Low Voltage Higher Current? Answered
I am having a strange problem on a USB peripheral.... it is a digital radiography sensor that overheats. I believe it may be due to the power supply to the motherboard, but I don't know for sure. I am ASKING FOR YOUR HELP in reasoning out what may be the cause. Anyone with computer/electronics experience, PLEASE HELP!!!
I was told that my power supply is too low voltage, and that current is going up in the USB peripheral causing it to heat up. I always thought V=IR means that if voltage drops so does current. But in other places I read that if voltage drops, current goes up so that the wattage/power usage stays the same according to P=VI. So which is it?
V=IR or P=VI ?
If my power supply has too low voltage, will the current in the device increase to compensate? Or will it just have a lower current? Does it depend on the circuit and the exact electronics in the USB peripheral?
Here is my SETUP. It is SIMPLE:
Antec AR-350 power supply connected to a motherboard Asus P5N7A-VM in an ATX case. All I have otherwise is a SATA hard drive and a SATA DVD-ROM in there. That's it! Problem started to happen about 1.5 years after I got the computer. That is why I am thinking maybe it is the power supply, or maybe it is the motherboard? The computer works fine in every other way! It uses Windows XP and has a wireless keyboard/mouse which also works fine.
BIOS settings screen Hardware Monitor shows voltage for USB 5v reading about 4.9v, within tolerance.
However, one of my USB peripherals is a digital xray sensor. It works ok a few times, then it starts to overheat and fail. This only happens on this computer. When I use another computer (like a laptop) with the same USB hardware it functions ok and never overheats. I don't have any problems on the other computer, even thought I am using the same software/drivers.
I bought a different ATX case with a new power supply, and just moved the motherboard, HD and DVD over. Now the motherboard BIOS shows under Hardware Monitor that it is getting 5.2 V instead of 5v, so it is higher! Also the 12 V is higher (around 12.2v) and same for the 3.3V. All the voltages are HIGHER!
So I have yet to test this new configuration with the USB peripheral sensor.
Could the motherboard be faulty? I did notice the motherboard looks "curved" with the area under the CPU sort of bulging out. However, with this motherboard you will see there is a huge heat-sink/fan that gets clamped over the CPU and that may be bending the board. Keep in mind the board works perfectly otherwise, so I am wondering WHY it would only affect USB for this one peripheral and not for the keyboard and mouse? Maybe the circuitry on the keyboard/mouse is more tolerant to low voltage?
Would appreciate your thoughts please.