Hein (fub) wrote,
Hein
fub

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Power woes

I had ordered a batch of 5V power supplies from the Conrad. They were EUR 3 -- a steal if you know that a shop can easily charge you EUR 10 for a wallwart powersupply. However, even though they supply 5V DC, they are not stabilised. And that is not much of a problem when you only have passive components in your circuit.

But ICs are a lot more 'brittle', having little tolerance for sudden power spikes.

You guessed it, I fried four microcontrollers by trying to get these wallwarts working with my circuits. Not too happy about that: at EUR 3.50 a piece, it adds up quickly.
There are ways to stabilise the power lines, but the ICs that do that effect a voltage drop: you need 9V if you want a stabilised 5V circuit. And stabilising a 5V input will yield only a stable 2V -- too little to drive LEDs in any meaningful way.

I guess I will need to invest in a few 9V/400mA wallwarts, and get a few stabilisers and the appropriate condensators. Those parts cost only just over 50 eurocents per set, which is good. I do want to present the recipients of my electronics projects with the appropriate wallwart to go with it -- and including the stabilisation circuitry would allow me to invest less in wallwarts and more in the actual electronics themselves.

Also, I would dearly love to support my local electronics store, but charging EUR 1.10 for a 2200uF/16V elco when I can get the same for 26 cents from my usual online store sure isn't helping.
Tags: electronics
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