Home - Blog

7 Differences Between FR-4 Material and Rogers Material

As you may know, printed circuit boards play an essential role in nearly all electronic products that we use daily. Therefore, you need to keep at the back of your mind the right materials when it comes to manufacturing your printed circuit boards.

 

There are plenty of suppliers and manufacturers that use different materials while making your PCBs. Plenty of them uses either FR-4 or Rogers material. But what are the differences between FR-4 and Rogers Materials?

 

If you may not know, here are seven distinguishing factors or differences between FR-4 and Rogers Material.

As you may know, printed circuit boards play an essential role in nearly all electronic products that we use daily. Therefore, you need to keep the right materials in the back of your mind when it comes to manufacturing your printed circuit boards.

There are plenty of suppliers and manufacturers that use different materials while making your PCBs. Plenty of them uses either FR-4 or Rogers material. But what are the differences between FR-4 and Rogers Materials?

If you may not know, here are seven distinguishing factors or differences between FR-4 and Rogers Material.

Price

When it comes to the manufacture of printed circuit boards, the type of material used matters a lot, but price matters. The FR-4 and Rogers materials differ when it comes to their cost. FR-4 material is cheaper compared to Rogers is material

FR-4 is one of the low-cost materials used in the manufacture of printed circuit boards, preferred for minimal processing costs. Even though PCBs made of FR-4 materials are known for their low performance; nevertheless, they cost less than printed circuit boards made of Rogers material. By considering the price of the content and its processing needs, it becomes possible to determine if you get value for your money. 

However, if you need a printed circuit board made of cheap materials, you better go for those made of FR-4 materials. But if you are not on a budget and need high-performing PCBs made of the best materials, you are better off with those made of Rogers materials. However, you need to keep at the back of your mind that choosing Rogers materials may be the best option because cheap may turn out to be expensive in the end. 

a high quality PCB board.jpg

High Frequencies

Printed circuit boards made of FR-4 and rogers materials –regardless of whether they consist of rogers 4350 or rogers 4350b materials- are highly popular due to a wide array of electronic applications, and again, for a good reason.

Printed circuit boards made of FR-4 materials are preferred for their low cost and for being reliable and well understood for their electrical and mechanical characteristics. They find use in everything from microwave designs to audio circuits. Unfortunately, printed circuit boards made of FR-4 materials are not ideal for high-frequency applications. Rogers manufactured the most famous high-frequency-special laminates. Its materials exhibit a close to 20% reduction in dielectric constant compared to printed circuit boards made of FR-4 materials.

The best way to decide whether your project will work better with high-frequency laminates is to size up the job’s mechanical and electrical requirements. If you find that the electrical and mechanical variations are too broad, you are better off with Rogers is materials.

PCB boards that have a high frequency tolerance.jpg

Df/Dissipation

When it comes to the manufacture of printed circuit boards, the type of material matters the most, although substantial costs may be necessary. However, it is not the only problem that knows the content value when it comes to the loss factor or Df. Printed circuit boards made of FR-4 materials will be affected or reduced. Compared with printed circuit boards made of Rogers materials, the losses are more significant.

In other words, FR-4 materials have got high dissipation factor compared to Rogers is articles, especially at high frequencies. Typical values for printed circuit boards made of FR-4 materials are about 0.020 and close to 0.004 for boards made of Rogers materials. FR-4 materials are identifiable by dissipation that increases when frequency increases. High-frequency laminates mainly exhibit a stable dissipation characteristic with frequency. 

The low dissipation factor of FR-4 materials helps minimize signal losses, not forgetting that their compatibility with automated assembly and processing of FR-4 makes them very easy to manufacture. 

a close PCB shot.jpg

Impedance Stability

Impedance is the obstruction or the measure of the opposition of an electric current to the energy flow when some voltage gets applied. An apt example of impedance is a line of resistance on an electric current. Stable impedance is essential to plenty of designs, and this is an area where the FR-4 and Rogers materials differ.

