On my first trip, about 10 days ago, I tried the takeout place in the back. I debated for awhile on what to get and ended up going with the chicken chow fun. It was good and I liked the flavor of the dish, but I wish there had been some more vegetables. There were some bean sprouts but that was it, so I felt like the dish was very heavy.
Today I went back to try the buffet. I think it's usually $7/lb but if you go after 2:15 pm, it's only $5/lb, which is a very worthwhile discount. Although many places get quieter for lunch after 2, Sun Yip is still pretty busy as a lot of people venture over there for the late afternoon buffet discount. There is a lot to choose from - noodles, chicken dishes, vegetable and tofu dishes - and they continue to refill the buffet throughout the day. (When I was there at 2:30 pm last time, they were bringing out new bok choy, just cooked from the kitchen.)
Since it was my first time at the buffet, I got a little more than I had planned, especially as I got toward the end of the line and saw a lot of the vegetable dishes. Most of the selections were really good. I got dry sauteed string beans, fried fish, bok choy, chicken with peppers, lemongrass chicken with string beans, two different homemade tofu dishes, mushrooms and zucchini, chicken lo mein, shrimp mei fun, pork fried rice, pork chow fun, and other things that I can't remember and that aren't visible in the photo. I completely understood why the buffet was so popular - cheap and tasty!
I'm not sure if I would do buffet or a regular takeout order on my next visit. I wouldn't get the chow fun though since I can just get that at the buffet - with vegetables!