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Chinese shit general
/CSG/ - Chinese Shit General Guide v1.0.2 beta
Websites to buy cheap shit (will add more websites over time to the list, if they are confirmed to be reputable):
- aliexpress.com (marketplace) - This is the main website /g/ uses. It has the largest selection out of any other site. Customer Support is pretty good, they will side with you if the seller made a mistake, just like Ebay. Uses Alipay for payment, meaning your CC details will not be given to the seller, just like Paypal. The main disadvantage for Americans is that unlike Paypal, it does not accept Discover cards. - banggood.com -accepts Paypal and you can checkout without making an account. Warehouses in many countries. This site is especially cool for European /g/entooman, because of their "Netherlands direct shipping" option. It's usually much faster than China Post Air Mail, and should mean getting your goods from China to Europe in a week. The cost is barely any higher than the free shipping option. - dinodirect.com -accepts Paypal, Sofort (German payment method). Good customer support and personally one of my favorites. - fasttech.com -accepts Bitcoin and Paypal. This is possibly the only site where the customer reviews are trustworthy. Lots of reviews in English. Website is known for a wide selection of e-cig/vape products, but they also sell many other products. - en.jd.com - They often have good limited time prices on cellphones. Haven't heard of them much apart from them. - dx.com - Free shipment tracking if order value above $15. I haven't personally used it so I can't comment much. - ebay.com (marketplace) - Oftentimes the same sellers as Aliexpress selling the items for a higher price because of Ebay's popularity and the higher Ebay seller fees. But sometimes it can surprise you and have items at a lower price than Aliexpress or any of the other sites. It is worth comparing the prices between Aliexpress and Ebay just in case if you are a scrooge. - gearbest.com - Oftentimes has some of the lowest prices for the more expensive products (things like phones, tablets, action cameras etc..), but are known to often take their merry time before sending a package. The free shipping option does not come with tracking, you have to pay extra. Known to pay users for positive reviews. - geekbuying.com - accepts Paypal. Dropshipping option on all goods. - pandawill.com - accepts Paypal, Skrill. Offers import tax & VAT insurance. For 5% more (10% if in the EU), they will give you a refund on the import tax & VAT cost if you show them the customs slip. This could perhaps be worth it for some expensive products like cell phones, although I haven't tried it myself.
Each website has their advantages and drawbacks, if there are any notable ones you want to add, please let me know. There is no one-stop shop for everything.
A word on Price comparison tools:
There are two main direct from China price comparison websites. Pandacheck and Chinaprices. I highly recommend you to NOT use Chinaprices. About half of the stores they list are known to be outright s̲c̲a̲m̲s̲ or to take part in many unethical practices (refusing to repair DOA products etc...). So if you must, use https://en.pandacheck.com/ However; in general I would recommend you to manually price compare or ask the thread. These comparison tools rarely find the correct lowest prices from all the different Chinese stores. It can perhaps be used to give you a rough idea of the websites who charge the most to weed them out, and then you can manually price compare to find the best prices. Be aware that all links on price comparison websites are affiliate links.
I recommend you try out several websites, and stick with them if you've had good experiences.
Bulk orders/Wholesale: Not recommended for getting individual items. You will need to manually contact sellers and chat with them each time and possibly use wire transfers instead of CCs. - alibaba.com - dhgate.com (lots more counterfeit products compared to Alibaba)
- It can seem ridiculous, but in the very competitive Chinese online shopping market, many sellers will have items on non-wholesale prices AT or very close to wholesale prices. This means that the prices on Alibaba and Dhgate are not necessarily advantageous. Wholesale websites rarely have free shipping, they usually ship with DHL.
Chinese national websites: You will probably need an agent to buy anything on there (unless you contact the seller in Chinese and negotiate international shipping with him.) The commissions for agents are generally less than 8%. It might be worth it for some more expensive products. Use a translator to read product information or to enter search terms in Chinese.
- taobao.com - The largest Chinese online marketplace. Owned by the Alibaba group (Aliexpress). Tons of sellers and a gigantic selection. - tmall.com - Also owned by the Alibaba Group. The difference with Taobao is that T-mall does not allow small individual sellers. The only sellers on tmall are the manufacturers themselves, large online retailers etc.. Tmall is used for buying brand name goods because they have the official company's store on there and only sell genuine products (Chinese brands such as Xiaomi, as well as foreign brands such as Nike among others.)
