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WIGGLING 'LITE' IN GUEST MODE

Zee best analog workstation OR powered breadboard.
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Music Tech DIY  
Author Zee best analog workstation OR powered breadboard.
pleaseohplease
Greetings,

the time has come for me to move up a bit in the breadboard department. i'm looking for something that is spacious, powered, and provides easy access to test out many things fairly easy.

At the moment these two have caught my eye....

http://www.circuitspecialists.com/prod.itml/icOid/9651

pros i like: digital display of various voltages. the breadboards used are high quality (known from experience). comes with a free pretty nice multimeter which i could also use. and price wise it's about right, 89 bucks.

con's: if i ever buy a bench power supply i could get the same functionality with a 30 dollar breadboard. (but i don't forsee buying a power supply anytime soon).

example two:

http://www.jameco.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?langId= -1&storeId=10001&catalogId=10001&productId=1919211&

a *bit* out of my budget, 460 bucks, but it's pretty awesome. if i had cash like that to toss around i would already have it.

Does anybody have any experience with the $89 option? Is there a cheaper but somewhat comparable option to the complete analog lab?

Any insight would be much appreciated. I kinda can't handle running out of room on the breadboard anymore.

best.
Luka
460$ for a bredboard !?!?!?

just go buy a cheap psu and a wallwort and get a cheap breadboard
it is really handy having a bench supply.

i just have a cheap board and am about to buy another
i keep finding i need to bredboard stuff and mine is full

sure they will get bad connections after awhile but just go buy another when that happens. it aint too hard to test.
wetterberg
I'd totally get the "not too cheap" variety; on a metal plate with power posts on them - the 2860-point ones - they're about 20bucks - then you can always buy another 70 dollar DMM if you want a power readout there, hehe...

razz
Randaleem
Hi,

You asked for insight.

If I had to choose one or the other, I'd choose neither.

Everybody's wants are different, but the true *needs* here are pretty well known. Sure it looks nice to have the all-in-one package. But I think you'll find you get a LOT more from individual breadboards, power, DMM and the rest.

Either of the two you've shown will be too small for something you'll want to breadboard. You'll run out of knobs, sources, or all-in-one resources.
Like our synths, modular IS the way to go with Breadboards, IMO.

Just go ahead and wire up some pots, switches and displays with pigtails, and buy several (smaller to larger) breadboards. You'll not only save money, you'll have the flexibility that you'll probably find that you need.

Ya can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you NEED...

Kind regards, Randal
pleaseohplease
thanks for the replies folks.

the funny thing is i pretty much agree with everyone, but that $89 option seems so convenient! plug it in, dial it in, done. it seems equivalent to having a mini bench supply on hand to power other boards as well.

at first i was really attracted to this...

http://www.allelectronics.com/make-a-store/item/PB-3260/BREADBOARD-326 0-CONTACT/-/1.html

and the best part is they're around the corner. but then i saw that powered one with the variable power supply. in order to use this one with the same functionality i would need to get a seperate bench supply, correct?

ideally, i'm looking to spend about a $100-150 for a nice comfortable place to breadboard things. i would rather spend a bit more for convenience and comfort rather than a mess of a million little boards and wires for power and such roaming around. Also, i don't really have any other immediate need at the moment for a separate bench power supply.

@luka, do you have any cheap psu links that you'd recommend?
Luka
my bench psu is from this design and it is built on a tiny bit of veroboard
pretty simple design to do on veroboard



and i use a $15 wallwort to power it

cheap as chip and it can run a few modules at a time
just chuck it in a small box and add a little distro board on the top and your bench will have a neat little supply that cost nothing.

just make sure if you use a wallwort you have a half recified psu and not fully rectified.
Randaleem
PleaseOhPlease wrote:
thanks for the replies folks.
the funny thing is i pretty much agree with everyone, but that $89 option seems so convenient! plug it in, dial it in, done. it seems equivalent to having a mini bench supply on hand to power other boards as well.

Is dial-it-in what you want or need for breadboarding synth circuits? Seems you need steady +/-12 or 15, and perhaps +5. There could be a downside to having such an easily adjustable supply, in this case?
Quote:
at first i was really attracted to this... http://www.allelectronics.com/make-a-store/item/PB-3260/BREADBOARD-326 0-CONTACT/-/1.html and the best part is they're around the corner.

First instincts are often spot-on!
Quote:
but then i saw that powered one with the variable power supply. in order to use this one with the same functionality i would need to get a seperate bench supply, correct?


