Tag: electronic design

Outsourcing Electronic Design Projects

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Electronic design projects usually use a group of software tools in the design of electronic systems including integrated circuits, printed circuit boards and electronic products from appliances to weapons. Suffice it to say that the technology is a crucial component of the manufacturing process across diverse industries.

But not every company has the capability in technologies, manpower and resources to undertake projects on their own, thus, the necessity for outsourcing. In itself, outsourcing has several benefits including tapping into the proven technologies, manpower and networks of the third-party provider and enjoying the desired results, which translates to excellent value for the money. Then again, outsourcing has many pitfalls wherein anything and everything can go wrong – and in sensitive projects involving electronic design, something going wrong can quickly become a nightmare.

The benefits of outsourcing design projects will then partly be determined by the quality (i.e., experience and expertise, reliability and reputation) of the engineering firm hired for the purpose and partly by the quality of coordination each party has with the other. Start asking for references for the best engineering firms in the industry and then make your choice from the shortlist after careful consideration of their suitability for the project.

Companies offering electronic design projects for outsourcing should be aware of three dangers in the process. First, the lack of familiarity between the two parties specifically in their operations will hinder the design process in so many ways – the right results may not be delivered in the right time to the right person, for example. Your company may not be familiar with the engineering firm’s processes in design projects and vice versa.

Second, the lack of preparation on the part of the company outsourcing the design work will jeopardize the entire project, too. Keep in mind that the company must have a project plan including detailed functional specifications before the project can be handed over, so to speak, to the contractor. Otherwise, mistakes will abound and reworks will be necessary, which will add to the overall costs – truly, something that any company will want to avoid.

Third, the lack of a written agreement (i.e. formal contract) can result in several disagreements, if not lawsuits. Intellectual property rights (i.e., who owns what part of the project) are thorny issues that every company outsourcing its electronic design projects must be aware of.

When any of these things manifest themselves, both the company and the contractor will have to deal with a wide range of issues. Think of incorrect results, inappropriate specs, and innumerable reworks, which are relatively mild in comparison with stolen design ideas, industry espionage, and violations of intellectual property rights.

Fortunately, these are issues that can be avoided with careful planning even before the electronic design project is outsourced. Do your homework on the specs for the project and the contractor for it. Work with the contractor on every aspect of the project so that mistakes can be detected and resolved early on. Get the terms and provisions of the project in writing.

How Bad Electronic Design Invented Rock n Roll

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Musicians are weird. Back in the early days of electrical music amplification, the aim of amplifiers was to increase the volume of instruments without adding or taking away any tone. Vacuum tubes, or valves, we used. These glass tubes waste energy by creating both light and heat – they also changed the tone of the instruments. Theoretically speaking, this is an example of awful electronic design. It was thought of as a terrible problem until the birth of rock music, which actually took the inaccurate tone amplification, or ‘distortion’, and sought to not only utilise it but extend it. Guitarists such as Jimi Hendrix, Pete Townsend of the Who and Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin were pioneers of distorted guitar tones. By the time component manufacture caught up – transistors and integrated circuits, or ICs, developed in recent decades can reproduce the actual tone of an electric guitar very accurately – rock music had become so dependent on valve tone that valves are still used in guitar amps – and, indeed, vastly preferred over transistors.

How Inefficient Electronic Design Makes Rock Records sound Awesome

Electronic DesignThe strange thing is that it’s not just rock guitar amps which use valve technology. Every professional recording studio will use valves in their production hardware – even computer based genres like house, trance and sample-driven hip-hop. This is because specialist music production hardware such as compressors (which reduce the dynamic between loud and quiet signals) and graphic EQs (which boost some frequencies and reduce others) simply sound better when valves are introduced. Something about this inefficient – and, by now, archaic – technology appeals to the human ear that modern transistors, ICs and software doesn’t. There’s no scientific reason why this is the case, but industry experts and casual listeners all seem to agree – a vacuum tube is the best sounding form of amplification there is.

The lesson learned here? With a little creative problem solving, you can make your technological limitations work to your advantage.

Using Electronic Design to Further Your WiFi

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electronic Design

It seems like the ultimate First World Problem – WiFi speeds and reach don’t always match our expectations. However, especially in the business world, speed and efficiency are the lifeblood of your organisation, and can make the difference between a good working environment and a very good working environment. At home, strong, broad WiFi signal can mean fewer arguments – the kids can stream media, Skype, download and browse to their heart’s content all at the same time, while you relax with your tablet or laptop elsewhere, winding down after a hard day. Compare this to rows over usage, speeds, and having to listen to complaints of slow speeds and limited range. The electronic design of new tech means that gadgets are available to tackle even the most demanding household’s WiFi needs – let’s have a look at how it does so.

