Note: PCBway has a policy of paying people for reviews with discounts off future work. I have not accepted, nor will I accept, any such compensation for a review.
I ordered quantity 5 of my board for the solar bike controller. Specs for the board were as follows:
Here is the timeline for the order. Dates have been adjusted, since China is one day ahead of me:
- 31-OCT-2015, morning: Uploaded Gerber files to pcbway.com
- 01-NOV-2015, late evening: pcbway says audit complete, allows me to pay for order
- 03-NOV-2015, just after midnight: board is released to manufacturing
- 04-NOV-2015, 10:30 pm: manufacturing and testing done
- 04-NOV-2015, 11:00 pm: boards packaged
- 05-NOV-2015, 1:00 am: pcbway says boards shipped, gives tracking #
- 10-NOV-2015, morning: HK Post finally acknowledges the tracking number
- 12-NOV-2015: HK Post says the package left China
- 16-NOV-2015, 9:00 am: package arrives at my door
- pcbway appears to work 24/7, although certain steps like auditing layouts only occur at specific times.
- Price is unbeatable. $117 including shipping, for 5 relatively large boards. Nobody in the USA even came close.
- Quality is ok for hobby projects, especially boards that are not challenging. Use heavy lines for silkscreen, and try to avoid narrow traces and spacings. Silkscreen alignment was not very good. Solder mask alignment was acceptable, but not perfect.
- Turnaround time is not their strength, cost is. It was basically 3 days after Gerber submittal that they actually started making the board, and it took 2 days to make it. Then it took 11 days in shipment. Possibly a week could be shaved off the shipping time by paying for a faster carrier. And tracking would be better.