Author Topic: Distributors vs Manufacturers or When Enough is Not Enough?  (Read 382 times)

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Offline olkipukki

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Distributors vs Manufacturers or When Enough is Not Enough?
« on: April 29, 2018, 12:12:54 am »
Not so far ago, I thought that a couple distributors from top 10 would be sufficient enough to meet my needs and cost effective... I was wrong!

As today, a list is keep extending and BOMs never go in full to a single distributor such as Avnet, Arrow, Digi-Key, Future Electronics, Mouser, Newark/Farnell; always split...
That's mighty looks cool, but become a time consuming!  :phew:
On other side, stuff can easy vary 30%-50% in cost between distributors...   :-//

Also, I found that in general cheaper buy directly from TI (1000 pcs+) and their online shop/support have improved overall :-+ or you can waste a lot of time without a result with Maxim  :palm:
But not always sunny days here, for example, one manufacturer showed a finger and redirected to "unknown" distributor, or another quoted same qty 50% expensive than a distributor with unreasonable shipping cost and handling fees :-\

How many permanent suppliers do you have? Would you manage BOMs to save 100 bucks here or a few hundred there?
Are you dealing with manufacturers directly on a small scale? How is your success?
 

Offline jmelson

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Re: Distributors vs Manufacturers or When Enough is Not Enough?
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2018, 12:49:41 pm »
I use Digi-Key first, then Mouser, Newark and Allied, and also sometimes check Avnet and Arrow.  I have open accounts at Digi-Key, Mouser, Newark and Allied.  I also buy some connectors from a NON-stocking distributor.  Their prices are HALF of the others, but everything comes from China or something, usually 8 - 12 weeks.  But, it is worth it to get 50% off on 50 - 100 connectors of each type.

It just doesn't make sense to fret over small differences on a reel of resistors, the saving of combining shipping into just one order makes up for it.
But, when talking about several hundred chips, power transistors, or whatever, then it makes sense to check several distributors.

Recently I had to order a Pulse Engineering inductor, it was surface mount, so that was the only part that would fit the PCB lands.  Nobody in the US had them, but Arrow had them in the Netherlands.  Surprise, they were SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper than any other distributor, and Arrow covered all the shipping, too!  I'll have to check with them more often on stuff!

Jon
 

Offline olkipukki

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Re: Distributors vs Manufacturers or When Enough is Not Enough?
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2018, 10:22:54 pm »
I use Digi-Key first, then Mouser, Newark and Allied, and also sometimes check Avnet and Arrow.  I have open accounts at Digi-Key, Mouser, Newark and Allied.  I also buy some connectors from a NON-stocking distributor.  Their prices are HALF of the others, but everything comes from China or something, usually 8 - 12 weeks.  But, it is worth it to get 50% off on 50 - 100 connectors of each type.
I bought a lot of passive from Avnet and sometimes prices are shocking - you can get a few reels for price one reel from Mouser/Digi-Key  :wtf:
Also, Avnet US and EU looks like using not same pricing tools too

The connectors live in a different universe, not sure how they price these ; one of my order for three Hirose connectors (same series!) end up in three distributors  :scared:

It just doesn't make sense to fret over small differences on a reel of resistors, the saving of combining shipping into just one order makes up for it.
But, when talking about several hundred chips, power transistors, or whatever, then it makes sense to check several distributors.
Well, these days the shipping cost is zero for orders $50+/€50+/£33+, so the combining shipping is not playing a critical role, except if you need just a reel or "right now".
I don't want to sound greedy, but why I need to pay, for example, $0.004 (mouser) v $0.00268 (digi-key) for same resistor? $13.2 per 10K reel might be not a big deal, about 30-40 reels - easy 1/2 grand "saving".


Recently I had to order a Pulse Engineering inductor, it was surface mount, so that was the only part that would fit the PCB lands.  Nobody in the US had them, but Arrow had them in the Netherlands.  Surprise, they were SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper than any other distributor, and Arrow covered all the shipping, too!  I'll have to check with them more often on stuff!
I remember ridiculous Arrow shipping cost to Europe and minimum order size, but it become really friendly (for example, recently DDP for EU shipping) thats probably to catch up to Mouser/Digi-Key for very small players like myself. Arrow was first a main distributor who accepted PayPal (very handy if USD is not your main currency) and promote quite frequently discounts  (this week 10% off* again). Digi-Key just added PayPal payment method!

 


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