baoshi wrote:There also exist chip "refurbish" lines, where they salvage chips from electronic wastes, do silicon level repackaging and sold as "new samples" or even sold by reels.
The situation for passive components are even worse.
I've seen these claims from a lot of people on forums, but I've never seen any real news reports/articles in magazines with any kind of proof that this actually happens.
Sure, there are a lot of crap being sold, but that should be on a design/board level rather than component level. By using parts with lower specs they can shave off a few cents here and there and raise their profits.
I can't see factory rejects of cheap active parts be a huge problem either since, from what I've read, most testing and rejecting is done even before the individual units even are cut from the wafer. Cutting, placing, bonding and sealing a chip before testing is a waste of time & resources
I have a hard time believing that even with the (rather) low salaries in China it can be profitable to desolder, clean up, do silicon level repackaging and bonding, marking and re-selling a chip valued at $0.25 or so.
And making a profit of desoldeing an passive part with cut and soldered/bent legs from a junk pcb and then make it look brand new when a new part is worth a few cents, or less, is even more unbelievable.
It's a completely another ballgame to take a factory new $0.10 chip and grind off the laser markings on top and then laser engrave another more expensive part number on it. This is relatively easy to do and can bring in some good profits for a while until the buyers starts to complain.