Author Topic: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?  (Read 22832 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline rwgast_lowlevellogicdesin

  • Frequent Contributor
  • **
  • Posts: 593
  • Country: us
    • LowLevel-LogicDesign
Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« on: June 18, 2013, 03:48:37 am »
Recently I have been doing experiments that need a bit of umphhh....  Having a higher power adjustable linear supply would be very beneficial! Ive been looking at some supplys like these

http://www.ebay.com/itm/X5045-Pro-30V-5A-Digital-DC-Power-Supply-Precision-Variable-Adjustable-/370586966860?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item5648b45b4c

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-DC-Power-Supply-30V-5A-Precision-Variable-Adjustable-Lab-Grade-/140675103345?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item20c0e3ba71

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Precision-Variable-0-30V-5A-DC-Power-Supply-USA-Product-/280949385169?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4169e367d1

There all current/voltage adjustable under $100 with US shippers... Im not looking to run precision analog stuff off them, mostly bigger load items like motors, heating elements etc...  and if quiet maybe low speed digital or imprecise analog stuff.... I think im more worried about these supplys blowing up than being noisy!

What do you guys think of equipment like this?


Offline Bored@Work

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3932
  • Country: 00
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2013, 03:58:28 am »
Some are okish, but far from great,  for the money you pay, others are absolute crap. The problem: They all look more or less the same from the outside, but you can't judge them from the outside, they are essentially grab bags.
I delete PMs unread. If you have something to say, say it in public.
For all else: Profile->[Modify Profile]Buddies/Ignore List->Edit Ignore List
 

Offline kerrinal

  • Contributor
  • Posts: 16
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2013, 04:04:30 am »
I think the description will help you much.If the seller is a fake or the production is a counterfeit.You can live the seller a negative feedback and hold the paypal fee.
 

Offline Smokey

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1630
  • Country: us
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2013, 04:43:57 am »
Check out the Chinese dual supplies that are rebadged by a dozen different companies like this:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA1PK0JM2440
I scored two on the ebay for 100USD each.  They are killer since you can put the independent outputs in parallel or series for 60V at 5A or 30V at 10A.  the ones I got were  pretty beat up looking to start with and I beat them up more and they are still going strong.   Nothing too precise but not bad for cheap work horse supplies.
I always wonder who the OEM is for these things.  They all seem to have a big oval power button in the bottom left that is usually green or orange.
 

Offline jebcom

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 81
  • Country: us
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2013, 05:06:12 am »
I did a bit of online research on this several months ago. I wanted a 3A bench supply because sometimes I have the need for 2.5 A range. I learned that many of these look similar on the outside but they do come from several different manufacturers, and some are very bad. The Mastech seemed to have better reviews than most others, but they are far from the cheapest. I decided to go with the Mastech HY3005D, which has a rating of 5A. I figured I could trust it for 3A. I got mine new for about $100 from a California dealer on eBay, and it has been just fine. Not perfect, but not awful for a low-cost Chinese unit. The power transformer is a toroid with several secondary windings, and as I adjust through the voltage range, I think there are 7 ranges of relay clicks, to minimize drop across the output drivers. I  have run it at 5A output for a brief test, but I trust it at 3A. Internally, construction and workmanship is OK; about what I expected. I'm satisfied.

This is the current listing from that dealer for the model that I bought:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mastech-HY3005D-30V-5A-Single-Output-Linear-DC-Power-Supply-Lab-Variable-NEW-/121086078044?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1c314aec5c
 

Offline LaurenceW

  • Frequent Contributor
  • **
  • Posts: 258
  • Country: gb
    • It's Time, Jim, but not as we know it
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2013, 04:30:49 pm »
RWGAST, it's difficult to give you a simple yes/no answer to your question "Are these cheap power supplies worth the money?" since i don't know how much you pay for your money!

Personally - i would not trust these supplies, but i am quite willing to accept that my sceptism/caution may be over done. You must decide.

As is noted elsewhere (and I concur), you cannot tell the quality of these supplies from the outside. Many fair and appalling supplies will even use apparently the same outer front panel plastic moulding, but have radically differing quality interiors. This will even change over time from teh same supplier, as they swap and change their own component suppliers.

Power supplies can fail in a number of exciting ways. The bigger the supply, the more potential excitement! Often, the main output transistors will go short circuit, so dumping maybe 40V DC at up to 8 amps across your load. If that load is only a heater or motor, it might even survive that. An Ipod will not, however!!

