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DIY Stompboxes => Building your own stompbox => Topic started by: frequencycentral on June 19, 2009, 12:38:25 PM

Title: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frequencycentral on June 19, 2009, 12:38:25 PM
I think perf. No cut tracks, tight layouts, easier to go from schematic to layout, you're not forced to work in only one plane, you can do stuff below IC sockets. The list goes on...........

What do you think and why? When should I choose vero over perf (not that I ever will!) ?
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Scruffie on June 19, 2009, 12:51:33 PM
Vero, none of those fiddly wires on the bottom to wire up and make sure there all connected nicely and I feel they have more chance of grounding on a case (probably an unfounded feeling), also I find it easier to get a nice neat layout with vero compared to perf (although your work on it I must say is outstanding)

A good drill bit cuts the tracks easily and mirroring the image takes 2 seconds to get a track cut image.

Also I think if your good (not that I am) that you can get a really good tight layout on vero (check out cathexis work, love it)

Vero also feels more like soldering to a PCB to me, just straight in, nice little connection, feels sturdy to me, onlyyy issue with it is bridging 2 tracks, but I've stopped doing that with practice and a slightly better £5 soldering iron.

I've stuffed stuff below IC's on vero, i've even wired some things on the base of it before with no issue.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: slacker on June 19, 2009, 12:54:45 PM
Except for using the small mod perf style  area of Moosapotamus's ADA flanger pcb I've never used perf so I can't really say which is better.
I think for small circuits or if you're not pushed for space it probably doesn't make a lot of difference, once you get used to vero it's easy to go straight from schematic to board. If you're careful you can also add components to the rear of the board as well, I've done it a few times without any problems.
For more complicated and larger layouts it seems to me like vero would be easier because the traces mean you have less work to do, because you don't have to make physical connections between everything. With a layout with a lot of ICs you can end up having to use a lot of jumpers though, so that kind of cancels out the advantages.

I guess it's what you're used to, I've only ever used vero so I'm quite happy tackling anything using it, If you're a perfer it's probably the same, and if you've only ever used PCBs they both probably look like way too much work  :)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: doitle on June 19, 2009, 01:06:48 PM
I've tried to perfboard three different circuits, all three didn't work. I just can't manage to keep all those small peices of wire correct on the bottom of the board and I also can't keep  my position straight and end up putting components in the wrong places. It's just in general a disaster for me.

I'd like to try out Veroboard but I'm having a lot of trouble finding anywhere in the US to get it. Likewise with Tripad board which looks even cooler. Only Maplin sells it as far as I can see.
(http://doitle.markdelano.com/stuff/perfboard.jpg)


Maybe there's something I'm doing wrong in my technique? Am I laying it out too close together? I kow the soldering is a mess but it was much better before I tried to "fix" my mistakes. One thing I read suggested putting more than one component down each hole and twisting them together which would allow you to actually test the circuit to make sure it worked then just solder the joints to make them permanent. I didn't try it on this build but was thinking about it for my next. In short, tips would be great.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: doc_drop on June 19, 2009, 01:21:19 PM
A couple of things I do is mark the locations of IC and tranny pins on the back to keep things straight. Also, printing a mirrored image of the layout helps to visualize the back. When worse comes to worse I will insert a wire looking at the front in a pertinent hole, and then I can identify it easily on the back.

I try to build the circuit from left to right. First I solder the lead in the hole it comes through. Then I connect the lead to the next point of connection. Once the connections are all made in one spot I trim the leads.

It helps to have a nice hot pointy soldering iron too.

Check twice, solder once. Then check again. Then mark it on your layout sheet. You have to be slow and methodical.

You really get to know a circuit this way.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: jacobyjd on June 19, 2009, 01:29:58 PM
The main difference for me has been moddability (?). Vero ends up being much like a PCB to me, in that I can swap components really easily. With perf, I'm less apt to fiddle once a circuit is complete--the end result always ends up being a lot messier when all is said and done--those long component legs are hard to remove once soldered in!
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: aron on June 19, 2009, 01:37:36 PM
If you ever finish and debug your perfboard IMO you will have learned valuable lessons that you can take with you no matter what your next project will be on.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Mark Hammer on June 19, 2009, 01:58:41 PM
Perf - the good:  Cheap, easy to find, works even when you have to cut it into weird shapes, allows for smallest possible footprint easily.
Perf - the bad:  Often VERY cheap, lets components wiggle too much and risk lead fracture, obliges you to use bunching of leads to connects things which produces a clumpier solder joint.

Vero - the good: Stuff is stable once soldered in place, as long as its cleaned soldering is a breeze, solder joints on copper side can be low profile, people can easily post layouts, does not require component s to have long leads to permit inter-connection.
Vero - the bad:  Much less flexibility about where things can be positioned or dimensions of board, generally results in bigger footprint, useful if copper is clean but if not watch out, harder to improvise with, costlier, harder to find.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: oldschoolanalog on June 19, 2009, 02:18:56 PM
Unclad perf (no copper).
The "totally blank canvas" aspect is very appealing.
And with careful planning & layout you can swap out components and make it very sturdy.
My $.02...
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: jacobyjd on June 19, 2009, 02:22:30 PM
Unclad perf (no copper).
The "totally blank canvas" aspect is very appealing.

I tend to prefer unclad over pad-per board from my experiences, and it's a lot easier to swap parts on it...I just run into trouble when it comes to IC's--anything with short legs seems to be a pain. What do you guys do for IC's, or any other short-legged parts on unclad perf?
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: doc_drop on June 19, 2009, 02:29:55 PM
I like making sure the componants are fixed in place so I solder the leads to the pads they insert through, so non-copper clad doesn't work for me. I can't imagine the parts are held in place as well if you can't solder them to the pads...
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: dap9 on June 19, 2009, 03:08:52 PM
I finally got around to getting some Vero (got it from this site).  I've always used the pad per hole perf - I like it just fine, but the Vero looks like it's much cleaner.  I just started a project the other night and realized what a PITA all the "prep" work is - cutting the traces, counting holes to make sure yer in the right place.  But it seems that once that's out of the way, it's a good method.  I'll know for sure when I finish the project.

