Computer Power Supply - Quick Hack

Introduction: Computer Power Supply - Quick Hack

About: Electronics Engineer by trade, general bodger by nature. Always making things, preferably from what-ever bits I have in the garage. You will find more interesting things on my personal web page rather than the…

There are many examples of modifying the standard CPU power supply on this site but if, like me, you just want a fistful of power and want it NOW then the power supply is not the project!

Even a hack has to be servicable and safe so this note describes a quick modification.

A front panel is fitted to hold the power switch, indicator light and terminals;

with the panel space now available then other components like a variable output can be added if desired.

Step 1: How to Fit a Panel

I vaguely remembered that the mounting screw size was metric M3 which did not make sense as the original fittings are self-tapping screws but a quick test showed that they took a loose fit - strange!?

Using oversize nuts as spacers allowed the M3 screw to be tightened properly :)

You now have four mounting points for a panel or other casework.

By fitting M3 threaded spacers allows a false front panel to be mounted giving plenty of scope for fixing the necessary items

Step 2: What I Actually Did...

I decided to go quick-and-dirty in my impatience so I used only the minimum of brackets.

Oops! I mounted the switch up-side down!

I did not have enough terminals for all outputs at this time but two was enough for the LED strip lighting that I wanted to power.

I will fit extra terminals in due course especialy as the +12 & -12v is useful for Op-Amp. projects.

Do not underestimate the usefulness of the negative 5 and 12 volts as bias voltages particularly for adding a variable output.

I note that others have gone to the trouble of adding a variable voltage regulator to make the unit more versatile though I would point out that as these power supplies give fixed voltages and are current limited then only a power transistor (e.g TIP 121), a base resistor and a potentiometer is needed.


Be the First to Share


    • Cold Challenge

      Cold Challenge
    • Baking Contest

      Baking Contest
    • Make it Glow Contest

      Make it Glow Contest



    4 years ago

    Welcome to the club: Just a note to let you know I have added this instructable to the collection:

    Encyclopedia of ATX to Bench Power Supply Conversion


    Take a look at about 70 different approaches to this project. This topic is one of the more popular of all instructables.