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Purple PCB-Outstanding And Attractive Quality

When selecting a printed circuit board, it is crucial that you choose the right colors for the solder mask.


The boards come in a wide range of colours including the traditional green, blue, white, yellow, black and purple. In this post, we shall look at Purple PCB colors.


When selecting a printed circuit board, you must choose the right colors for the solder mask.

The boards come in a wide range of colors, including traditional green, blue, white, yellow, black, and purple. In this post, we shall look at Purple PCB colors.

What is Purple PCB

1. What is Purple PCB

Typically, the color of the PCB comes from the solder mask. A purple PCB is one whose solder mask is purple, this color is not standard, so it may require that you place an order with your manufacturer to have purple PCBs supplied. Manufacturers offer different standards and may charge differently depending on the order placed.

In most cases, you may need to pay a premium when you place an order for a purple PCB. However, most users prefer green PCBs even though there is no restriction on the color chosen. It is all about what you like and your preferences. Different people use different colors depending on the use they want to put the PCB to. However, most users find working with white or black solder masks challenging because it is difficult to see the traces when troubleshooting

Purple PCB.jpg

2.About PCB

Even though it is essential to note that there is always a difference between solder masks used in special situations, for instance, in high impedance circuits, specific colors may be chosen to reduce leakage, characterized by impedances. Also, there are cases where colors must be avoided. For instance, there are cases where a transparent PCB is required. In such a case, it may be necessary that you choose one that can serve your needs.

It is also possible to work with a PCB with mixed colors. However, you need to make a particular order from the manufacturer. Such PCBs may be costly and may require that you dig deeper into your pocket.  

The other benefit of using colored PCBs is using solder mask colors such as red and purple to test your PCB’s functionality. Using boards with different colors may be critical if you don’t want to get confused.

Why Select a Purple PCB?

There are several reasons for selecting a purple PCB. For instance, you may employ a purple PCB because you want your product to stand out and appear more unique, especially if you’re using a clear design. 

People often associate the color purple with creativity, wisdom, regalness, creativity, femininity, and luxury. You may also want your products to evoke the same emotions. Purple is also generally a visually striking color. Technicians working with complex circuitry may have an easier time finding your purple PCB as it contrasts against other green, matte and metallic colors.

How are Purple PCBs Created?

Purple PCBs are created much the same way other PCBs are. First, they undergo a design process to determine the structure and layout. Designers use complex pieces of software to achieve this. 

Next, the fabricator picks and sources the necessary materials. This includes copper for the conductive layers and traces, the substrate, which typically consists of a reinforced fiber-glass material (FR-4), and the solder mask. You could consider the solder mask as the most important component of the fabrication process, as the purple PCB gets its distinctive color from it.

The engineers and designer review the PCB layout and then print it out onto the substrate. Next, they apply and bond a copper layer to the substrate and etch it to remove excess copper. Finally, they apply the purple solder mask before drying, cleaning and performing final tests and inspections. If you want a more detailed overview of the PCB fabrication process, please visit our guide.     

Printed Circuit Board Red Stock Photo        

Printed Circuit Board Red Stock Photo        

Best Material for Purple PCB Fabrication

As with most PCBs, purple PCBs don’t just use FR-4 material. However, this is the most common material in PCB fabrication. Manufacturers can also employ paper board substrates that use FR-1, FR-2, and FR-3-based material. In addition to these compounds, you can also find purple PCBs that consist of polyester resins, polyimide resins, and epoxy resins.    

Manufacturers can also use a combination of these materials to form composite boards (CEM-1 and CEM-2). Ultimately, Purple PCBs use the same material that other colored boards use. Judging the quality of the board requires more than just assessing the type of material it uses.    

Different Types of Purple PCB

Single-sided PCBs aren’t the only types available to you. As with most coloured PCBs, you can find purple PCBs in a variety of types and form factors. These include rigid-flex, flexible, multilayer, double-sided and rigid PCB.  

Plating Methods for Purple PCBs

The four most common plating methods that manufacturers use for purple PCBs are as follows:

  • Through/Thru-hole plating
  • Reel linkage plating
  • Brushing plating
  • Finger plated plating

You can learn more about these techniques from our PCB plating guide.

Modern Electronics Research Development Facility  

Modern Electronics Research Development Facility  

Difference Between Standard Purple PCBs and Heavy Copper Purple PCBs

Should you select a standard purple PCB or pay a bit more for a heavy copper purple PCB? To answer this question, you must know the difference between the two.

The standard purple PCB only uses a small amount of copper. Whereas its heavy copper counterpart uses a large amount. 

Consequently, heavy copper purple PCBs are a lot thicker and weigh more than standard purple PCBs. Heavy copper purple PCBs can use up to as much as 115 grams of copper. On the other hand, standard copper PCBs use just 28 grams.

As a result, standard PCBs are more compact. However, heavy copper purple PCBs exhibit greater conductivity and thus are more suitable for applications that require intense loads. They also feature high-stress tolerance, which makes them more reliable.

How manufacturers fabricate standard and heavy copper purple PCBs also differs. For instance, heavy copper purple PCBs require differential etching and step plating, whereas standard PCBs use copper etching and plating.

Overall, heavy copper purple PCBs deliver superior heat distribution and greater tensile strength than the standard variety. However, heavy copper-purple PCBs tend to be more expensive. 

High Power Radio Frequency Printed Circuit 

High Power Radio Frequency Printed Circuit 

Alternatives to White Silkscreen Print for Purple PCBs

Each PCB has information printed on it. This information is used to mark components and display warning symbols, data codes, company logos, manufacturers’ marks and the PCB part number.  Manufacturers prefer to use white silkscreen, especially on purple PCBs because it tends to be more visible to the human eye. 

However, to add some prestige or uniqueness to the PCB, a manufacturer may elect to use a different color. For instance, they may use yellow, red, blue, black or even gold.  

Advantages and Disadvantages of Purple PCBs

As with anything, there are pros and cons related to using purple solder masks and PCBS. Some of the benefits are as follows:

  • Unique manufacturing branding opportunity
  • Purple PCBs offer superior component contrasting, making them easier to inspect
  • They do not yellow against lead-free soldering

Some of the drawbacks related to using purple PCBs include:

  • High costs
  • Purple PCBs may seem less credible than green PCBs
  • Silkscreen contrasting issues may make labels and markings (legends) harder to read

How to Make Color Commercial PCBs

Colored commercial PCBs can be made by lying them down using a screen-printer. The color may come from solder mask ink which is then cured. In such a case, photoimaging may be used to make gaps.

Notice that solder mask ink may come in a wide range of colors, but the trouble is that it may not be easy to change the colors since it requires that you clean the printing equipment and clean the ink, which will waste more time. Note that vendors may have a limited list of colors, and it may be necessary that you keep the printer settings for your colors.

Black and white solder mask should be avoided because they make it difficult to see the tracks. However, whether you choose purple PCB, black PCB, or green PCBs, it may not matter much since the differences may not be much.

Consequently, choosing among the PCBs that are already on the market may make your work easier.

Purple PCB.jpg
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Emma Lu
Our professional engineering support saves our customers a lot of trouble and loss. >>>>>> After you place the order, our engineer will conduct technical reviews to make sure the parts can be mounted well/correctly on the boards. We will check if the component packages match well with the Gerber footprints, if the part numbers you provided match well with the descriptions, and if the polarity is clearly marked. >>>>> When your design is ready, please send your Gerber and BOM so we can quote and start!