[simple question] Turn wires into a plug?

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Old 12-21-09, 11:12 AM
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[simple question] Turn wires into a plug?

Hi! I Google'd "electrical forum" and this was the second hit. And the name seems to fit: do-it-yourself.

I say this because my question doesn't really fit in with other people's topics too well. I'm not wiring a house. I'm just trying to get my amplifier powered.

So, I bought an amplifier on eBay (big surprise) and it came with a power cable:



That's where it plugs in. If you can't read it, it says DC12V2A. And let's just say that's the most technical information I have on it, lol. But, for some reason, the other end is just wire:



And there's the problem. I tried searching for what to call this thing (whatever I need), but I had no luck. I'm tempted to just plug those into the wall outlet (just to see if it will turn on!), but it took like 3 weeks to ship from China so I don't want to blow it up (or kill myself in the process).

So, right. How can I turn those wires into something that will plug into the outlet, safely? No need to spend a lot of time, I mean, if someone can just give me the name of the thing I need? I'm all for DIY stuff, though, so aluminum foil/bobby pin-solutions are accepted.

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 12-21-09, 11:23 AM
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If you just plug the wires into the wall you will destroy your amplifier!!! DO NOT DO IT!!!!

What you need is a 12 volt transformer that supplies at least 2 amps (24VA) Smiler to this: http://ep.yimg.com/ca/I/spytown_2081_45148867 Just google 12 volt transformer.

Be sure when you hook it up you have your polarity correct. The outside of the plug to the amp needs to be the negative and inside positive.
 
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Old 12-21-09, 11:25 AM
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This is not made to be used on AC power like you would find in a regular electrical receptacle. This is made to be used either in a car or with the use of a step-down power supply similar to a laptop.

Do not attempt to use this without the proper power supply.
 
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Old 12-21-09, 11:53 AM
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Got it. Won't be plugging it into the wall.

Yeah, now that I think about it, I think the picture on the description @ eBay was inside a car...

OK, transformer. Would it be bad if I bought one that was more than 24VA/watts? I've found some that are 40W and 60W?

Inside positive / outside negative: wee bit confused here. Where does this a role? And I did a quick search and it sounds like it doesn't matter which end is positive/negative when it's black/white?

I mean, one is full black and the other is black with a white stripe?

Thanks for the replies, uber-appreciated!

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 12-21-09, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post
OK, transformer. Would it be bad if I bought one that was more than 24VA/watts? I've found some that are 40W and 60W?
Usually that is not a problem. You also need to make sure that you're buying a 120V AC to 12V DC power supply, preferably voltage regulated. A simple transformer will not work.

A surplus computer supply will do the trick if you happen to have one of those around. You would use one set of the the black and yellow wires to get 12V DC.

Inside positive / outside negative: wee bit confused here. Where does this a role? And I did a quick search and it sounds like it doesn't matter which end is positive/negative when it's black/white?
If you pull the plug out of the back of the unit, you'll see it has an inner metal surface and an outer metal surface on the shaft of the plug. Each of those surfaces connects to one of the wires. Once you get your power supply, it is important that the negative (-) terminal on the power supply connects to the wire for the outer surface on the plug. The inner wire connects to the positive (+) terminal on the power supply.
 
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Old 12-21-09, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post
Hi! I Google'd "electrical forum" and this was the second hit. And the name seems to fit: do-it-yourself.

I say this because my question doesn't really fit in with other people's topics too well. I'm not wiring a house. I'm just trying to get my amplifier powered.

So, I bought an amplifier on eBay (big surprise) and it came with a power cable:



That's where it plugs in. If you can't read it, it says DC12V2A. And let's just say that's the most technical information I have on it, lol. But, for some reason, the other end is just wire:



And there's the problem. I tried searching for what to call this thing (whatever I need), but I had no luck. I'm tempted to just plug those into the wall outlet (just to see if it will turn on!), but it took like 3 weeks to ship from China so I don't want to blow it up (or kill myself in the process).

So, right. How can I turn those wires into something that will plug into the outlet, safely? No need to spend a lot of time, I mean, if someone can just give me the name of the thing I need? I'm all for DIY stuff, though, so aluminum foil/bobby pin-solutions are accepted.

~Ibrahim~
Hey Guys something very important left out!

