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assembled PCB ordering at JLCPCB & PCBWay, a comparison

December 2023

For assembled PCBs so far I only offered JLCPCB 'comptible' BOM & CPL files. Altough ordering at JLCPCB is quite easy, for an unexperienced user it can become a challenge:

- many options for PCB ordering

- Gerber, BOM and CPL files need to be manually uploaded

- often changed options/features on JLCPCB side which results in error messages

- sometimes components are not 'in stock' and must be preordered or replaced

PCBway offers a much more comfortable solution by providing a 'one click' order shielding all these things from the user. So I decided to make a testorder of my '7digit Bally' display both at JLCPCB & PCBWay, here are the results.


26.11.2023 issue of orders

JLCPCB: LED digits are not in stock, need to issue a preorder first

PCBWay: ordered, now in review at PCBWay


PCBWay: quotation completed. Ordered 5 boards.


JLCPCB: parts arrived in my personal part lib. Ordered 5 boards


PCBWay: mail: "We are going to solder components, see attached image of X1,X2,X3,X4,X5,X6,X7 FJ8106AH, the spacing on part is smaller, we will need to bend the legs and insert into holes, can you accept it?"

As it was minimal bend, I accepted it. Interestingly there was no feedback from JLCPCB on this matter, they just 'silently' bend the legs.


JLCPCB  PCBs delivered by carrier


PCBWay PCBs delivered by carrier


Not many differences. Assembled PCBs from JLCPCB & PCBWay looking quite similar, maybe the black color from PCBWay is a bit more polished. All 10 PCBs worked! On one JLCPCB component there was a 'solder bridge' which needed to be removed. See below pictures.

JLCPCB packaging
PCBWay packaging. Each display packed in an antistatic bag.
Displays front. (PCBWay display on bottom of picture)
Displays back. (PCBWay display on bottom of picture)

JLCPCB & PCBWay displays mixed in a Bally centaur. (Note: the credit display is a 6digit display with orange LEDs, hence the colour difference)
solder bridge on one JLCPCB display PCB which I needed to correct. All PCBWay displays were soldered ccorrectly.


For price comparison I choosed Fedex for shipping. An order consists of 5 displays which is the minimum order quantity. With shipping (to Germany) & VAT the overall costs were 90,10€ with JLCPCB and €103,37 with PCBWay.


Only marginal differences when looking to the end product. In my testorder the price was around 15% higher with PCBWay. A big plus for PCBWay is the 'one click' order possibility. So, step by step, I will issue more of my projects at PCBway, starting with the tested Bally 7digit display which you can find here: 7digit_Bally_display_at_PCBWay