At the end of the day, you do get what you pay for. Cheap price will invariably mean cheap quality components and/or construction.  You might getter better value and more reliable results from a branded second hand power supply? eBay is awash with those.
If you don't measure, you don't get.
 

Offline ignator

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 205
  • Country: us
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #6 on: June 18, 2013, 06:54:29 pm »
I purchased the 60V 5A version of this 6 months ago.  Any adjustable supply can fail in output short circuit.  If it's that critical you need a separate over voltage crow bar circuit.
For the money, they do what you need for the hobby.
My ONLY complaint is there is NO documentation of any kind of the inner workings.  And I doubt if there are too many serviceable components.  I have not opened mine (I bet that $17K agilent spectrum analyzer Dave did a tear down on is FUBAR), but I would guess the digital meters are integrated into the voltage reference to drive the switching power circuits.  And there are no off the shelf components as these would be proprietary. If it ever fails, I would just buy another one.
It's $63, you can buy a used, lab grade supply that's how old?  And has the same guarantee.
 

Offline edavid

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3012
  • Country: us
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #7 on: June 18, 2013, 07:07:58 pm »
I did a bit of online research on this several months ago. I wanted a 3A bench supply because sometimes I have the need for 2.5 A range. I learned that many of these look similar on the outside but they do come from several different manufacturers, and some are very bad. The Mastech seemed to have better reviews than most others, but they are far from the cheapest. I decided to go with the Mastech HY3005D, which has a rating of 5A. I figured I could trust it for 3A. I got mine new for about $100 from a California dealer on eBay, and it has been just fine. Not perfect, but not awful for a low-cost Chinese unit. The power transformer is a toroid with several secondary windings, and as I adjust through the voltage range, I think there are 7 ranges of relay clicks, to minimize drop across the output drivers. I  have run it at 5A output for a brief test, but I trust it at 3A. Internally, construction and workmanship is OK; about what I expected. I'm satisfied.

This is the current listing from that dealer for the model that I bought:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mastech-HY3005D-30V-5A-Single-Output-Linear-DC-Power-Supply-Lab-Variable-NEW-/121086078044?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1c314aec5c

That one seems overpriced to me... for the same price, you could buy the Korad programmable supply:  http://www.ebay.com/itm/110888868115
 

Offline edavid

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3012
  • Country: us
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #8 on: June 18, 2013, 07:09:10 pm »
I purchased the 60V 5A version of this 6 months ago.  Any adjustable supply can fail in output short circuit.  If it's that critical you need a separate over voltage crow bar circuit.
For the money, they do what you need for the hobby.
My ONLY complaint is there is NO documentation of any kind of the inner workings.  And I doubt if there are too many serviceable components.  I have not opened mine (I bet that $17K agilent spectrum analyzer Dave did a tear down on is FUBAR), but I would guess the digital meters are integrated into the voltage reference to drive the switching power circuits.  And there are no off the shelf components as these would be proprietary. If it ever fails, I would just buy another one.
It's $63, you can buy a used, lab grade supply that's how old?  And has the same guarantee.

I think you are mistaken, it's probably a simple linear supply using very common parts.
 

Offline bilko

  • Frequent Contributor
  • **
  • Posts: 405
  • Country: 00
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2013, 10:08:09 pm »
Here's the schematic for the Mastech 3005D. Most of the similar PSU's will be variations with some components added/snipped

 
The following users thanked this post: debininja

Offline calmtron

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 62
  • Country: se
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2013, 11:26:46 pm »
A couple of internal shots of my SAKO SK1731SL5A, which is similar to the ones mentioned (the schematic is very similar to the Mastech 3005D).
Build quality is so-so, but it does provide the specified power and hasn't failed yet (3 years old or so). I wouldn't trust the specs for load/line regulation etc though.

Sorry about the PotatoCam shots  :-[
 

Online nctnico

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 19974
  • Country: nl
    • NCT Developments
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #11 on: June 19, 2013, 12:44:14 am »
Did you look at this one?
http://www.ebay.com/itm/ITech-IT6720-Programmable-DC-power-supply-60V-5A-100W-/221132853843
60V may be handy every now and then. They are also available in 36V versions (as usual under several brands).
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline edavid

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3012
  • Country: us
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #12 on: June 19, 2013, 12:50:36 am »
Did you look at this one?
http://www.ebay.com/itm/ITech-IT6720-Programmable-DC-power-supply-60V-5A-100W-/221132853843
60V may be handy every now and then. They are also available in 36V versions (as usual under several brands).