DC12V = Direct Current @ 12Volts

You need a 12 volt DC supply You will still burn the unit up if you plug it into a 12V AC transformer!
 
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Old 12-21-09, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post
OK, transformer. Would it be bad if I bought one that was more than 24VA/watts? I've found some that are 40W and 60W?
No. A transformer that has a higher VA/watt rating is fine.

Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post
Inside positive / outside negative: wee bit confused here. Where does this a role? And I did a quick search and it sounds like it doesn't matter which end is positive/negative when it's black/white?
If it was AC it wouldn't matter but since it is 12 DC it does. After you get your transformer hooked up, take the small end that goes to the amp out and connect a meter to it. Set the meter to something higher than 12 volts DC and connect the black lead (negative) to the outside of the small round plug. Insert the red lead (positive) of the meter into the middle of the small plug and make sure the lead touches the inside. You meter should read something around 12 volts or +12volts. If it reads -12volts then change the two leads on the transformer and retest. You are working with low voltage DC so there is should be no danger working on it hot.

You need a 12 volt DC supply You will still burn the unit up if you plug it into a 12V AC transformer!
You are very correct! I forgot to mention that. Thank you very much for pointing that out! That maybe a little harder to find cheaply You need one at least 2A 24VA or 2000mA
 
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Old 12-21-09, 12:10 PM
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The emblem on the unit shows the circle with the line coming off of it to the left is the Negative terminal and the dot to the right with the line coming off it to the right is the Positive terminal.

This is like something that is used in a car, with a car battery.

What you need is a DC power supply rated at 12V DC 2A.
 
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Old 12-21-09, 12:27 PM
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@melbax

OOOOOHHHHHH. I get it now, the picture means negative outside, positive inside.

All right. Let me get some terminology straight.

I need a 12 volt DC transformer that is rated for at least 24VA. This turns the 110V AC from the wall to the 12V DC needed. This is also known as a power supply? But I need to get a power supply that turns 110V AC to 12V DC and not to 12V AC. Right? And so this is like a whole new cable? Or will it be able to use the two naked wires I have now?

Definitely, there are some small electrical stores that I could stop by.

Thanks a ton, guys. I'm nearly there!

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 12-21-09, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post
I need a 12 volt DC transformer that is rated for at least 24VA. This turns the 110V AC from the wall to the 12V DC needed. This is also known as a power supply?
Correct.

Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post
But I need to get a power supply that turns 110V AC to 12V DC and not to 12V AC. Right?
Correct again.

Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post
And so this is like a whole new cable? Or will it be able to use the two naked wires I have now?
If you can get one with the proper end on it you will be good. Otherwise you could cut off the old end and splice yours on. Again, test to make sure you have the proper polarity.
 
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Old 12-21-09, 12:43 PM
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Sweetness.

Thanks for all the help, guys.

If I make it out alive after this, I'll post back with the results.

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 12-21-09, 12:47 PM
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Take your amplifier in with you if you have a good electronics supply/repair store nearby (the kind HAM radio guys shop and hang out at). They will help you find exactly what you need. Don't expect anything useful at a chain store like radioshack or BB though.
 
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Old 12-21-09, 01:39 PM
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Yeah, that's not a bad idea either.

I called one of the mom and pop stores, though they only did car stereo (what a coincidence) so they didn't have anything to convert AC. He said that I may have some luck at the Radio Shack getting what's called a PowerPack? He mentioned that they usually only come in 1A varieties, so it probably won't work. I'm gonna try a few more today, hopefully.

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 12-21-09, 02:45 PM
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I can't recommend it but if all the power bricks (AKA wallwart AKA power supply) suddenly disappeared from my junk cabinet I'd probably look for a trickle charger for an car battery or charger for a motorcycle battery. Just making sure it had at least a 2-3amp output. If it had hum I'd add an electrolytic capacitor. But I'd do that only if I couldn't find one. Take a look on line with Google or Ebay
 
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Old 12-21-09, 03:42 PM
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If you have any big music stores that sell musicial instruments in your town or city they will have them. Mosy of their pedals they sell are 9vdc or 12vdc. They have a good selection most of the time. Or just take it to your Radio shack and they can hook you up.

