In this day and age, computer stores are everywhere. If you are serious about computers, however, you will know that most of these stores have very high mark-ups (especially the ones in malls) and usually carry old or low-end (“mainstream”) stuff.

This post will cover where I get the “good stuff” in Metro Manila.

You’re reading this blog post so I assume that you’re online (there’s a very low chance that this will be published in a local publication, but I’m not betting on it :P ). Being online, your first stop should always be TipidPC.com.

Even if you’re wary of buying second hand stuff from people you don’t know, TipidPC is still a valuable resource. It’s practically the only place you could find people in our country selling hard to find computer parts. There are also stores which post their prices there in real time, giving you an idea of the “correct” retail prices of computer parts. You could also get opinions from forum members on parts — they’ll even tell you where to find that part for less.

As for “traditional” computer stores, there are only a few computer stores worth going to.

Every enthusiast will tell you about (in)famous store PC Options at Gilmore. Don’t listen when other stores say they have “the lowest prices”; other than TipidPC, PCO has the lowest prices for parts, hands down. And these are not just your mainstream parts, they carry high-end enthusiast parts too.

There is one catch, though. PCO is infamous for its inefficient system of handling customers. I’ve never bought something from PCO without waiting at least an hour to get it. So before buying something from PCO, ask yourself: “Is waiting for 2 hours for a P500 discount worth it?”

On the opposite end of the inefficiency spectrum is PC Express. They’re not as cheap as PCO, but their stores are pretty efficient with multiple ordering booths and chairs for customers waiting for their orders to be processed. They also have a lot more branches than PCO, which is good for those who live far away from Gilmore.

Another good thing about PCX is their price list is available online in the front page of their website. There are two types of price lists, the SRP and the Promo price list. You use the latter if you’re paying by cash; they give a discount considering credit card fraud is widespread around here.

The only problem IMO with PCX is that they don’t carry a lot of enthusiast level parts. For cool stuff, you’ll have to go to PCO or the next store in this list.

Somewhere in between PCO and PCX is PCHub. They’re cheaper than PCX but not as cheap as PCO. They’re not as efficient with dealing with customers as PCX but they’re not as inefficient as PCO either.

Like PCX, they have an online price list in TipidPC. They’re actually better than PCX in this department because their list is updated in real time, whereas in PCX you have to call to verify the price or if they have stocks available in a certain branch.

Like PCO, they carry high end stuff in their stores. They’re also better in this department because they carry enthusiast coolers like Arctic Cooling and Thermalright and “gamer” peripherals from Razer.

IMO, PCHub is the best store to go to in Gilmore, followed by PCX. Only go to PCO on off-peak hours/days or if you really need to save a couple of hundred pesos.

The problem with the three stores above is that most of their wares are hidden in their store room. That’s ok for internal parts, but for external peripherals, looks matter.

Here’s where Octagon and CD-R King steps in.

Octagon is not a store that I would normally recommend to people. Their markups are just too high. For example, the monitor I bought last month, a Samsung T220, costs 17k in their stores. PCHub sells it for a lot less.

However, Octagon’s open supermarket-style setup showcases their products for all to see. You could easily compare how keyboards and mice with each other in this setup.

They also carry some rare stuff in their shelves. I bought my Japanese-made mouse pad for optical mice in Octagon (I’d love to get a Razer one from PCHub, but seriously, 1-2k for a mouse pad is just too much).

As for CD-R King, everyone knows it’s good for only two things: writable media and cheap (disposable) gadgets. What people don’t know is that they also carry rare parts like RAM sinks and thermal compounds.

Enthusiasts should consider going to the CD-R King site to look for rare stuff if searching TipidPC turns up nothing. I myself use a USB KVM from CD-R King, a part that you could not find in any other store locally.

So there you have it, the best places to buy computer parts in Metro Manila. Honorable mentions go to PC Corner and RSun, both of which have competitive prices and online price lists.

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11 Responses to Computer Stores in Metro Manila

  1. Alex says:

    How about after sales support? PCX has one of the most horrible after sales support of all retailers. That’s why some people would opt to pay for more at pricier stores like Villman since their CS is (most of the time) above par and satisfactory.

    And proximity? The trip alone can translate to savings as well. This also is partly related to after sales. Having to return, exchange, and send back an item under warranty at a place not really inaccessible to you can set you back time, money, and comfort. Gilmore might be the mecca of cheaper prices but you might actually be set to be spending more on logistics alone.

    Just a couple of points to consider, IMHO.

  2. Alex says:

    How about after sales support? PCX has one of the most horrible after sales support of all retailers. That’s why some people would opt to pay for more at pricier stores like Villman since their CS is (most of the time) above par and satisfactory.

