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DSE getting out of the electronics game??

Discussion in 'Hobby Electronics' started by Mikegw, Jan 16, 2005.

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  1. Mikegw

    Mikegw Guest

    I know that electronic bits at DSE ain't the best usually. But I went to
    two stores in my travels this weekend (Bankstown and Moore park superstores,
    NSW) the 'electronics' section of these two stores seemed to be about 3/4
    the size of what the once were and microwave ovens and hair-dryers popped up
    in their place. Anyone else noticed this?

    It doesn't really worry me (and I guess this could be a major part of the
    reason) as I get most parts online these days.

  2. It started when they were first bought out by Woolworths.

    You're only several years too slow... :)
  3. Mikegw

    Mikegw Guest

    Well that is better than my usual score. It just seems that a lot has
    disappeared over the last month or so. I also noticed that jaycar is going
    for the whole 'extreeme electronics thing'....

  4. KLR

    KLR Guest

    I have noticed the same thing too,
    But It isnt just dick smith that is heading this way

    If you look in the farnell "connect" (or whatever they call their
    flyers that come every month or 2) there are many many "strange" items
    popping up, like shaving kits, electric card shufflers, radio
    controlled cars etc that.

    For such a company as this - one that I thought was aimed only at the
    electrical/electronic trade and definitely not the public - this sort
    of change is very surprising !
  5. Inevitable isn't it?
    The electronic/electrical trade is shrinking/dieing off, so they have to
    broaden their customer base to survive.
  6. Not sure what you mean by 'extreme electronics' but yes, they have shown a
    more recent change in shift was well.

    More dissapointing than DSE is perhaps their plethora of stupid toys that
    deserve no home than something like a joke or novelty shop.
    The several farting novelties, are prime examples.

    I haven't been keeping up with the who's who, but perhaps the recent CEO
    change had something to do with it... Seemed about the same time.
  7. Try almost 22 years too slow! :->
    Woolies aquired Tricky Dicks around 1983.

    Yes, a lot of the area devoted to the electronics components looks to
    have been "optimised" a tad.
    It's not Tircky Dicks core business though, hasn't been for a long
    time, so not too surprising.
    It's interesting that several years ago they stopped producing the
    catalog and said they would never make another one, yet they have just
    done an about face and produced a new one for this year. Might of been
    a change of management since the Tandy aquisition perhaps?

    Dave :)
  8. Sure about that? Back down somewhere in the dark recess of my failing
    memory, I do recall when this happened, but didn't think it was that far back...
    I'm glad they did, best of all, they kept the data section. Good for the joe
    average who doesn't or can't browse the web for the basics.
    Dunno if tandy had anything to do with it, that would have just been an
    opportunity to get their stock out there in more stores. Tandy still does not
    stock electronic components though, they had stopped a LONG time ago.
  9. Same here in Sydney, the kit department hasn't shunk too much, but what has
    changed, is there are by far more 'baby' kits that perform small novelty tasks
    (assorted beeps or flashes lights), or learning kits.

    The business end of the kit scale has certainly shrunk.
    This has always been the case though. It was almost always cheaper to buy
    brand X black box rather than the kit. But that's not what it's about. It's
    about building it yourself, or being able to customise a kit for a particular

    The latter being a good option to use as a starting base if you need
    something that's not otherwise available, and a kit is not too far off. Saves
    you the trouble of redesigning from scratch.
  10. S Roby

    S Roby Guest

    DSE are starting to sell some interesting stuff in NZ (some of it at very
    competitive prices)
    $6500 Meade telescopes (as well as the generic ones, NZ$170 for a 4.5" newton)
    HT DVD recorders at the cheapest prices around (they do the job)
    10" powered subs at an unbeleivable price(NZ$150 )

    The elec. kits (& components) are disappearing: being squeezed out of the
    shop, I guess they want Joe(& wife Jane) average in the shop
    Is this a sign of the times: even some of the better kits where too expensive
    for what they are
  11. far back...

    Looks like my failing memory might have been a bit off, it was actually
    earlier than that! DSE was aquired in two parts, 1980 and 1982
    according to:

    Although this one says 1983:

    And this one says 1981 and 1983:
    Looks like they merged management according to the above link:
    "We will continue to trade all three brands but a combined management
    team and office infrastructure will deliver significant synergies,"

    I can still remember buying two resistors in a blister pack from Tandy

    Dave :)
  12. Actually I'm not sure about how useful it would be for that. I can't
    picture the average Joe actually keeping the DSE catalog as a sales
    reference for any length of time. They might browse it while in store,
    or take it home for a few days to mull over a purchase, but I think it
    would get quickly tossed in the bin. The $3 price tag doesn't make it
    an attractive take home reference either.