How do you all cut your Vero to size?  I used a box cutter/razor, but didn't like the fact that I had to press the "good" side down against my workbench while repeatedly scoring the board.  Is this my excuse to get a dremmel?
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: FlyingZ on June 19, 2009, 03:12:46 PM
I like small but it can be quite the pain.

(http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii166/_FlyingZ/Rebote25.jpg)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: jacobyjd on June 19, 2009, 03:16:21 PM
How do you all cut your Vero to size? 

I generally just use a razor knife--although the vero you can get from Smallbear cuts REALLY hard that way, so if that's what you're using, you may want a dremel :)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frequencycentral on June 19, 2009, 03:22:55 PM
Well as we're doing gutshots:

(http://i210.photobucket.com/albums/bb292/frequencycentral/000_0005-5.jpg)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: oldschoolanalog on June 19, 2009, 03:31:56 PM
What do you guys do for IC's, or any other short-legged parts on unclad perf?
Sockets anyone?
http://i175.photobucket.com/albums/w121/oldschoolanalog/DSC00380.jpg
http://i175.photobucket.com/albums/w121/oldschoolanalog/DSC00396.jpg
 ;)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frank_p on June 19, 2009, 03:38:38 PM

Anyone ever tried to use wirewrap tool and wire on perf and then solder.  Just wind a couple of turns around the leads, cut and solder ? ( could be advantageous to have firm grip on the leads before soldering and have insulation on a good portion of the wires).  Or it would be more of a PITA that standard perf technique ?  Sometimes I find that perfing is like building boats models in bottles...

Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: jacobyjd on June 19, 2009, 03:43:58 PM
What do you guys do for IC's, or any other short-legged parts on unclad perf?
Sockets anyone?
http://i175.photobucket.com/albums/w121/oldschoolanalog/DSC00380.jpg
http://i175.photobucket.com/albums/w121/oldschoolanalog/DSC00396.jpg
 ;)
Yeah, I use sockets--they just don't protrude from the board a whole lot...maybe I'm just not patient enough...it seems almost impossible to get a bent lead to hold still long enough to solder it. Is there a trick to it that I'm missing?
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: petemoore on June 19, 2009, 04:01:11 PM
  I put the first corner in after feeding the lead through the board.
  Then I"ll put the second corner in exactly the right place the 2nd time [or preferably the 1rst], and leave the bend so that when I press or pull on the end that's above the board, it pins down the part on the bottom side of the baord.
  Kind of like pliers made from perfboard and a component, the hole being the jaw.
  Grow thumbnail long as heat insulator, fix the easy end [solder in place] of the wire so the thumbnail, pressing on the wire as the thumb holds the board, pushes the hard to position [pre-tinnned]other end to contact at the [also pre-tinned]to be soldered connection. Then it's just get 'em both hot, don't overflex the wire you positioned, mounted, shaped and tinned...get used to the leverage-distance thing  and bend resistance of the wire involved...easy does it makes contact/heat/solder = fine joint.
  For really tough 'inside the keyhole' jobs, the wire itself can heat the pad...takes a while though.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: FlyingZ on June 19, 2009, 04:01:53 PM
Well as we're doing gutshots:

(http://i210.photobucket.com/albums/bb292/frequencycentral/000_0005-5.jpg)

Did you clean it or do I need to upgrade my Rad Shack 60/40?
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: punkin on June 19, 2009, 04:05:17 PM
perf for me...if your willing to do a smart layout and do a clean build you can get a nice tight board with really clean results. its what youre used to i guess.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Taylor on June 19, 2009, 04:09:54 PM
Well as we're doing gutshots:

(http://i210.photobucket.com/albums/bb292/frequencycentral/000_0005-5.jpg)

Yeah, if my perf looked that neat, I would stick with it. I just find debugging to be an enormous pain with perf, so I'm going to start etching my own PCBs, because I never have to debug PCBs.

The coolest thing about perf for me, which I will miss, is the ability to work directly from a schematic. It's awesome to be able to just look at a schem and do the perf layout as I work through it, without having to find or make a layout. Also, with PCBs and vero, you can't do those crazy 3 dimensional trace arcs curving over each other, but doing that really isn't a great idea anyway.

But I do think it has a lot to do with what you're used to, as others have said. Each method has an associated way of thinking, and once you get into that way of thinking, all others seems much worse.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: oldschoolanalog on June 19, 2009, 04:18:36 PM
...its what youre used to i guess.
There's something we can all agree on!
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frequencycentral on June 19, 2009, 04:44:28 PM
Did you clean it or do I need to upgrade my Rad Shack 60/40?

No that hasn't been cleaned at all. I use lead-free solder, 99.3% Sn (Tin), 0.7% Cu (Copper).

Each method has an associated way of thinking, and once you get into that way of thinking, all others seems much worse.

I think that sums it up perfectly.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: jacobyjd on June 19, 2009, 04:49:15 PM
I think it's interesting that Rick brought up this hell-storm of a topic ( :icon_razz:)...since lately I've been thinking about giving perf another go.

I agree with what everyone's saying about having your preferred method for laying down a circuit, and there are pros and cons all around. I'm just thinking of what I can do to break that habit and make myself a little more versatile.

If your life depended on it, could you work with vero? :) It's kind of an interesting thought...once my workbench is back up and running, I think it'll be time to expand my horizons...
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frequencycentral on June 19, 2009, 04:58:09 PM
If your life depended on it, could you work with vero?

Jeez I hate stripboard. If the world ever ran out of perf, and all that was left was stripboard, I'd drill a matrix of 1mm holes in my Platinum AmEx card.  :icon_lol:
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: slacker on June 19, 2009, 05:11:02 PM
If your life depended on it, could you work with vero? :)

If it was a matter of life or death and all you had was vero you could just drill out alternate holes along the rows and you'd have some crazy assed perf.
Likewise you could basically do a vero layout on perf if you wanted to, just follow the vero layout and connect components horizontally with component leads and off cuts.

I don't think this topic is any where near controversial enough I think we need to drag the PCBers into it, perf or vero are obviously vastly superior to PCBs. All that press and peel, messing about with noxious substances, drilling and what not.
You could have built and got bored of your new fuzzbox before those boys have even finished preparing their boards  :)
   
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frank_p on June 19, 2009, 05:20:18 PM
Anyone ever tried to use wirewrap tool and wire on perf and then solder.  Just wind a couple of turns around the leads, cut and solder ? ( could be advantageous to have firm grip on the leads before soldering and have insulation on a good portion of the wires).  Or it would be more of a PITA that standard perf technique ?  Sometimes I find that perfing is like building boats models in bottles...

So, no one tried this ? No one have an opinion ?

(http://www.6502.org/users/alexis/6502_wire.jpeg)

Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: slacker on June 19, 2009, 05:31:20 PM
I've never tried it, I've seen it before and it looks like a nightmare to debug.

My brother in law has some sort of of engineering degree, I can never remember what. When he was studying one of his projects was to build some sort of interface board to connect a bunch of sensors to a PC as well as write the software to run it.  He used something like that method and he couldn't get it to work and was running out of time to debug it so in the end he rewrote the software and basically faked it so it looked like the board worked when he had to present it.
He got away with it, and got his degree, worryingly he works on cars now!
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frank_p on June 19, 2009, 05:48:27 PM
haha. Good story Slacker.  Sometimes I just wonder why, with all the simple fuzz we see on that forum, why we don't see much other prototyping method.  Like you said PCB can be a fastidious method.  Why nobody build a fuzz-face dead-bug style ?  Gus beginner project, free solder style (or hanging garden). Simple and easy to probe around (and thus to study) for a "simple build".  I think the last one I saw was Dragonfly with the stripboard method.  I type this; it's all old knowed methods, but I just can't stop myself from insisting for beginner to stand away from PCBs.  As Frequency-Central said: follow the schematic,  It's invaluable way to memorise (instead of soldering on ready-made PCBs that have traces hidden from the eyes of a learner.

Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: oldschoolanalog on June 19, 2009, 05:48:52 PM
I don't think this topic is any where near controversial enough I think we need to drag the PCBers into it, perf or vero are obviously vastly superior to PCBs.
Controversy! Anarchy! Weee! ;D
I like a well made PCB. When somebody makes it for me :icon_rolleyes:. However for me...
Quote
All that press and peel, messing about with noxious substances, drilling and what not.
You could have built and got bored of your new fuzzbox before those boys have even finished preparing their boards  :)
Perfectly stated!

frank_p: you are scaring me. What is that on those 2 boards in the photo?
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frank_p on June 19, 2009, 06:26:09 PM
frank_p: you are scaring me. What is that on those 2 boards in the photo?

Go in peace.  It's not one of my projects.  Just borrowed to illustrate the question I was asking before.  Debugging perfboard is sometimes driving me mad and I was wondering if this could be a better method (could be on smaller projects) than with plain leads.  The usual way of wiring with a wire-wrap is not with solder and I needed a photo to illustrate what I was meaning (just because no one responded: toughted perhaps text was not enough for the reader to understand).

Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: demonstar on June 19, 2009, 06:35:44 PM
I never even knew that perfboard had copper on it. I have used a kind of perfboard once but no copper on it. It makes it awkward without the copper to solder to. The board I've used I've had to glue the components to it then make electrical connections. I made a minimum theremin with that type of board. Usually I use stripboard or PCB but even the PCBs have to be hand drawn.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: petemoore on June 19, 2009, 06:39:15 PM
  It looks rediculous in a way, and in another way, if that is the wiring and the wires are making all the neccessary connections, designing a PCB to do that might be more time consuming, for a one-off prototype.
  If that had to be done twice though Frank, I think planning out a PCB would start to make sense, it looks like it might have to be double sided and still have a few jumpers for that conglomeration of intersections.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Electric Warrior on June 19, 2009, 06:41:22 PM
I love vero! It needs a bit of planning beforehand, but I think that's part of the fun - at least with DIY Layout Creator ;)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: oldschoolanalog on June 19, 2009, 06:57:03 PM
Some very serious vero layouts. From 2 very talented builders:
http://www.aronnelson.com/gallery/main.php/v/slackers-stuff/
http://www.aronnelson.com/gallery/main.php/v/cathexis/Veroboard+Layouts/
Happy soldering!
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frank_p on June 19, 2009, 07:17:57 PM
  It looks rediculous in a way, and in another way, if that is the wiring and the wires are making all the neccessary connections, designing a PCB to do that might be more time consuming, for a one-off prototype.
  If that had to be done twice though Frank, I think planning out a PCB would start to make sense, it looks like it might have to be double sided and still have a few jumpers for that conglomeration of intersections.

Agree completely, especially if the person design his own PCB.  The new-to-the-hobby (even like me  :icon_mrgreen: ) I had in head are the ones that ask (or use without studying) for a preexisting PCB.

The reasoning I had in head is: go over it three times: read the schematic, connect your components and debug it.  For me perf-board offer the best solution vs vero because the "learner" work with the schematic (as F.C. mentioned it).  Any method that is closer to the schematic is a winner unless the learners do their work themselves.  But when you have a PCB already made: this is a very good method for someone to get hooked on DIY: but not on learning.  I also had this in mind because of F.C. complainling about persons asking for layouts.  The best thing a "new-to-the-hobby" can do is wire his own perf-board, freestyle or hanging garden himself.

And thus the idea or wire-wrap on a perf-board.  Do-connections-yourself = DCY = DIY = better insight IMO.

I love vero! It needs a bit of planning beforehand, but I think that's part of the fun - at least with DIY Layout Creator ;)

Exactly: planning is part of the learning process. 

P.S.: My opinions are not directed at the original poster.  The question he ask may be wider than what I am talking about.
EX: Doing your own vero.  (I am thinking about the ADA flanger re-work that had been done lately...)


Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: davent on June 19, 2009, 07:25:06 PM
Man oh man life's too short for perfboard and i haven't tried Vero. I love designing PCB's, probably my favourite part of doing a build. Once I've got my design i can have an etched board in hand in half an hour. Don't bother with the toner transfer method use photo sensitized boards. Develop the board in a washing soda (sodiom carbonate) solution then etch in hydrogen peroxide/muriatic acid. No need for noxious exotic chemicals.

Have fun ;)
dave
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: appliancide on June 19, 2009, 09:49:55 PM
If you ever finish and debug your perfboard IMO you will have learned valuable lessons that you can take with you no matter what your next project will be on.

+1

I just picked up one of these to try out...

http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2102845

Paul

Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: petemoore on June 19, 2009, 11:30:39 PM
I love designing PCB's, probably my favourite part of doing a build.
  That is good for you, I wish I'd made a PCB by now, really do.
  Perfboards just great, but when you start getting into larger complicated circuits, it's hard to find point G-9 in the middle of a large board.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: doitle on June 19, 2009, 11:35:07 PM
Davent where do you get your photosensitive boards? Also how do you develop them? Do you have a special UV bed for it or use some sort of makeshift light? Do you just drill the holes with a dremel tool or something? I'm really interested as I too love making PCB designs. I've never gotten one made though :( I've almost sent in orders to BatchPCB and Futurlec to get them fabricated but the fear of it not working coupled with the cost made me chicken out.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: punkin on June 19, 2009, 11:38:24 PM
its settled then...perf is the best  ;D
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Scruffie on June 19, 2009, 11:47:46 PM
Lol damn it, I was gunna say it's settled, vero is better, I was just holding out, cause I can last longer being a veroboarder, unlike perfers...  :icon_lol:
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Toney on June 19, 2009, 11:54:46 PM

 Well...for me it's Vero.
 First as a mini 'crossword puzzle' when doing the layout - fun if you enjoy that sort of thing.
 Then the building... as fast as a PCB. I find all the winding ends together just too un-co and slow with perf.
 Then the modding. Desolder/resolder done. No unrapping clipping swearing etc

 Terminal strip can be good fun too, but that's enough wire wrapping/farting around for me.
 So in conclusion, with my most grown up tone...
 Vero's great.
 Perf sucks.  ;D
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Scruffie on June 19, 2009, 11:57:51 PM
Amen (from a non religious view) to that toney, vero rocks... Join us rick, joinnn ussss.....  (and all other perf users, us veroers want your layouts)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Renegadrian on June 20, 2009, 04:19:54 AM
I am a VERO user too, I think you can use perf for small circuits, and I've done some, but vero lets me do the best, in terms of soldering and laying things out (and my gallery is full of VERO layouts I've done...)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: FlyingZ on June 20, 2009, 05:09:38 AM
I will definitely go vero if I could get it in a box.  Etched would be my choice if in had a tutor, trial and error is not a valid option yet.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frequencycentral on June 20, 2009, 07:16:27 AM
vero rocks... Join us rick, joinnn ussss.....  (and all other perf users, us veroers want your layouts)

I've recently done quite a few perf layouts (using DIYLC of course). It's really easy to then translate a perf layout to a PCB layout just by changing the board properties in DIYLC and replacing the jumpers with track/pads. Likewise, it's very easy to take a published PCB layout and copy it exactly onto perf.

For some projects I've done, I've thought it would be nice to also provide a vero layout, so I've opened up DIYLC and looked at creating a vero, then I've come across all the tricks that I use with perf layouts which are just impossible with vero. I generally give up in horror as the board size doubles in size and I realise there are dozens of track cuts and acres of wasted space. @#$% all those parallel lines! Reminds me of my mum, who doesn't like taking right turns (we drive on the wrong side in the UK of course) at junctions when driving - it's possible to reach your destination using just left turns (maybe?) but the route is convaluted.

I don't understand the 'perfs ok for small circuits' argument, as it seems to me that the bigger the circuit the more of a headache layout is with vero. I think it's the other was round, vero is ok for building a Fuzz Face, but a vero layout for a Phase 180 (the photo I posted is a Phase 180 on perf) would be the size of a small Caribean island - and forget 'stompbox', it would be the size of a guitar case with a freakin 3PDT!

I don't use PCB's because I figure that for one-off circuits the time spend etching and drilling equals the extra time required creating the jumpers with perf. And I'm no chemist either. I've had PCBs made up for Murder One, just because I build a few of them, so it saves time rather than duplicating the perf over and over. As for debugging being difficult with perf, I just don't debug. Time well spent on DIYLC means it's going to work first time anyway.

Case solved: Perfrocksverosucks!
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: slacker on June 20, 2009, 07:37:19 AM
. I think it's the other was round, vero is ok for building a Fuzz Face, but a vero layout for a Phase 180 (the photo I posted is a Phase 180 on perf) would be the size of a small Caribean island - and forget 'stompbox', it would be the size of a guitar case with a freakin 3PDT!

That sounds almost like a challenge sir  :)

I'd say again it comes down to what you're used to working with. I've seen the argument about vero leading to massive layouts before, and for that particular circuit you might be right but I wouldn't say it's a general rule.
Ages ago I did a vero layout for the rebote 2.5, unfortunately I can't post it because I agreed with Francisco that I wouldn't. At the time there were comments that it would be huge but in fact it's no bigger than the PCB and it's smaller than the perf layout that exists for the circuit.
That's not to say that you couldn't make a perf layout or a PCB that was smaller, but for a circuit that needs a box big enough for 3 knobs, jacks and a stomp the vero layout is plenty small enough.

(http://www.aronnelson.com/gallery/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=39975&g2_serialNumber=1)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Renegadrian on June 20, 2009, 07:50:23 AM
I don't understand the 'perfs ok for small circuits' argument, as it seems to me that the bigger the circuit the more of a headache layout is with vero.

Dunno Rick, I personally don't like to join components with jumpers, so I can easily make a small low count circuit but would find tedious to build a bigger circuit...I started a RAT using a perf layout, then I gave up, desoldered the components I mounted and tried a more confortable vero layout (the one recently posted, so easy for me...)

It seems that at the end you have to find the good tools for the job...I developed a vero mind, while reading a schem I always think how I could figure it with vero...and then come all my layouts...
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frequencycentral on June 20, 2009, 08:00:03 AM
. I think it's the other was round, vero is ok for building a Fuzz Face, but a vero layout for a Phase 180 (the photo I posted is a Phase 180 on perf) would be the size of a small Caribean island - and forget 'stompbox', it would be the size of a guitar case with a freakin 3PDT!

That sounds almost like a challenge sir  :)

Consider the gauntlet thrown down sir! Name your weapon!

....and I'm about to do a perf layout for Echo Base, (is the schematic on page 1 still to one to use?) I should think it will fit comfortably on a 8x20 hole piece of perf!
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: slacker on June 20, 2009, 08:42:54 AM
Going straight for the jugular with the Echo Base, you're striking at the very heart of my vero empire, you swine  :icon_wink:

Yeah the schematic on page 1 is correct. On my actual build and the vero layout U3A and U3B are the other way round, so the input buffer uses U3B and the output stage is U3A. If it makes the layout easier you can probably arrange the CD4066 differently as well, it shouldn't make any difference which switches you use.
I'd maybe include the "no tick" mod, or at least leave space for it, in case you need it. It's just a 2u2 electro cap, from pin 7 of U1 to ground.

If I get some time I might have a crack at the Phase 180, I haven't got a phaser and it looks interesting.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Toney on June 20, 2009, 09:44:19 AM

 A well thought out Vero will have very little wasted space.
 Perhaps no more than a PCB if it's done right.

 Follow the link for a shameless self -referring example...

 http://www.aronnelson.com/gallery/main.php/v/Toneys-Album/Working_Final333.png.html?g2_imageViewsIndex=1 (http://www.aronnelson.com/gallery/main.php/v/Toneys-Album/Working_Final333.png.html?g2_imageViewsIndex=1)

 Perf?
 Oh look now I want to mod it.....
 Snip, twist clip...bugger.... hope I don't overheat the actives.... snip...oh shooot not enough lead length left.... :P
 Twisty twisty, snippy snippy....
 

 
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: slacker on June 20, 2009, 10:25:43 AM
Twisty twisty, snippy snippy....

funny, if I was 12 I'd have said LOL but I'm not so I won't.

Perhaps we need to compromise and try Tripad, the bastard son of perf and vero. At least one person here likes it http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=44838.msg569474#msg569474 (http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=44838.msg569474#msg569474)  :)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frequencycentral on June 20, 2009, 10:34:27 AM
Perhaps we need to compromise and try Tripad, the bastard son of perf and vero. At least one person here likes it http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=44838.msg569474#msg569474 (http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=44838.msg569474#msg569474)  :)

Hey that's me! I filled eight 100m x 160mm Tripad boards for my modular synth. It's good stuff. I've built a few pedals using it, I've moved to perf because even Tripad sometimes 'makes' you go in one direction when you don't want to, so I've found perf is ultimately better for small tight pedal layouts. Tripad is not supported by DIYLC, but my modular synth was built a few years ago before I discovered DIYLC anyway. When I get round to 'synthing' again I'll use perf. Although Tripad is great when you have plenty of space and lots of ICs, the DIYLC perf support swings it for me.

This is an 8 step analogue sequencer, 4024 clock divider, gate delay and LFO on Tripad. 14 ICs, 16 BJTs. About 10 years old, very messy compared to what I do now. No layout plan whatsoever, just solder and go. Insane really. Still works though!

(http://i210.photobucket.com/albums/bb292/frequencycentral/000_0003-7.jpg)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: davent on June 20, 2009, 10:14:21 PM
Davent where do you get your photosensitive boards? Also how do you develop them? Do you have a special UV bed for it or use some sort of makeshift light? Do you just drill the holes with a dremel tool or something? I'm really interested as I too love making PCB designs. I've never gotten one made though :( I've almost sent in orders to BatchPCB and Futurlec to get them fabricated but the fear of it not working coupled with the cost made me chicken out.

Hi Mike,

I use MG Chemicals' boards and developer which i get in a local electronics store. I've also used no-name boards and developer i've picked up in shops in Toronto as well as the various boards from companies in the Digikey catalogue. A city the size of Chicago's gotta have a few shops you could walk into and pick up some board and developer. Digikey (as well as the other suppliers big and small)  has boards from a few different companies but i don't know whether they carry developer. The MG developer is sodium hydroxide. If you google sodium hydroxide pcb developer or sodium carbonate PCB developer you should get some instructions on mixing your own from grocery or hardware store products. 