Shipping methods: -Seller's shipping method - Slowest option on Aliexpress. Up to two months shipping time. If you don't receive your goods after that time period you can get a refund. oftentimes untracked. Sometimes you can be pleasantly surprised and get your product in a week or two. But since the seller doesn't list the method, you'll never know. -Sweden Post, Wishpost, Swisspost, Singapore post - Generally piss slow and untracked. These are often the default free shipping methods on many websites. -China Post Registered air mail = generally 1-2 weeks. tracked. -China post ground = the method usually used when the seller lists "seller's shipping method". Can take over a month. -EMS (express mail service) = expensive but should get there within a week. -SAL (surface air lifted) = week and a half to two weeks. Generally a bit cheaper than EMS. -DHL and Fedex = very quick, very expensive. -ePacket = only available to people in America. Generally much faster than China Post, and oftentimes free.
Use info about these shipping methods to help you decide which seller you want to purchase from. For example if a seller sells a product for 20 cents more and offers China Post Registered Air Mail instead of the unknown "seller's shipping method", I usually pick the former.
Recommended tracking site: 17track.net Sometimes it will fuck up, but generally it should automatically find the shipping method so you don't have to manually input it.
Things that we recommend you DO NOT buy:
-S̶u̶n̶g̶l̶a̶s̶s̶e̶s̶ ̶t̶h̶o̶u̶g̶h̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶r̶e̶ ̶a̶r̶e̶ ̶m̶a̶n̶y̶ ̶g̶o̶o̶d̶ ̶f̶a̶k̶e̶s̶,̶ ̶m̶a̶n̶y̶ ̶d̶o̶ ̶n̶o̶t̶ ̶h̶a̶v̶e̶ ̶U̶V̶ ̶c̶o̶a̶t̶i̶n̶g̶s̶.̶ This is wrong, most Chinese sunglasses and prescription glasses are perfectly fine. It doesn't cost $100 to make proper sunglasses, it's just that in the US we are used to the horrible monopoly from Luxottica, a company making a majority of world's famous sunglasses brands. They have an insane markup. Even the cheapest of Chinese glasses have UV coatings, and even if they didn't glass inherently blocks out most UV rays anyway:
Either way it can't be worse than NOT wearing sunglasses, so go for it. Stop paying the ridiculous markups for glasses.
Here's a video if you want to learn more about Luxottica: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gDdq2rIqAlM
- US/German/etc - branded headphones. They will be fake. - Memory cards and USB sticks can be bought with caution, but many don't have their advertised capacity. Run h2testw or a similar program to make sure you get what you're paying for. Speed ratings may be inflated, try to buy from reputable Chinese brands (ask around on the threads for more info) - Anything that goes in your ass. - Anything that goes on your dick or vagina. (Anon's remark: Actually, properly shaped silicone / pyrex / steel is safe enough, but /g/ doesn't really need to know about yours.) - "Cool" and "Trendy" asian fashion clothes. EG. Yesstyle clothes. You'll look like a faggot. Things like socks, ties, tshirts and panties are generally fine. Some /csg/ posters like to buy replica clothing (aka fakes), I don't know much about rep clothing, so ask around. -Plant seeds. Not only will customs seize the shipment, but most seeds you see on Aliexpress etc.. are not what they claim to be. unless it's a plant with very obvious shaped seeds, don't bother. You'll end up with seeds for a random weed. -Food. Sellers will markup Chinese food 10 fold and sell it to dumb Laowais. Also, mouth cancer. -Batteries that claim ridiculous Ah ratings. Enjoy your Ultra(house)Fire™ and sand filled batteries! -Mini cooper condoms: http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Brand-Mini-Small-Condoms-For-Men-10pcs-Lot-Ultra-Thin-Width-46mm-Sex-Products-Condones-Sex/32319802551.html? or you know... any condoms in general. $1 saved for $1 million in raising a child.
General Buying Tips:
IF IT SOUNDS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE, then it very well could be. Ask in the thread for feedback.
- Payment: Use Paypal or Alipay if it's an option, or purchase with a prepaid Visa. Find out when your money back deadline is so you can always request a refund if things go bad. The advantage of Paypal or Alipay is that you won't be sharing your CC details with random Chinese sellers, and it provides you with an added layer of protection in the form of disputes in case a seller fucks you over. Alipay on Aliexpress should be safe enough, too. Preferable for sellers (and in turn, buyers) due to lower / no fees. - Buying clothes: Chinese clothes sizes are different to US sizes, and are usually smaller. Be cautions if there are no measurements on clothing to judge its true size. Read feedback to try to get an idea on sizing. Compare the measurements on the listing to those of current clothes you own.
