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Best Hobbyist Benchtop Power Supply

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Wow! Looks like you’re on the edge of finishing your project, finally. Now all you need is just a power source to have a check on your circuit systems. But what’s this!? Seems your benchtop power supply just gave up on putting enough power to the circuits.

But there’s no way you can keep it pending there. After all, that’s your hours of labor, or maybe of days. Now just imagine, what if you had the best hobbyist benchtop power supply right on your desk? Sounds perfect, doesn’t it?

Come on, mate! You’re not too late yet. I’ll get you a list of the best hobbyist benchtop power supplies to have your best pick.

Hobbyist Benchtop Power Supply Comparison 2020

Last update on 2020-11-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Benefits of Hobbyist Benchtop Power Supply

Benefits of Hobbyist Benchtop Power Supply

I know you’re not in the mood to waste your money this time. So, you better know how things are going to turn into your favor when you grab the right hobbyist benchtop power supply.

Testing and Powering Up the Circuits

When it comes to playing with the circuits, I don’t know how many tools can be as effective as a benchtop power supply.

When you’re about to complete your projects, nothing can be more useful than this tech piece for testing and powering up the circuits.

Speeding Up of the Project

You can’t spend all your time on one project only. So, if you don’t want to waste your time anymore and want to give the finishing touch right away, a benchtop power supply will speed things up a bit for you. As a quicker tech, it won’t take much of a time to get things done.

Boosts Failing Devices

Just in case any project you’re dealing with is failing, due to lack of enough power, the benchtop power supply can get it back to life. But that is only when it has issues with power.

Best Hobbyist Benchtop Power Supply Review 2020

Choosing the right thing is comparatively easier when you’re choosing from limited options. So, I’ve tried to limit your options with the finest 5 hobbyist benchtop power supplies. Now all you need is just make a pick.

Tekpower TP3005T

Tekpower TP3005T

When it comes to perfecting a project, there’s no way you can pull that off with a power supply that can’t get you a consistent performance. But have you got your one?

If you haven’t, then I don’t think you’ll find too many great options like TP3005T from Tekpower. This son of a gun got tons feature in its arsenal, just for you!

Worrying about ending up with a DC-regulated power supply that offers nothing but a low precision level? Do yourself a favor. Get a dustbin and throw all your worries over there. Because the TP3005T is here to back you up.

It’s going to keep the precision level high with its DC Voltage Output of 0.0 – 30.0Volt and DC Current Output of 0.00 – 5.00 Ampere.

Now, dealing with amplifiers will be easier for you than ever with this linear power supply. To give your tasks a convenient edge, it comes with two different operational modes – constant current and constant voltage. Congrats! Now, you’re in complete control over the project.

Moreover, its OCP (Over Current Protection) feature maximizes safety by shutting off the power immediately. It happens when your adjusted current value overtakes the preset OCP value.

But what else has made it another cool tech piece, you may ask. Well, it’s the temperature-sensing feature. For ensuring the overheat protection, the automated cooling fan activates itself when the heat level goes higher than a certain threshold.

This fan comes with variable speed that is dependent on the output power.
With the resolution of 10mV/1mA, you’ll find the accuracy level higher than any of the regular power supplies you’ve dealt with earlier.

If the reverse polarity is your kryptonite in a power supply, then it’s time to kick that out from your list with the Reverse Current-Protection Diode.

PROS

  • Comes with overvoltage protection
  • Has a higher level of accuracy
  • Protection against excessive heat
  • Allows to have complete control
  • Helps in avoiding reverse polarity

CONS

  • Don’t have External Communication Ports for the PC

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Siglent Technologies SPD3303X-E

Siglent Technologies SPD3303X-E

Looking for a dependable name that can satisfy your circuit’s power cravings? Well, then you can totally rely on the SPD3303X-E from Siglent Technologies with closed eyes.

At first, let’s check out the part you’re looking for, I mean the outputs. To get you the stunning performance, it comes with 3 different outputs – two 32V/3.2A along with one 2.5V/3.3V/5V/3.2A × 1. These three independent channels have made it simply a powerhouse for you with 220 watts in total.

To deal with all the types of applications you’re looking forward to, the SPD3303X-E has 3 types on the output modes.

One of them is the independent mode, the next one is the series mode (60-V max), and last but not the least, you’ll get the parallel mode (6.4-A max). Do you still think you have anything to worry about controls? I don’t think so.

Thinking about keeping it cool and noise-free? Just let the temperature-controlled fan deal with it. But what else is the twist in this story? It’s the timer.