Even though they are low in cost, FR-4 materials are highly susceptible to wide variations in dielectric constant across width and length of a substrate in addition to changes in temperature. All in all, when it comes to impedance stability, Rogers’s material has got a more extensive range of dielectric constant compared to FR-4 content.

If a circuit needs to work with little variations over broad temperature changes, high-frequency laminates are better. Here, you may have to go for printed circuit boards made of Rogers materials instead of those made of FR-4 materials, especially if a majority of your operations involve working in high-temperate environments.   

 board that has high impedance stability.jpg

Dielectric Constant

The dielectric constant is a quantity that effectively measures the ability of a substance to store some electrical energy across an electrical field, when it comes to matters concerning dielectric constant, FR-4 features a dielectric constant of about 4.5, a figure much lower than Rogers material, whose dielectric constant stands at around 6.15 to 11.

Put, printed circuit boards made with materials that contain high dielectric constant values can yield some small circuits. FR-4 materials have high dielectric values than a majority of plastics. Using FR-4 materials can save not less than 25% or more of a printed circuit board made of such materials. Other things that make FR-4 articles accessible because these redundant fire materials are lightweight, moisture resistant, and come with high dielectric strength.

Even though Rogers is materials are suitable, when it comes to dielectric constant, you are better off with FR-4 materials. Rogers 4350 and Rogers 4350b materials follow the same manufacturing processes as FR-4 materials, though an FR-4 element can effectively store electrical energy compared to a Rogers PCB. A high dielectric constant in itself is not as desirable as such.

Generally, printed circuit boards with high dielectric constant tend to break down quickly, especially when subjected to some of the most intense electrical fields.

Close range PCB in a workstation.jpg

Space Applications

Space explorations have increased lately, with many countries trying to send people to space. When it comes to space applications, the materials used in manufacturing printed circuit boards matter a lot; not all the materials used in the production of printed circuit boards meant for space exploration come with the promise of excellent functionality.

Some materials may fail to function as desired. FR-4 and Rogers are materials profoundly differ when it comes to their applicability or use in space. In space, there is outgassing. Outgassing takes place when trapped gases get released in powder coating during the process of curing. Corrosive materials or moisture can effectively penetrate the surface via the pinholes to destroy some parts.

Even though FR-4 materials deliver an excellent balance for electrical stability, manufacturability, durability, and cost, Rogers materials are regarded as some of the best in the field when it comes to matters concerning space applications. In short, they are low outgassing for almost every space exploration or use.  

various applications on PCB board.jpg

Temperature Management

Heat management materials are essential for plenty of electrical devices. Since these products’ temperature needs maintenance at certain levels, it means that thermal management materials are necessary when producing printed circuit boards.

Printed circuit board materials are characterized or gauged by the thermal coefficient of what is known as the dielectric constant. For FR-4 materials, this is almost 200 parts per million per degree Celsius change. Even though this may seem like a small number, it may bring about significant variations in temperature ranges.

If a printed circuit board must work with little variations over a high-temperature range, then those made of Rogers material could be better than those made of FR-4 materials. In short, when it comes to temperature management, Rogers’s material performs better based on the fact that they have less variation compared to FR-4 content. High-frequency thermoset-based laminates such as Rogers’s materials are highly robust compared to FR-4 materials and are known for their excellent handling of high temperatures.

7_58.jpg

Conclusion

The type of material on your printed circuit board matters a lot. When selecting a printed circuit board, you need to go for the one made of the best articles that guarantee you quality results and long-lasting effects. Here at WellPCB is the best place to find excellent PCB production and manufacturing services. 

Depending on the type of materials that you need, rest assured of finding them at WellPCB. We have a team of experts that can guarantee you an unforgettable manufacturing experience using Rogers and FR-4 materials, which are popular in the industry. For more details concerning PCB materials, feel free to contact our support team at your earliest convenience at [email protected]

Hommer
Hi, I am Hommer, the founder of WellPCB. So far we have more than 4,000 customers worldwide. Any questions you can feel free to contact me. Thanks in advance.

Services