Notable brands that are known to be reliable:
Portable Items / Every Day Carry:
Battery Banks: Buying too cheap might result in very hot lithium housefires & most don't have anywhere near their advertised capacity. Stick to the one brand that is known to use great batteries and electronics:
Tons of Xiaomi fakes are floating around. Either buy from the official mi store, ibuygou, banggood, dinodirect, fasttech, gearbest, dx etc... Aliexpress and Ebay are both marketplaces so your risk of getting fakes is much higher. Even though you will probably get a refund, it's still a PITA to deal with.
Sellers will often trick you by writing something like "Powerbank for Xiaomi" so it shows up in the search results even if it's not a genuine Xiaomi product. Don't just read the title and purchase a product on a whim. This is general advice for Chinese products, but sometimes seller will have a title mentioning "Original *insert brand name* product", but then will say that it's not the original product in the detailed info. Some Ebay sellers claim they have licensed Xiaomi OEM powerbanks but that's total horseshit. Those are fakes, plain and simple. Some even have sand in their "cells": https://youtu.be/Fn_lu-jEv9k?t=55s
Xiaomi powerbanks: 5000mah slim version 5400mah 10000mah (about the size of the 5400mah) 10400mah (older and larger than the 10000mah. This one technically has 400mah more, but because the 10000mah is more efficient it will actually charge devices for longer. The 10000mah version is recommended over the older 10400.) 16000mah 20000mah
Camera Bag: Bags & backpacks in general are very affordable from China. For camera use, the National Geographic & Lowepro bags in particular have great design according to /p/
- National Geographic - Lowepro
Flashlights/Torches: Focus on Cree LEDs with a single chip, especially their Q5 (updated version note: The Q5 is a specific bin of the XP-E2 LED, so disregard what the old pastebin says) and XM-L2 series. They have long battery life / super strong output, respectively. Do not pay too much attention to usually bogus lumen ratings.
More info on Cree LEDs: http://flashlightwiki.com/Cree
- SK68-type (many have fake Cree Q5 that are actually LatticeBright, don't bother finding genuine ones though) - Convoy C8 & S2+ (Red / Blue variants on the latter have a nicer strap, but may cost extra vs gray) - Eagle eye - Nitecore - Olight
- KZ-HDS1, ED3, ED9, DT3, EDR2, ATE. KZ in general makes great value IEMs. - Superlux HD661, HD668B - Takstar Hi2050, Pro80 - Xiaomi Pistons 2 & 3, Dual Drivers (The Xiaomi piston 3 youth edition are cheap, but they don't sound very good.)
Knives: Specific models are up to your own taste, but these brands are good:
- Enlan Bee - Ganzo - Sanrenmu
As always, ask around before making a purchase.
Fountain: - Jinhao - Baoer - Hero
Phones: Chinese phones can be had for a fraction of the price of the big brand name phones with all the power you need.
Phone guide as of March 2016:
-Under $80 ---Homtom HT7 Pro It's still on preorder so the reviews have yet to come out, but the Homtom HT7 Pro looks like the most promising phone for poorfa/g/s. This could be a good phone if you're going to be traveling somewhere dangerous but still want a decent smartphone, or simply for someone too wary of buying a used phone.
Check out the reviews of the HT7 to get an idea of what to expect:
Pros: LTE for a sub $100 phone (this is not the case for the older non-pro Homtom HT7) 2GB of RAM and microSD Large and removable Battery 720p IPS screen Mediatek MT6735P is more powerful than other phones under $100.
Cons: Shitty camera If you have 70 bucks to spare, the redmi note 2 is a good upgrade. Feels cheap (what did you expect)
-Under $150 ---Xiaomi Redmi Note 2
Pros: MIUI Helio x10 SoC unbeatable at this pricepoint. microSD slot (unlike many Chinese phones, you can install 2 SIMs AND a microSD) Removable battery Build quality is not as nice as than the newer Redmi Note 3 Mediatek version, but it's just as good in almost all aspects and even better in others (microSD and removable battery). The Redmi Note 3 Mediatek version's only advantage is essentially the metal build.
Cons: Battery life is mediocre considering it's 3050mAh. Spending $60 extra for the Redmi Note 3 pro should give you a much better overall experience. This one still cuts some corners as far as performance Plasticky build in a time when even budget Chinese phones feel premium.
