In this case neither place had all of what I wanted in stock. I wasn’t in a hurry so I decided to experiment and order from Aliexpress.com. This place seems be a clearing house for all things manufactured in China. They sell everything from make up and bathrobes, sex toys, shoes, and electronic components, and here we are.
Shopping Aliexpress is a little bit of a jungle safari. The place is big on pictures and short on written information in most cases. It can be a little hard to find very specific things, and when you do find them it’s sometimes hard to tell if that’s exactly the item you’re looking for.
I’ve ordered a few things from Aliexpress.com before. I got a bag of 200 100n caps. I also ordered some 3PDT foot switches, some Arduino clones and a few other things. While I have been happy with the orders shipping times are the biggest drawback. It can take several weeks for an order to show up.
Here is what I ordered:
- LM308N x 10 – $1.28
- LM386N-4 x 10 – $3.88
- LM386N x 10 – $0.82
- OPA2134PA x 5 – $1.92
- TL022 x 5 – $1.45
- TL062CP x 20 – $1.76
- TL072CP x 30 – $2.46
- Total – $13.57
That’s about $0.16 per chip. Not bad. But the cost goes up with shipping.
The cost with shipping was $20.64. So shipping came out to $7.07. Which is not too bad. It’s a little higher than you would pay for domestic orders. Tayda shipping would be about $2.25 and StompboxParts was $4.98.
Price per part is way lower at Aliexpress. For example the TL072 from Tayda were $0.79 each! This the same TL072CP variety. At StompboxParts the TL072CP is $0.65 each. The Aliexpress TL072CP was about $0.08 each! That’s a huge difference.
What about shipping times? I ordered my parts on Mar 25, 2022 and received them Apr 7, 2022. So about two weeks. Which is not bad. Tayda ships about on the same schedule. Though they can be a couple days faster if the stars are aligned.
What about the quality? Hard to say. The chips look like like your typical integrated circuits in DIP format.
Aliexpress sells ever switches, knobs, enclosures. Small stuff might be the best choice, enclosures might incur exorbitant shipping fees. it might be a good option for people who patient and willing to look carefully at each purchase.
Do these op-amps work?
I took a random chip out of each bag and tried them out in some pedals that I knew worked. I used this overdrive to test all of the dual op-amps, and this Rat Like pedal to test the LM308. I tested the LM386 in this PWM pedal.
All of the dual op-amps seemed to be working fine. That would be the TL072, TL062, TL022, and OP2134 all working without issue.
The LM386N and LM386-4 worked fine.
The LM308 did not work. Not sure what is going on here. I’ll have to think of a more conclusive test.