Cheap & Powerful Power Supply

1. Presentation

You often need to power the boards and the various devices on your bench. For that, you need a simple, cheap, but powerful power supply able to provide various voltages up to some few amperes. The best way is to make a switching power supply with a specific integrated circuit. You can draw the PCB, add a transformer and few components and you will get it. But a cheaper solution exists...

Simply go to and search for any switching regulator, for example "LM2596" device. You will get hundred of results and particularly some cheap boards built with this device. Various models are available. I got the following one for some few USD.

Voltage and current limitations are set thanks to the display from 1.2 to 37 volts and 0 to 3 amps.

2. Assembly

I added some few components, mostly retrieved from electronics material and old projects.

Few hours later, the wiring was finished.


...and finally installed on my bench.


Here is a solution to quickly build a very nice power supply. Thanks to many recovered parts (transformer, case, wiring, switch...), this one only costed about 20USD. That's great, isn't it?!