakes: SMT auto-corrects slight misalignments through the surface tension of molten solder. Through holes, if misaligned even slightly, cannot shift once the leads are through the holes and would require a rework.

Why not use SMT?

The small amount of space between components make it harder for repairs, it's

Not suited for extreme heat or stress. For PCBs that need to withstand a lot of mechanical stress, through holes or a hybrid are recommended.

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