I've made synth protoboards for Kosmo & Eurorack, care to review my first real hardware release?

So, I had some of @analogoutput’s protoboards printed, and they’re cool right? But I’m cheap as hell and I thought I could stack up two of those bad boys to gull the fab into giving me ten for the price of five.

Plus in addition to being cheap, I’m lazy, so I wanted a different configuration of power rails that cuts down on wiring.

Behold:

And it’s designed so you can do this:

Revision 1 had minor issues (mostly in the silkscreen), so I made a revision 2, I’m 99% sure it will work just fine but I had to remake some traces (I removed the 4mm space in the center).

This is my first real hardware release intended for use by others: care to take a look and tell me what you think? Not just the board design itself, but also the docs. I want my stuff to be as user-friendly and foolproof as possible.

I might not take immediate action on your feedback, but it will probably be useful for future projects.

And if you feel like gambling a whole 7 of your hard-earned currencies, maybe you’ll want to try out having some printed, at your own risk?

Note that the CC-BY-NC-SA license is a deliberate choice that was not made out of a lack of education about what it entails. I will not debate or negotiate it.

Okies, enough preamble, here’s the stuff:

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Just my two cents (may not be worth even that).

  • Why not highlight multiple of 5 instead of numbers congruent to 1 modulo 5?
  • Why not have a V-score or slot to help separation of the two boards?
  • It seems to me that the gaps for solder bridges could be narrower.
  • I’d maintain the 100mil spacing of holes everywhere, including in the gap bellow ICs. You could put two busses shortable by solder bridge.

Once you add a V-score to a small order, they bump up the price such that it’s just as expensive as buying double the amount, maybe even more. I also expect half of the boards will be used intact, a V-score would not let me run the power and a few traces between halves.

Also, there’s definitely room for two rows in the center, but I wanted to have the ground easily available to both pad groups.

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Revision 2 of my protoboards are here! Looking perfect, but I haven’t tested them yet, just checked continuity.

Revision 1 was already working well but had some mistakes on the silkscreen so I wanted to order version 2 to confirm it’s safe to have yours printed. The files on the github repo are for that revision, i’ll update it soon with ready-to-use gerbers and updated photos.

2 Likes