Guide to computer shopping in Phnom Penh

If you live in Cambodia long enough and use your laptop for both work and leisure you will eventually find yourself in need of a new one, or at least one that is new to you. So what can you do when the combination of heat and power fluctuations gives you the need for a computer? One option is to go to Singapore and buy one, but if you can’t get to Singapore, here’s a brief guide to buying a computer in Phnom Penh.

buy computer Phnom Penh

No, computer shopping in Phnom Penh does not need to be a nerve-wracking experience. (Nojima, Aeon Mall)

Do your computer research

Doing research before you head to the laptop store is a must in Cambodia. Some of the stores possess extremely knowledgeable staff, but some staff members are less knowledgable and you will never know which kind you will get until you are in the store. Similarly many of the major stores have websites which list computers and accessories on them, making it easy to do research from home before heading to the store. Some stores are better at updating their websites than others, but it is still a good way to check if the prices and selection meet your needs before you head out to buy you new machine.

Once at the store, you will usually find a sheet for each computer that includes relevant specifics and price. If you ask the staff, they will usually take a sheet from one computer to another section to compare, even if the store is multiple stories.

Know the software

Some non-Mac computers say they have DOS, while others have a specific version of Windows. If the spec sheets say DOS the stores will normally load an unlicensed version of Windows operating system onto your computer, which will work fine, but will not update.

Most stores will also ask what you need on your computer when you buy it and then upload software onto your computer. If they don’t ask you what you want on the computer feel free to ask them for specific software.

Phnom Penh computer stores

Guide to Phnom Penh computer stores (this is PSC).

Computer stores in Phnom Penh

PTC Computer Technology

PTC is the largest computer store with two locations in Phnom Penh, both near Central Market, one in Siem Reap, and one in Battambang. The smaller of the two in Phnom Penh is located across Street 126 from Central Market’s north side. This store has a smaller collection of computers than its larger sister store located a few blocks south on Street 63. Both stores have a separate area for each brand of laptop, with the larger store having entire floors devoted to specific brands. This makes it easy if you know which brand you want, but more complicated if you only know what style computer you want. If you are an Apple-only buyer, this large store is one of six certified Mac resellers in Phnom Penh, and is a good first stop. The computers are fairly well priced, some brands more so than others, but you could pick up a laptop for as low as $250 if need be. PTC often have sales on Cambodian holidays.

Chhay Hook Computer Trading

Located north of Central Market next to the smaller PTC computer store, Chhay Hook has a limited number of laptops for sale. When visited, they had only new ACER brand laptops, and a few used Dell computers. The prices seemed a bit lower on ACER than other places, but it was unclear if that was because they lacked a warranty or because they had a discount. They also have a selection of accessories for computers including printers, scanners, and projectors in case you are in need those as well.

PSC Computer Center

Across the street from Institute Francais, PSC is another of the large computer stores in Phnom Penh. The prices are comparable to PTC Computer Center so it is a good idea to check both as each tend to have special deals at different times (especially around Cambodian holidays). This store is not just for laptop and desktops. PSC also has a wide variety of accessories as well as hardware if you want to modify existing computers. The store is easy to navigate, taking up one floor of the building it is in, with staff that are attentive and helpful.

Nojima

Located in Aeon Mall this is one of the only stores I’ve found that sells computers alongside vacuum cleaners, cell phones, and dance pads for video games. The selection of between eight and ten laptops less than most other stores, and they are also more expensive than other stores. With less selection, what Nojima has going for it is ease of purchase as Nojima takes all credit cards and has an easy return policy in case of early problems. All software here is also fully licensed.

Chantra Computer Shop

Located near Russian Market on Street 468, this store used to be the go to place, but according to online reviews it has become a former shadow of itself. That being said, the shop still seems to be the place to go if you want to build a computer from scratch, or simply want parts for a computer you have built yourself. Their laptop and desktop selection is not as extensive as PTC or PSC but there are also some good deals to be found as well. They also have a nice selection of monitors. When you walk in they will end up eventually directing you to their website on a computer in their store if you have some complicated questions, so be sure to do a bit of research before you enter. Chantra sells both used and new laptops so be sure to ask about what type of computer you are looking at before you decide to buy. Though they do not have warranties on all their laptops, you can take it back to have it worked on for a good price.

PTC Computer Technology
Open daily 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
66 Street 63 at Street 154, Phsar Thmei, Phnom Penh
T: 023 222 213
ptc-computer.com.kh

Chhay Hook Computer Trading
Open daily 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
85 Street 136, Phnom Penh
T: 023 213 046
chhayhok.com

PSC Computer Center
Open daily 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
220B 184 Street 184, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
T: 023 999 992
psccomputer.com.kh

Nojima
Open daily 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Aeon Mall, 132 Sothearos Blvd, Tonle Bassac, Phnom Penh
T: 023 966 221
facebook.com/Nojima-Cambodia

Chantra Computer Shop
Open daily 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
18Eo Street 468, Toul Tom Pong, Phnom Penh
T: 012 646 581
chantracomputer.com

2 Responses to Guide to computer shopping in Phnom Penh

  1. Charlie says:

    This is pretty old info.

    If you want budget computing, go for refurbs up Kampuchea Krom, closer to Olympic.. There are probably close to 100 stores up there, on the Krom and in surrounding streets.

    • NKxOK says:

      Okay, seriously though, you accuse this article of purveying “old info” and then give Kampuchea Krom as your hot tip? That’s been the street lined with computer shops since before the Apple IIe was a hot item. But most of those stores are small Khmer-style stores with little in the way of customer service. In fact, many of them are actually more like distributors of products to other stores and will mostly be annoyed by your presence if you aren’t buying 100 or 1000 of something. Anyone who needs to look at this website in order to figure out where to buy a computer in Phnom Penh is probably going to be looking for ease and convenience because that’s going to be their number one concern most likely: navigating an unfamiliar environment while dealing with culture shock to one degree or another.

      I don’t think there’s much in the way of hot tips or cutting edge info in regards to computers in Cambodia out there anyways, but I would suggest that people check the classified sites like Khmer24.com or the BUY/SELL groups on Facebook. You will often find private individuals unloading stuff much cheaper than any store ever would, especially with Expats.

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