- This thing is very useful for anyone who works with electronics. It supplies nice, clean DC power in a number of voltages with overload and short circuit protection built right in!
- It is a very easy project. Most of the work is already done for you inside the computer. It's just a matter connecting a few wires and you're done.
- It's very cheap. I got the old computer for free and the rest of the parts were under $10. A commercially built benchtop power supply like this could run you more than $150!
- It's somewhat environmentally friendly since your recycling old parts to make something new.
I should mention that this is not an original idea of mine. I learned everything I know about this project from other Instructables about power supplies (there are dozens). My project is unique only because of the enclosure I built for it. The guts are the same as any other one.
My particular unit is capable of suppling +12, +5, +3.3 VDC and -12, -5 VDC. These 5 rails along with the Ground rail can be mixed and matched to provide many different voltages eg. the voltage between the +12 and -12 rails is 24 volts). There is also a handy on/off switch in the front with lights that indicate how the unit is operating.
Since I don't have any electronics projects on the go yet, I am only able to demonstrate a simple relay circuit. Here you can see the relay powering different combinations of indicator lights based on the state of the pushbutton.