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Venture Capabilities

PCB ICT Testing


Years of Experience


Electronics Components


Successful Projects


Experienced Engineers

The PCB ICT testing verifies the correct operation and positioning of PCB components. This is done by connecting the board to a machine called in-circuit tester.

During the test, an array of probes scans components for defined electrical properties such as shorts and opens or capacitance and resistance.

An in-circuit test system is basically made up of these main components: the test program, the testing fixture called “bed of nails”, and the tester itself.

    • Test Software – this contains instructions for the specified test points on the board. It also defines PCBA parameters to be checked and their “fail and pass” information.

    • Test Fixture – the in-circuit test fixture consists of many spring-loaded test pins. These touch the board at the appropriate points during the process, delivering signals to the components and receiving feedback.

    • Tester – the in-circuit tester is the machine that perform the entire testing process. While this can be used to check many different types of boards, the software and fixture are PCB-specific.

Comparison of In-Circuit Testing and AOI

In comparison to AOI, in-circuit testing is a more detailed method for checking PCB assemblies. It provides a better analysis of the components, and can detect various after-assembly flaws that would otherwise go unnoticed.

Venture uses both visual and physical tests, such as the in-circuit test procedure, to analyze PCBs during their production process. Here’s a brief comparison of the two testing methods.

In Circuit Testing


Electrical method

Visual analysis

Costs more

Less expensive

More accurate

Less accurate

A faster method

Comparatively slower method

Typically an after-assembly test

Can be done before and after assembly

How Does Venture Perform In Circuit Testing for Quality Control?

At venture, the ICT test involves a series of steps. Advanced ICT equipment is also used. This ensures the best outcomes when conducting the test, and greater reliability of your assembly printed circuit boards. During the in-circuit testing process, the following takes place.

Step 1: Preparations

PCB in-circuit test starts with making the necessary preparations. A custom testing fixture is made, based on the particular PCBs design specifications. A proprietary testing program is also written.

The fixture contains matrix of testing pins or probes whose positions align with the testing nodes of the PCB. The in-circuit test software, on the other hand, has all the test parameters for the specific board.

Step 2: Loading the PCB

The PCBA to be tested is loaded onto the testing fixture, with the component side facing up. The fixture is a structure that typically contains hundreds of probes whose positions match with those of the PCB points.

For lower production runs, the slower but less costly method called “flying probe” is a more preferred option. This type of test involves moving probes that hover above the PCB, carrying out in-circuit tests at different positions.

Step 3: In Circuit Testing

The actual testing process can now begin. This is done by lowering the board onto the fixture using a vacuum mechanism. It allows the probes to make direct contact with the board’s testing nodes.

The in-circuit tester then takes measurements and compares them to those contained in the design file of the particular PCB. To verify PCBAs, their components are measured for the following:

    • Open connections

    • Short circuits

    • Soldering defects

    • Component defects

    • Missing components

    • Incorrect component position and values

    • Power and signal faults

    • Capacitance and inductive values

Step 4: Analyzing ICT Results

Results from the test process are analyzed. Faultless PCBs are allowed to move on to the other stages of their production process. The in-circuit test engineer also uses the test results to identify defects and correct them early enough.

Venture makes use of the in-circuit test to check assembled PCB components, ensuring their correct operation and positioning. For more information about our services for PCB manufacturing and testing, feel free to contact us.

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