    Dave :)
  13. Tim Polmear

    Tim Polmear Guest

    Alas! The dumbing down of the 'Clever Country' (snigger)
  14. Mr. T

    Mr. T Guest

    Actually I disagree. The whole point of the $3 is to stop people taking them
    who WILL throw them away after a couple of days. Most of the people I know
    who get them in Silicon Chip, or from DS, keep them until the next one comes
    out. Same with Jaycar catalog, Farnell catalog etc.

    The reference section is pretty lame though, but better than nothing for
    newbies I guess.

  15. Yep, I've never paid for cattledogs. If I don't get them bundled with
    another magazine, they get thown in with the larger orders.

    Even if I don't have one, at least the DSE/Jaycar/Farnell/RS online systems
    are plenty functional enough to do the job.

    Exception is WES (Wagner Electronic Services) in Ashfield Sydney.

    Their online catalogue is worse than their paper equivalent. All pages only
    available as separate individual PDF downloads. The real paper catalogue is
    higher resolution (for those subtly small parts) and the paper version is
    already printed for you.

    They really need to do some work on that.
  16. Yes, but those people are electronics oriented, they aren't your Joe
    Average consumer. I do not know a single "consumer" person who keeps
    any catalog for any length of time, let alone a Tricky Dicks catalog.

    DSEs market would have to be 99% comsumer, the kind that don't even
    know what a resistor is.

    Dave :)
  17. Mr. T

    Mr. T Guest

    As I said, the $3 price stops the average consumer getting one in the first
    place. They simply don't need it. The monthly fliers in the letterbox are
    for them.
    The ones who do bother to get the catalog, probably keep it.
    Exactly. Not too many real parts in the catalog now anyway.

  18. Mike Paull

    Mike Paull Guest

    Looks like they merged management according to the above link:
    Merger is what it was called however it was really a buy-out/take-over.

    Tandy Service Centre's were the first casualties, with most of the staff
    being redeployed and the operations integrated with the local DSE Service
    centre. Then it was the old Tandy head office which was closed down with
    staff either being offered a position at DSE, redeployement or as many did
    they resigned. Finally the warehouse was closed and all stock moved to the
    new DSE head office at Chullora ( along with the admin staff ).

    All along they called it a merger but it was pretty obvious what was going
    on, all the old RadioShack and Tandy product started to disappear and
    equivalent "DSE" or "Digitor" product replaced it.

    Then the stores started closing or being converted to DSE stores.

    Ironically, I was involved in the merger of the Victorian Tandy Service
    Centre only to have my own Service Centre (DSE in Richmond) closed down
    some three or so years later.

  19. Mike Paull

    Mike Paull Guest

    Actually I'm not sure about how useful it would be for that. I can't
    Catalogs are now $1.

  20. And their prices are twice to three times as much on equivalent items
    sourced from other outlets (notable Jaycar, which is still independent and
    owned by Gary Johnston! [hello Gary from a former Jaycar employee if you're
    reading this!]).

    It's gone on ever since the company was bought by Woolworths and turned in a
    'retail consumer electronics' chain instead of being a retail electronics
    enthusiast chain as it was with Dick still owned the company.

    The 'Powerhouse' stores are the next level of this, with a huge range of
    consumer products at excessive prices which allows DSE to price traditional
    electronics products way more than they should be priced but most buyers
    don't realise they are being ripped off since they're coming in for the
    'consumer' side of the business, not the 'enthusiast' side.

    When DSE dropped amateur radio that was about the end of the line for the
    company having any realistic credibility with the enthusiast community. So
    in the space of 5 years we have lost both a very prominent electronics
    enthusiast retailer, and Australia's oldest electronics magazine, and both
    have fallen to the same tune of being turned into consumer-focused rather
    than enthusiast-focused devices, and both have sunk.

    It's got even worse now that DSE has taken over Tandy Electronics in
    Australia... RadioShack are a hopelessly unimpressive chain of stores and
    for an already unimpressive company (the 'Woolworthed DSE') to take them
    over is going to do nothing to help the merged companies remain strong in
    the electronics enthusiast community.


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