Jim

 
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Old 12-21-09, 03:45 PM
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Lightbulb AC/DC adapter

If you don't mind buying from eBay here is exactly what you need
Ebay 12VDC Adapter
oh and the amp requires a positive tip polarity (Which most adapters are now a days but watch out for the odd ball adapter which may be negative tip) I can't see the diagram very well on that adapter I linked to but ask the seller what the polarity is
Oh and your amp requires at least 2 Amps but the adapter supplies 4A but the amp will only draw what it needs so more amperage is not a problem but more voltage is
I hope my jiber jaber will help you get your item working
 
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Old 12-21-09, 04:00 PM
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If the positive and negative are swapped and it doesn't have a way to swap them you can cut the cord and splice them back swapped. When doing that I like to stagger the two splices, solder them and use heat shrink tubing on the individual splices and a larger piece over the whole wire. I stagger the splices mainly so even if the insulation fails on the splice the wires aren't touching but it also makes it less bulky at the splice.
 
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Old 12-21-09, 04:37 PM
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Some updates:

Radio Shack had the power supply (12V, 2.5A), but they wanted $40. I mean, come on! That's twice it cost the for the amplifier. But it was the entire power supply, meaning a whole new cable.

Thanks for the eBay link: if I can't find anything local, I'll get that. The reason I want to go local is that, especially in this economy and even in fine times, it benefits the small businesses that don't get too much business because everyone goes to big businesses and the such. I'm sure the eBay seller is a "small business", too, but that mney goes to wherever he lives and not Richmond, Kentucky.

But, besides all that:

Splicing: like I'm all for DIY....when I don't have to buy anything extra, lol. BUT, if somehow I get the wrong cable, I can definitely grab a splicer, as I've needed one for other "projects" but just never got around to it.

Wow...I'm learning so much about power now. Voltage has to be exact, but for amps there is only a minimum. Never knew that.

I'll check some more stores tomorrow.

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 12-21-09, 04:52 PM
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Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post
Some updates:

Radio Shack had the power supply (12V, 2.5A), but they wanted $40. I mean, come on! That's twice it cost the for the amplifier. But it was the entire power supply, meaning a whole new cable.

Thanks for the eBay link: if I can't find anything local, I'll get that. The reason I want to go local is that, especially in this economy and even in fine times, it benefits the small businesses that don't get too much business because everyone goes to big businesses and the such. I'm sure the eBay seller is a "small business", too, but that mney goes to wherever he lives and not Richmond, Kentucky.

But, besides all that:

Splicing: like I'm all for DIY....when I don't have to buy anything extra, lol. BUT, if somehow I get the wrong cable, I can definitely grab a splicer, as I've needed one for other "projects" but just never got around to it.

Wow...I'm learning so much about power now. Voltage has to be exact, but for amps there is only a minimum. Never knew that.

I'll check some more stores tomorrow.

~Ibrahim~
If you buy it from Ebay or order it from someone, make sure you get the correct barrel end size on it.

JimBeer 4U2
 
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Old 12-21-09, 05:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Tolyn Ironhand View Post
If you can get one with the proper end on it you will be good. Otherwise you could cut off the old end and splice yours on. Again, test to make sure you have the proper polarity.
This looks like exactly what you want:
Radio Shack Enercell™ 6-12VDC/2.5 Amp High-Power AC Adapter Model: 273-318.
They sell various "Adaptaplug" tips and probably have one that matches your amp exactly. Take it and the cord you have to the store to get the correct size Adaptaplug. You can choose which polarity to make the tip, so read the instructions, set it for 12V and go. If they don't have the right size Adaptaplug, you can always cut the adapter end off and splice yours on, but that's a pain.

Downside is you're looking at about $50 for the adapter and Adaptaplug after TT&L (although you may get one plug included with the $40 adapter, saving $7 & tax... not sure).

Good luck!
 
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Old 12-21-09, 05:32 PM
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@rukkus

Oh, blast! You're completely right, I legit forgot about that. There goes online orders. I guess I could try to measure what size it is, but looking at the ones at Radio Shack, they're all so close. What happen to standardization!?

@ByteWrangler

Yup, that's the one I saw in the store. I think the adapters come free, you just have to ask an associate to help you. But $40 is a lot.........

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 12-21-09, 06:02 PM
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But he has a plug for the equipment.so a little cut and splice and he is golden.
 