With it, you can configure a table of voltages and current over time. When you test your equipment, this feature is going to blow your mind.

You probably have heard of power supplies that need separate software for what you need to spend some extra bucks.

But you can count this one out of that list as it comes with the Free PC software. You can also use remote programming on it and even a LabView driver too.

Thanks to the mechanical switch, you’ll get a super-fast boot-up. The 4.3″ TFT-LCD color display comes in a divided pattern. This means from now on, you can check the set points on the top of the screen and output at the bottom.

PROS

  • Display with a detailed operational view
  • Accessibility of remote programming
  • Timing feature for extra ease
  • Cool and noise-free
  • Different output modes for better performance

CONS

  • Display brightness can’t be controlled

B&K Precision 1687B

B&K Precision 1687B

Bored of dealing with linear power supplies when all you need is a switching one? Then, it’s your time to have that wish fulfilled. Check out the amazing 1687B from B&K Precision, the tech you’re craving for.

So, you’re looking for something that not only can power your techs but also test them? Well, in that case, as a single-output unit, 1687B can surely be your next power source with the capacity to get you DC voltage and current constantly.

Would you like to know the output limits? Well, it comes with Variable Output Voltage that ranges from 1-36V. Plus, the Variable Output Current you’re going to get will range between 0 – 10 Ampere.

I don’t think you’re having any problem in assuming how perfectly it can power up any of your electronic devices.

Which one do you prefer the most anyway – fine adjustment or the coarse one? Don’t worry, the 1687B has got your back as it can deal with both. The credit goes to its encoder control knobs.

The makers of this bench power supply can understand your love for new experiments. So, they made the PSU (Power Supply Unit) in a way where you alter the voltage and current as per your application.

If you need to have a peek over the current and voltage reading, its LED screen will show you everything clear as a day.

Can you ensure that you won’t need the same output setting on your next techs? You can’t. So, 1687B, with its internal memory, will save up to three of those settings in case you need to run them again.

And who says you need to use your hands to control it. Simply use the remote control settings and Voila! The whole benchtop power supply will obey your commands.

All you have to do is just connect it to your PC. But if you want to go analog, then the analog remote-control terminal will pull that off on your behalf.

As for overheating, you don’t have to worry about that bummer as well. The power supply has got a built-in cooling fan in it that keeps it cool all the time with its three-speed settings.

Its three speeds are going to keep it cool as a breeze. Worrying about overvoltage and overcurrent protection? Don’t, because 1687B got that covered too.

PROS

  • Easy to control and adjust the output
  • Protects against overheating, overvoltage, and overcurrent
  • Internal memory for saving output settings
  • Can be controlled remotely
  • Comes with a compact design

CONS

  • The transient response time should’ve been lower

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KORAD KD3005D

KORAD KD3005D

Yeah, I’m agreeing with you completely. After all, what else will you call a power supply but junk, if it can’t get your circuit enough power?

KORAD Technology doesn’t want you to grab another junk. So, they’ve brought the KD3005D just to change your thoughts on benchtop power supplies.

If you’re a fan of robustness, then you’re simply going to love this one. Doesn’t matter how much power your circuits are going to need, this bad boy can easily keep up with them.

Thanks to its variable output voltage of 0-30 Volts and variable output current of 0-5 Ampere for keeping that bar high.

Maybe you’ve seen linear power supplies with noise and ripples only. But the KD3005D doesn’t walk on that road.

It has been designed in a way that when you’re fixing up your circuits, it won’t cause you any trouble, not even with the sound or ripple.

Waiting for the Wow-Factor? Well, you can switch its input power supply within a snap, and that too within the range of 110 to 220 Volts.

But that’s not the end; the automatic switching makes it easy to switch between mA and A display as well, just the way you like it.

Team KORAD understands that you’re expecting a power supply, not an oven. So, to keep the heat down, they’ve included the intelligent temperature-controlled fan. It’ll not only keep things cool but also prolong the equipment’s life.

To keep its controlling super easy, KD3005D comes with knobs for both coarse and fine adjustments. And yes, it has the knob lock function too. Moreover, the circuit protection within saves it from overload and short circuit.

PROS

  • Easy to adjust and control
  • Prevents the overheating problem
  • Comes with knob lock function
  • Keeps the noise and ripple low
  • Easy switching from mA to A display

CONS

  • User manual could’ve been clearer

Rigol DP832

Rigol DP832

“Look speaks a lot” – that’s probably true even for tech pieces like Rigol DP832. Once you look at it, you’ll easily understand that a lot is going on here.

