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How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply...

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How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply
Computer power supplies are US$15 but lab power supplies are US$100+. By converting the cheap (free) ATX power supplies that can be found in any discarded computer you can get a phenomenal lab power supply with huge current outputs, short circuit protection, and very tight

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12/12/2005 4:36 PM

Unplug the power cord from the back of the computer.). 2. "Harvest" a power supply from a computer by opening up the case of the computer.. 3. 5.. Cut off the connectors (leave a few inches of wire on the connectors so that you can use them later on for other projects). tracing the wires from the power supply to the boards and devices and disconnecting all the cables by unplugging them. I used the following: binding posts (terminals). Get all the parts that you need together.. and heat shrink tubing. http://wiki. a switch. 10W or greater Remove the screws (typically 4) that attach the power supply to the computer case and remove the power supply. I had a sexy looking 25W unit around so . a LED with a current limiting resistor. 2 of 9 12/12/2005 4:36 PM . locating the gray box that is the power supply unit. 4.. Discharge the power supply by stripping the insulation of the ends of a black and a red wire and connecting them together. a power resistor (10 ohm..How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply. voltage regulation. Steps 1..ehow.

. Blue = -12V.. Yellow = +12V. The color code for the wires is: Red = +5V. 8. Open up the power supply unit by removing the screws connecting the top and the bottom of the PSU case.3V the power supply will produce an output.ehow. 3 of 9 12/12/2005 4:36 PM . http://wiki. 6. Brown = Sense (tie to 3.3V. Orange = +3.How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply. Black = 0V. If the brwon wire is tied to 3.3V).. Bundle wires of the same colors together. IMPORTANT: Make sure that the lone brown sense wire is bundled with the orange wire.

ehow. Gray = power is on.. http://wiki.connecting all the pieces together. 11. Used a dremel to drill the starting holes followed by a hand reamer to enlarge the holes till they were the right size by test fitting the binding posts... Purple = +5V Standby (not used). 9. Now came the interesting part . all the remaining red wires to the red binding posts (not really necessary to 4 of 9 12/12/2005 4:36 PM .Also drilled holes for the power ON LED and a Power switch. I drilled holes in a free area of the power supply case by marking the center of the holes with a nail and a tap from the hammer. 10. I connected one of the red wires to the power resistor.. I screwed the binding posts into their corresponding holes and attached the nut on the back.How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply. and Green = Turn DC

and hooked up the orange wires with the brown..How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply. connected the white to the -5V binding post. 5 of 9 12/12/2005 4:36 PM . one black wire to the DC-On switch..ehow. all the remaining black wires to the black binding post.). one black wire to a resistor (330 ohm) attached anode of the LED. And organized the wires with a lot of electrical tape. the gray to the cathode of the LED. yellow to the +12V binding post. the blue to the -12V binding connect all but .. connected the green wire to the other terminal on the switch.. http://wiki. I made sure that the soldered ends were insulated in heatshrink tubing.. connected one of the black wires to the other end of the power resistor..

com/Convert-a-Computer-ATX-Power-Supply-to-a-La..How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply. 12. Checked to see if the LED light came on. Switched on the main switch on the PSU.. Looked good and worked like a charm (and still works like a charm!). then I powered up by flipping the switch that I had placed on the front. Put the cover on. 13. If it had not. http://wiki. Plugged in the IEC power cord into the back and into an AC socket. Put a drop of superglue to stick the LED to its hole. Plugged in a 12V bulb into the different sockets to see if the PSU worked. 14..ehow. also checked with a digital voltmeter.. 6 of 9 12/12/2005 4:36 PM . I made sure that all the connections look good.

http://wiki.but that is another article (hint: Uses a 317 IC with power transistor). no LED light. The PSU will be continously on.. Have converted a few more power supplies . The power resistor needs to be attached to the metal body as it gets pretty warm and needs to be kept cool by If the power supply does not work. just connect the green and a black wire together.. just ignore the gray wire. If you cannot attach the resistor with a screw. Make sure that you have removed the power cord before doing the conversion and have discharged the capacitors by tying the +5V to ground or by shorting the capacitors with the power resistor or with the older ones the brown sense wire needed to be attached to the 5v wire for the PSU to work. attach the resistor by tying it to a ventilation slot with twist ties or large dia. then the LED may have been wired wrong that is the positive and negative leads of the LED may have been switched. You can also convert this to a VARIABLE POWER SUPPLY .How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply. that is.. Open the poswer supply case and flip the purple or gray wires on the LED around (make sure that you do not bypass the LED resistor). 7 of 9 12/12/2005 4:36 PM . Tips OPTIONS: You don't need an additional switch. Check to see if the fan has come on. If the fan in the power supply is on. I did not make a sexy looking cabinet for the power supply but feel free to add some pizzaz to the dull gray box. Cut in short and insulate it from the rest.. copper wire. You also don't need an LED.ehow. Warnings Line voltage which can kill.

9 Dec 2005. LED..How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply. electrical tape. Search wikiHow: Search 8 of 9 12/12/2005 4:36 PM . soldering current limiting resistor for the LED. Wire cutters. http://wiki. Things You'll Need An obsolete computer with an ATX 250W. Edit this Page Discuss this Page Thank the Authors Write a New wikiHow E-mail this to a Friend Printable Version Initial Author: Abizarl . soldering wire. a low wattage switch. power resistor to load the power supply. reamer. needle nose pliers. drill.. This page was last modified 23:27. heat shrink tubing binding posts for output terminals.ehow.. 300W or 400W power supply. This page has been accessed 500 times.

. Home | About wikiHow | Help | Terms of UseTerms of Use | RSS | Inspired by MediaWiki | Visit eHow This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 License...ehow. 9 of 9 12/12/2005 4:36 PM .com/Convert-a-Computer-ATX-Power-Supply-to-a-La.How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply.. http://wiki.