The other alternative I would recommend at this price is the Xiaomi Redmi Note 2. It has a better build quality and look, a less powerful octa-core mediatek SoC, and better battery life. You can find it for $135 if you look around. Both displays are full HD, but the M2 Note's is better
-$160 ---Oukitel K10000 10,000mAh battery! You can use this phone as a power bank to power other devices. If you value battery life above everything, and want a phone that will last as long as an old Nokia dumbphone, this is for you.
Pros: BATTERY. The largest in the world. Quotes from review: "take your device off charge on a Monday morning and you won’t need to put it on charge until Friday night". A "Battery bigger than the iPad Pro" "After fully charging 3 iPhone 6 Plus devices, the K10000 still has 10% battery power left" to name a few. Original looking design and nice metal build that should turn some heads Like most Chinese phones, the 720P IPS screen is quite decent and helps prolong battery life
Cons: Bulkier than the avg smartphone, due to the battery. For $20 less, Redmi Note 2's Helio X10 and 1080p screen beat this phone handily. Then again if you're getting this phone it's not because you want the fastest performance in the world. Shitty camera. For $40 more the Redmi Note 3 Pro is a better phone overall, and it also has a great battery. But you already knew that.
Under $200 ---Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 Pro (Snapdragon 650). The de-facto recommendation for budget smartphones. Do not skimp and get the regular Mediatek powered Redmi Note 3, which doesn't even have microSD support (a necessity when buying phone with 16GB or 32GB of storage)
Pros: MIUI Qualcomm Snapdragon 650 is extremely powerful and power efficient. More powerful than the flagship Snapdragon 805, 808 and 810 in many cases. As of now it's the only Snapdragon 650 phone out there, which makes it a no-brainer. Excellent battery size (4000mah), and excellent battery life. Should last you much longer than a Samsung Galaxy S6, S7 etc... Because it's a qualcomm SOC, you can/will get ROMs. This is in contrast to mania Mediatek (Helio X10 etc...) SoCs. Basically improved upon the Redmi Note 2 in every way. If you're not completely broke, spend the extra $70 for the Redmi Note 3 pro, it's completely worth it. Good build quality In a few months, this will probably cost $150, which is the MSRP in China.
Cons: battery is not removable like the redmi note 2. You could change it but you would need to disassemble the phone. Then again the battery life is miles ahead of the redmi note 2. You will need to get the 32GB variant if you want 3GB of RAM Just released and in very high demand. This means retailers may inflate the prices and it may be hard to find. Check the prices below to get an idea of what you should be paying, don't overpay. Ask in the thread if you can't find a retailer selling at those prices.
Variants: 16GB w/ 2GB RAM Current cheapest price: $185 32GB w/ 3GB RAM Current cheapest price: $220
>$300 ---Xiaomi Mi 5 Pros: Compared to flagships from non-Chinese brands, this is priced much more competitively ($310-$345-$415 respectively for each variant) Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 (same as the brand new flagships from Samsung, Sony, LG etc...) There won't be anything faster than that in the near future. To give you an idea of how quick the 820 is, single core performance is almost twice as good as the flagship Snapdragon 810 on the GB single core test. Best GPU performance of any Android phone. Will perform better in graphically intensive tasks than the S7, G5 etc.. because of the 1080p screen. Great camera with the best image stabilization out there (only phone with 4-axis IS. Provides better IS than even the iphone 6s plus) Ridiculously bright screen (over 600 nits) Excellent design and build quality One of, if not the best audio output of any smartphone. If you're a snobbish "audiophile" this phone will please you with it's great audio output. USB type C. No camera lens bump, something present on every other flagship. No overheating issues like the Snapdragon 810.
Cons: Diminishing returns; The Redmi Note 3 Pro (Pro denotes the snapdragon variant) has the best bang for the buck. No microSD! WTF, Again the Redmi Note 3 Pro has it beat in that regard. This is a dealbreaker for me, but to you it may not matter much 1080p screen is lower-res than most other flagships. If you're into Google Cardboard type VR, that's a big con. Otherwise it's probably an advantage for the battery life and performance. Glass back doubles your chances of tears. Battery on the cheaper Redmi Note 3 Pro is larger and longer lasting... Not that this one is bad by any means. The Mi5's battery life is about equivalent to the Samsung s7. Expect to add $100 to the MSRP listed above for every variant. The price should drop back to MSRP once the phone has been released for at least a month or two.
