Sunday, November 11, 2007

ATX Power supply into a cheap lab power supply

This is old hat by now and is covered in some web articles. Why build it? I needed the +/-12V to test my welder wire speed control.

Basically an ATX supply scavenged form an old computer, cut off all the wires, install a load resistor, and an LED power on indicator + switch. Good source of ~1 foot lengths of 16 gauge wire as well.

You get +12V, -12V, +5V, -5V, and +3.3V from this supply. The 5V is at ridiculous current - usually 25 amps or more. 12V is usually 15 amps+!

Super easy to do, surely the cheapest way to get a fairly capable lab power supply.

I used terminal strips - most people use binding posts. It's all I had on hand. The REALLY nice thing about computer power supplies is that they are over-current protected. If you draw to much, it just shuts off. Turning it back on, and it is reset.

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