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powersupply?
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Music Tech DIY  
Author powersupply?
ello
while i currently build a case for my eurorack stuff, i am starting to ask myself about the powersupply. the case in its final state will have 10U 1m width. but for now i start with 6U at 1m width. modgrid tells me about 2000 mA at +12V, 1000 mA at -12V.

now i wonder what would be best to do. is it save to just use a bunch of 4ms rowpower modules straight away? or do i need to use something like the doepfer psu3 or two of them? shall i use flexible busboards or fixed ones?

would be nice if you can share some experience here.
LED-man
ello wrote:
while i currently build a case for my eurorack stuff, i am starting to ask myself about the powersupply. the case in its final state will have 10U 1m width. but for now i start with 6U at 1m width. modgrid tells me about 2000 A at +12V, 1000 A at -12V.

now i wonder what would be best to do. is it save to just use a bunch of 4ms rowpower modules straight away? or do i need to use something like the doepfer psu3 or two of them? shall i use flexible busboards or fixed ones?

would be nice if you can share some experience here.


makhho
probably meant 2000mA, but you went there still.
LED-man
makhho wrote:
probably meant 2000mA, but you went there still.


hihi
wackelpeter
Would like to witness the Moment he turns his synth on and all the Lights in the city start flickering for a few moments before the city fades into eternal Darkness... smile
ello
Dead Banana indeed, thats a relevant typo...
hamildad
First person to design a 2000A drawing rack on Modular gird, gets to turn it on..

then investigate for noise issues...

D.
joem
hamildad wrote:
First person to design a 2000A drawing rack on Modular gird, gets to turn it on..

then investigate for noise issues...

D.


That's just an all-Metasonix rack, isn't it? razz
NV
Power is probably the trickiest element of modulars, and definitely the least understood. A lot of the perceived quality of a modular's output can come from the quality of the power supply and distribution. 90% of people will tell you it doesn't matter, just get some flying bus ribbons and be done with it, and for some people that works fine. But for others they end up with noise and troubles they can't explain and it causes serious frustration.

In simplest terms, what you want from a supply is a quiet and reliable PSU or multiple PSUs that provide more than enough power for your system. Between that (hopefully) clean supply and your modules you want as little resistance as possible (short lengths, thick wire gauge, heavy/wide board traces), and as little sharing of paths as possible (a long/thin busboard with the inputs on a far end is less optimal than a square busboard with the inputs directly in the middle and starred out to the headers). Some quick pointers along those lines:

  • Avoid flying buses (long ribbon cables with multiple power plugs on them). This is probably the single quickest way to reduce the quality of your entire system.

  • Avoid extensions for long ribbon cables. With 1m case width (assuming ~200HP) it's a better idea to have 2 busboards per row and each module having ribbon cables around 0.2m than to have one busboard with the outside modules having 0.5m long ribbons. You can position a busboard between rows so it services one half of two rows and that will help in keeping module cables short. Most modules ship with cables around 0.2 - 0.3m by default.

  • Have more power than your system needs. If you have 2A of modules, don't get only 2A of power - go for 2.5A or more. Give your system some room to breathe, the more the better.

  • Don't DIY anything unless you have a strong idea of what you're doing. Not only could you just make a crappy distribution that introduces all sorts of hassles, but also the whole mains power explosions/fire/death/doom thing.

As far as specific power solutions, Hinton Instruments offers custom solutions that a lot of people would argue is worth the cost - bus bar distribution provides a lot of metal to get power to modules while still being reasonable to implement, and linear supplies are dependable. If that's too expensive/complicated, then Doepfer supplies are often overlooked simply because they're Doepfer, but he makes reliable toroidal linear supplies that mount to the center of busboards and don't require daisy-chaining boards together, which I would wager for many people would be enough to resolve the problems they have with systems. Intellijel, TipTop, or MakeNoise busboards are all switching supplies, which are much lighter and can rely on wallwarts but can get noisy if they aren't handled properly. I can't personally say how they perform in terms of switching noise but people seem to be doing alright with them. Below that price threshold you start seeing long/thin busboards and flying ribbons, which as mentioned becomes a bit more of a game of roulette.

Those aren't the only available options, just some off the top of my head. The one thing to keep in mind is that while power/distribution isn't the sexiest thing to spend money on, it's vital to the performance of your system. Don't spend $5,000 on modules and power them with a gerbil on a wheel.
ello
thank you very much. so i'll save some more money and do it with multiple inbuilt psu3 or similar and fixed busboards. and in the meantime i'll stick with my small case until the power is on point.
dot matrix madness
wackelpeter wrote:
Would like to witness the Moment he turns his synth on and all the Lights in the city start flickering for a few moments before the city fades into eternal Darkness... smile

lol Doesn't need a synth to achieve that. A weasel or water causing a major
short in a power station also does the trick.
Anyway I would go for a Doepfer A-100PSU3 to have the required specs.
jimboburgess
I also rec the Doepfer A-100 psu3

it is worth looking at something like the Meanwell rt65b lots of people use these to power their racks. If you want something lighter and smaller.
ello
jimboburgess wrote:
I also rec the Doepfer A-100 psu3

it is worth looking at something like the Meanwell rt65b lots of people use these to power their racks. If you want something lighter and smaller.

thank you, that looks interesting, too. and it seems worth a test since if not for the big rack at least as a supply for experiments

am i understanding it correct, that it would be a good idea to use additional regulators and some capacitors to smooth the rippling before going into the busboards?
flx
jimboburgess wrote:

it is worth looking at something like the Meanwell rt65b lots of people use these to power their racks. If you want something lighter and smaller.

I just realized that I only have those PSUs and nothing else anymore for a long time. Five RT65b in total, powering eight rows of Eurorack and three 19” Serge boats. No problems to report so far thumbs up

Edit:
I use one RT65b for for every two rows of Eurorack (84 or 104hp) and one for all three Serge Boats, which don’t draw a lot of power.
ello
when looking at your Wardrobe smile I get the feeling that those psu should indeed get me going with my project
flx
ello wrote:
when looking at your Wardrobe smile I get the feeling that those psu should indeed get me going with my project

Yes, probably Mr. Green Maybe someone else can point us to some possible problems with that PSU. It's quite popular tough indeed.
ello
i now went with the +/- 15 V switched psu from befaco and two active bussboards. it works really well, just that i have such a big difference between my +12V (~1505mA) and -12V (~400mA) usage. so the +12 is almost done but the -12v has plenty to give

are there any interesting modules that take some more of the negative rail?
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