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Raising the Bar of Burn-In Testing Sockets

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When conducting reliability testing of semiconductor devices, there's a wide range of mechanical, thermal, and electrical challenges. Knowing the socket options available will help address and solve these issues. 

Plastronics, a Smiths Interconnect technology brand,  socket solutions are an innovative approach to traditional socket solutions, integrating electronics and plastic molding technologies to create complex electronic systems with enhanced durability, lower costs, and smaller form factors.

Plastronics socket solutions offer several advantages over traditional socket solutions, including:

  • Higher pin counts: Our sockets can accommodate higher pin counts, making them suitable for high-performance electronic devices.
  • Greater design flexibility: We offer greater design flexibility, allowing for customization and optimization of the socket design to meet specific application requirements.
  • Reduced manufacturing time: Sockets are produced through automated assembly, reducing manufacturing time and costs.
  • Improved electrical performance: Plastronic socket solutions offer enhanced electrical performance, with better signal integrity, lower crosstalk, and better impedance control.

Chip manufacturers use our burn-in testing socket solutions in various electronic devices, including medical, consumer, automotive, and industrial applications.

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Our Approach

The socket solutions are available in different types, such as Zero Insertion Force (ZIF) sockets, Land Grid Array (LGA) sockets, Ball Grid Array (BGA) sockets, and Pin Grid Array (PGA) sockets. The type of socket selected will depend on the specific application requirements, such as the number of pins, pitch, and form factor.


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With the most extensive Quad Flat No-Lead (QFN) catalog worldwide, Plastronics has led in designing and developing socket solutions for QFN packages. These sockets offer a modular design in a small outline with very low inductance. The Open Top QFN socket allows for more convenient package loading and unloading in most of the same lead count options as the lidded version.

The QFN sockets provide maximum performance with the most cost-effective, high-performance pin on the market – the H-Pin.

What is the H-Pin?

The H-Pin is a stamped spring probe with the mechanical, electrical, and thermal performance of a spring probe and the ease of use and high volume manufacturability of a stamped contact. The H-Pin serves applications without the typical compromises required when considering cost versus performance.

Designed to provide a reliable and secure connection between the electronic component and the socket or connector, the H-Pins offer several benefits over other contact pins used in the market. 

These benefits include:

  • Improved electrical performance: Designed to provide a low insertion force, H-Pins reduce the risk of damage to the electronic component during insertion and removal. They provide a high contact force, which ensures a secure and stable connection between the component and the socket or connector. The H-Pin design also reduces contact resistance, leading to better electrical performance.
  • Better signal integrity: H-Pins provide a more constant and consistent contact force across all the pins, ensuring the signals transmit uniformly without signal loss or distortion. This leads to better signal integrity, improved data transfer rates, and reduced noise.
  • Enhanced durability: Made of high-quality materials that can withstand high temperatures and mechanical stress, H-Pins are more durable than other contact pins with a longer life span, leading to lower maintenance costs and reduced downtime.
  • Compatibility: H-Pins can be used in a wide range of electronic applications, making them a versatile solution for electronic sockets, connectors, and adapters.


We offer a semi-custom socket solution, which involves customizing standard socket designs to meet the specific requirements of a customer's application. The semi-custom socket process involves several stages, including:

  1. Requirement Analysis
    The first step in the semi-custom socket process is to analyze the customer's requirements, including the application's electrical, mechanical, and environmental specifications. 

  2. Design Phase
    Once the requirements have been identified, the next step is to design the semi-custom socket. Plantronics engineers will work with the customer to create a design that meets their needs. 

  3. Prototype Development
    After finalizing the design, a prototype of the semi-custom socket is developed. This prototype is then tested to ensure it meets the customer's requirements and specifications. Any necessary adjustments are made to the design based on the testing results.

  4. Validation
    Once the prototype has been developed, it is validated to ensure it meets the customer's requirements and specifications. This validation process includes electrical testing, mechanical testing, and environmental testing.

  5. Production
    After validating the semi-custom socket, it moves into production.  Plastronics' production team will manufacture the sockets according to the customer's specifications.

  6. Error-free delivery
    Finally, the semi-custom sockets are delivered to the customer. Plastronics provides ongoing technical support to ensure that the semi-custom sockets continue to meet the customer's needs.

Our semi-custom socket process involves customizing standard socket designs to meet the specific requirements of a customer's application. The semi-custom socket solution provides customers with a cost-effective and efficient way to obtain customized sockets that meet their particular needs.



We also offer a fully custom socket solution, which involves the development of completely bespoke one-of-a-kind sockets and fixtures. We can leverage a wide range of socket designs and an extensive catalog of universal components to address special needs quickly and at an enabling price.

  1. Engineering and Design
    When the time has come to test the reliability of your new product, you need cost-effective, reliable burn-in sockets to achieve optimal testing results. The path to finding the right solution starts with our advanced engineering team.

    Semiconductor companies introduce new devices with more features and complexity every year. As a valued supplier of test and burn-in socket solutions, We continue to advance its engineering and design capabilities by using 3D CAD and Simulation technologies to ensure customers get working, reliable connectors for their next-generation product testing. From thermal issues on high-power parts to simulating mechanical stress, we have advanced modeling capability to help solve your most challenging problems.
  2. Tooling, molding, and machining
    Plastronics has a fully integrated tool and molding shop to ensure the best quality and competitive lead times. Master toolmakers work with our engineering and mold designers to build tools from the ground up.

    With painstaking detail, our experienced toolmakers use the latest technology in CNC, grinding wire, and plunge EDM equipment and work with mold tolerances in the .0001 of an inch.

    In the same building, we have a molding operation with six horizontal injection molding machines ranging from 22 to 66 tons, all with high-speed injection capability to help fill the most demanding plastic parts. 
  3. Assembly, packaging, and delivery
    Our assembly operation's #1 goal is to ship zero-defect products on time. Depending on volume, Plastronics engineers and manufacturing personnel work together to ensure designs can be assembled quickly and correctly using manual, semi-automated, or fully automated assembly techniques.

    With incoming and outgoing quality control on every product, Plastronics ensures you get a quality product on every shipment.

    Our in-house tool and mold facility, machine shop, and the versatility of the H-Pin with universal socket components give our customers quick and reliable sockets for a wide array of applications, including:
  • Mixed pitch
  • Power SOs
  • Odd package sizes
  • High temperatures
  • High power
  • Other custom test needs

Plastronics socket solutions offer several advantages over traditional ones, including higher pin counts, greater design flexibility, reduced manufacturing time, improved electrical performance, and environmental friendliness. The type of socket selected will depend on the specific application requirements, and Plastronics socket solutions can be used in a wide range of electronic devices.

Whether your package matches perfectly with a socket in our current catalog or you need a custom product for your innovation, Plastronics has the technology and the expertise to determine and deliver the right solution for you.

Start the process today!

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