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Modding a PSU for more wattage?

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August 17, 2006 8:54:29 PM

Ok heres a question.

Ive never really torn apart a power supply so I dunno how much water this question holds.

I have an antec aria case in which I wanted to put a Tforce 6100 mobo, but its having problems with the power supply. It wants a 24 pin case, not to mention biostar reccomended to me with my problems i get a 450watt psu. Well i wsih that were possible, but the psu is a different shape in order to fit the stuff in the case. My question is could I crack open the PSU housing and fit the inards of some 450 24-pin psu inside there or is that impossible?
Here are pictures of the PSU:
http://reviews.pcapex.com/cases/antec_aria_micro_atx_cu...

This comp is for a girl and I had all the parts but the integrated gfx are F-ed up and biostar said its due to my PSU not being 24 pinn. Can I make my Aria the first 500watt one out there hah. :lol: 

Brian

More about : modding psu wattage

a b ) Power supply
August 17, 2006 11:30:50 PM

Quote:
Ok heres a question.

Ive never really torn apart a power supply so I dunno how much water this question holds.

I have an antec aria case in which I wanted to put a Tforce 6100 mobo, but its having problems with the power supply. It wants a 24 pin cas...


Try a 20 pin to 24 pin adapter and see if that will work. Otherwise, you'll need to buy a cheap PCI-e video card.

List of 20 pin to 24 pin adapters.

If you are going to be crazy enough to mod a PSU, then I suggest you do a Google search on the phrase "Funeral Services" first and plan accordingly.
August 18, 2006 12:20:41 AM

Quote:
...
You can sure give it a try. ....
8O 8O
Yes, this was said with a disclaimer. Yes, the smart answer of don't touch it came first.
However, given the apparent lack of knowledge of the OP regarding PSs/electricity, there is essentially no chance of the OP succeeding. The DANGER of serious injury and/or death IS VERY REAL. If you have to ask about it, you don't know enough to do it properly -- just say NO.
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a c 85 ) Power supply
August 18, 2006 1:40:41 AM

Quote:
The DANGER of serious injury and/or death IS VERY REAL. If you have to ask about it, you don't know enough to do it properly -- just say NO.


LOL, I've used this on people before. Yes, it is probably very possible to do what you want, but do to your lack of knowledge, you should not even attempt it. I don't know if this is true with the OP, but I also feel it probably is. If a normal psu won't fit in the case, do yourself a favor and change the case.
August 18, 2006 1:52:57 AM

now theres a good idea if i ever did hear 1
August 18, 2006 3:02:26 AM

Ok I had to RMA the mobo for an unrelated reason, but when it gets back im gonna try the adapter....

If it doesnt work, well, dont worry I'll be careful....but now that I know its possible....whats 300v gonna do....psh
August 18, 2006 3:14:39 AM

Quote:
PSU have Large capasitors that can hold a charge of up to 300+v. Any attempt to modify a PSU may result in personal injury and/or death.


Back in the dark ages, I witnessed a computer tech mod a large power supply. He accidentally grounded a bank of large caps and they basically detonated. A few seconds before, my face had been inches away from those caps but I got lucky and walked away at the right instant. They went off like fireworks and threw schrapnel all over the place - into the computer case, into the brick wall, into the tech's thumb, into the tech's tool case. It was really kind of beautiul in a sick way, watching him use pliers to pull the chunk of metal out of his thumb, whining like a wuss when it was all his fault...
August 18, 2006 3:42:59 AM

Quote:
Ok I had to RMA the mobo for an unrelated reason, but when it gets back im gonna try the adapter....

If it doesnt work, well, dont worry I'll be careful....but now that I know its possible....whats 300v gonna do....psh


300v is nothing to a human body. A static spark generates upwards of 40,000v. But as little as 0.10 amps across a human heart can stop it.
It is not the voltage you worry about, people live through lightning strikes, it is the amperage.

In current stun-gun models, the amperage is relatively low (2.1mA=0.0021 amperes to 3.6mA=0.0036 amps) which is based in part on the electrical supply, (for example M-26 Taser models use 8 x AAs batteries generating 500,000 volts, but only 0.0018 amps!). Electrical current above 100mA is considered to be potentially lethal to humans.

For the sake of keeping yourself out of the Darwin Awards, please don't mess with the innards of a PSU unless you are 100% sure you know EXACTLY what you are doing.
August 18, 2006 4:08:06 AM

Quote:
Ok I had to RMA the mobo for an unrelated reason, but when it gets back im gonna try the adapter....

If it doesnt work, well, dont worry I'll be careful....but now that I know its possible....whats 300v gonna do....psh


It is not VOLTS that kill you as much as the AMPS behind them.
One volt can kill a horse with enough amps.

As far as the caps in any electronic unit (mostly TV sets) you drain the stored charge by shorting the hot to ground with a proper sized resistor depending on the Pf of the cap.

A normal case and a real PSU like a PC P&C would have been the way to go from the start.
a c 85 ) Power supply
August 18, 2006 4:15:39 AM

Quote:
you drain the stored charge by shorting the hot to ground with a proper sized resistor depending on the Pf of the cap.


