Embedded Systems Conference
Breaking News
Comments
Oldest First | Newest First | Threaded View
Page 1 / 5   >   >>
Bill_Jaffa
User Rank
Author
They are stuck in the middle
Bill_Jaffa   3/4/2014 5:45:23 PM
NO RATINGS
For the vast majority of folks, all they need "right away" might be cable assemblies (cable+connector) or batteries. Radio Shack can't make a profitable business from those items alone. For the serious hobbyist or DIY person--and there are some out there--it's easier, smarter, and cheaper to get your BOM filled online if you can't get to a Fry's or equivalent nearby. Radio Shack is stuck in the gap in the middle, not a good place. And the "iconic" name sure doesn't help, either.

Bill_Jaffa
User Rank
Author
Re: They are stuck in the middle
Bill_Jaffa   3/4/2014 5:54:56 PM
NO RATINGS
I guess it's like Kodak--when change came, there was little they could do about it, despite what all the pundits said: "they didn;t adapt, even though they invented the digitla camera." Fact is that their entire business model was based on selling consumables like film and chemicals and processing, not one-time items like cameras (those were almost an incidental business for them). And Kodak had lots of IP and patents, unlike Radio Shack, so RS is in a far more precarious place.

DrQuine
User Rank
Author
Re: They are stuck in the middle
DrQuine   3/4/2014 6:01:26 PM
NO RATINGS
As a kid, Radio Shack was my favorite store and I often went there to buy parts and to learn about new components. Now I'll admit that I buy big ticket items online (better selection, ability to compare and research alternatives, avoid a trip to the mall). Radio Shack is the place I go for parts once a year when something breaks. It seems that they are the "convenience store" of electronics. If you want tools, there are home improvement stores, if you want cell phones there are cell phone stores, but if you have a shopping list with a variety of items then Radio Shack gets a visit.

MeasurementBlues
User Rank
Author
Re: They are stuck in the middle
MeasurementBlues   3/4/2014 6:07:43 PM
NO RATINGS
You-Do-It has been around for years and has adapted well. They're more heavily into selling things like computer cables and other IT infrastructure, bu they still carry lots of components, meters, ham radios, and the like. They even had one oscilloscopes when I was last there. It's a 30-MHz, two-channel analog model from Elenco.



MeasurementBlues
User Rank
Author
MIT electronics flea market
MeasurementBlues   3/4/2014 6:10:11 PM
NO RATINGS
I hope toget back there again this year when it opens. In theory, it's warm enough in April but this year, who knows?

betajet
User Rank
Author
Re: They are stuck in the middle
betajet   3/4/2014 6:13:47 PM
NO RATINGS
Well, for what they charge for cable assemblies, RS must be getting a pretty big profit margin... when they're able to sell one.  RS is a good place for cordless phone batteries, the occasional connector, the occasional LED, and the occasional switch.  However, the part selection is so limited compared to (say) Digi-Key, that it's rarely worth bothering.

MeasurementBlues
User Rank
Author
Biggest electronics store
MeasurementBlues   3/4/2014 6:17:03 PM
NO RATINGS
The biggest electronics store I ever saw was in Tokyo. Nive floors, mostly consumer stuff but one floor was dedicated to computer hardware and components.

 

MeasurementBlues
User Rank
Author
Surplus electronics
MeasurementBlues   3/4/2014 6:18:36 PM
NO RATINGS
I used to buy surplus parts from a basement store called Verada 214 in Lowell, Mass. The cabinets for the Utah speakers I bought at You Do It came from there. I also bought a National Semi MM5316 digital clock chip and built a clock. It still works although the LEDs don't put out much light anymore. I still have the MM5316 data sheet.

