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Webinar: Optimizing High-Speed Performance with Advanced PCB Connectors

Headshot of Amit Bahl

Amit Bahl

Sierra Circuits

PCB connectors enable signal and power transmission between different circuit board modules. However, connectors in complex high-frequency/RF boards might introduce impedance discontinuities, crosstalk, and electromagnetic radiation in signal paths. Therefore, you need to consider frequency range, power handling capability, and mating cycle durability to successfully integrate advanced RF connectors into your designs.

In this webinar, you will learn how to optimize your layout to ensure reliable signal transmission using advanced connectors.

Choosing advanced PCB connectors and layout optimization

When selecting a connector, consider the end application before deciding the type: board-to-board (B2B), wire-to-wire (W2W), and wire-to-board (W2B).

Different types of connectors cater to different needs. For instance, coaxial connectors are ideal for transmitting radio frequency signals, while mezzanine connectors allow for stacking PCBs vertically, thus saving space. You can use flat flexible cables (FFC) and flexible printed circuit (FPC) connectors to link flexible and rigid PCBs.


Board connectors can introduce an extra electrical path, leading to propagation delay and crosstalk. To avoid this, maintain uniform impedance between the connector and the traces.

Place connectors on one side of the board to hold them on the same reference potential. When connectors are placed on different sides, do not place high-frequency circuits between them.

To prevent EMI, shield connectors with a metallic enclosure. You can also use shielded cables to maximize noise suppression. These enclosed connectors offer electrostatic discharge (ESD) protection.

For common-mode current suppression, connect the conductive enclosure directly to the chassis rather than the system ground. Place decoupling capacitors near the connectors to store local energy and stabilize the voltage supply.

Determine each connector pin voltage and current ratings to optimize the number of contacts based on the power requirements. The current capacity depends on pin size and the wire type, while the voltage rating relies on the spacing between two contacts and the insulating materials used.

Maintain a clearance of 4 mm between SMT connectors and PTHs to avoid unintended electrical connections. Keep the PCB connectors away from the board edge to prevent solder damage during V-scoring.

In this webinar, our industry experts will discuss the layout techniques to optimize high-speed connectors for reliable signal transmission.


What you’ll learn:

  • How connectors impact the performance of high-speed PCBs
  • Choosing the right circuit board connectors for efficient signal transmission
  • Types of advanced connectors
  • Layout guidelines to optimize connector performance
  • Connector mounting strategies
  • Impedance matching to minimize signal reflections
  • PDN design considerations for PCB connectors


Date and time:

Wednesday June 5th, 2024

10:00 AM PT


Meet the speaker

Amit Bahl

Chief Revenue Officer, Sierra Circuits

Amit Bahl, widely recognized as the PCB Guy, currently serves as the Chief Revenue Officer at Sierra Circuits. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Engineering from UCLA in 1997, launching his career in Silicon Valley’s tech industry. In 2009, he assumed the role of Director of Sales and Marketing at Sierra Circuits, with a dedicated focus on democratizing design for manufacturing best practices and guidelines for PCB designers and engineers.

Within a short span, Amit successfully propelled Sierra Circuits to become a leading educational platform for all aspects of PCBs. Under his leadership, Sierra expanded to offer blogs, design guides, webinars, calculators and design tools, and a vibrant forum, SierraConnect. Amit remains committed to ensuring the community has access to the essential resources, whether they are developing standard products or boards with specifications for medtech or military applications.

Assuming the position of Chief Revenue Officer since 2022, Amit’s mission persists: to simplify the PCB design journey for all stakeholders. His unwavering dedication continues to drive Sierra Circuits as a trusted resource for the PCB design community.

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