What Are the Differences and Relations Between PCB, PCBA, and SMT?

When it comes to PCB, everyone is familiar with it. But when it comes to SMT and PCBA, few people understand what they are, and they often confuse these concepts.

Today, let’s talk about what are the differences and relations between PCB, PCBA, and SMT?

PCB (abbreviation of Printed Circuit Board)
Printed circuit board, which is a carrier used to support electronic components and provide circuits so that a complete circuit can be formed between the electronic components.

SMT (abbreviation of Surface Mounted Technology)
SMT is surface mounted technology (abbreviation of Surface Mounted Technology), a popular process technology that mounts electronic components on PCB boards by processes.

PCBA (abbreviation of Printed Circuit Board Assembly)
PCBA refers to a one-stop service processing including raw material procurement, SMT pick and place, DIP plug-in, testing and finished product assembly.

To sum up, "PCB is a board, SMT is a technology, PCBA is a process/finished product". On a PCB bare board, after carrying out SMT pick and place (or DIP plug-in), the finished product can be called PCBA, or this process can be called PCBA.

When we disassemble the electronic product, we can see that the circuit board is fully soldered with components, and the circuit board at this time is the PCB processed by SMT.