The two most prominent and popular assembly methods in electronic manufacturing are Surface Mount Technology (SMT) and Through-Hole Technology (THT). When it comes to electronic device production, these two methods are widely used for small to big devices, from smartphones to industrial machinery. Let’s see the basic difference between SMT and THT lines and how they benefit the electronic manufacturing industry.
Surface Mount Technology (SMT)
As a modern electronic assembly technique, SMT is the process of placing and soldering SMT components onto PCB’s surface. These small, flat components have metalized pads on their undersides, which are soldered to corresponding pads on the surface of the PCB.
Through-Hole Technology (THT)
SMT has replaced THT, which is an old method of electronic assembly. THT is important because of its traditional importance. SMT is popular now, but still, time is needed to make people aware of the significance of surface mount Technology. In this process, THT components which have long wire leads are inserted easily through holes in the PCB. Then, they are soldered to the copper traces on the opposite side.
SMT Line Vs. THT Line Key Differences
Let’s discuss the SMT line vs THT line main differences.
SMT line components are different from THT. The former has miniature components designed for surface mounting. In contrast, THT has larger components with wire leads for easy insertion through holes.
Printed circuit board design is another significant difference between SMT and THT. SMT components are small and require pad designs; thus, they are mounted on the surface of the PCB. In contrast, THT components are not only big but have leads; therefore, they need holes for insertion. SMT PCBs are smaller as they have to accommodate the compact nature of components, while THT are larger board sizes and are used to accommodate larger components
When it comes to automation, SMT is at an advantage. Its assembly is automated, thus making it a better option for high-volume production. Machines that automatically pick and place SMT components do their job very precisely. It also increases the speed of production and accuracy. In contrast, THT requires manual labor for the insertion and soldering of components. It is not only a slow process but also less precise.
Both SMT and THT lines have their own pros and cons in terms of reliability. SMT’s positive points are its excellent electrical performance and high-frequency capabilities. They have shorter component lead lengths and have less parasitic effects. THT is more robust mechanically; thus, it is suitable for applications subjected to mechanical stress.
SMT assembly is utilized for high-volume production because of automatic assembling; that’s why it is cost-effective. THT is also cost-effective for the low-volume production of specialized applications where manual labor is acceptable.
SMT line vs THT line are both valuable assemblies as the former is for small devices, and the latter is best for big ones. SMT is an advanced method and is widely used in electronic product development and manufacturing.