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Choosing the Right Board to Board Connector

Choosing the Right Board to Board Connector

Board-to-board connectors come in various pitches, densities and stack heights. Orientation options include vertical (mezzanine) or horizontal connections and perpendicular motherboard-daughter board connections.

Conductor pins, or terminals, are typically made of a copper alloy that is plated to improve conductivity and resist oxidation for long-term performance. A variety of specialized features are also available to suit specific needs.


The insulator (sometimes called the base) is an integral component in a board to board connector. It positions and spaces the contacts correctly, maintains voltage insulation resistance between the contact points and the shell, and is a key factor in the performance of a connector.

The base can be made from a variety of materials, and is often injection molded. This requires precise processing technology to ensure that the mold produces a consistent insulator. The material used determines the connector’s operating temperature, insertion force, and mechanical life. It must also pass a salt spray test to protect the connector from corrosion in corrosive environments.

Contacts are the conductive elements that transfer electrical energy between circuit boards. They may be metal plated to improve conductivity and anti-rust properties. Contacts are also rated for their resistance, insulation performance, and dielectric strength. The latter is the maximum voltage that the mated contact can handle without breaking down.

The shell is an outer cover that protects the built-in insulating base from physical damage and enables easy mounting of the connector to equipment. The shell can be made from plastic, epoxy, or metal. Some plastic shells are designed to be conductive, allowing them to conduct electricity across the surface of a PCB to power components. Others have low-profile designs for use in space-constrained devices.


Board-to-board connectors are an essential part of our technological world. They enable the transmission of high currents with minimal losses and provide a mechanically stable connection to printed circuit boards. They are available in a wide variety of packages, mounting styles, and pin pitches. They can also be made with different locking mechanisms. Choosing the right one for your application is essential.

The type of board-to-board connector you choose depends on the requirements of your application. For example, if hdi pcb you need to connect wires with different diameters, you should look for a connector with a wider pin pitch or different height options. Depending on your application, you may also need to consider polarization and keying features. These features ensure that the connector is inserted into its socket in the correct orientation and prevent damage to the mating device or the connections on either side of the connector.

There are two basic types of board-to-board connectors: surface mount and through-hole. Through-hole connectors are inserted into holes on the HDI PCB Supplier PCB, whereas surface-mount connectors are soldered directly onto the board. Regardless of the type you choose, it is important to verify that the pins are properly spaced and configured. This can be done using a tool like a board-to-board connector tool or a PCB design software program that has schematic symbols, footprints, and images of common connectors.


Board-to-board connectors are essential in many different applications and settings including data centre storage systems, industrial controls and high-speed trains. They transmit data at high speeds and require a durable connection that can resist a wide range of environmental tests.

Board to board connectors connect two PCBs together without the use of wires and come in a variety of configurations. For example, there are pin header and pin receptacle board to board connectors that allow for parallel or stacked connections between two boards. There are also straight and right angle types that enable boards to be connected vertically.

The type of board to board connector that is used depends on the application and the number of contacts needed. Some are designed to be plugged into an existing hole in the circuit board while others are surface mount and can be soldered directly on top of it. Both are available in various pitch, density, and stack heights.

Some board to board connectors are polarized and feature tabs that prevent them from mating with the incorrect orientation. These features are important for ensuring the connector can deliver the proper amount of current and power. Other features that are useful include the termination method and locking mechanism. The termination method determines how the item attaches to the circuit board and may include snap-on clips, screws, latches, or bayonet-style locks.


Pitch is the measure of distance between the centers of two pins in a connector. A smaller pitch means a higher density, while a larger pitch offers a lower density. The choice of pitch depends on many factors, including signal integrity and wire size. For example, high-speed board-to-board (BTB) connectors have a fine pitch of 0.5 mm or less to ensure high data transmission.

In general, BTB connectors can be grouped into four types: Through-Hole and Surface Mount Technology (SMT). Through-hole connections involve mounting the pin header on the PCB using drilled holes. Surface mount, on the other hand, involves placing the connector directly onto the PCB with soldering. Whether a connector is through-hole or SMT depends on the application.

For example, the FINEPITCH family of board-to-board connectors from Phoenix Contact is available with either through-hole or surface-mount technology. It also provides shielded and unshielded solutions for signal and data transmission. It also supports individual PCB orientations in all dimensions with different designs, stack heights, and numbers of positions in pitches ranging from 0.635 mm to 2.54 mm. Moreover, it supports mezzanine, coplanar connections, and mother-daughter cards.

In addition to pitch, other factors that determine the quality of a board-to-board connector include its housing material, stacking height, and pin count. Lastly, the type of termination inside a connector is another important factor. Connectors that handle significant power have crimped-on contacts, while those with less power are terminated by soldering the pins to the wire.