Where to buy components?

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by schrammIC.DIODE, Sep 20, 2010.

  1. schrammIC.DIODE

    Thread Starter New Member

    Sep 20, 2010
    Hi everybody,

    I was wondering if anyone knew of a place with a wide selection of component parts, radioshack isn't working and fry's has some but not all the parts I need.

    Does anyone know of any other good stores in Portland, Oregon?
  2. SgtWookie


    Jul 17, 2007
    I suggest that you buy from authorized distributors only.

    Digikey is fairly hobbyist-friendly, and will ship via USPS 1st class for SMALL orders.

    Mouser is another 1st class vendor, and authorized distributor for many manufacturers.

    AvnetExpress is another authorized distributor for numerous manufacturers.

    Buy cautiously, as you don't want to wind up with piles of stuff that you can't u se.
  3. Wendy


    Mar 24, 2008
    Their might also be local outlets. When I read Fry's I thought there was a slight chance you lived in the Dallas area, then I reread your post.
  4. marshallf3

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2010
    I've found Mouser to be the most friendly of the bunch when it comes to small orders, and their policy is to only charge you exactly what they had to pay to ship something, i.e. they even pass on the volume discount they get from UPS so $4 isn't an unusual charge for a 1 lb package.

    Where I live, if I order before 8:00 PM via UPS Ground they have it out on the last truck and I've got it the next morning.

    Really small order? They'll even ship parcel post but that can take a little longer. Came in handy a while back when I found I was short a half handful of 0.01 uF SMT caps, cost me about $1 in shipping since they only ship in boxes.
  5. wayneh


    Sep 9, 2010
    Maybe I've just been lucky so far, but I've had very good results with the parts sellers on e-bay. You have to be patient while the parts ship all the way from Hong Kong or wherever, but I always get my stuff and it's practically free compared to other options. You need to know what you want, and it seems they only carry "popular" parts, but if they have what you need it's tough to beat.
  6. retched

    AAC Fanatic!

    Dec 5, 2009
    And you may get craphanz dealing with those types of sellers.

    Thousands of folks are getting counterfeit parts from ebay and the like.

    They can work as intended, but you have no idea when they will decide to spark on fire or quit or whatever.

    There is really no reason to buy ebay parts when places like digikey and mouser will sell you 1 pc and guarantee it/them.

    We had a member here who received mis-marked counterfeit parts from a reputable dealer and he was compensated within a day or two.

    If REPUTABLE dealers can get these parts accidentally, then you DEFINITELY can via ebay.
  7. wayneh


    Sep 9, 2010
    Well, no reason other than the massive price differential, often 90% or more. I could get completely ripped off on my next 3 orders and I'll still be ahead overall.

    But, I don't disagree with the buyer-beware warnings here. It's just that my work with these parts is mostly experimental, prototyping and hobbyist. If I was actually building something of lasting importance, I'd be far more careful.
  8. retched

    AAC Fanatic!

    Dec 5, 2009
    This is where I sit.

    If you are a budding hobbyist, and there are already 10,000 things that could cause your first circuits to fail, causing one to give-up and stray away from what could have been a fulfilling hobby, why start getting your parts on ebay?

    If you HAPPEN to get a bad part, how would you know?

    You would sit over your breadboard wondering what you did wrong..checking schematics..asking questions..adding decoupling caps..asking more questions..

    when it was a bad part the whole time.

    If you are just starting out, you should try to eliminate these avoidable errs.

    Now, if you have been in the biz for awhile, and know what is 'mission critical' and what is not, then by all means, penny pinch.

    You can save quite a bit.

    But at this point, you are paying for your education. Dont skimp on that.
  9. spacewrench


    Oct 5, 2009
    Don't forget Arrow! I had a poor opinion of them (they appeared to be focusing more on corporate clients, as they had relatively large minimum-quantitity requirements and high shipping charges) but I checked there the other day, and found:

    * Parts in stock that Mouser and DigiKey didn't have
    * Prices as much as 75% off Digikey for same parts, same quantity
    * Free shipping (at least for the 20 CPUs I ordered).

    In the future, I'll be checking all three places. (I wish I could just deal with one, but they each seem to have certain types of parts MUCH cheaper than the others.)
  10. retched

    AAC Fanatic!

    Dec 5, 2009
    Just like supermarkets.

    One will have corn on the cob for 10 cents a pound to get you in the door, the other will have mac and cheese for 49 cents a box ........

  11. prb22786


    Sep 19, 2010
    I'm a big fan of Digi-Key/Newark personally. Newark is sometimes more expensive, but they're very helpful as far as requesting samples goes. Samples are a prototypers best friend...

    E-bay does have one nice caveat. A lot of times someone will give up the hobby, or an electronics shop will close down, and you can buy the "mysterious box o' parts" for dirt cheap. I've gotten a lot of nice gems this way. I even got a decent AMP crimping tool in one box. A couple of times my bid was literally $1, I just had to pay shipping to take it off the seller's hands (granted shipping costs could add up due to weight).
  12. retched

    AAC Fanatic!

    Dec 5, 2009
    Absoloutely. Its the standard single 7805 sellers that I find iffy.

    ebay is a tool, and you should know how to use said tool safely.

    I buy broken stuff on ebay KNOWING its broken. There is nothing wrong with that. BUT I see ebay as the doors to a golden bliss for counterfeiters. So, they can keep it.
  13. wayneh


    Sep 9, 2010
    mmm... Corn
    Even trolling e-bay I've found U.S. suppliers that beat the Asian sources. I use 'em when I can.
  14. tom66

    Senior Member

    May 9, 2009
    I've found Farnell to be pretty good. I live in the UK, so the equivalent is Newark in the US. I also order occasionally from Rapid Electronics as they have good prices for low quantity. One problem with Rapid is they often won't have that obscure chip or value of resistor, when Farnell will.