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Old May 13, 2010, 03:18 PM
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Default Running 12v lights/leds on desk, how to?

Hey guys, just wondering if any of you have found an ingenious device to allow us to run say, pc modders cold cathodes or led strips as back/under glow on our desks.
Looking for something with a switch preferably. Most of the 120v > 12v adapters I have been seeing would require a ton of messing around to get the functionality I am looking for, so here's hoping someone has found an awesome solution! Otherwise I guess I could always slim down an old PSU and mount it on my desk somewhere hahah.
Thanks guys!
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Old May 13, 2010, 04:25 PM
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Just run a power line off your computer to do it?
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Old May 13, 2010, 04:40 PM
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You need a power supply. Scavenge one, build your own, or poach a line from a PC. There's no other way to do it. It's impossible to run 12VDC devices directly off of 120VAC power.
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Old May 13, 2010, 04:46 PM
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You need to use a power supply or a universal adapter. You could run an extension line (some newer mobos come with a backplate that gives you a molex connection ouside of your pc with the other side connected to your power supply) or you could use one of those universal adapters. I've done this with extra fans, i just clicked the adjustable output voltage until i found a voltage my fans were effective but quiet and you could do the same. I recommend any of the rewiring of the universal adapter you do it unplugged from the wall, use solder and cover all exposed connections with electrical tape.
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Old May 13, 2010, 05:40 PM
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This might do the trick for you.

Newegg.ca - OKGEAR PA-AD-UL 12V/5V AC/DC Power adapter w/ 4pin molex connector
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Old May 13, 2010, 05:44 PM
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Don't cold cathodes run off AC? I think you could pull it off with that.

I remember seeing a keyboard mod where they took out the numlock/scrollock LEDs and hooked them up to LED strips for a desk light.
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Old May 13, 2010, 05:47 PM
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The cold cathodes you buy for PCs work off of DC from your PC power supply. I'd also suspect the cathodes sold for automotive bling use would run off of DC as well.
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Old May 13, 2010, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ilya View Post
Don't cold cathodes run off AC? I think you could pull it off with that.

I remember seeing a keyboard mod where they took out the numlock/scrollock LEDs and hooked them up to LED strips for a desk light.
The bulbs run off AC power, but that is provided by an inverter which itself uses DC power. I doubt you'd be able to run cathode bulbs straight off mains power since despite the fact that it's AC, it's also a completely different voltage and most likely a different frequency as well compared to what the inverter produces. At the very least you'd need some kind of device to transform the AC power into something the bulbs can run off, and at that point you may as well just use a power supply to power the thing anyway.
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Old May 14, 2010, 08:31 AM
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Thanks a lot for your ideas guys! Also, for the warnings. Always good to see people being careful around power, heh.
I work in DC so I have 12v sources out the yinger, but I hardly ever get into the AC side(I do large UPS back up systems for data centers and such, think, 600v DC). Was just wondering if there were any smaller systems, but I'll have to mod out an old PS, it's just easier and cheaper.
Thanks for the newegg link as well, didn't know they sold them so tiny!
Thanks a lot guys!
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