Thursday, May 21, 2015

13 Online Shops for Buying Electronic Components in India

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Are you a newbie or student who wants to explore the world of electronics? Are you a hobbyist or maker who loves to tinker with electronics? Are you a practicing electronics engineer or a hands-on researcher? If your answer to any of the above questions is yes, you need to buy different types of electronics components and printed circuit boards for your projects. They may range from the most basic resistors and capacitors to highly specialized integrated circuits, sensors and development boards. 

Unless you stay in one of the metro cities of India, you will find it hard to get many of these components. Even if you stay in a metro, some components are hard to find. But thanks to the internet, we have many online shops to buy electronic parts from. I've listed 13 options here. Although I've bought from some of them, I haven't bought from all of them. I've included websites that I know people get stuff from. 

1. Free samples
Who does not like freebies? Some companies are generous enough to provide samples of their components either through their websites or if you politely request them stating your purpose and requirement. E.g. TI, Cypress, Allegro. There might be many more. If you're a student, many companies have designated personnel for university relations who can be approached.  

The rest of the list is about online destinations where you BUY the components and boards. 

[Pay in Indian Rupees]

2. Element14
Formerly Farnell electronics, Element14 is one of the biggest online stores for electronic components. They charge pretty high particularly for small numbers. However, they are sometimes the only option for hard-to-find components and are highly reliable. You might need to have TIN number to buy from them. I was able to get around that problem when I bought from them a few years back.

3. Kits 'n' Spares
Kits 'n' Spares is a subsidiary of Element14 catering to non-industrial costumers. They sell a wide variety of Do-It-Yourself electronics projects and hobby kits.

4. Nex Robotics
Nex Robotix is a spin-off from IIT Bombay that intends to cater to the robotics and embedded systems community. However, many of their products are useful for any electronics enthusiast. I've bought some nice stepper motors and breakout boards from them.

5. Explore Labs 
This Jodhpur based startup calls itself "an opensource playground" and stocks a diverse range of DIY electronics kits. They are an authorized distributor for Sparkfun Electronics in India. 

6. ProtoCentral
This Bangalore based company sells DIY electronics kits and is another authorized distributor for Sparkfun Electronics in India. They ship worldwide.

7. Tenet Technetronics
Tenet Technetronics is yet another Bangalore based online store for electronics hobbysists and engineers.

8. NSK Electronics
NSK is the third Bangalore based entry on the list. Their SP road shop is hugely popular with localites and also has an online store.

9. OnlineTPS
OnlineTPS is a Bhopal based online provider of electronics components and boards.

10. Ventor Technologies
Ventor Technologies is a Kolkata based online shop for electronics components and boards.

11. rhydoLABZ
This Kochi based online store is known as the Sparkfun of India and ships worldwide.

DangerousPrototypes visited and blogged about ProtoCentral, Tenet Technetronics, NSK Electronics, and rhydoLABZ during their India Global Geek Tour 2012.

[Pay in US Dollars]

If you can afford to pay in dollars for something that isn't available anywhere else, try the following two international biggies.

12. DigiKey

13. Mouser

I hope this was useful. Let me know of your personal experiences with them and also if you know of other reliable online stores. I expect the list to grow with time. Happy soldering!


Reader suggestions

14. Aliexpress [Suggested by Syam Krishnan]
While Element14 requires TIN number, Aliexpress is better suited for personal orders. Go to the "Electronic components and supplies" category on their website. 

15. Digibay [Suggested by John F Xavier]
John found some affordable modules at their site.

16. Robokits [Suggested by John F Xavier]
John bought servo and stepper motors from them.

17. DNA Technology [Suggested by Anonymous]

18. Hacktronics India [Suggested by Abhijit Kshirsagar]

19. eNTesla India [Suggested by Sudish Menon]


Discovered later

20. Project Point