I have a feeling everyone is going to have a different answer to this based on their particular focus, but I’m still curious to know where folks here have cut corners to save money and it really hasn’t been a problem. So, in everyone’s opinion when is getting cheap ok?
For example, I’ve gotten cheap on power supplies, and basic hand tools. I use Harbor Freight - (or Menards) “free” screw driver sets for my bench. My power supplies are also either USB, old AC adapters I have laying around or low-end $35 variable bench supplies. From what I can tell, going cheap here hasn’t been a problem. Hand tools, if I need to exert force on a piece of electronics that might strip or bend my drivers, I should be using my craftsman set from my garage, and what the HECK am I doing?! Power supplies, I just don’t do work that can’t tolerate noise or fluctuation in voltage or whatever. I’m pretty much a 3.3v, 5v, or 12v guy. That’s it. Couple hundred milliamps, etc. So I think I’m ok there.
Where I try to stay in better quality gear is with soldering irons, scopes, and meters when I can. Aside from the “free” Harbor Freight meters I try to use good stuff.
What say we all? I’m curious to know what different areas of focus do to that cheap-o-delux vs. high quality shift.