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Thread: ATX/PC Power supply vs Meanwell PSU

  1. #1

    Default ATX/PC Power supply vs Meanwell PSU

    I wonder, whats the pro-cons for both types of cheap PSU if we just power-up the mobile rig (thats only TX the VFH and UHF only), example TYT TH-7800/ Yaesu FH-8800..

    and which one is better for long-term? and how long the duration that "wont" damage your rig?

    Sent from my SM-N980F using Tapatalk

  2. #2
    Super Moderator 5B4AJB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Meneou, Cyprus


    They look like they use the same kind of technology.

    A P.C. power supply may be more inclined to have a better Voltage tolerance, however, switch-mode type supplies always have some kind of switching noise. This may be acceptable for a VHF/UHF transceiver because the switching frequency is comparatively low, but for H.F. the harmonics may be (will be) too much and drown the receiver in noise.

    An "old fashioned" linear type power supply with a huge, heavy, transformer is best for radio as they often have barely measurable noise.

    The PSU is an often overlooked part of the shack and I would not recommend skimping on a big one. I bought a 12V 40A supply (discontinued) decades ago and it still works beautifully. It can power the whole shack at once, HF, VHF, and packet, plus lights and anything else.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Gillingham, Kent, UK


    Some of the PC power supplies have limited Amps on the 12V rail. It will be listed on the side of the power supply. Check how many Amps your transceiver will draw on high power.
    MB6IGK Fusion WiRES-X Digital Gateway on 434.5125 MHz in Gillingham, Kent, UK

  4. #4
    gnuuser's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2020
    NW Pa,USA


    to start with yes you can convert a computer psu for use with ham radios But you have to modify them a little so they output 13.5 volts that your radio wants.
    most radios will run on 12 volts but your transmitter output will be diminished a little.
    choosing a psu to convert requires a little study,
    at minimum you want a 300 to 400 watt psu. you have to add a 5 ohm 5 watt resister to one of the 5 volt lines to ground, you need to find the power good wire and add a switch to it , and adjust the stage 1 pot inside to bring the voltage up to 13.5 volts.

    there are plenty of youtube videos and other sites with directions to do this.

    a 400 watt psu stepped up to 13.5 volt is producing 29.62 amps plenty of power to run the radio
    providing you use the proper fuse for the radio (and that is the important thing) there is no danger of damaging your radio

    I have 2 converted supplies in my shack in use all the time, power monitoring with a oscope shows they are more stable than commercial 12 volt supplies for mobile equipment
    I chose the psu's with the large "quiet" fans

    quite often you can pick up old computers with intact psu's for nothing if you know when people are getting rid of them!

    there are power supplies out there with a lot more wattage that can be converted for running more than one radio. but if you are just running one or two your not drawing a lot of power!
    check your radios for their current requirements on high power and make your decision based on that.
    Last edited by gnuuser; Tue 6th Oct 2020 at 01:02.
    too much blood in my caffeine system.

  5. #5


    I've never understood the philosophy behind spending several hundred dollars (or more) on a good radio and then powering or programming it with the cheapest, poorest quality power supply or software available.

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