After all, the road of being a superior benchtop power supply is not that easy, but DP832 has made it. You’ll agree on that too once you check this bad boy out.

The makers know what you’re looking for in your next power supply. That’s why they’ve enriched the DP832 with tons of useful features. It all starts with the 3 output channels that can deliver you a total power of 196 W.

Two of these channels come with the voltage range of 0-30 Volt/3 Ampere and one of them with 5 Volt/3 Ampere.

Now getting all your complicated projects powered up is nothing but easy as locking your door. This one doesn’t even let the noise go over the boundary, and the same goes for ripple too.

The days of sticking to the power supply for the whole time are over now. So, if you want to have it remotely controlled, then with the SCPI commands, you can do that too.

All you need is just utilize any of the interfaces from USB, LAN, or GPIB (optional) to pull that off.
But that’s not what I call the game changer in this one.

It’s the trigger output that I’m pretty fond of. When you check out the rear panel, you’ll see a digital I/O interface.

This one supports both trigger input and output. As the 4-data lines are independent mutually, you can use them as trigger input or output line.

The one feature that’ll pull down your hassles from top to right at the bottom is its programmable timer. You can set the current and voltage setting with the timer control.

Don’t feel amazed yet, there’s more to it! You can set up 100 settings and can activate them just the way you like it.

PROS

  • Has a convenient user interface
  • Comes with multiple output channels
  • Lowers the noise and ripple
  • Has the programmable timer
  • Can be controlled remotely

CONS

  • The software update is a little expensive

Things to Consider Before Buying Benchtop Power Supply

Well, one wrong move is enough to toast the circuit of your equipment. So, the game is not over until you’re bringing the right one in.

But how are you going to get your next best one? Don’t have any idea? Okay, then just focus on these aspects if you don’t want to end up with the wrong power supply.

Number of Channels

Number of Channels

You’re the master here. So, it all depends on you. It’s on you to decide what number of channels will get you the best performance.

I’m not saying that sticking to one is anything bad. Usually, a power supply with dual output channels is more preferred and easy to work with. So, listen to your need on this one.

Maximum Current and Voltage

Not all of your projects are going to need the same level of power output. So, if you don’t want to waste some bucks on a new one, then pick a power supply that can deliver the maximum current and voltage limit as you need.

Linear or Switched

If you’re more into heavier usage, then the linear power supply is going to the best one here. But as a hobbyist, if you need nothing extra-ordinary, then go for the switching one as they are more light and easy to use.

Ripple and Noise Level

One of the worst enemies of concentration is noise. So, if you really don’t want that to get into your work, then you better pick one that is low on noise.

The same goes for the ripple. If you’re confused about whether the one you’re seeing can keep it low or not, then check out the reviews for it.

Ease of Usage

Do you want to get pissed while powering your circuits? Then just don’t pick a power supply that has a complicated usage process. Also, check the boot-up time, in case you don’t want to wait for too long.

Protection Against Overheating

Protection Against Overheating

If it’s not your first benchtop power supply, then you already know how an overheating problem can ruin the piece. So, check out if the one you’re choosing has the mechanism to deal with it or not.

Display

There’s no way for you to get the perfect reading if the display you’re looking at can’t show you the numbers clearly. That’s why you need to make sure if you’re getting all the readings properly there or not.

Portability

When you’re a hobbyist, you obviously will focus mostly on having something compact and easy to use. So, check out if your one is perfectly portable or not. You’re not planning to fix that up permanently to your table, I believe.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is choosing a switching power supply better when it comes to low noise?

The linear one will be better here if you really don’t want that noise to piss you off. In comparison to the linear one, the switching power supplies are comparatively louder.

What are the major problems with linear power supplies?

It’s not the performance where it lacks; in fact, linear ones are better in this aspect. But I can’t say the same when it comes to size and high heat loss. In this race, switching one is a step ahead.

Is interchanging cables okay between power supplies?

Most likely, yes, but you need to be sure about the rating before doing that. Using underrated cables is a bad idea because there’s a possibility of fire and there can be other damages too.

How beneficial are automated cooling fans are for the power supply?

Automated cooling fans make it easier for the power supply to cool down. Once it crosses a certain heat level, the fan gets started or adjusted with speed to take it down.

What kind of power supplies is good for dealing with overload?

Some of the power supplies come with circuit protection to deal with the overload. Pick them if you think there’s a possibility.

Final Words

So, you’ve got the best hobbyist benchtop power supply finally? Well, I guess you have as the ones you see here are nothing but the best. Now, it’s your turn to grab your right one and give all your projects the perfect finishing, once and for all.

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