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Old 12-21-09, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post
@rukkus

Oh, blast! You're completely right, I legit forgot about that. There goes online orders. I guess I could try to measure what size it is, but looking at the ones at Radio Shack, they're all so close. What happen to standardization!?

@ByteWrangler

Yup, that's the one I saw in the store. I think the adapters come free, you just have to ask an associate to help you. But $40 is a lot.........

~Ibrahim~
If you have a radio shack where you live take it down there and find the one that works. Look at the box and see what size of barrel it is. Tell them it's pricely and might be back later. You then know what size you need for sure if you buy it on the internet. You can also take the plug you have on it now and they can also tell you what size of barrel it is. They're there to help and you don't have to buy something everytime you go into a store. If we all did that we would be broke.

Jim

 
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Old 12-22-09, 08:21 AM
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I called pretty much every electrical store in town and even a few computer repair places. No one carries these adapters/power supply/transformer things. Everyone says to try Radio Shack or Wal*Mart, lol.

@rukkus

Haha, that's true. Maybe I'll just bring the cable in and ask if they can tell me the size. That way I don't lead them on about actually buying something.

Thanks again, guys.

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 12-22-09, 08:46 AM
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Its a stretch...but some of the thrift stores around me have a whole bin full of wall warts/power supplies/transformers. You would have to read the specs...then plug them in of course and see if they have an output. A cheap meter for that would prob run about $5. Then I bet the mom and pop store you spoke to would help you hook it up...its about a 5 min job for someone who understands how it works and has a hot soldering iron...lol

I'd help ya out if ya lived a bit closer...prob have 2 under the bench that would work.

Uhhhh...another question...what exactly is the amp for?
 
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Old 12-22-09, 02:50 PM
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unish:GI2

(only this combination of smilies can reflect my current emotions)

That's it....the *only* one available that would work is the $40 Radio Shack one. I've tried thrift stores, small mom-and-pop electronic stores, chain electronic stores, Wal*Mart, computer repair shops, electrical contractors (funny phone call), my siblings: NO ONE has a DC 12V 2A adapter. There are some DC 12 2A for cigarette lighters (like that'll do anything) and some 1.3/1.5A adapters for wall outlets. I must be looking for the Holy Grail or something...

I didn't get enough time to stop by Radio Shack again for them to "measure" it out. I found one on Amazon that has six different pins (need to compare sizes), 12V 2.5A, wall outlet, switchable polarity (oh yeah), and $21. It's more than I want to pay and add shipping to that, but Radio Shack is not going to abuse me!

Oh, it's for an amplifier. There's a picture of the back there on the first post..

I'm tempted to find a old computer supply for mine and jimmy-rig the wires onto a 4-pin Molex (which has 12V+) since that's basically what I need. But then there's fan noise and trying to mount a power supply onto a wall (where the speakers will eventually go) might difficult. Oh, well.

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 12-22-09, 03:14 PM
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But don't you already have a plug for the amplifier so all you need is the power upply and splice it to the cord. You are making this harder then it needs to be. Heck, a quick Google Advanced Search turned up many incuding several here: 12 Volt DC External Power Supplies, Low Power, 1 to 70 watts, External
 
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Old 12-22-09, 03:33 PM
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Originally Posted by ray2047 View Post
all you need is the power upply
Yeah, that there is the issue. I give in. Radio Shack it is and that's only because they have the only 2A adapter available. The fact that they can give the right adapter is only a perk; the splicing isn't an issue, really.

Thanks for all the help, guys. I truly appreciate it, even though it sounds so simple now that I look back. Still, I had no idea about the volt/amp thing or even the AC/DC thing, so I've definitely learned something.

All for the want of an adapter....

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 12-22-09, 03:48 PM
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Here's one for six bucks plus shipping. You will need an input cord for it but you may have one already. If not they are also available.

12V @ 2A APD DESKTOP SUPPLY-MPJA, Inc.
 
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Old 12-23-09, 11:31 AM
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Wow...sweet. Thanks for the link, Furd. I'm buying that now; just got off the phone with the guys at Audio Center. He said I should bring in the cables to be sure, but he's pretty positive he can splice it for me.

~Ibrahim~
 
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Old 01-04-10, 11:49 AM
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