How Good Electronic Design Keeps You Surfing Quicker

Electronic DesignThis image shows how most people see their human needs according to Maslow’s scale. It is of course mean as a joke, but it does point out how important WiFi is to our society. Electronic design behind a range of boosters, amplifiers and extenders means that you can browse quicker and further from your wireless router thanks to the following factors:

1. Premium Components

That free router you got with your broadband package probably isn’t of the highest quality, especially from smaller broadband providers. Especially for budget packages, your router will have been manufactured as cheaply as possible, which means the cheapest components were used in the router’s circuitry. Premium routers available from computer stores will offer much better range and speed because they use the best components.

2. Research and Development

The reason that premium manufacturers’ products are more expensive is because they need to offset their R&D costs. This involves the company paying electronic specialists to research new technologies, components and techniques to create better products. When the ‘copycat’ brands bring out cheaper variations, it’s because they’ve simply copied these premium brands’ products – which is why they’re always released some time after the premium brands.

Product Design Derby News Round Up

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Product design Derby experts like to keep on top of the latest news in product design from across the globe. Product design is an important process in any design, it helps determine solutions to products that perhaps aren’t as effective as they should be, and enables a better product to take it’s place. We have curated the latest news in product design so you can keep up to date.


Product Design Derby
Product Design Derby

Sleek, innovative product design transforms the personal breathalyser into a classy fashion statement

A fantastic breathalyser has been designed called AURA. AURA offers a contemporary and sleek looking gadget that uses the very best electrochemical fuel cell sensor technology so you know it’s reliable. This design is hoped to catch on to make people more aware of responsible drinking.

Read the full story here


Is design still about making things?

A really interesting read on how the patterns in product design are changing in todays modern society. Designers are still creating beautiful products, but there is now a bigger focus on creating products that are designed to help those in healthcare, and those in need, to help make lives easier.

Read the full story here


Apple announces the iPhone 5c: 4-inch Retina display, plastic design, available in five colors

Of course we couldn’t forget to mention the new release of the Apple iPhone 5c. Apple have always lead the way with many of their products and it’s fascinating to see how much buzz and social media interest there is when a new product is released. Watch the video from Jony Ive, who is leader of design at Apple.

Read the full story and watch the video here

London Design Festival: the next big five

With the London Design Festival about to kick off, the Guardian writes about the next big five up and coming designers to look out for. Mainly focussed on furniture and fashion product design, but it still showcases some great talents.

Read the full story here

We hope you found these stories interesting. Product design Derby is always on the look out for the latest news and developments in todays society.


The 7 Steps of Product Design

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Any serious business knows the importance of introducing new products to the market. In this world of business there is a lot of competition which means that in order to succeed in any business you really have to impress your potential customers. A product design is a major part of product branding which usually determines the superiority of your product in the market. You can never go wrong in investing a in a good product design as it is what’s sets your product a part from others in a competitive market.

One of the biggest challenges in launching a new product both in new as well as in already established businesses is the cost of marketing. A successful design will reduce this cost as it makes your product appealing and in the long run creating customer loyalty.

The process is usually broken down into seven main steps namely: problem assessment, research, idea analysis, prototyping, final design, testing and manufacturing.

Product Design
Product Design

Problem assessment

Many businesses thrive in commercialising solutions to problems in a certain community. Solutions may take the form of either improvement to physical products or services or inventing new products or services. Design process starts when an idea is generated in the mind. At this point it is advisable to write the idea on paper and what problem the idea seeks to solve.


This step involves conducting research to find out if there are other similar ideas or products elsewhere. The focus here is to refine the idea and identify the target market. A good product design focuses on customer satisfaction and involves determining the price that the target customer will be willing to pay for the product, usability, safety as well as disposal. It is hence very important to know the specific customer needs and preferences. Some of the important information that this step seeks to find is; size of product, materials needed in the design and the products needs and requirements-whether there are other products that will be needed to use this particular product such as batteries.

Idea analysis 

Based on the findings on the previous stage-research, product sketches are produced through brain storming and other forms of discussions. This stage seeks to come up with as many designs sketches as possible and at the end of this step one or two sketches are selected and moved to the next stage-prototyping.


A design of the chosen sketches or sketches on the previous stage is created in 3D using the material and color that is expected to be used in the final product. The focus here is not the product functionality but the appearance and usability though basic functionality of product is implemented.

Final design

A final design is produces based on the features of the prototype and all the changes that may have been suggested are made. Complete functionality of the product is implemented at this stage. A few samples are produced a waiting testing.


