Production considerations

Hey all!

Since I am asking, I’ll toss this out…

Has anyone looked into the “full blast” production costs of a Hydra / Cerb based product? Obviously on a custom PCB a stripped down (non modular) version of these will be much cheaper than the full size boards… but how MUCH cheaper?

For one offs, or high intelligence applications where the final cost is high it isn’t much of an issue, but for those applications something like the Pi starts to make more sense. depending on final application. Ont he lower end, for those dedicated tasks the gadgeteer hardware can handle, it is interesting to contemplate the bare minimum component prices.


p.s. thanks to everyone for being so cool about my questions :slight_smile:


How many?

100? Then just call and ask for volume discount. Nothing custom

1000? Call and discuss options

10000? Custom board is better

100000? Custom board and custom firmware :slight_smile:

Interesting, I hadn’t thought of just asking you guys. Lets talk once I find out if I can do it at all on this platform. Whatever it is, it has to be cheaper than Pi :slight_smile:


I dunno. At 100 I’d be looking at a custom board, for a STM32/Cerb based product, anyway. The LQFP package is easy to work with, and there’s very little else that goes with it. Simple to hand-prototype, and simple to reflow, even with a very simple setup. For Hydra/SAM9 it’s a different ball game, because you have not only the RAM and flash but also that BGA processor to deal with.

The STM32 on the Cerberus is only $11.50 in ones, and in 100s you’re at $8.85. By 1k pieces you’re down in the $6.xx range. The thing has a pretty dang high performance/price ratio :slight_smile:

Building a custom board wit the Pi stuff is nigh-impossible for anyone without a highly advanced production line (I’d bet money GHI couldn’t do it), because of the weird stacked RAM-on-SoC thing they have. That, plus the fact that Broadcom is subsidizing the Pi, so they get cheaper prices on the SoC that an average person does.

Not really :slight_smile: Custom board design and prototype costs $10,000. That is $100 each if you are making 100 pcs. you may save on a “per unit” cost but the NRE is too high. Of course, at this cost, I am talking about commercial level custom designs and prototype, not DIY and “batch pcb” order with hand soldering :slight_smile:

How much was your bet? :slight_smile: Our production line is capable off doing 5mil BGAs with 0201 resistors and even PoP (package on package). Rated at 21,000CPH :slight_smile:

Basically, there is nothing that our line can’t do. Higher graded lines place faster but not better.

$250,000 buys you some cool toys :o

@ Gus - but does it make coffee? :slight_smile:

Wow, I’m very impressed. The PoP stuff is the real thing. If your line was available, even with the ARM9 stuff I’d probably want a custom board in the 1k range. Hopefully the board design would be less than $10k, I don’t value my time highly enough, apparently :wink:

No but watching it placing parts faster than your eyes can see is enjoyable while drinking coffee :slight_smile:

@ Gus - touché

The cost is not all “your time”. PCB samples cost hundreds and then sourcing needed parts is very time consuming and then PCB assembly in low volume is extremely expensive. Make a custom design on your own then go here and get an immediate quote and this is only for assembly!!

Wow, that’s more expensive than I would have guessed.

More reason to go with the Cerb. Get yourself a pair of tweezers, a good stencil and a toaster oven, and you’re off to the races :slight_smile:

Think of it this was, how much time you need to setup the machines to run 10 boards? I say 2 hours. Now, how much does $250K link cost you for 2 hours :slight_smile: