Vero or perf? Which is better?

Started by frequencycentral, June 19, 2009, 12:38:25 PM

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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

N.S.B.A. ~ Coming soon


Quote from: frequencycentral on June 20, 2009, 07:16:27 AM
Case solved: Perfrocksverosucks!

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

Hijack alert! Hijack alert! Hijack alert!

Quote from: 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:

The Echo Base vero is 32 x 23 holes (=736 holes). My Echo Base perf 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!

Questo è il fiore del partigiano morto per la libertà!


Nah yours is smaller than ours... we could make our layouts smaller but we don't like to brag... (too many oxymorons!)


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....
Breadboard it!


Quote from: frequencycentral on June 21, 2009, 08:09:59 PM
The Echo Base vero is 32 x 23 holes (=736 holes). My Echo Base perf is 39 x 14 holes (= 546 holes),

Very cool. I might even give it a go.

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.


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!

Questo è il fiore del partigiano morto per la libertà!


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.
Since when is 3/4 of the way up "cranked"?


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 :-)


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.

Questo è il fiore del partigiano morto per la libertà!


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.


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.


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.


Quote from: 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...........

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.
always think outside the box

LP Hovercraft

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. 



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...   :-\
The people who work for a living are now outnumbered by those who vote for a living.


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:, 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.


Quote from: ayayay! on March 31, 2011, 09:18:06 AMVero 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.


Quote from: IvIark on March 31, 2011, 10:05:59 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.


Quote from: jefe on March 31, 2011, 10:15:54 AMClarification: 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.