Printed circuit boards, or PCBs, have become an integral part of electronic equipments. A typical PCB contains a large number of active and passive components connected together through traces on the board. With the availability of very small-size electronic components, it is possible to develop large circuits on small PCBs.
Low Electronic Noise
When properly laid out, a PCB minimizes electronics noise that could significantly degrade performance. The electrical components on a PCB are organized in such as way that the path lengths of the electrical current between them are minimized, leading to low radiation and pickup of electromagnetic waves. This ensures lower cross-talk between components and between different traces, which is a major concern in electronic circuits.
Ease in Diagnostics and Repair
PCBs are helpful in performing diagnostics for a number of reasons. The components and their polarities on a well-designed PCB are clearly labeled on the board, which is convenient for installation as well as repair. For diagnostics, one often needs to trace signal paths, which would be very difficult to perform if the traces were not exposed and well organized.
A typical PCB contains a large number of electronic components, most of which are very small in size. Without a PCB, it would be nearly impossible to connect such components together with wires. A PCB provides a convenient platform to arrange the electronic components in a compact and efficient way. This compactness allows development of large and complicated electronic circuits in small form factors, taking less space in devices.
Immunity to Movement
Since components on a PCB are held fixed to the board by solder flux, they do not move, irrespective of the movement of the board. This enables the electronic circuit to be placed in devices that are moving or shaking without worrying about the possibility of component displacement and subsequent electronic short circuits.