What is Pad to Pad (PP)?

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Understanding Pad to Pad (PP) Dimension

Definition of Pad to Pad (PP)

Pad to Pad (PP) is defined as the distance between the centers of two neighboring pads on a component or PCB. These pads are typically used for soldering components or connecting them to other parts of the circuit through various methods such as wire bonding or surface mount technology (SMT).

Importance of Pad to Pad (PP) in Electronic Packaging

Maintaining the correct Pad to Pad (PP) dimension is crucial for several reasons:

  1. Proper Connectivity: The PP dimension ensures that components are correctly aligned and connected to the PCB. Any deviation from the specified PP can lead to poor connections or even open circuits.

  2. Signal Integrity: The spacing between pads affects the signal integrity of the electronic device. Inadequate PP spacing can result in signal interference, crosstalk, or other electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) issues.

  3. Manufacturability: Adhering to the recommended PP dimensions is essential for the manufacturability of PCBs and electronic devices. It ensures that the components can be accurately placed and soldered using automated assembly processes.

Factors Affecting Pad to Pad (PP) Dimension

Several factors influence the determination of the appropriate Pad to Pad (PP) dimension for a given electronic design:

Component Package Type

The component package type plays a significant role in determining the PP dimension. Different package types, such as Quad Flat Pack (QFP), Ball Grid Array (BGA), or Chip Scale Package (CSP), have varying pad sizes and spacing requirements. The PP dimension must be compatible with the specific package type to ensure proper connectivity and manufacturability.

PCB Manufacturing Capabilities

The manufacturing capabilities of the PCB fabricator also impact the achievable PP dimension. Factors such as the minimum trace width, minimum spacing, and the accuracy of the manufacturing process determine the smallest possible PP dimension that can be reliably produced.

Design Requirements and Constraints

The design requirements and constraints of the electronic device influence the PP dimension. These include factors such as the required signal integrity, power handling capacity, and the overall size and form factor of the device. The PP dimension must be optimized to meet these requirements while adhering to the manufacturability constraints.

Designing with Pad to Pad (PP) Consideration

When designing electronic devices, it is essential to consider the Pad to Pad (PP) dimension from the early stages of the design process. Here are some key steps and considerations:

Component Selection

Select components that have package types and pad configurations compatible with the desired PP dimension. Consider the package size, pitch, and pad layout when choosing components to ensure they can be properly accommodated on the PCB.

PCB Layout Design

During the PCB layout design phase, pay close attention to the PP dimension. Use PCB design software that allows you to accurately define and control the pad sizes and spacing. Adhere to the recommended PP dimensions provided by the component manufacturers and the PCB fabricator.

Design Rule Checking (DRC)

Utilize Design Rule Checking (DRC) tools within your PCB design software to verify that the PP dimensions are within the acceptable range. DRC helps identify any violations or conflicts in the pad spacing and ensures that the design is manufacturable.

Collaboration with PCB Fabricator

Collaborate closely with your PCB fabricator throughout the design process. Discuss your PP requirements and seek their guidance on the manufacturability and any specific design rules they may have. They can provide valuable insights and recommendations to optimize your design for successful fabrication.

Common Pad to Pad (PP) Pitches

Different component package types and PCB designs utilize various Pad to Pad (PP) pitches. Some common PP pitches include:

Pitch Description
0.5 mm Common for fine-pitch components and high-density PCBs
0.65 mm Used for many surface mount components
0.8 mm Frequently used for leaded components
1.0 mm Typical pitch for larger components and connectors
1.27 mm Common pitch for through-hole components

It’s important to note that these are just a few examples, and the specific PP pitch used in a design depends on various factors such as the component package, PCB manufacturing capabilities, and design requirements.

Pad to Pad (PP) vs. Other Dimensional Specifications

Pad to Pad (PP) is one of several dimensional specifications used in electronic packaging. It is important to understand how PP relates to other commonly used dimensions:

Pad Size

Pad size refers to the dimensions of an individual pad, typically specified as length and width. The pad size must be compatible with the component’s package and the PP dimension to ensure proper soldering and connectivity.


Pitch is the distance between the centers of adjacent pins or balls on a component. While pitch and PP are related, pitch specifically refers to the spacing between pins, while PP is the spacing between pads.

Trace Width and Spacing

Trace width and spacing are PCB design parameters that define the width of the conductive traces and the spacing between them. These dimensions must be considered in conjunction with the PP dimension to ensure proper signal integrity and manufacturability.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  1. What is the difference between Pad to Pad (PP) and pitch?
    Pad to Pad (PP) refers to the distance between the centers of adjacent pads on a PCB, while pitch is the distance between the centers of adjacent pins or balls on a component.

  2. How does the component package type affect the Pad to Pad (PP) dimension?
    Different component package types have varying pad sizes and spacing requirements. The PP dimension must be compatible with the specific package type to ensure proper connectivity and manufacturability.

  3. What are the consequences of not adhering to the recommended Pad to Pad (PP) dimension?
    Not adhering to the recommended PP dimension can lead to issues such as poor connections, open circuits, signal integrity problems, and difficulties in manufacturing.

  4. How can I ensure that my PCB design meets the Pad to Pad (PP) requirements?
    Use PCB design software that allows accurate control of pad sizes and spacing, adhere to the recommended PP dimensions provided by component manufacturers and PCB Fabricators, and utilize Design Rule Checking (DRC) tools to verify the PP dimensions.

  5. What should I do if I’m unsure about the Pad to Pad (PP) requirements for my specific design?
    Consult with your PCB fabricator and component suppliers for guidance on the recommended PP dimensions. They can provide valuable insights based on their manufacturing capabilities and the specific requirements of your design.


Pad to Pad (PP) is a crucial dimension in electronic packaging that ensures proper connectivity, signal integrity, and manufacturability of electronic devices. Understanding the factors that influence PP, such as component package type, PCB manufacturing capabilities, and design requirements, is essential for successful PCB design.

By considering PP throughout the design process, selecting compatible components, and collaborating with PCB fabricators, designers can create reliable and manufacturable electronic products. Adhering to recommended PP dimensions and utilizing design tools and best practices helps minimize issues and ensures the overall success of the electronic design.

As technology advances and electronic devices become more compact and complex, the importance of accurate Pad to Pad (PP) dimensions will only continue to grow. Designers must stay updated with the latest industry standards and best practices to effectively navigate the challenges and opportunities presented by evolving electronic packaging requirements.