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Thread: benchtop power supply recommendations

  1. #1
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    Default benchtop power supply recommendations

    Thinking it might be useful to pick up a decent benchtop power supply. The number of brands available now is overwhelming... looking for something reasonably good, that won't die in a year, and does a good enough job to not fry diodes and other sensitive electronics. Looking for double or triple output. Do any of them allow bridging the outputs to get higher voltages or positive and negative rails?

    Thanks,
    Mike

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    I use TTi lab power supplies for a while and very happy with them, can't expect better and really affordable. They have a comprehensive range and I'm sure you will find what you are searching, of course you can parallel or series the output, and nothing weird like spikes on turn-on or so

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    I have multiple pairs of the Circuit Specialists Analog bench supplies. I'm very very very happy with them, and need the adjustable current limiting. Main issue is you hear the transformer relays switch about 10 volts into the overall 30 volt range. Also a pretty bad turn on spike from the 30 uF capacitor across the supply's outlet. So I don't use them for testing laser diodes. For everything else, including testing LEDs, they are great.

    Typically 79$ a unit, but they do go on sale for ~59$ from time to time. Their high end units are nice.

    They do "stack", and have outputs that can float from line ground.

    Very few constant current bench supplies are decent enough to drive small laser diodes without spiking or lethal turn on surges. Your looking at HP- Agilent-Keysite price levels at that point. Easier to put a driver in a test box at that time.

    Team Wavelength CW diode driver modules show up cheap on fleabay.. About 80-90$ a driver.

    Steve
    Last edited by mixedgas; 09-24-2014 at 09:32.
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    TTi, Circuit Specialists, thanks for the recommendations! I will look in to those. Last night I also ran across some reasonably priced Tenma models, but can't find much on their quality.

    Anyone have any brands they would AVOID?

    Thanks, everyone!

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    Note that a TTi is another order of magnitude of price compared to a Circuit Specialist, but if you're looking to perfect quality, current limiting at 0.01mA resolution and an overall perfect quality, it's the way to go All depends on your needs.

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    Yeah, One other recommendation. Have two of the single channel units or a independent, isolated, dual channel one. I find I need to set voltage and current on both rails independently of each other. But I do analog bench work, so I have stricter requirements in that regard.

    My restraint was budget, I had no intention of spending more then 225$ on a pair of bench PSUs for home.

    How the knobs are set up matters. Having the whole 0-30 V on one knob can be a PITA.
    My current set has a course/fine pair of knobs for both current and voltage.

    On dual units, I've never found "tracking" mode to be of much use.

    Make sure it has a indicator light for constant current mode, and that the indicator only comes on when actually holding or limiting the current constant.

    We had this one at my former employer, and I loved it:

    http://www.circuitspecialists.com/pr...csipps55t.html

    But pricy. At that point you should consider looking at a TTi or similar. In PSUs, you do get what you pay for.

    Steve

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    Last edited by mixedgas; 09-25-2014 at 03:40.
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    Now that is a nice one!!! I like the fact that you can have 1 channel for powering the second to use for the modulation input. Very practical.Damn accurate too.


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    Looking at the circuit specialists products... wondering why a dual output plus 5v fixed is better than three single-output supplies, since the latter is significantly cheaper. The 0-30 @ 5 A is only $60, but the triple is $220. Could get 3 single output units for less and have a more capable third rail. What am I missing?

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    Sorry Steve, I re-read the thread and it seems you had already answered the questions I posed... somehow I must have missed that content. :-\ Anyhow, I have been eyeballing this little guy, seems like a nice unit, though backordered.

    http://www.circuitspecialists.com/csi2116a.html

    The only other cost effective option I've seen that looks safe is the mastech/elenco/sinometer HY3005D unit for a similar price. Whatever I end up with, I'll post some feedback here.

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    I ended up ordering this one:

    http://www.circuitspecialists.com/csi2116a.html

    If I like it, I'll order a second to have a matched pair.

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