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More and more components I want to use are only available in surface mount packages.

I can either get a big collection of adapter boards for all flavors of SOIC/WFBGA/QDERP to 100 mil pin spacing, and keep using breadboard and stripboard, or I can try to make the jump to all surface mount.

I don't imagine there are many solderless prototyping solutions for surface mount components, but are there solderable "stripboard" type products for surface mount at different pitches?

If not, would it be a good idea to make some exposed pads in a crisscross network of some sort from a board house and keep around for experiments, or is there some reason that won't work at all?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ There are for some MCU's but they are expensive (>$100 usa)! \$\endgroup\$ – Garrett Fogerlie Dec 26 '12 at 7:35
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    \$\begingroup\$ Oddly enough, googling "smd protoboard" gives you plenty of examples. Just for some of the ''standard'' pitch (0.5mm ,0.65mm, 1.27mm). \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Dec 26 '12 at 7:40
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While I don't know of a generic multi-pitch stripboard equivalent for SMD components, the Schmartboard|ez system and their Schmart Modules, give pretty solid productivity for prototyping, much like stripboard did in the DIP era.

Some examples:

EZ Discrete #1
EZ Discrete #1: Supports 0201, 0603, 0805, 1206, 1210, 1608, 1812, 2010, 2512, CAES-A, B, C.

Schmartboard Arduino
Schmartboard Arduino 206-0007-01: 0.5mm Pitch SOIC Surface Mount Prototyping shield for Arduino

The solder grooves and raised solder resist make it easy to hand-solder small-pitch SMD components, both basic parts like passives, and high pin count ICs. The time saved in DIY prototyping projects is very significant, as well.


The original Schmartboard products were oriented towards soldering an individual SMD IC onto an adapter board, which would then be soldered onto traditional 0.1" pitch layouts. The new module products provide for entire subsystems, i.e. one or more SMD ICs and their associated support components, onto a suitable module, and interconnection of such modules with Schmartboard|ez boards.

Thus, for instance, an SMD RS232 subsystem in its entirety can be prototyped onto a single suitable module board:
Schmartboard RS232

The product listing and identification on the Schmartboard site could be a bit confusing, the site could do with some usability reviews and redesign, but the products are excellent.


I have tried similar looking nameless SMD proto boards bought on eBay, but they aren't quite as effective. The Schmartboard grooves, specifically, make a world of difference.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for the suggestion. I had found the previous line of Schmartboards, and as you say, they are more "adapters" than "prototype boards." They're also a bit pricey... \$\endgroup\$ – Jon Watte Dec 28 '12 at 19:17

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