Introduction: How Do I Power My Finished Circuit? Here's the Fix! Just Plug It in !!

About: Just getting into the microcontroller craze. I used to do this sort of thing building circuits for 8 bit microprocessors back in the early 80s, so this is kind of like reliving a bit of my childhood. Back then…

OK - so you've moved your project to a perfboard or you're designing a PC board for it.
The question is - what's a cheap and easy way to power it?
Well, we are familiar with the wall warts, but they are often bulky, and not always convenient.
Yes, you can use an iPhone charger, but the USB cord comes out too easy, plus you may want to market your device, and although that solution works great for you, it's a bit cheesy for anything other than an iPod or iPhone.

Well, Recom has the RAC02 series of voltage converters.
They will take an input of 70 to 277 volts AC in, and give you a constant DC output.
You can choose your converter to suit your needs.
Output voltages available are 3.3, 5, 12, 15 and 24 volts.

This means that once your PC Board is made and in a project box, you can have just a standard plug and cord going to it.
And the devices are about the size of a small relay, so they are easily mounted and hookup is a breeze - it's just AC in, and DC out.
One component, job done!

I have included a photo of my driver board from my LED Cube. It's a bit of a different design than you will see on the internet because I put all the driver I/O on the one board, including the transistors and 3 to 8 line demultiplexer. I wanted it set up so any microcontroller board could be easily interfaced to it, be it the Atmega32A, Arduino, Launch pad, or whatever.Also it can be disconnected from the cube so that it can be used for other projects where you just need a huge number of outputs..

With this module supplying the power to the board, I can send 5V back to the controller (whatever it is) so the entire project can be powered from it.