A PCB prototype is a circuit board that houses the electronic components of a circuit. It is commonly used before a circuit is ready for mass production. The prototype is used for testing the circuit initially to detect and correct any inefficiencies in the circuit. The board holds the physical components while connecting them electronically through conductive pathways that are etched from copper sheets placed on non-conductive substrates. Assembled boards are also called PCBs.
Three types of PCBs are available: single-sided, double-sided and multi-layered. Components on a PCB are connected either using ‘through hole technology’ or using ‘surface mount technology’. The non-conducting surface of a PCB is normally either fibre glass reinforced epoxy resin or paper reinforced phenolic resin with a copper foil or layer bonded on one or both sides. Computer-aided design (CAD) software is used to print circuit layout on the board. The space between the conducting paths is 1mm or less and components are connected on the board.