FAQ

About Us

About Us

Are you IPC class 3/3A Certified

Yes

Are you ITAR and EAR certified?

Yes

Are all your facilities US-based?

Yes – our facility is in San Francisco and all of our operations take place there.

Can I visit the facility?

Yes, you can book a factory tour. However, since there are multiple boards being built at one time we do not allow customers to view their order going through the line.

Do you have an equipment list?

Our assembly line is made up of the top of the line, cutting-edge equipment to ensure the highest quality products. Our equipment consists of:
1) Solder Jet Printer (Additive solder paste application) for high precision, additive solder jetting
2) Stencil Printer (Stencil based solder paste application) for select boards
3) Pick and Place Assembly machines to place components as small as 01005 and .3mm pitch BGAs
4) 10 zone reflow oven with custom profiling capability
5) 3D Automated Optical Inspection (AOI)
6) 3D X-Ray with BGA analysis tools
7) Selective solder machine from automated and consistent through hole assembly
8) PCB Wash with Ionic cleanliness test and ROSE Tester
9) Baking Oven to remove moisture from parts and PCBs

Who are Tempo partners for high volume production?

We work with various partners depending on design complexity, quantity, and services. Please contact sales@tempoautomation for more information.

Services

Services

How do you ensure quick turn times from fab?

We perform a comprehensive Design for Manufacturing Process (DFM) at Tempo and send production ready files to our Fab vendors, so that there are no holds or hiccups. Our vendors also prioritize us given our partnership and the volume of orders we send them.

What is your minimum/maximum quantity?

Runs from 1 – 250 boards are standard. Small production runs up to 1000 are also possible on a case by case basis. If you are interested in small batch production, contact our sales team at sales@tempoautomation.com

Will you make extra bare boards for me along with my order?

Yes, please specify this when ordering in the “Notes” section of Preferences step in your quote.

Are you capable of flex, rigid-flex boards with HDI construction

Yes, please see our capabilities page for all the processes we support.

Do you do through-hole only boards?

Yes

Are bare fabrication only orders possible?

Yes and No. We are a full turnkey electronics manufacturer and we source all materials to ensure our quality standards are met and you get the fastest and most seamless experience. If you would like just bare boards to test them internally, we are happy to take the order. Please mention “Bare boards only” in the “Notes” section of the Preferences step in your quote.

Are assembly only orders possible?

No. We are a full turnkey electronics manufacturer optimized for speed, quality, reliability, and a seamless experience We have partnerships with fabricators that have passed our qualification requirements for quality, reliability, and are closely integrated to our systems and DFM rules (panelization requirements, fiducials registration, etc.). If there is a fabricator you’d like us to use for your design, our logistics and DFM teams are happy to work with them – please connect the fabricator to your account manager.

Do you do partial assemblies?

Yes, we provide partial assemblies though there is an additional cost for each extra shipment.

Does Tempo provide mechanical assembly services?

No.

Do you provide wire bonding?

Yes. This service would add extra lead time to your order.

How do you help me with going from prototyping (low volumes) to high volume manufacturing?

We believe in making the transition from prototyping to high volume as smooth and frictionless as possible. We help engineers scale by providing our comprehensive Manufacturing Process Instructions (MPI) we’ve built for the design over the course of each consecutive iteration, which contains reflow profiles, specific part numbers to watch out for, AOI and Pick and Place Assembly programs (IPC standard), design rules (IPC standard) we’ve used, etc. We share this with the high volume manufacturer so they start where we stopped.

Design Support

Design Support

Are there standard stackup and DRC files?

Yes, we provide Altium stackups and DRC files downloads for boards up to 8 layers

Do you offer PCB design or help with PCB design?

We don’t internally, but we work with a few partners we’ve seen our customers succeed with. Please contact sales@tempoautomation to be connected to them.

Can you help choose components for my BOM?

No, we require a complete BOM to provide a quote. This includes MPNs, reference designators, values, and quantity for every line item.

RFQ

RFQ

What files do I need to submit for an RFQ?

Required: The CAD file and a complete BOM. Optional: fab drawing and any other additional files that include helpful information to help us understand your design

Will you sign an NDA?

Yes. You can send us your NDA or sign a mutual NDA with Tempo electronically here: https://secure.tempoautomation.com/rfq/ (under the “Set up an NDA” section)

What are the supported CAD file types?

We currently support Altium (.PcbDoc), Eagle (.brd), Kicad (.kicad_pcb), DesignSpark (.pcb), Mentor (.pcb), Cadence (.brd), and DipTrace (.dip)

Are my files secure to upload?