For exposing the boards i just use regular flourescent tubes. I used to stack up phone books, Digikey catalogs and other tomes on the kitchen counter under the cupboards to raise the boards to within an inch or so of the under cupboard lights. Now,  above my workbench are a pair of 4' tubes recessed between the joists and i've screwed a piece of clear plexglass that was lying around, to the joists so i have a shelf just below the tubes. The PCB's now get exposed on the shelf there.

(http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc305/davent/IMG_1738.jpg)

I use a frameless picture frame from Ikea to hold the transparency/PCB sandwich securely during the exposure which, with the boards i've been using is about 12 minutes.  I print out two copies of the artwork onto a piece of transparency with a laser printer and make a sandwich of those. Before we bought a laser printer i used to take a copy of the artwork to the local print shop and get them to make a copy onto a transparency with one of their uber  photocopiers and with those i only ever used one layer of transparency but with my cheap laser printer i need the insurance of two layers of art.  So expose for 12 minute then into the developer for ~ 90sec's then it's ready to etch. For a developer tray i just use a little dollar store Tupperware type container marked for developer use only. Dollar store would probably have the picture frames as well.

(http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc305/davent/IMG_1733.jpg)

(http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc305/davent/IMG_1734.jpg)

For drilling the holes i use a Dremel in a drill stand and use a set of HSS wire drills from Lee Valley. Have always used HSS drills and have had people tell me you can't do boards with them but I've got thousands of holes that say otherwise. And that being said, last week my brother delivered some carbide drill bits from Drill Bit City that he brought back from south of the border,  look forward to giving those a spin. 

 Using ExpressPCB  for doing the schematics and board design.

(http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc305/davent/IMG_1357.jpg)

(http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc305/davent/IMG_1368.jpg)

(http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc305/davent/IMG_0322.jpg)

(http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc305/davent/Cropped_IMG_0122.jpg)

(http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc305/davent/IMG_0133.jpg)

(http://i216.photobucket.com/albums/cc305/davent/IMG_0440.jpg)

Take care,
dave
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: doitle on June 21, 2009, 01:49:49 AM
Wow Dave those are some nice looking boards. I actually live in Peoria most of the year, I am at school there. It's about 2 and a half hours south west of Chicago. Down there, there are no electronics shops. :( The last one that exists, Stewart Radio is now 100% Car Audio. There may be some up in Chicago but I haven't found them yet. I may just try ordering a photo board if they really are that simple. I still need to find a drill or some other method for drilling the holes however. I don't own a dremel sadly. I have a dinky little engraving kit that I use to cut holes in plastic but I doubt it will go through the boards.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: panterafanatic on June 21, 2009, 09:31:45 AM
i hope you guys dont mind a new guy joining in a little late.. but i cant stand working with perf. never had to work with vero though. kinda new to thing. gonna etch my own shortly. any tutorials anyone recommends? and using pcb express don't you have to order 40 min?
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: davent on June 21, 2009, 11:55:40 AM
i hope you guys dont mind a new guy joining in a little late.. but i cant stand working with perf. never had to work with vero though. kinda new to thing. gonna etch my own shortly. any tutorials anyone recommends? and using pcb express don't you have to order 40 min?

You can just use the free ExpressPCB software to design your stuff then print off your board artwork to either a transparency or some sort of toner carrier and use that to get the design to the copper board. (Need a laser printer or photocopier.) http://www.expresspcb.com/ Software is really easy to learn and it's free! You used to have to jump through hoops to get a printable image but in the last version i downloaded you can now print direct from the software and get a correctly sized perfect piece of art ready for use. There is a good tutorial  on doing the toner transfer method by forum member John Lyons. http://www.mrdwab.com/john/How-to-make-PCBs.html  others  http://www.qsl.net/ve2emm/pcb/pcb2e.html  http://myweb.cableone.net/wheedal/pcb.htm  http://www.riccibitti.com/pcb/pcb.htm

I found the toner transfer method too frustrating and inconsistent so switched to photo-sensitized boards which are a breeze to do. Others have great success with toner transfer.

Photo Resist  http://www.pcbhobbyist.com/

Some info on PCB design.  http://www.alternatezone.com/electronics/files/PCBDesignTutorialRevA.pdf

dave
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: trixdropd on June 21, 2009, 06:52:01 PM
Stunning work dave!! I am gonna look into your method!!
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: panterafanatic on June 21, 2009, 08:02:59 PM
to do the photosensitive, how do i put it onto the boards? from what i hear, using a marking pen rather than other methods uses more resist and gives less clean results.

i'll read more into it shortly. thank you
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frequencycentral on June 21, 2009, 08:09:59 PM
Case solved: Perfrocksverosucks!

.........but Dave's PCBs are in another world.

Hijack alert! Hijack alert! Hijack alert!

Going straight for the jugular with the Echo Base, you're striking at the very heart of my vero empire, you swine  :icon_wink:

The Echo Base vero is 32 x 23 holes (=736 holes). My Echo Base perf (http://i210.photobucket.com/albums/bb292/frequencycentral/EB01.gif) is 39 x 14 holes (= 546 holes), I could make it smaller, there's a couple of wide open spaces (in which I'll probably write 'Perf Rocks!' with a Sharpie), but perf comes 39 holes wide anyway, shame to cut it down - the board will fit nicely in my enclosure anyway. Mine is smaller than yours - which in this case really means that mine is bigger than yours!
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Scruffie on June 22, 2009, 06:31:05 AM
Nah yours is smaller than ours... we could make our layouts smaller but we don't like to brag... (too many oxymorons!)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: liquids on June 22, 2009, 03:02:34 PM
I'm a vero guy.  Some of the Perf stuff here is beautiful to me, visually. That is what I like the most, and part of why I choose perf.

