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Has anyone tried this DC-DC solution?

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  • Has anyone tried this DC-DC solution?

    Looking on the forums last night, I stumbled across this PSU.

    http://www.mini-box.com/pw-70a.htm

    I said to myself, hey I have a mobile laptop power supply around here somewhere...Found it.

    http://www.targus.com/us/product_details.asp?sku=PA379U

    (That's the newer model, mine is model number PA350, I'm not seeing it on the site)

    The laptop adaptor runs a continuous 70 watts of power (That being the same power as the DC-DC PSU), and outputs 3-24 VDC.

    My question is, would my adapter power that supply, would i still need a regulator to keep the voltage under 12 volts? Is this a good power solution?
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  • #2
    Well plug you adaptor in and use a multimeter to check if you need a regulator or not!
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    • #3
      I don't think this is a good solution at all without a good regulator. if you have anything on the 12v rail it could damage it with a increase or decrease in voltage.
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      • #4
        Originally posted by hijinks21
        I don't think this is a good solution at all without a good regulator. if you have anything on the 12v rail it could damage it with a increase or decrease in voltage.
        So as long as I'm building a regulator, bottom line which would be a more reliable option? An inverter into my ATX psu with regulator, or the dc-dc with the regulator? I'm not great with electrical, so I want something that will work. A regulator and a fuse are pretty much the extent of my knowledge, but i'm just learning about those things. Just want to say that these forums have been a great help, thank you for all the help you give others like myself. Thanks.
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        • #5
          either would be ok.. if you go the dc-dc with a regulator buy a multimeter and make sure you don't get any major spikes or drops on the 5v and 12v rail. With a normal atx PSU you know that the power coming out of the PSU is totally clean. Thats why a lot of people here get an opus cause its made for in-car use.
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          • #6
            Pudge,

            Using that Targus supply (as long as it can put out about 7 amps @ 12v) will be perfect to drive your PW-70 power supply.
            current projects

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            • #7
              Laptop do typicaly have another regulator. I dont know how well the targus can keep its output at 12V though. It should regulate fairly well, I cant imagine it being worst than a standard voltage regulator that you may wanna add on.

              Measuring it with a voltmeter will only indicate a "static" DC voltage, but you cant see any sudden short dip or rise in voltage with it which could be enough to damage your PC.

              They also tend to heatup alot and cant work when voltage goes below around 10.5V

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              • #8
                Found that mini-box site too, last night. They suggest putting two diodes in series from the car battery to drop voltage from 14 to 12. This would be less taxing on the regulator (less heat), but I'm not sure if this is a good idea or not.
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                • #9
                  Im afraid thats not a good idea, diodes dont regulate. Its assuming your voltage is always 14V. If your engine is not on then you might get 12V, -2v = 10V as your final output...your pc wont come on, crash or whatever.

                  What if you have a 18V spike? you will get 16V out in this case.

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                  • #10
                    How 'bout a large, 12v zener diode, to at least avoid the spikes.
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                    • #11
                      ya diodes are an awful idea. they should remove that from their site. even a drop in voltage can damage your setup.
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                      http://mp3car.zcentric.com (down atm)
                      AMD 800mhz 192megs RAM 60gig hard drive 9 inch widescreen VGA
                      80% done

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                      • #12
                        You want exactly 12v...not somewhere less than 13v.

                        A regulator should bump up the voltage to 12 (within reason) and always lower to 12v.
                        current projects

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                        • #13
                          Will a standard inverter eliminate the need for a regualator? I have been reading around, and haven't gotten a clear answer. Thanks.
                          My Carputer! (More Car Pics at the end)
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                          Check it out?!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Pudge
                            Will a standard inverter eliminate the need for a regualator? I have been reading around, and haven't gotten a clear answer. Thanks.

                            I use a regular inverter and regular power supply, and it works fine, the only reason I would ever want to change, is to clean things up a bit, right now it looks a little cluttered.
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by MeanGT
                              I use a regular inverter and regular power supply, and it works fine, the only reason I would ever want to change, is to clean things up a bit, right now it looks a little cluttered.
                              Thank you.
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