Uploading CAD files through our system is more secure than sending them over email – we use SSL and TSL encryption to protect your data. Our servers are all hosted on Amazon GovCloud, which is also used by financial institutions like FINRA, World Bank – institutions that need the highest level of security.

Why do we only take native files?

Native files, unlike gerbers, contain rich manufacturing data that makes the fast, seamless, and cost-effective manufacturing possible. We use native files in the following ways:

1) Quality at speed: Native files, like a .pcbdoc, allow us to export IPC 2581 formatted data which is then parsed by our system to understand the design and return a quote to you instantly and seamlessly. We also set up the programs faster on Solder Paste jet, Pick and Place machine, and Automated Optical Inspection (AOI) machines using specific data outputs we can extract from the native file, resulting in high quality boards while maintaining high speed.
2) DFM: Native files also allow us to extract necessary files (ODB ++, netlist, component matrix data) for a comprehensive DFM review using Valor software. We check for any DFM errors that may create any production delays, so you get your boards at high quality when you expect them to.
3) QA: We extract information necessary for a comprehensive QA check so that the QA team is equipped with the best visualizations and routing information to make sure no board leaves the factory with an error.

I have a problem with my account?

Contact us at support@tempoautomation.com and we will work with you to resolve the issue.

What do I do if there is file upload error?

If you see a mismatch between the data you uploaded and the data display in the RFQ Process, contact us at support@tempoautomation.com and we will work with you to resolve the issue.

Why would quote take longer than two hours?

Exotic features are things like blind and buried vias, controlled impedance, controlled dielectric, special stackups, custom thickness. They take longer to fabricate because we have to send files to our fabricators to get the quote. Below are some of the parameters that will trigger a manual quote.
– Layer count > 8 (10, 12, 14, etc)
– Thickness > 250 mil
– Custom stackup
– Blind or buried vias
– The minimum hole size is less than 6 mil
– The minimum trace width/space is less than 3 mil
– Custom material (anything besides FR4)
– The Inner/Outer copper weight is greater than 4oz
– High Quantity

How is cost calculated?

Pricing depends on the complexity and quantity of the design – in general, we are cheaper than the price of the fastest turnaround already available on the market. We have deep relationships with our partners which allow us to get the best pricing from them.

Many of our customers use our quoting tool as a workflow in their design process – by uploading early and updating those designs often. They take our DFM feedback and price breakdown early in the design process and make appropriate changes to make their design faster and cheaper to manufacture.

Does Tempo give discounts?

No.

How is lead time calculated?

Lead time is mainly dependent on the design complexity and the order quantity. Long lead time components, high layer counts, sequential construction, high throughhole counts, etc. are some of the factors the will affect lead time calculations. However, even with these factors are involved, Tempo will still have the fastest turnaround times in the industry.

What are your payment terms?

Net 30

What payment options do you have?

You can pay with a Credit card, PO, ACH, and Wire transfer – all of these options are available at checkout.

Capabilities

Capabilities

What are your standard fab materials?

Our in-house rigid materials are:

  • FR4 370HR
  • FR406
  • FR408
  • FR408HR
  • G200
  • GETEK
  • GreenSpeed
  • IS410
  • IS415
  • IS620i
  • IS680
  • P95-P25 Polyimide
  • P95-P26 Polyimide
  • Rogers 4350B
  • Rogers 4003

Our in-house flex materials are:

  • Pyralux Copper Clad
  • P95-P25 Polyimide
  • P95-P26 Polyimide
  • Pyralux Coverlay

Custom metaerias are also possible. Contact us for more information

What is the maximum size of board that you can accommodate?

18in X 22in

What is the minimum hole size possible?

For mechanical drill, the smallest drill size is .006in with a maximum aspect ratio of 1/20. For laser drilled micro-vias, the smallest hole size is .002in with a maximum aspect ratio of 2/1.

Do you support via in pad, blind vias, buried vias, and micro-vias?

Yes.

Can you do controlled impedance?

Yes; please enter your requirements in the “Notes” field or upload a pdf on Preferences step in your quote.

What kind of solder material do we use?

The manufacturer for our solder paste is AIM. Our main sphere size is T5. The alloys are:

  1. Lead: SN63PB37
  2. Lead-Free: SAC305

See our capabilities page for more information

What are Tempo’s surface finish options?

The default surface finish is ENIG (electroless copper, immersion gold). Leaded HASL, Leaded Free HASL, ENEPIG, Immersion Silver, Wire Bondable Gold, Organic Solder Preservative (OSP), Hard Gold, Selective Gold are also possible.

What are Tempo’s soldermask colors?

Green is the default color. Orange, Red, Yellow, Blue, Purple, Black, White, Clear, and Peelable are also possible.

What is Tempo’s experience with component package types?

