I noticed a few recent articles about ordering PCBs from Gold Phoenix of China and thought I would add to the discussion. I just got a set of boards from Gold Phoenix and they look great. My father (an RF Engineer) and I are working on a Arduino controlled Signal Generator. We did the design, layout and ordered the boards. I took several pictures of the raw boards and a finished, but not yet tested, Arduino SigGen1 Shield board. The Arduino SigGen1 Shield is more then a signal generator, it has a log amp input so it can do gain vs. frequency sweeps. I am testing the hardware now and will be creating the Arduino software after that. Take a look at the board and let me know what you think.
There is something magical about having your hobby design made into PCBs. It really makes you proud. Just look at that pile of boards. Ahhhh….
The picture above shows the component side of the SigGen1 shield board. The row of pins at the top mate with the Arduino Compatible Bare-Bones Board. I snapped this picture just after I soldered on the high speed Op-Amp, U4. As you can see, most of the parts are surface mount.
The populated board is shown above mounted atop an Arduino, ready for testing. The first problem I found was that I installed the 50MHz oscillator backwards. I used a hot air gun to remove and replace the part.
I plan to have a companion PC program that controls the Arduino SigGen1 shield providing Bode plots and control over the frequency synthizier. Of course I want to release this as an open source design, hardware, firmware and software but I don’t know if anyone is interested. Please leave a comment if you have any interest in this design.
The board is not running yet, I will update as I make progress.