Bill_Jaffa
User Rank
Author
You also mentioned Lafayette
Bill_Jaffa   3/4/2014 7:01:03 PM
NO RATINGS
One of the highlights of getting my driver's license "back in the day" was that I was able to drive to Lafayette HQ/main store, instead of being limited to their smaller store near my house (a short bus ride away). Going to Lafayette by car the first time, in those pre-GPS days, was an adventure in itself. On the way back I stopped at nearby Eico (a vendor of kits, like Heathkit but smaller) with an AM/FM tuner kit I built, didn't work. They were nice enough to send a technician out to look at it, turned out it was a defective front-panel rotary switch (they gave me a new one). That kind of customer service is long gone!

TonyTib
User Rank
Author
No, next question?
TonyTib   3/4/2014 7:14:34 PM
NO RATINGS
RS's selection is too limited; heck, even Fry's is limited, but they do have stuff that's handy in a pinch, like a good selection of resistors, DSub connectors and adapters, and such.

But my normal retail shopping is Excess Solutions, and maybe All Electronics (more electronics, but fewer connectors & such); I haven't been to Halted in a long while -- and those three are about all that's left for Silicon Valley surplus.  There used to be a lot before the Dot-bomb bubble destroyed most of them due to rising rents.

For industrial stuff like servo motors, eBay is the place.

Page 1 / 5   >   >>


Most Recent Comments
Top Comments of the Week
Like Us on Facebook

Datasheets.com Parts Search

185 million searchable parts
(please enter a part number or hit search to begin)
EE Life
Frankenstein's Fix, Teardowns, Sideshows, Design Contests, Reader Content & More
Max Maxfield

ESC Boston 2015 Sneak Peek! Embedded Systems That Glow in the Dark
Max Maxfield
Post a comment
Some time ago, I asked my mom what she knew about radiation. She replied that she didn't know much about it at all; all she did know was that she didn't want to be in the same room as ...

Chris Wiltz, Managing Editor, Design News

10 Greatest Hoaxes in the History of Engineering
Chris Wiltz, Managing Editor, Design News
5 comments
You'll probably be reading your fair share of fake headlines on April 1, but phony tech news - both for scams and humor - aren't anything new. The history of science and technology is rife ...

Bernard Cole

A Book For All Reasons
Bernard Cole
3 comments
Robert Oshana's recent book "Software Engineering for Embedded Systems (Newnes/Elsevier)," written and edited with Mark Kraeling, is a 'book for all reasons.' At almost 1,200 pages, it ...

latest comment mjlinden Thanks for your input!
Martin Rowe

Leonard Nimoy, We'll Miss you
Martin Rowe
5 comments
Like many of you, I was saddened to hear the news of Leonard Nimoy's death. His Star Trek character Mr. Spock was an inspiration to many of us who entered technical fields.

Special Video Section
After a four-year absence, Infineon returns to Mobile World ...
A laptop’s 65-watt adapter can be made 6 times smaller and ...
An industry network should have device and data security at ...
The LTC2975 is a four-channel PMBus Power System Manager ...
In this video, a new high speed CMOS output comparator ...
The LT8640 is a 42V, 5A synchronous step-down regulator ...
The LTC2000 high-speed DAC has low noise and excellent ...
How do you protect the load and ensure output continues to ...
General-purpose DACs have applications in instrumentation, ...
Linear Technology demonstrates its latest measurement ...
10:29
Demos from Maxim Integrated at Electronica 2014 show ...
Bosch CEO Stefan Finkbeiner shows off latest combo and ...
STMicroelectronics demoed this simple gesture control ...
Keysight shows you what signals lurk in real-time at 510MHz ...
TE Connectivity's clear-plastic, full-size model car shows ...
Why culture makes Linear Tech a winner.
Recently formed Architects of Modern Power consortium ...
Specially modified Corvette C7 Stingray responds to ex Indy ...
Avago’s ACPL-K30T is the first solid-state driver qualified ...
NXP launches its line of multi-gate, multifunction, ...
Radio
LATEST ARCHIVED BROADCAST
EE Times Senior Technical Editor Martin Rowe will interview EMC engineer Kenneth Wyatt.
Flash Poll