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Thread: DC-DC versus Inverter

  1. #1
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    DC-DC versus Inverter

    Although I've read LOTS of messages here on this forum (which is great!) I'm still somewhat confused on the whole "DC-DC power supply versus using an Inverter" thing. I'll be using a laptop as my carputer so as I understand things that means I have a built-in tank circuit and shouldn't have to worry about power-up issues - the kind that send people towards using a DC-DC power supply, right?

    Am I missing something or is there some other advantage to NOT using an inverter in my particular case, other than the potential for less noise in the audio system?

  2. #2
    MySQL Error Scouse Monkey's Avatar
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    How can you be confused!!!! there is loads of threads all saying the same thing about how crap inverters are. Jsut some people have to use them as they want to put 3Ghz PCs in their cars!

  3. #3
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    There are adapters available for most laptops to plug into a cigarette lighter. You'd be better off with one of them as some folks have experienced noise using a laptop with an inverter. If you go with an inverter, get one that has a sine wave output. Square wave inverters and bad grounding techniques are the culprit for most noise issues.

    Walt

  4. #4
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    Walt is right, get a standard laptop adaptor for it, even if you want to do something different you can still use it's guts even if you don't want it plugged into your cigarette adapter.
    Da_Kooz

  5. #5
    FLAC -zip-'s Avatar
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    Geez man this has been done over and over and over.....
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  6. #6
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    Geez Nothing

    Hey I DID say I had read lots of posts on here already and STILL had a question - the searching bit had been done and if that answered all my questions I wouldn't have posted.

    Regardless, what I was *specifically* looking for was whether or not the true reason for going DC-DC rather than using an inverter with a laptop was because of noise issues and I guess that's basically answered now. (and thanks for that folks that respond - sounds like its the primary reason but there might be cases where a laptop wouldn't work correctly on an inverter as well)

    I actually do have a Targus DC-DC converter for the laptop that works, what lead me to asking this was also powering the two LCD screens, the Audigy2 NX external USB soundcard, and the USB 2 hub. With a standard PC and one of the good DC-DC power supplies I could just run the various 5v sources needed right off of that, but with the laptop that's a bit more difficult. I can of course either use a high-capacity DC-DC power supply for all those sources or lots of smaller DC-DC converters - I was just looking into how important it was to do so rather than just going the easy way and resorted to an inverter. Anyway, thanks for the replies folks - at this point I think I'll continue on the path of going all DC-DC.

  7. #7
    Low Bitrate Deadnick's Avatar
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    Every attempt I've made to go DC-DC has been crap and ends in failure. Dirty Power, Unstable voltages, etc. I use a 1500 watt inverter in my car to power everything with an optima gell cell and I never turn the inverter off because it has a very low draw when the computer is off or in standby. Anyways its your choice but I just wanted to let you know not everyone has gone DC-DC without problems. And as for the noise issue people talk about I got tons of noise with my DC-DC PW-200 power supply but get absolutly no noise from my inverter.

  8. #8
    Raw Wave Defiler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deadnick
    I use a 1500 watt inverter in my car to power everything


    OMFG, dude!!!!

    I use a 300W inverter. Cheaper and have no issues with surviving crank or noise. You just need to route and ground wires properly to avoid noise.
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  9. #9
    MySQL Error Scouse Monkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Defiler


    OMFG, dude!!!!

    I use a 300W inverter. Cheaper and have no issues with surviving crank or noise. You just need to route and ground wires properly to avoid noise.
    But his is an uber 99.9999999999% efficient crank proof inverter that doubles up as a perpetual motion machine with the optional addon!


    hehe jsut pullin your leg mate. There is just something baout inverters that is not right somewhere......maybe it from when i nearly soiled myself after I spilt coke on the one in my car (we have 230V not your measley 110V).

    EDIT: and my feet were sitting in a puddle of coke and an inverter!

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