MFOS sells a PCB for one. So does Ken Stone/CGS. Likely others too. Or just pick up a power one on ebay for 20 bucks. For that matter, I bet all electronics has something which will work! Again, why do you need variable?
Quote:
ideally, i'm looking to spend about a $100-150 for a nice comfortable place to breadboard things. i would rather spend a bit more for convenience and comfort rather than a mess of a million little boards and wires for power and such roaming around. Also, i don't really have any other immediate need at the moment for a separate bench power supply.

Sounds like you've already made up your mind. If it works for you, that's what matters. I'd choose differently, having already gone the way you're planning in the past. Good luck, which ever path you take!

Kind regards, Randal
pleaseohplease
randal and luka, thanks for the diy push. and good call about the variable voltages. i guess i really don't need that much variety, just plus/minus 12, 15 and a steady 5 perhaps.

unfortunately, all electronics don't have any appropriate power supplies. but i'll definitely be looking into those cgs and mfos boards.

thanks!
Luka
you can chain more regulators from that cgs psu design so you have 12, 15 and 5v.

a good example of that is here
just use half wave rec. if you use a wallwort

http://burnit.co.uk/sdiy/index.php?page=benchpsu
Doug Wellington
Now may be the time to talk regulators too... If you're going with the DIY route, make sure you read the spec sheets on the regulators you use - you have to make sure you're feeding enough voltage even under load. For example, you should probably feed about 18 volts into a standard 15v regulator for it to work properly.

Also, check your loading - if you have less than 1A load on your regulator(s) you can use the standard 7815/7915 regulators, but if you need more than that, check out something like the 78S15 (+15) which will handle up to 2A or the L7915CV (-15) which handles up to 1.5A...

And make sure you put nice heat sinks on those things!
doobedy
Not to discourage DIY but check this thread out: http://muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=4630

I have one, it cost me $17.99 + shipping on ebay.
pleaseohplease
ahhhh, too many options.

however, i think i might have found the perfect solution...

DIY power supply with +/-12v +/-15v and a steady 5v, if possible, all with banana outs. really don't need any other variation, good call on that.

the $30ish dollar breadboard option from all electronics. it's got the nicest and biggest breadboard available.

that way i'll have all the power options i'll ever need, it won't be that messy, rather it would look pretty sweet (lone power supply being banana patched out to the breadboard, awesome), and i'll have plenty of space to work on the actual breadboard. Thanks for the suggestions everybody!

if i was real slick i would build a function generator/noise source as well and package that with the power supply, then i'd really be set...

Last question though, for now: has anyone built the cgs +/- 15 volt power supply to provide all those various voltages simultaneously? It seems like you can vary the two voltages but once you pick your favorite rails you gotta stick to 'em. I'm kind of looking for one stop shopping and building, if possible.

thanks!!!
doobedy
Don't forget pots smile

That's actually my favorite part about the heathkit, is the two built in pots. Figuring out a way to mount a few without them flopping around might make you happy. I still use pigtails but the mounted ones are deluxe.

IDC ribbon connectors are the same spacing and size as breadboards, I wonder if they make 3 hole female ones. I may have to look into that. Would be an easy way to expand.
Luka
it should be fine i think
typically you want to run your regulators with a voltage around 3volts higher than the regulator is dropping down to.

so for 15v regs you want 18v transformer/wallwort etc

otherwise they get really hot

while this may not be EE aproved my methods would be just drop from 18v wall wort down to 15 then down to 12 then down to 5 in series and have tap points leading out for access at each stage.

make sure you add some LEDs after each rail output to see if each stage is working ok.
pleaseohplease
@luka, ah, just saw your earlier post about chaining on the cgs psu.

for a psu noob, do you think that would be pretty doable? all this talk of dropping and tap points seems like it could be easy, but easily done wrong for a noob such as myself.

@doo, in that case, i'll have to think twice about the built in pot situation.
Luka
try it on your new breadboard
then once you have it working make it on vero
a good starting project smile
pleaseohplease
yo luka,

thanks for all the info.

so...

say i were to use a 15vac at 1000ma. and say i were to use that with the schematic you provided. if i were to use two vero boards hooked up to that, with one board being geared towards 15v +/-, and the other board using 12v pos/neg regulators, do you think that would work fine?

if so, it's on.
Luka
i dont see why not
give it a go

if you really want some more experience advice on this matter go ask at electro-music's diy section
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