We have experience with BGA, QFP, QFN, CSP, and Package on Package. For specialized components such as optical components, contact our team.

Have we ever worked with UL 94 v0?

Yes, that is standard.

Manufacturing

Manufacturing

Can we issue a change order?

Please contact support@tempoautomation with your order #, and depending on where the order is in the manufacturing process, we will try to accommodate your changes.

Do you do DFM after I place my order?

We only use stencil for certain jobs like ones that require clean solder paste.

Do you carry component inventory?

No, Tempo does not keep inventory in stock so you will need to provide all BOM details for all components in your design in the “BOM validation” step of the quoting tool.

What are the BOM information requirements?

The BOM must include MPNs, reference designators, values, and quantity for every line item. Download the Tempo BOM template to speed up BOM processing

What should I do if a component is showing out of stock from your component vendors?

You can choose an alternate part, click “Do not Assemble,” or consign the parts if you have them. Please include enough parts to account for attrition, and be sure to follow all component handling requirements like moisture sensitivity otherwise lead time could be affected. For attrition include 10% extra for passives, and 1-2 extra for more expensive ICs. We accept tape, reel, cut tape, trays, and tubes. Loose parts are not favorable because they do not integrate well with Tempo’s automated processes. NOTE: Tempo does not accept orders where the majority of parts are consigned or if the board fab will be consigned.

Can I consign parts to you?

Yes, just click “I will consign” for the parts you plan to consign in the “BOM” part of the quoting process. We will be in touch with you after the order is confirmed with shipping instructions.

How do I ship consigned parts?

After the order is confirmed, your order coordinator will be in touch with you. If you are local to the Bay Area, we will send a courier to pick them up. If you are not local, we will send you a FedEx overnight shipping label.

Which component distributors are acceptable?

We prefer Digikey and Mouser, and our BOM tool checks those by default. We can order from other vendors, like Arrow, Coilcraft, Newark, etc. – click “Use other distbributors” – keep in mind that this may delay delivery. If there is a specific source you want us to use for a component(s), please mention it in the “Notes” field on the Preferences step in your quote.

Does low-volume solder-jet solder application scale to high-volume stencil solder application?

We can define the solder printing to exactly match the profile that would be applied by a stencil. This makes the transition to a high volume seamless.

Do we use stencils for solder paste application?

After the order is complete, every board is run through a detailed DFM process. If any issues come up, you will be contacted to resolve them. If all issues are resolved by 6:00pm, the build will start that day. Otherwise, the build will begin once all issues have been dealt with

How does Tempo separate leaded and unleaded processes?

Leaded and lead-free boards are kept separate through dedicated lead and lead-free solder jet and selective solder machines, as well as process-specific rework procedures.

How do we customize reflow profiles?

Our process engineers create a custom reflow profile for each design based on features such as copper weight, board thickness, layer count, lead free/lead, finish, board dimensions, components used on the board (looking for big caps, or if an IC requires a specific reflow profile as listed on its datasheet).

For a routed board can you sand down the mouse bites?

It’s possible, but this may increase lead time. If you want to request this, put it in the “Notes field” on the Preferences step in your  quote

Do you do first article inspection?

Yes. We can provide documentation if the customer requests it before production/placing the order.

What are your QA processes?

Each board and assembly goes through rigorous QA processes throughout the build. Fabrication QA includes:
1) Flying probe testing is done for each board.
2) Impedance testing can also be done if requested. Please mention it in the “Notes” section of the “Preferences” step in your quote.

For assembly, each board goes through the following steps:
1) AOI – We do 3D Automated Optical Inspection (AOI) for almost all designs. We do it for free.
2) 3D X-ray machine – BGA analyzer and 3D tools to look at leadless parts from a side angle. We can look for separated leads or pins that 2D X-Rays cannot check for. We are working to put these images on your orders page so after you receive the boards, so you can go online and see your board-specifc X-Ray and AOI images.
3) Final human QA – every board goes through a certified IPC QA person for Final QA.
4) We strive for the highest quality boards, but we know that quality issues happen. Please contact support@tempoautomation if you find issues on your board. We will send you a shipping label or courier to rework, or remake them immediately.

Can you send the remaining parts?

We only send remaining consigned parts back.

Do you provide rework? Can you re-ball BGAs?

Yes, and yes, we can do rework for a nominal fee. Please contact us at support@tempoautomation.com

Do you do conformal coating?

We work with partners to accomplish customer conformal coating requests.

What are the shipping options?

We use Uber Rush, FedEx same day, or FedEx overnight to ship boards. The fastest method of shipping is always chosen. We do not ship internationally but we will ship to a representative/contact in the US.

Do you ship internationally?

We do not ship internationally but we will ship to a representative/contact in the US.