Hi there community!
It’s Theo, the Community Reporter! I am back for more updates on the development front. This week we bring news on ES07DC9’s quality control (QC) following the road test that took place following the conclusion of our first mass production run.
We start by preparing the shipment pallet of ES07DC9 for easy access by our third-party QC team.
Half-complete pallet of ES07DC9. Here, another half of the units are already on their QC check.
Then, we unpack the monitors. This happens in a dedicated room, next to where the pallet is. In this room, we are not only doing the unpacking but also repacking post-inspection. The stands are checked as well, albeit in a separate process.
ES07DC9s are unpacked and attached with their separate Spectrum stand. If you pay attention to the base of the stand, it is written “testing stand”. This stand is not our retail unit and is only used for testing.
Unpacked monitors are then sent out to another room, where we have them set on the inspection desk. We have the monitors inspected not only for their physical integrity, but also for port functions, and the image quality.
Next, we go to the video. In the video below, you will see how the core QC check is done. If the unit passes the check, then it will go back to the original room to be repacked. If not, it will be sent yet to another room for further investigation.
In the video, we managed to document a few retail stands that made a creaking noise. Our mechanical engineer disassembled the stand to find out the cause of the noise and fix it for our next production batch. We will talk more about the findings for the ES07DC9 units in a separate section towards the end of the topic.
ES07DC9 units that passed the QC check are being repacked. The boxes have their own section, so as not to have them mixed. It is important to not mix the boxes because each unit has its unique serial numbers printed on the box.
Monitors repackaged and taken out of the room, back to the pallet.
As a last touch, our inspection team scanned the barcode of the units that have passed its QC check to document and mark the unit as “checked and good to go”.
After repackaging is done, the units are stacked again in the pallet and have their barcode scanned.
Now that we have done repackaging and preparing the pallet stack, we discuss the findings of the inspection.
Our production engineer (the man standing in the middle with light gray shirt) discussed the issues on the failing unit(s) during the inspection.
While most of the units exhibit no issues, the yield percentage is not good enough to be considered a successful run and for us to commit to bigger-scale mass production. This means that there are a few things that need addressing at the production level and possibly vendor (supplier) level as well.
While we are aware this is not a really welcome development, it is important to note that ultimately we just want to make sure that the units are of the best quality possible when it arrives at your door. This QC check is very important for us to rule out possible issues that might arise, and address them sooner than later.
What is the yield percentage and what is considered to be good?
The yield percentage for this mass production run is 90%, while we need to reach at least 97% in order to be considered good enough. We need to have the failure rate to be lower since it is tightly intertwined with efficiency and cost calculation. Going with a 90% yield may sound good on paper, but effectively it will force us to drive the prices even higher just to meet our bottom line caused by failing units and wasted material.
What are the issues?
Collectively we have found ES07DC9 units with a scratch mark on display, a sunken power button, dead pixels, and a faulty USB-C port. One issue that showed up the most is : failing to detect video input during first start-up
How are we going to address the issues?
Each of these issues is to be addressed separately by different sections of the manufacturing. For example, sunken buttons and scratch marks may require reviewing assembly procedures and operator assembly skills. Dead pixels and faulty ports need to involve investigation on parts quality check and material test report. The video input issue will require the firmware team to do the necessary optimizations.
How serious are these issues?
While it seems like it might be worrying to see the issues at a first glance, they all belong to a minor category which means that it is relatively easy to track and fix the cause. With the exception of the faulty USB-C port, which requires further investigation of the vendor’s yield rate.
The additional adjustment and investigation to increase yield percentage obviously will cost time, and with that comes the delay of mass production of more units. This also means that we will have to delay the production and consequently, expect shipping of the rest of the units to commence in July 2022. This estimate is based on the time needed to iron out our production nicks. As always, we will keep you guys in the loop.
As you are aware, we have 90% of the units that pass the inspection. These units are going to be shipped out first along with more ES07D03 units going out towards the end of the month.
Thanks everyone for reading! Feel free to drop your comment below.