A PCB (printed circuit board) is a board that allows you to connect electronic components using conductive pathways. The board has several lines and pads to connect different points together.

PCBs are usually created with copper, resin, or substrate and contain several layers of copper laminated between the conductive material. In this article, we will explain the different layers of the PCB. Let’s get to the point: PCB layers explained.

Difference Between Solitary and Multi-Layer PCB Boards

When choosing a PCB board for your work, you first need to define whether you need a multilayer PCB or a solitary one. Apart from the costs, solitary and multilayer PCBs have different signal frequencies.

If you are looking to create a simple component, go for a solitary PCB. They have a conductive design on one side and electrical segments on the other. However, remember, they don’t have enough wire crossing areas, so it might not be a good option for advanced gadgets.

Multilayer printed circuit boards have several conductor patterns, thereby offering additional area for wiring. A typical multilayer PCB has at least one double-sided circuit boards, insulated and laminated together.

While the most common type of multilayer PCB has two layers, you can choose up to eight layers of PCB. And as mentioned above, the more the layers of PCB, the higher the signal intensity. This means, if you are looking to create a complex circuit, make sure to choose a multilayer PCB motherboard.

Understanding Different Layers of PCB 

Just to remind you, a simple circuit can be created with a solitary PCB. But, if you want to create complex circuits, choose from one of the below options.

1 – Single Layer PCBs

It contains one segment of conductive material at the top. The conductive material is welded together. However, to build a single layer PCB, you will need a conductive separator material and a copper overlay to cover it. In the end, use soldering to cover your PCB post laminating.

For the color of the layers:

  • Brown indicates copper
  • Grey indicates the conductive layer
  • Green indicates the lamination cover

Single-layer PCBs are usually used in radios and calculators.

2- Double Layer PCBs

It contains two layers of conductive layers on either side of the PCB. This allows you to connect wires easily from one layer to another. The two segments are usually laminated and overlaid together, thereby providing you a greater wiring area. So, if you are looking to create a circuit that can handle complex functions, such as air conditioners, then a double layer PCB is the right choice.

3- Four Layer PCBs

Unlike the boards mentioned above, the four-layer PCB uses four copper sheets. All the sheets are welded together to give a multifaceted product performance level.

A four-layer PCB board has a solitary copper sheet covered with its mirror-image representation. It is then covered with a resin and copper material from the top and the bottom, thereby creating four layers.

It can be used to create complex circuits and are often utilized in space tech, satellite, and handheld devices.

4- Six Layer PCBs

Looking to create complex technical gadgets? A six-layer PCB is all you need. Just like four-layer PCBs, a six-layer PCB contains a solitary copper sheet covered with its mirror-image representation and covered with a resin and copper foil material. However, it has two additional layers of copper and columns of encasing material.

Six-layer PCBs reduce cross-connection between different layers, thereby enhancing the performance of your circuit. The most common use of six-layer PCB is in desktops and laptops.

5- Complex Multilayer PCBs

Last but not least, complex multilayer PCBs include eight and ten-layer PCBs. In the 8-layer PCB, there are 4-layers of copper sheets and 4-cover layers. In the ten-layer PCB, there are two additional layers of copper and encasing materials.


With the advancement in technology, we are witnessing different types of PCB boards. In this article, we have discussed different layer stack of PCB. It is essential to understand the differences so that you can choose the right one for your circuit.