I think I I prioritize compactness, simplicity, and how the final product looks visually on both sides.   That's what I shoot for, and it helps a lot in building and especially debugging.  while I try to be very careful and orderly, I still make a lot of mistakes, which is a factor for me. I wish I could get something half as beautiful as Rick's perf! Most perfs I have looked at prior to this thread look hideous on the underside.

I've not been doing this long, and I've only done a few veros.  A month or so ago, I made up my mind to give perf a chance. I tried a small, simple circuit, even.  In short time I realized I had already misplaced two resistors.  Normally no big deal, except that those resistors are my traces, since it's perf! I stopped immediately.  It seemed it would be harder to debug, harder to mod, and much harder to fix errors since oftentimes you are using the leads of any said mis-soldered components as traces. Similarly, I couldn't believe how much trouble it was to get parallel leads aligned under the board (as traces) so nicely but without touching each other, even with unused rows of holes between them.  It seemed I would need quite of bit of of 'white space.'   As a mistake-prone person and as a beginner with both, I've concluded vero makes it easier to recover from my mistakes, and less effort to make it looking nice.  At least when I turn it upside down the traces are gauranteed straight.

That being said, I hate how long it takes me to perfect a vero layout.  I've been able to get them pretty tight, and increasingly more so every time I try, after doing just a few layouts.  It's definitely got it's drawbacks.

I hope to soon get the guts up to buy the materials and do my own PCBs.  Vero, I hope, is just what I use for now until I can make my own pcbs...which does sound like it has it's own set of hurdles!  :)  Nothing is perfect.

Some tips that help me with vero/stripboard....I've taken to drilling track cuts in every hole that I'm not soldering a component.  It doesn't take that much longer if you've got the drill out anyway, and in the end, it makes the board look nicer to my eyes.  Slightly easier to debug.  Then, while I'm soldering, it makes it less likely that I'll put a component in the wrong hole, since there is more reference along the trace, less counting...etc.   :)

cut the board: I'm not handy (read, dangerous) with the exacto knife.  Since  I've got no dremel and have the drill out already, I've used my drill to cut vero boards.  I outline the part of the board I'm going to use by drilling all around the said area with a small bit that makes those holes bigger, without breaking space between the holes. Then I get a significantly  larger drill bit. I then drill through holes in the next row (away from the actual board area), every other hole or so, which breaks the board between the first row of holes I just enlarged. 

I sand the edges down careful and/or use flat-nosed clipping pliers/nibs to straighten out the rough edges and make it a little cleaner....
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: slacker on June 22, 2009, 05:10:43 PM
The Echo Base vero is 32 x 23 holes (=736 holes). My Echo Base perf (http://i210.photobucket.com/albums/bb292/frequencycentral/EB01.gif) is 39 x 14 holes (= 546 holes),

Very cool. I might even give it a go.

Quote
the board will fit nicely in my enclosure anyway.

This is the most important thing in my opinion. My layout will fit in a 1590BB enclosure, given the amount of controls jacks and what ever you probably wouldn't want to use a much smaller enclosure anyway, even if the board was smaller.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frequencycentral on June 22, 2009, 07:02:51 PM
Thanks Ian. The layout's unverified at the moment, but I'll be building it over the next couple of weeks. I notice DIYLC has cut off some resistor values, I'll have to fix that. I'll be boxing it up to match the Phase 180 I just finished. I'm looking forward to it!
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: BRingoC on June 22, 2009, 08:41:25 PM
All right, I hear a challenge, or rather, I think I should make a challenge.  I am planning on making an echo base on perf in the near future. I plan on making it on as small a piece of perf board as I can, and I bet I can make a layout smaller than that.  Touché. 

As far as my opinion goes, I have never used vero, seems like it requires more space than any of the other options.  Perf is the most repairable of the other options, any wrong connection and just unsolder the lead, put it where it belongs and there you go.  I have had connections break, but those are on the first pedals I have made, I have learned since those how to not make the poor connections that are likely to break since then.  Overall, perf is like building a house of cards, but using scotch tape and super glue to keep the cards in place.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: demym on March 28, 2011, 04:09:38 PM
I use vero, my first projects on perfs went not very well... then i tried vero; it needs a planning, but i like very much this phase; also, makes me think more to a circuit as connection points beetwen components (even not near ones).. i like the fact that if i have to change i comp, i just desolder it and solder the new one, without the worry to 'reconstruct' the same connection between leads..

i also hade some pcbs made, but i find them less interesting... planning vero on DIYLC is like solving a rebus to me...

just my 1.98 cents :-)
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: frequencycentral on March 28, 2011, 04:41:04 PM
Most of my recent builds have been PCB, but I've got a couple of perf builds just started. I like perf. Perf likes me. We may marry.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: trjones1 on March 28, 2011, 04:59:01 PM
I vote for vero.  For circuits using discrete transistors you can pack the components in pretty tight.  Where it goes wrong is when ICs are involved.  Some IC based circuits fit on vero nicely, others are a nightmare and quickly balloon the size of the board.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: Derringer on March 28, 2011, 05:08:59 PM
when I first got into this I thought vero was the way to go

but then I notice what Rick was doing with perf and thought ... wow you CAN have straight lines on perf when you want to.
So I started using perf and I like it a lot better.

