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Electronic Components Technology

Obsolete components and where to find them?

Obsolete electronic components are, despite the name, still widely used and required for manufactured products. The term obsolete often denotes something out of date or out of use. While these electronic components are classed as out of date, they are still used long after their so-called expiry date.

As companies try to keep up to date with the latest technological advancements and customer needs, many original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) will stop producing their older components and move on to manufacture the newest, high-profit electronics.

These older, no longer produced components will soon become obsolete and will be classed as end of life by their OEM, who will release a formal product change notice (PCN) for its customers.

But obsolescence does not stop companies from using a component. There will already be many products that use the component and will still require it. The demand will continue but the stock will shrink, causing the price of these end-of-life components to increase and drive competition to acquire them.

There are a few ways to bypass the need for obsolete components, but it will always be a case of balancing the cost to the benefits.

One option is a drop-in replacement, which is designed to be compatible with an existing product. This, however, can be time-consuming or costly, or both, depending on how many components need to be sourced.

There may also be the option for crossing, or cross-referencing, the obsolete electronic component. A different manufacturer may produce a component very similar to one no longer produced, or there could be an alternative part number which results in a usable substitute. There is always the risk that there is no viable substitute, though, or the alternatives are also obsolete.

Despite the high price for obsolete components, it’s likely that it would still be cheaper for companies to source these discontinued parts than to re-design their whole product around a new component. As such, people looking for obsolete components are often competing with many others and need to find reliable, trustworthy sources of stock.

Among the many companies offering to source obsolete components, there will be some that are untrustworthy. Buyers risk exposing themselves to faulty, counterfeit or overpriced products if they are unable to find a reliable, certified re-seller.

A Cyclops Excess speciality is buying obsolete components from suppliers who have ended up with slightly more than they needed. As a result, our Excess stock includes a huge variety of hard-to-find obsolete electronic components that are still sought after today.

All of Cyclops’s stock is quality checked and as an independent stockist we can buy and sell components according to our customer’s needs. If you’re on the look-out for regular or obsolete electronic components get in touch today at sales@cyclops-electronics.com, or use the rapid enquiry form available on our website here.