What is the difference between a PCB and PCBA?

What is the difference between PCB and PCBA?

PCB is a Printed Circuit Board. It’s an important electronic component, which is a support for electronic components and a carrier for electrical connections between electronic components.

As it is produced by printing the required image on the substrate, it is called a “printed” circuit board. It’s most commonly manufactured using copper clad epoxy resin / glass cloth compound.

The PCB is often made up of multiple layers with 4 and 6 being the most commonly used, dependant on the required number of signal layers.

So, what is PCBA?

PCBA stands for Printed Circuit Board Assembly and relates to the component placement onto the bare board  or PCB. Multiple electronic components are assembled to the circuit board and soldered into position.


A PCBA is a complete package; it has been fitted with all the necessary components and is ready for deployment for its desired purpose.

The components that are mounted into a PCB assembly can include capacitors inductors, resistors, diodes, triodes, modules, and BGA’s and many more.

PCBA therefore is the complete electronic assembly , whereas a PCB is purely the bare electronic circuitry.

At Exception, we provide PCB and PCBA as a one-stop service. If you want to discuss your requirements further, please contact our sales team on +44 (0) 1684 292448.

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