For me, it's easier and quicker to do a layout with perf and easier to assemble.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: defaced on March 28, 2011, 05:33:16 PM
When I don't Eagle, I perf.  I like enjoying designing PCBs because of the nice tools that PCB design softwares have.  If one of the DIY softwares out there for perf/vero had schematics and nets, I'd use it.  But for now, it's Eagle.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: LucifersTrip on March 28, 2011, 10:19:38 PM
I think perf. No cut tracks, tight layouts, easier to go from schematic to layout, you're not forced to work in only one plane, you can do stuff below IC sockets. The list goes on...........


Exactly...I like abstract art & music & enjoy vintage fuzzes the most so I'd go perf all the way for the pure flexability. I simply follow a schematic from left to right and work across the perf in any direction I want, possibly planning a few moves ahead for space. To me that semi-random placing of the parts is all the fun. If I build the same thing 5 times, they'll all look different.

To me, the only appealing thing about vero or pcb would be maybe designing the layout in the first place. Once you have a vero or pcb, to me it's just boring "paint by numbers" (or solder by numbers) and everyone who builds from the same vero layout/pcb will have a circuit that looks almost the same. I don't see why I would want mine to look the same as everyone else's?

Though, I can fully understand using a vero/pcb if you are mass producing stuff or have a large complicated circuit and have access to a pre-designed vero/pcb.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: LP Hovercraft on March 28, 2011, 11:02:44 PM
I've been doing perf without the copper pads for almost all of my builds including big modded phasers, choruses, delays, etc.  The one that really tripped me up was the Deluxe Electric Mistress flanger off the GGG layout.  It wheezed and heterodyned like a 30's Philco radio.  Had to resort to ordering a PC board from GGG just to get it done.  The pc board I ordered, was in fact an inch wider and longer than my perfboarded build.  I then realized that perfboard allowed me to make everything too tight and presumably some of my leads in the clock section were too close to each other and creating a bad clock bleed into the audio section.  I've learned that perfboard is great for things of a lesser complexity, but for high frequency circuits, watch out!  You are right that perf looks hideous if you are not Frequencycentral, but 99% of the time I have found it to be quite functional, very rugged, highly moddable, and fun. 

I'd love to try vero and obviously there are a lot of you are quite good with it, I've just never been able to get my hands on veroboard.  Different strokes for different folks.  One is not better than the other, just different. 
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: jefe on March 29, 2011, 07:32:52 AM
It's pad-per-hole perf for me.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: ayayay! on March 31, 2011, 09:18:06 AM
I prefer perf, as I feel no desire to cut anything on a board to make it work.  With perf, enough holes have been drilled already.  :)

One thought that occured to me:  Jumpers are often poo-poo'd on by folks who know how to really make good PCB layouts.  And it's often not acceptable for many courses/companies/corporations.  Vero invites lots of jumpers.  Just sayin...   :-\
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: jefe on March 31, 2011, 09:33:04 AM
It seems to me like a few jumpers are required for most vero layouts. I don't think that's necessarily a bad thing, just the nature of vero.

I know jumpers are often poo-poo'd, but why is that, really? I assumed it was because in a production setting, every jumper is an extra "component" that needs to be installed and soldered in place. That's too time consuming when you're trying to crank out dozens of units a day, for example. Here in our little DIY world, a few jumpers here and there don't really matter that much, do they?

I had a bit of a jumper realization myself this morning, concerning perf. While looking at a beautifully simple Big Muff perf layout by Rick Holt (yet another masterpiece from Mr. Holt) here: http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=75787.0 (http://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=75787.0), I realized that Rick had used 4 jumpers in this layout. "Jumpers?? Oh no!!" I thought... then it occured to me.. when soldering up a perf layout, you are creating jumpers over the entire bottom of the board anyway. OK, they're actually more like PCB traces. But it really does't matter if you make a few of those "traces" on the component side of the board, in order to make a more compact layout.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: IvIark on March 31, 2011, 10:05:59 AM
Vero invites lots of jumpers.  Just sayin...   :-\
I don't agree that large corporations would deem jumpers unacceptable.  I used to work for a well known electronics corporation who made surface mount pick and place machines, and zero ohm resistors have always been a very commonly used component.  Sometimes you really have no option unless you move to a multi layer PCB.

At the end of the day, a jumper is just an additional track, and perf by its very nature has more added tracks than any other type of build.  I like both but vero just seems less messing about for me, i'd prefer to cut a hole in a track than make the entire track, but it's all horses for courses.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: jefe on March 31, 2011, 10:15:54 AM
perf by its very nature has more added tracks than any other type of build. 

Clarification: Not added tracks, all tracks. There are no additional tracks when using perf, you create all of them from scratch.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: IvIark on March 31, 2011, 10:42:38 AM
Clarification: Not added tracks, all tracks. There are no additional tracks when using perf, you create all of them from scratch.
Well they all certainly have to be added don't they?  I don't really see how what you said contradicted what I said.  The point is with perf you have to create your own tracks and there's no difference between tracks on the front or tracks at the back of the board.  So if you favour perf it doesn't make sense to say that one of the disadvantages of vero is added tracks or links.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: jefe on March 31, 2011, 10:56:52 AM
Clarification: Not added tracks, all tracks. There are no additional tracks when using perf, you create all of them from scratch.
Well they all certainly have to be added don't they?  I don't really see how what you said contradicted what I said.  The point is with perf you have to create your own tracks and there's no difference between tracks on the front or tracks at the back of the board.  So if you favour perf it doesn't make sense to say that one of the disadvantages of vero is added tracks or links.

Yes, they all have to be added, that's the nature of perf. Sorry, it seemed like you were saying that perf needs additional tracks above and beyond other types of boards. Perf uses the same amount of tracks, you just have to install all of them yourself.
Title: Re: Vero or perf? Which is better?
Post by: IvIark on March 31, 2011, 10:59:52 AM
And my perf builds never ending up looking like Rick's is another reason to prefer vero! :)