Placing and Orienting Your Components

With your preferred component types established, it is now time to decide how to efficiently place and orient those parts on your board. This process will have a large effect on how you utilize the available space on your board layout, and can be one of those most challenging steps in your design process. Below you will find specific recommendations on how to optimize your component placement to be both manufacturable and capable of meeting your specific design requirements.

General Component Placement and Spacing

Before going into the specifics of component placement and orientation, there are several general guidelines to keep in mind:

  • Orient similar components in the same direction.
  • Avoid placing components on the solder side of a board.
  • Try to place all your SMT components on the same side of the board, and all the through-hole components (if mixed) on the top side of the board.
  • When you have mixed technology components (SMT and PTH), manufacturers might require an extra process to epoxy the bottom components.
  • You should terminate all lands with only one trace.
  • When you specify a chip under a device, this can make inspections, rework, and test more difficult.
  • All components used on the wave solder sides of an assembly should first be approved by your manufacturer for immersion in a solder bath.

Finalizing Your Component Placement and Board Orientation


With the information presented in this chapter, you are now well-equipped to begin your component placement and orientation process to meet fundamental manufacturability requirements. Now that your design is well on its way to completion, it is time to finalize the board layout process by configuring your test point requirements in the next chapter.