Power Supply Smallest Power Supplies / Power Bricks

lhl

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Powerful PCs are getting smaller and smaller (personally, I'm focusing more and more on NUCs and other sub mini-ITX sized boards/SBCs). Power supplies are becoming more and more of the computer's size - my Hades Canyon power brick is about the same size and weight as the NUC itself...

In any case, I've recently been exploring power supply options and thought it'd be worth kicking off a discussion.

I wanted to start off by pointing to this thread from the beginning of the year on ganging up Xbox One S power supplies. Pretty cool, and you can get genuine ones for about $30 or AliExpress some offbrand ones for considerably cheaper. While an interesting form factor, IMO these really aren't ideal - they are 12V (19V would be better), and aren't all that small (0.4L, 265g).

I found an incredibly tiny (<0.1L, 160g!) 90W power supply, the AcBel AD9009, which can also be found for <$30. If you're running without a GPU, a single unit has you covered, otherwise you could gang two up with a Y-PWR. Pretty sweet.

I also found a tiny 65W power supply, the FINsix DART - it's about 0.055L and 85g, but seems to be largely unavailable - I did find some on eBay for $30. There is a very similar recently Kickstartered (being shipped/delivered, so I'm sure it'll hit store shelves soon) device called the Innergie 55cc/Innergie PowerGear 60C that has USB-C support (but only 60W output) and is about the same weight and volume (but a little more squat). These power supplies seem like the smallest option for most NUC/APUs.

The last thing I was looking at were used Mac Mini power supplies - these are 85W power supplies and go for about $30 or so on eBay. I'll have one arriving in a bit where I can check dimensions, although I really just got it out of curiosity, I doubt it can beat the AcBel, even if you have to factor in the weight of a picoPSU.

Anyway, I did a bunch of research shopping around the other night so I thought I'd share and see what else people have been looking at?

With the DART I picked up, I think I'll have no problem building a <0.5L system that packs a punch when my UDOO Bolt arrives. In the meantime, it should be useful if I decide to grab a Bean Canyon while I wait (will really depend on how overpriced it is).
 
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lhl

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Nov 16, 2015
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Nice work on those Apple power supplies!

I’m still thinking about those AcBel power supplies - you should be able to fashion a very compact dual IEC320 C7 adapter, get up to 180W in probably a super slim 17mm profile, ~0.25L form factor.

For beefier power supplies, I did see that Meanwell sells a 200W (active, 140W passive) cooled open frame EPP-200 that's really small - 0.15L, 190g. The cheapest I could find those were for $38.70 @ Jameco. (You could just put EMI shielding tape/spray on your case I guess? Meanwell's enclosed power supplies are significantly larger.)
 

Thehack

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The RPS-200-12-C is an enclosed version. That series of psu is pretty popular among us 12V guys.

The enclosed supplies are overbuilt industrial bricks. I got one and the quality is legit but it is BIG.
 

CC Ricers

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lhl

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@Thehack I saw your electrical safety post the other day (great!) - curious, in terms of open frame power supplies, is there anything beyond dealing with EMI interference and cooling to deal with (for a future project I may end up playing w/ one of these, the plan would be to mount it in a 3D printed (nylon or PETG) case, maybe with a barrier separating it from the PC components)
 

Thehack

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@Thehack I saw your electrical safety post the other day (great!) - curious, in terms of open frame power supplies, is there anything beyond dealing with EMI interference and cooling to deal with (for a future project I may end up playing w/ one of these, the plan would be to mount it in a 3D printed (nylon or PETG) case, maybe with a barrier separating it from the PC components)

If you are making a plastic enclosure I would make sure everything is secured, and make sure that the chassis also grounded. If the AC power entry is going into the psu only and it is isolated from the case, then the case isn't grounded.

I also recommend the RPS-200-12-C version and just mount it to where you need it to go. That said, I'll be looking to work on designing a new standard 12V psu for the community later this year.
 
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