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 > DC to DC converter for small electronics

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JoeChiOhki

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Posted: 05/21/21 07:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Trying to locate what to look for in a DC to DC convert that I can add a barrel jack on to power a small NAS device in my camper project.

The NAS takes 12volt stable for input (12v only, not 11-18v of your standard automotive electric system), and I'm trying to figure out what to search to get a unit that takes the stock 12 volt system input and puts out a constant 12volts output at a max of 3-5 amps.

Does anyone know the wording for what I'm trying to find? I need to get the DC to DC converters in place for the network extender and NAS devices so I'm not wasting energy by stepping it up to 110volts via inverter and then back down the low voltage DC that the devices use.


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Posted: 05/21/21 08:13pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I suppose you could use a voltage stabilizer/regulator. I don’t know if the voltage would be constant enough. My guess is that if you are going to have multiple network devices, you’d be better off with AC and a computer lab quality surge suppressor/power strip.

Alternatively, you could have a dedicated 12V circuit for it and use some type of trickle charger that can keep the voltage of the battery relatively constant.


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Posted: 05/21/21 08:23pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

This will do what you want:

Victron DC-DC Converter

otrfun

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Posted: 05/21/21 08:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

This might work.

FWC

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Posted: 05/21/21 08:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Depending on how stable the output needs to be, you may do better with a higher quality DC-DC converter. I use one of the no-name cast aluminum ones with my MPPT solar controller to use it as a DC-DC charger and the '24V' output on that is all over the place depending on load, luckily it doesn't matter in that application.

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Posted: 05/21/21 08:37pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

DC to DC conversion typically uses pulse width modulation with a feed back loop to keep the voltage regulated at a set reference under varying loads. The power is pretty dirty until filtered through some capacitors. It used to be easy to pick up all these components and scale it to your needs, but stores and user knowledge have been dieing out.


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JoeChiOhki

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Posted: 05/21/21 09:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

jimh425 wrote:

I suppose you could use a voltage stabilizer/regulator. I don’t know if the voltage would be constant enough. My guess is that if you are going to have multiple network devices, you’d be better off with AC and a computer lab quality surge suppressor/power strip.

Alternatively, you could have a dedicated 12V circuit for it and use some type of trickle charger that can keep the voltage of the battery relatively constant.


I suspect it needs to be at least as stable as the 12volt leg on a PC power supply, as its doing its own step down internally to create a separate 5volt +/- circuit on the board in the NAS.

My plan is to run appropriate DC-DC units for the two main devices (NAS and Network Extender) as those will see more use in transit than the TV and Roku will, which will just get used on the inverter circuit.


FWC wrote:

This will do what you want:

Victron DC-DC Converter


Thank you, I was having a devil of a time remembering the brand and what these were called from the last time I saw them pop up in regards to flat screen TV discussions back in the past on the forum.

otrfun wrote:

This might work.


That's one of the one I found in my searches, but wasn't certain if that was a stable enough unit.

FWC wrote:

Depending on how stable the output needs to be, you may do better with a higher quality DC-DC converter. I use one of the no-name cast aluminum ones with my MPPT solar controller to use it as a DC-DC charger and the '24V' output on that is all over the place depending on load, luckily it doesn't matter in that application.


Yeah, that's one of the reasons I asked, I remembered there being discussions on this in the past here, but I couldn't remember the key words for the technology used, so wasn't turning up any results.

What I did find I was wary of because its no-name chinese made stuff and those rarely produce a PC power supply grade level of voltage.

Bedlam wrote:

DC to DC conversion typically uses pulse width modulation with a feed back loop to keep the voltage regulated at a set reference under varying loads. The power is pretty dirty until filtered through some capacitors. It used to be easy to pick up all these components and scale it to your needs, but stores and user knowledge have been dieing out.


Yeah, finding any kind of small components is getting troublesome. I couldn't even find the same single pole 12 volt illuminated switches I had bought less than ten years ago (I ended up cannibalizing the originals out of Mr. KIT because I couldn't find anything nowadays half as decent a quality).

JoeChiOhki

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Posted: 05/21/21 10:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So, something I also found during my searching, which might be a viable solution is Pico makes a small DC-DC Converter for UPS type functionality.

https://www.mini-box.com/picoUPS-100-12V........C-micro-UPS-system-battery-backup-system

These are designed for continuous power to electronic devices (it also has a built in charger, but if you never connect the thing so the charger kicks in, it will always just be a converter), which need a consistent 12 volts out for the 12 volt bus rail inside them.

Camper_Jeff_&_Kelli

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Posted: 05/21/21 11:23pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hey Matt, So I take it you're trying to eliminate a 120 volt wall cord and go straight into the 12 volt connector using the 12 volt system of the house which will be 14.4 or 14.6 at times. 13.7 or 13.2 at others. and 12.8, 12.6 and going lower as the evening progresses until the engine or generator start charging. Sounds like the Victron may be the solution you're looking for. Since this NAS is going to be rattling around in the truck camper, are you going to be using SSD drives? Will your NAS accept smaller 2.5 drives? I have a couple LACIE 4T USB drives RAID capable if desired. It's a much simpler solution than a hardwired NAS unit in the TC and easier to take with you if needed. Probably not as capable though as a true NAS designed to serve several work stations but will easily work for one person/computer. I saw the RV GEEKS on YouTube the other night, released a video on their electronic communication and NAS system. They had a NAS with I recall 6 full sized bays but I don't recall if they plugged into 120 volt or adapted to use 12 volt. They have a huge LION battery system so I suspect they used 120 volt and let the unit make it's own clean power. Hope it works out whatever you end up with.

* This post was edited 05/21/21 11:30pm by Camper_Jeff_&_Kelli *


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theoldwizard1

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Posted: 05/22/21 05:28am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

FWC wrote:

This will do what you want:

Victron DC-DC Converter

Output range 10V - 15V.

Do the "double conversion" (DC - AC - DC). Safer !

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