Breadboarding for success

Circuit Break Podcast #363

Breadboarding for Success

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January 28, 2023, Episode #363

This week we are talking about Breadboards. Is breadboarding a circuit or design still applicable in today's SMT component dominated world?

Breadboarding your circuits

  • Why even do it?
    • Time savings
    • Quick check of your ideas
    • Leave breadboard assembled for future pcbs
  • Breadboards do not break physics – all the same rules apply
  • What you put into it you get out
    • Cleanliness matters
    • Plan out your circuits
      • You will likely find that you do not need extra jumpers if you plan the circuit
    • Measure and bend leads – 0.1” pitch
    • Use good components
    • Use the bus strips for power and ground
    • You can get away with high voltage if you plan for isolation
    • Keep connections short. If the components can be the connection that is ideal
    • Feedback and shorts – keep them short
  • Know the limitations – breadboard what you need
    • Breadboards may not be a one stop shop – use them to prove what you need to

About the Hosts

Parker dillmann
  Parker Dillmann

Parker is an Electrical Engineer with backgrounds in Embedded System Design and Digital Signal Processing. He got his start in 2005 by hacking Nintendo consoles into portable gaming units. The following year he designed and produced an Atari 2600 video mod to allow the Atari to display a crisp, RF fuzz free picture on newer TVs. Over a thousand Atari video mods where produced by Parker from 2006 to 2011 and the mod is still made by other enthusiasts in the Atari community.

In 2006, Parker enrolled at The University of Texas at Austin as a Petroleum Engineer. After realizing electronics was his passion he switched majors in 2007 to Electrical and Computer Engineering. Following his previous background in making the Atari 2600 video mod, Parker decided to take more board layout classes and circuit design classes. Other areas of study include robotics, microcontroller theory and design, FPGA development with VHDL and Verilog, and image and signal processing with DSPs. In 2010, Parker won a Ti sponsored Launchpad programming and design contest that was held by the IEEE CS chapter at the University. Parker graduated with a BS in Electrical and Computer Engineering in the Spring of 2012.

In the Summer of 2012, Parker was hired on as an Electrical Engineer at Dynamic Perception to design and prototype new electronic products. Here, Parker learned about full product development cycles and honed his board layout skills. Seeing the difficulties in managing operations and FCC/CE compliance testing, Parker thought there had to be a better way for small electronic companies to get their product out in customer's hands.

Parker also runs the blog, longhornengineer.com, where he posts his personal projects, technical guides, and appnotes about board layout design and components.

Stephen Kraig
  Stephen Kraig

Stephen Kraig began his electronics career by building musical oriented circuits in 2003. Stephen is an avid guitar player and, in his down time, manufactures audio electronics including guitar amplifiers, pedals, and pro audio gear. Stephen graduated with a BS in Electrical Engineering from Texas A&M University.

Special thanks to whixr over at Tymkrs for the intro and outro!

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