This stage is very import in the design process and should never be overlooked. It is at this stage where the product is taken to a lab for testing by professionals. This will enable it to be certified by the governing body such as the bureau of standards. Testing also involves distributing samples for use by potential customers and getting their feedback.


If the results of the testing stage are satisfactory the product is ready for mass production else part or the whole process of product design is repeated.

It is very important to remember that every stage of the design process should be documented and all the documents complied and kept as the information can be used in future either for other new product designs or for product improvement.










Inspiring Product Design Web Magazines

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As product design is such a fast paced technology, it can sometimes feel impossible to keep on track with the newest innovative products. We’ve rounded up some inspiring web based magazines that feature product design and industrial design, that keep us up to date with the latest breaking technology in the world today.

Product Design
Product Design

Design Boom

Design boom is a a great place for professionals and young amateur designers to come together and learn about the latest news stories from across the world. They’re always on top of the latest headlines when it comes to design, heres one we particularly liked –

Design Boom – solar-powered flat pack refugee shelters by IKEA



Wired is a magazine for all things geeky, and they blog about a variety of different news articles, from entertainment, science and technology. We like their articles about 3D printing, which is a relatively new and emerging technology, which is gaining more and more popularity.

Wired – Is this 3D printed cast the future of healing broken bones?



Core77 really has it all, and is a fantastic place to find all you may need for industrial design. From news articles to job listings and discussion forums.



Monkee Design

Monkee Design is the place for inspiration and congregates industrial and product designers together, to help each other look for gorgeous designs. In such a fast paced environment when it comes to products, it’s important to keep designs fresh and interesting and not get lost amongst the crowd. We particularly like their inspiration page.

Check it out here – Monkee Design – Inspiration


How to achieve the best in product design

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Product Design
Product Design

As the technology advances, especially in the field of computer technology, there are more products being designed to be used in the field of computers. You may be willing to venture into product design to meet some needs in the field. That can be a good idea because there is wide market, provided you design a product that will meet some specific needs that are not well utilised in the market already. Different products that you may see in the market that are used in different levels of computer technology were once designed by individuals who had an idea just like the one you may have. For you to achieve the best in product design you need to take the following factors into consideration.


1.Budget on which to work on for you to achieve your design

For any design that you may think of to be successful you need to spend some amount in doing research about the given product and on buying materials to be used in the design. You will need to travel from one place to another while carrying out the design. This can be with an aim of obtaining the necessary information or to do more research. In product design you need to work with models where you will need to display to people the working of your project. These models will require you to spend some money. For you to avoid being strained in the project try and plan a budget on which to work on, to avoid cases where you will end up running short of money for other things that are important in life.


2. Doing research concerning the product

For you to achieve the best out of the product that you are about to design you need to do some research on the product with characteristics almost similar to what you are about to design. This is necessary for you to avoid cases where you will end up designing a product and you are faced with charges due to piracy. In doing research you need to identify similar products and try to make your product an improvement.


3. Working on a time schedule

It is highly advisable for you to decide on a time schedule for you to work on. This is necessary to avoid taking too much time to complete a project. Remember the products especially in the field of computer technology are changing drastically. You may design a product and if you delay, other products will be designed with more superior quality than yours. This will make yourself look inferior within the shortest time which will disadvantage you in getting enough market for your product. It is advisable to release a product within the shortest time possible and try to improve it with time. This will enable you maintain customers as they will like to have an improvement in the product that they already have.

Product Design Round Up

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Product Design
Product Design

There are some amazing product design and ideas out there, from cool and quirky, to pure genius bespoke designs. Here is our latest round up of product designs from around the globe.

15+ Beautiful And Clever Products Design

From functional and beautiful wine racks, to a multi purpose lamp, it’s all here. Product design is getting more and more innovative yet challenging. People will often go for more well designed pieces to fit within their home, not only due to the one off designs, but because they can also be a conversation starter when guests come round.

See the inspirational designs here from touchey.com


17 Cool Product Design Ideas

If you’re looking to make your home more interesting, then look no further than some of these products. If you’re perhaps on more of a budget, but want to spark some interest in your home, some of these product designs will get you interested in creating a more interesting feel to your home.

See the gallery here from sloganmaker.net


20 Awesome Products And Design Ideas

If you’re looking for a more quirky way of relaxing in your home, then take a look at some of these functional designs. From rest spaces, to interesting desk designs that integrate ways of creating maximum space in your home.

See the designs here from nedhardy.com



Finally, if you’re looking for a guide on the good and the bad, of product design, these guide gives some great tips on what to steer clear of.

See the guide here