    And proximity? The trip alone can translate to savings as well. This also is partly related to after sales. Having to return, exchange, and send back an item under warranty at a place not really inaccessible to you can set you back time, money, and comfort. Gilmore might be the mecca of cheaper prices but you might actually be set to be spending more on logistics alone.

    Just a couple of points to consider, IMHO.

  3. Bry says:

    Both are valid points for buying computer parts. If those two points are high on your list of priorities, you have to verify if the stores listed in the post fulfill your needs.

    However, the focus of this post is on enthusiast parts, and those two are not that high in the list of priorities of people buying them.

    People who buy rare or high-end parts will care about after sales support, but it’s not as important to them as to the common consumer. First off, they don’t need to call tech support as much — they will know if the part is a dud and will proceed to RMA directly. Also, unlike a consumer who just bought his first PC, they’re not as affected by a dud because they’re likely to have a spare around. And there’s also the tendency for these people to voluntarily break their warranties (e.g. overclocking).

    Proximity is not an issue for rare or high-end parts, simply because there are only a few places selling those stuff locally. It’s either you buy it in this certain store (and understand that you may have to make a return trip) or you don’t.

    For other parts, I’ll have to say that it’s worth it most of the time. As a commuter, my round trip between Gilmore and Taguig only costs P86. Considering I buy a part which is just P500 cheaper than “SRP” and I have to go back to replace it, I still save money. I might be wasting an hour or two because I chose to buy from Gilmore instead of Makati, but hey, I’m the type of guy who doesn’t care about wasting time on useless things. :D

    (Actually, PCHub and PCX now has branches in Pasong Tamo so that round trip is just P37 :P )

  4. Bry says:

    Both are valid points for buying computer parts. If those two points are high on your list of priorities, you have to verify if the stores listed in the post fulfill your needs.

    However, the focus of this post is on enthusiast parts, and those two are not that high in the list of priorities of people buying them.

    People who buy rare or high-end parts will care about after sales support, but it’s not as important to them as to the common consumer. First off, they don’t need to call tech support as much — they will know if the part is a dud and will proceed to RMA directly. Also, unlike a consumer who just bought his first PC, they’re not as affected by a dud because they’re likely to have a spare around. And there’s also the tendency for these people to voluntarily break their warranties (e.g. overclocking).

    Proximity is not an issue for rare or high-end parts, simply because there are only a few places selling those stuff locally. It’s either you buy it in this certain store (and understand that you may have to make a return trip) or you don’t.

    For other parts, I’ll have to say that it’s worth it most of the time. As a commuter, my round trip between Gilmore and Taguig only costs P86. Considering I buy a part which is just P500 cheaper than “SRP” and I have to go back to replace it, I still save money. I might be wasting an hour or two because I chose to buy from Gilmore instead of Makati, but hey, I’m the type of guy who doesn’t care about wasting time on useless things. :D

    (Actually, PCHub and PCX now has branches in Pasong Tamo so that round trip is just P37 :P )

  5. [...] already mentioned this in my older post on computer stores. Simply put, there is no store in Metro Manila selling USB KVM switches. Most stores that actually [...]

  6. [...] already mentioned this in my older post on computer stores. Simply put, there is no store in Metro Manila selling USB KVM switches. Most stores that actually [...]

  7. [...] first post will be partida*: I won’t be using parts from PCO, PC Hub or PC Express. Instead, I’ll be using parts from VillMan Computers. Their parts are more expensive and they [...]

  8. [...] first post will be partida*: I won’t be using parts from PCO, PC Hub or PC Express. Instead, I’ll be using parts from VillMan Computers. Their parts are more expensive and they [...]

  9. Erin says:

    [I ack that this post is >2 years old]

    I have bought several units (two of which for my own use) from qube (buyqube.com) and aside from the now defunct risingsun I am still loyal to them. The units I bought from them lasts the 5 years that I usually allocate as the lifetime of my machines (give or take a few part replacements).

    caveat: I am not a gamer, but I do push my machines to the limit most of the time.

    ciao!

  10. don says:

    As an avid consumer of computer parts, I have not found a better store to shop in than pchub fairview the service is great and they carry or you can put on order most hardware products.
    I have shopped at octagon well they carry such a limited amount of products usually low end and overpriced. but the worst store in all the philippines would be Dyna-Quest near UST, the service is terrible and although they advertize on tipidpc.com one price you will be charged another. I will never buy from Dyna_quest period. PS beware “UST students”

  11. don says:

    2nd comment
    Failed to state about pchub after market service, well I bought a part that did not fit my machine (my fault)but I took it back
    and they refunded my money no questions asked, no hassling questions done in 5 minutes. that’s the best refund ever.I also find there pricing to be the best. so if your looking for pricing check, for service check, for after market check only flaw I could find is they need a bigger store.

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