Friday, March 3, 2017

TekPower TP3016M Switching DC Power Supply Mod & Review

I have been using various DC power supplies for projects on my workbench for some time now, but recently decided I need the flexibility of a true variable supply, vs a wall adapter that has 4-5 voltage choices.  In my search, I found that most workbench power supplies were very large and bulky, which wasn't ideal.  Then I came across this geam, the TekPower TP3016M Switching DC Power Supply.  It is a fairly new product, and can be found on Amazon.

This unit fits my needs perfectly having an output range of 0.3V-12V @ 0-3.75A, and it can even jump up to 30V@ 1.6A.  The other perk was the size, which is about the same as a multi-meter.  The unit is portable, and small enough for me to mount on the wall above the workbench.

I have already used it for a few projects, and it performed flawlessly.  Backlit display is a nice touch, as are the dedicated USB ports for output at 5.1V @ 2.5A.  The only downside to this unit, is that is has no dedicated power button.  To turn it off, you have to remove the power cord.  Not ideal, especially for my plan to wall mount it.  So I set off to MOD the device, to remove this "negative" from the feature list. So I opened the unit up and took a peek inside to see what I could do.

Turns out the is ample room in the upper right of the device for a dedicated power switch.  I found a fairly small rocker switch (pictured below) that could take up to 6A, and began preparations to add it to the power supply. First thing I did was remove the solder from the post on the right of the 2 pin power input/plug.  Once the solder was removed (from only the right post), I bent the post up and away from the circuit board.

With the prep work done, I drilled a starter hole where I decided the switch would go, and then used a small file to shape the opening to fit the switch.

Lowered the switch into place, and then connected it to the power input pin I had previously bent upwards.  The other jumper was then soldered back to the board to complete the connection. It is a pretty tight area to work in, and I also chose to use some heat-shrink tube just in case the contacts got too close.

I plugged the cable back in, and gave it a quick test... WORKS!  Then proceeded to put the unit back together, which was as simple as snapping it back together and screwing in 3 screws.  The unit was then attached to my tool wall, where it is easily accessible to power future projects.

Overall a pretty simple MOD, but made this unit a lot easier to work with.  Here is a video I put together which is more of an overview of the power supply's operation.  Thanks for visiting.

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