Integrating XMOS processors with custom PCB board designs

Technical discussions around xCORE processors (e.g. General Purpose (L/G), xCORE-USB, xCORE-Analog, xCORE-XA).
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jason
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Integrating XMOS processors with custom PCB board designs

Postby jason » Wed Oct 07, 2009 12:47 pm

I would be most grateful if anyone who has designed custom boards with XMOS processors could post about their experiences, what companies they used to get them made, typical costs, the general process etc. Please reply to this topic and the best posts I shall put in this top post.

Thanks in advance to anyone who contributes, even if it is just a link to a site that can help you design your own PCBs to point people in the right direction.

So far we have:

Places to get boards made

http://www.expresspcb.com/ - Very reasonable prices if you are ordering 2-3 of them or more, and they even provide the CAD software so you can design your board easily!

http://www.pcbcart.com or http://www.pcbtrain.co.uk - recommended by Leon_Heller

http://www.multipcb.com/ - suggested by Ale500 - not so cheap for small runs.

Comments from Adrenalynn:

"I'd comment on ExpressPCB and similar. They offer a good service, but I'm not fond of laying-out in non-standard tools.

KiCAD as mentioned is one standard tool, but I'm more well versed in EAGLE : http://www.cadsoft.de/

They have a free version, but it's limited to just a couple layers and small boards. Not going to squeeze a BGA part on there without going commercial. Their autorouter on the commercial version is very respectable. And some of the 3rd part 3D rendering tools are amazing for visualizing your board.

http://www.pcbpool.com I've heard that they're maybe getting too much work and slowing down a bit. True or not [shrug]

http://www.batchpcb.com/ Is who I use today for prototype/low number runs. Great pricing, good turn-around.

http://www.pcbunlimited.com will do board stuffing with BGA down to 12mil, I believe (I haven't looked at the spacing on the XMOS parts). I've used them to stuff some FPGAs for me. They'll do full kitted or partial kitted boards, and they do a pretty good job of it too."


Tutorials and examples

http://kicad.sourceforge.net/wiki/index ... i_tutorial is a good place to start for kicad. More comprehensive ones E.g. http://www.kicadlib.org/Fichiers/KiCad_Tutorial.pdf
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mikef
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Postby mikef » Sun Dec 13, 2009 3:49 am

Another place to get boards made is Gold Phoenix http://www.goldphoenixpcb.biz/ They have a 2-layer 155 sq inches for $99 special (including shipping) for a single design, and they'll do the panelize/depanelize for you. Turnaround is typically <10 days (I've often had boards in hand in 8 or 9 days). They also offer upgrades like adding different silkscreen color for $20. I've ordered about half a dozen times from them, great service each time.

-Fergs
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mikef
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Postby mikef » Sun Dec 13, 2009 3:53 am

Also, another great resource is this tutorial from Sparkfun: http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/tutori ... als_id=115 on making better PCBs. Lots of helpful tips on design, and, they have a very nicely tuned CAM file for creating Gerber output from EAGLE (implementing many of the tips).

-Fergs
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steven
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Postby steven » Sun Dec 13, 2009 11:28 am

For somewhat larger quantities (+10 pcs) and final designs, I'd recommend http://www.ourpcb.com. They charge a 50USD startup fee, but it is waived for reorders. Their price per sq. inch is on the low side, too. For quick quotes, they are available on MSN messenger, which according to me is a first in the industry :-P
Shipping is reasonably priced and pretty fast, seeing as they ship via DHL. Don't forget the VAT if you're not a business customer though.
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tautic
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Postby tautic » Mon Oct 04, 2010 1:53 pm

mikef wrote:Another place to get boards made is Gold Phoenix http://www.goldphoenixpcb.biz/ They have a 2-layer 155 sq inches for $99 special (including shipping) for a single design, and they'll do the panelize/depanelize for you. Turnaround is typically <10 days (I've often had boards in hand in 8 or 9 days). They also offer upgrades like adding different silkscreen color for $20. I've ordered about half a dozen times from them, great service each time.

-Fergs
I second this recommendation - I've had nothing but great results from gold phoenix so far. I'm starting to think about my first board to integrate XMOS, and will definitely use gold phoenix when i'm ready to have more than a few made.

For small quantities for a prototype run, I have had good success with http://www.batchpcb.com - they're a part of SparkFun and actually use gold phoenix to produce their boards. Last I checked, they offered both 2 layer and 4 layer boards for reasonable prices. Turn time is a bit slower, I usually see about 22 days on my 2 layer boards, but if you only need one or two and can wait, they're a good option.
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RogerH
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Postby RogerH » Tue Oct 19, 2010 3:27 am

Another good site with lots of information on PCB manufacture:

http://www.everythingpcb.com/

Cheers, Roger...
ale500
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Postby ale500 » Thu Jan 06, 2011 1:45 pm

I just sent my XS1-Stamp and mainboard design to HAKA, http://www.haka-lp.de. They have a 2 board run for 50 € for 160x100 mm. You can go down to 0.2 mm for traces and separations and holes down to 0.5 mm. Copper pour should have a separation of 0.3 mm (Zwillingsangebot).
Let's see when my boards show up how they look. I used them last year and I am quite satisfied with their work and prices. If they only did 0.125 mm things would go the BGA-way ;-)

Edit: Sorry about the link
Last edited by ale500 on Thu Jan 06, 2011 6:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Folknology
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Postby Folknology » Thu Jan 06, 2011 5:47 pm

The Haka link doesn't work for me can you check it?
Thanks it works now
Last edited by Folknology on Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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TonyD
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Postby TonyD » Fri Jan 07, 2011 10:13 am

Another one to consider is Seeedstudio. Their Fusion PCB service costs $40 for 10-pieces of 2 Layer 10cm*10cm.
Lejo
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Postby Lejo » Fri Jan 07, 2011 10:13 am

TonyD wrote:Another one to consider is Seeedstudio. Their Fusion PCB service costs $40 for 10-pieces of 2 Layer 10cm*10cm.
The price of Fusion PCB 10-pieces of 2 Layer 10cm*10cm prototype pcb is $9.9 now :)

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