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Thread: Testing draw from carpc

  1. #1
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Cambs UK
    Posts
    53

    Testing draw from carpc

    Whats the best way to find out how many watts my car pc is using? Is it as easy as strapping a multimeter to one wire? or is it too complicated too even try?

    Would just be interested in seeing what it is using so i can accomodate future expansion!

    Thanx

    James

    ps, please no web based wattage calculators, these are mainly for mini itx systems anyway and im on p4 baby !

  2. #2
    Raw Wave Rob Withey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Location
    Bedfordshire, UK
    Posts
    2,139
    You can use an ammeter in series with one of the power lines. If your multimeter doesn't go high enough like mine didn't (mine only goes up to 2A) then you can do what I did which was to go back to basics and build an ammeter the old fashioned way:

    Put a really low resistance (a fraction of an ohm) in series with one of the power leads, run up the system and measure the voltage drop. From that you can calculate the current (I=V/R).
    Old Systems retired due to new car
    New system at design/prototype stage on BeagleBoard.

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