Way overpriced at $310!
 

Offline iloveelectronics

  • Frequent Contributor
  • **
  • Posts: 937
  • Country: hk
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #13 on: June 19, 2013, 12:58:28 am »
Did you look at this one?
http://www.ebay.com/itm/ITech-IT6720-Programmable-DC-power-supply-60V-5A-100W-/221132853843
60V may be handy every now and then. They are also available in 36V versions (as usual under several brands).

Way overpriced at $310!

ITech is a BK Precision company, so you are paying partly for the brand name there. You can't compare it (price-wise) directly with a no-name Chinese PSU.
My email address: franky @ 99centHobbies . com
My eBay store: http://stores.ebay.com/99centhobbies
 

Offline jebcom

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 81
  • Country: us
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #14 on: June 19, 2013, 03:02:13 am »
Quote
That one seems overpriced to me... for the same price, you could buy the Korad programmable supply:  http://www.ebay.com/itm/110888868115
Maybe; if you need a cheap programmable supply. But I try to operate on the Keep-it-Simple principle, so something that I have a chance of repairing is more valuable to me. I don't remember if I saw any reviews on that model, but for this purchase, I avoided anything that was not controlled by potentiometers.

However, if this model has some positive reviews for quality and reliability, then it might fall into my general intention on this unit; that is to spend a bit more money than the dirt-cheapest in order to get something that works.

 

Offline ignator

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 205
  • Country: us
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #15 on: June 19, 2013, 04:21:28 am »
I think you are mistaken, it's probably a simple linear supply using very common parts.
You are correct.  Qty. 4 TO-3 output transistors that appear wired in parallel. These are mounted to a 2mm thick aluminum plate, with cooling fan.
Also all through hole parts. 3 PWB assemblies.  Front panel must be using some COTs LED panel meters.
Pretty boring implementation.  But these have been in production for a long time, and I would assume the bugs have been worked out.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2013, 05:00:03 am by ignator »
 

Online nctnico

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 19974
  • Country: nl
    • NCT Developments
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #16 on: June 19, 2013, 04:42:05 pm »
Did you look at this one?
http://www.ebay.com/itm/ITech-IT6720-Programmable-DC-power-supply-60V-5A-100W-/221132853843
60V may be handy every now and then. They are also available in 36V versions (as usual under several brands).

Way overpriced at $310!
Not really. Its a switching PSU which can deliver a lot of current at low voltages and high voltages (with less current). And its lightweight and small. IIRC Mike (mikeselectricstuff) did a teardown of it.
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline electronupdate

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 70
  • Country: ca
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #17 on: June 19, 2013, 08:34:44 pm »
A tear down and review video of the 3rd supply (GQ-305)  you mention is here:





The only real negative (other than very modest quality construction) is that the output can glitch rather badly when the supply is turned off.




Recently I have been doing experiments that need a bit of umphhh....  Having a higher power adjustable linear supply would be very beneficial! Ive been looking at some supplys like these

http://www.ebay.com/itm/X5045-Pro-30V-5A-Digital-DC-Power-Supply-Precision-Variable-Adjustable-/370586966860?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item5648b45b4c

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-DC-Power-Supply-30V-5A-Precision-Variable-Adjustable-Lab-Grade-/140675103345?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item20c0e3ba71

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Precision-Variable-0-30V-5A-DC-Power-Supply-USA-Product-/280949385169?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4169e367d1

There all current/voltage adjustable under $100 with US shippers... Im not looking to run precision analog stuff off them, mostly bigger load items like motors, heating elements etc...  and if quiet maybe low speed digital or imprecise analog stuff.... I think im more worried about these supplys blowing up than being noisy!

What do you guys think of equipment like this?
 

Offline Smokey

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1630
  • Country: us
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #18 on: June 20, 2013, 09:50:06 pm »
What are you doing turning it off?  Quit taking breaks and get back in the lab!!!!
 

Oracle

  • Guest
Re: Are cheap ebay power supply worth the money?
« Reply #19 on: June 21, 2013, 09:05:40 am »
In my opinion, you should save money until you can get something better than this... It's only a matter of time and you will get what you want: I saved up money at 200 eur/month, and after 1 year i got: 1.agilent PSU (u8002A) 2. Power meter (HM8115-2), 3. capacitance meter U1701B 4. fluke 287 5.oscilloscope hp54600B 6. another bit of money saved (which i won't use for test gear)
 


Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo
Smf