Variants: 32GB model with Snapdragon 820 chipset (2x 1.8 GHz and 2x 1.6GHz cores); 3GB RAM $410 64GB model with Snapdragon 820 chipset (2x 2.15 GHz and 2x 1.6GHz cores); 3GB RAM $460 128GB model with Snapdragon 820 chipset (2x 2.15 GHz and 2x 1.6GHz cores); 4GB RAM Ceramic back (32 and 64GB variant come with a glass back) $520
You should pay the extra $50 for the 64GB model since this phone doesn't have microSD support and the 64GB variant has a better SoC. My advice is to wait a month or two for the prices to drop, as this phone is currently $100 over the Chinese MSRP. Since you're buying from stores that ship internationally, eventually the price should drop to around MSRP +$20 as it did in the past with other xiaomi phones.
- Xiaomi phones - Meizu phones (As of March 2016, the new Meizu MX6 with the Mediatek Helio X20 SoC is right around the corner so you should wait, or get Xiaomi phones that are currently better offerings for the price.) The distinction with Meizu phones is that they use Samsung AMOLED displays. Some people enjoy AMOLED because of the infinite contrast and "popping" colors, while others hate it because of the often over saturated colors and the propensity for screen burn-in. Meizu uses the FlymeUI - OnePlus phones. (As of March 2016, the Oneplus X is not really worth buying thanks to the Redmi Note 3 pro offering a much better battery life, the newer and faster SD 650 SoC, and a lower price tag while still offering more storage and memory.) Same deal with the OnePlus 2 dethroned by the Mi5. Mid-2016 should see the Oneplus 3, which could undercut the Mi5 and prove to be a better value. We'll have to wait and see. - Previous generation refurbished flagships
Upcoming developments: -Around April/May 2016, new phones with the Mediatek Helio X20 should be released. It will be significantly faster than the Helio X10, and should be a killer SoC for budget phones. Expect to see it in phones as cheap as $200. Phones announced with the X20: Doogee F7, Zopo Speed 8, Meizu MX6 We will have to wait and see if that SoC has any issues with overheating, single core performance etc...
Electronic and Computer Goods:
Battery chargers (for either or both of NiMh and Lithium rechargeables):
- Miller ML-102 v8 - Xtar MC1 (I will add more notes here later, but there are many more Xtar chargers out there I recommend. Generally speaking I think they offer better values than the Nitecore brand) - Nitecore i2 and i4 (d2 and d4 if you like to additionally have a display or LiFePO4 charging) - Klarus C2 (also can be used as power bank) - Opus BT-C3100 (preferably v2.2+) - Skyrc MC3000 - Liitokilla
NiMh AA/AAA: - Hobbyking's Turnigy (Eneloop alternatives, high-end, check which warehouse you buy from!) - GP ReCyko (Ikea Ladda alternatives, low-end) Lithium rechargeables: - Buy LG / Sanyo / Panasonic. Not necessarily Chinese in origin, but Chinese resellers are often the cheapest way to get smaller quantities shipped.
- BoGeer YT-816, YT-833
Drawing Tablets / Digitizers:
Drones / Quadcopters:
- Cheerson - Floureon H101
- Aoyue and Yihua 936 soldering station (double check ground) - A-BF GS60 and GS90 soldering irons (GS120 uses hard to find larger tips that are expensive & harder to find, better avoid that one) - All-sun multimeters - KCX-045 USB voltage meter - Uni-T (anything, official spec sheets are correct)
- Clone headsets
Google "Cardboard" VR Glasses:
- BoboVR II and III - VR Box II
- BM-800 - BM-700 (exact same as BM-800 internally. go with whichever is cheaper between the 700 and 800.) - SF-666
Music / MP3 Player:
- AGPTeK (alias for RuiZu) - RuiZu X02 (Flash the AGPTeK's software on it)
- Xiaomi Mini Router
Note: Will add much more info about sports cameras when I ahve the time
- Mobius Actioncam - SJCam - Xiaomi Yicam
- Cube tablets - Chuwi tablets *Chuwi Hi8 is known to have a few issues.* - Onda tablets - Teclast X98 Pro
- MiniPRO TL866xx series programmers (works on Linux and Windows)
- Orico. Orico generally makes quality stuff. - Tronsmart - Xiaomi's power rail (the version that has USB ports)
- Screwdrivers - Panties - Controllers - Android devices - Cables - Camera accessories - Cycling goods - Anything that's relatively easy to manufacture. The copy/unbranded item will be just as good. - Adapters - ExpressPort cards - Borescope cameras - endoscopes for exploring your rectum