3.5inch Hard Drive motor spinning it with desktop powersupply

Old 08-30-22, 11:09 PM
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3.5inch Hard Drive motor spinning it with desktop powersupply

Hi guys, I've got several old hard drives and just for fun I opened it up. Now I want to just power the HDD so I can see the motor and disks spinning. So I bought one of those benchtop power supplies and was trying to somehow power 12v (as I read somewhere on the internet) to the HDD but it didn't quite spin up. Tweaked the Amp current knob and I think I burnt something on the HDD.

So I'd like to ask you experts if anyone has done this before and just how you'd connect it all up.

Old 08-31-22, 06:08 AM
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Hard drives use +5V & +12V. The 12V powers the motor, and the 5V the controller (electronics). It depends on the drive, but many require both 5 & 12 to spin up the motor. The reason is that the controller controls the operation of the motor as well as the heads, etc.
Old 08-31-22, 06:20 AM
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Don't forget that a hard drive is a very high precision piece of equipment. The motor doesn't just "run". Its rotation is precisely controlled so those microscopic one's and zero's can be read and written. Some drives won't spin even when properly powered. This is to save the life of the drive when it's not in use. It may require the proper commands to wake the drive up and have it spin the platters up to speed.
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Old 09-01-22, 01:30 AM
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Lets assume your hard drives are SATA. Depending if you want to connect using USB 3.0 or USB-C.

I have one of each for my laptops:

SATA to USB 3.0 Adapter

SATA to USB C Adapter

If you are connecting a 3.5, you will need to plug in the power supply that comes with it.
If you are connecting 2.5, you will NOT need the power supply.

Also the power supply has to be 12V and 2A. The reason why yours did not spin up, you may want to check the amp on the power supply.

When I did this years ago, the hard drive collected dust very fast in attempt to fix it. If you burned the hard drive board, that is another story. You will need to buy a replacement board.

The items above can also be used when you travel and bring along your hard drives for large storage capacity.

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