Not sure I would have told him that. I can see it now, him using the biggest resistor he has, but holding onto the exposed metal leads... When/if he wakes up, he'll be pretty pissed and looking for you.
August 18, 2006 5:23:41 AM

I've NEVER been shocked while working inside a power supply. On the other hand, I've probably been rendered temporarily dead by a few other devices...
August 18, 2006 5:57:33 AM

Yes, but you are THE Crashman! Besides, look at the OP's handle... :twisted:
August 18, 2006 6:03:03 AM

Quote:
...This comp is for a girl ...

I think this explains the foolhardy determination in the face of death! :lol: 
August 18, 2006 6:09:48 AM

Don't go stoking his ego...instead, tell him to try adjusting the display width on a standard-VGA monitor.
August 18, 2006 6:23:00 AM

Maybe while he's at it he should try to replace his flyback adapter in his crt, 20-30 kV makes for a nice hair do if you touch something you shouldn't

I've actually replaced a couple of these, power supplies are cake to repair compared to these things.
August 18, 2006 6:46:54 AM

You can't get more watts out of a PSU because it's limited by the transformer.

Watts = volts x amps

The voltage supplied to the rectifier/filter is governed by the secondary winding on the transformer, and short of rewinding there's nothing you can do about it. The only way that PSU will deliver more watts is by replacing the transformer with a different one with a higher secondary voltage.
August 18, 2006 7:04:59 AM

Just to be sure: You guys do unplug from the power outlet before you start working on electrical devices, don't you? :) 

If anything goes wrong, it'll go wrong when you plug it back in...
August 18, 2006 9:35:49 AM

Quote:
Just to be sure: You guys do unplug from the power outlet before you start working on electrical devices, don't you? :) 

If anything goes wrong, it'll go wrong when you plug it back in...


I'm no electrical engineer, but I worked in an electronics shop before, and I can tell you first hand that a device is just as dangerous unplugged if it has charged caps 8O
a c 85 ) Power supply
August 18, 2006 10:21:32 AM

Everything is a piece of cake to repair, assuming you know what you are doing. The last big thing I fixed was a bad cap on a motherboard. I unsoldered the old/bad one, and put a new one it. I'm still using the motherboard/cpu as my sever, it no longer reboots. Can all people on this forum do this? Doubt it, even though it is really simple.
August 18, 2006 11:10:22 AM

Quote:
Just to be sure: You guys do unplug from the power outlet before you start working on electrical devices, don't you? :) 

If anything goes wrong, it'll go wrong when you plug it back in...


I'm no electrical engineer, but I worked in an electronics shop before, and I can tell you first hand that a device is just as dangerous unplugged if it has charged caps 8O

Exactimundo. At very least you'd want to unplug it and then turn the PC on while it's switched off to take some of the bite out of the caps.
August 18, 2006 11:16:54 AM

You don't need more voltage out of the transformer. You need more current. The only way to get more current is to wind the transformer with larger gauge wire. The power transistor/s will also have to be replaced with higher wattage units. And maybe a bigger fan. :) 
August 18, 2006 11:33:22 AM

I'd just buy a new case. I had an Aria and it was a lot of hassle, there wasn't enough room inside, the CPU/GPU were running far too hot, due to the terrible design (the only fan in the system is the PSU fan and the air vents are all in the wrong places so everything inside doesn't get cooled properly). I also managed to break the SATA connector on my hard drive when I was putting the drive cage back in. Finally I got completely fed up with it and replaced it with an Aspire QPack that is so much better!
August 18, 2006 1:54:34 PM

Quote:
Maybe while he's at it he should try to replace his flyback adapter in his crt, 20-30 kV makes for a nice hair do if you touch something you shouldn't

I've actually replaced a couple of these, power supplies are cake to repair compared to these things.


Yea, but with an avatar like yours, I bet you could even change the oil in a motocross bike mid-race without breaking a sweat. All this 30kV crap is just child's play.
August 18, 2006 4:53:12 PM

Quote:
Maybe while he's at it he should try to replace his flyback adapter in his crt, 20-30 kV makes for a nice hair do if you touch something you shouldn't

I've actually replaced a couple of these, power supplies are cake to repair compared to these things.


My point exactly, the old VGA CRT's had to have their width adjusted internally, and the only way to see what you were doing was to do this with the monitor turned on. Hitting high voltage is an assumed risk. You were supposed to use plastic screwdrivers...yeh, like most of us have those!
August 18, 2006 4:57:45 PM

Yeah, I have a set of plastic wrapped mini-drivers that still have a metal core and about a 1/16" of blade sticking out. I need to tweak my NEC FE1250+ every year or so to keep the syncs and focus accurate.
August 18, 2006 5:07:30 PM

That's the cheap redneck method I guess :lol: 
August 18, 2006 8:27:17 PM

Quote:
All i'm saying is your not having any fun moding till you've drawn blood or had a couple houndred volts passing through you. Otherwise what's the point, right? :D 


It's all child's play until someone gets loses an appendage.
August 18, 2006 8:34:59 PM

Had a buddy that was a line-man for the electric company, didn't check voltage on a line, grounded himself and lost both arms, not pretty.
August 18, 2006 10:52:02 PM

Quote:
All i'm saying is your not having any fun moding till you've drawn blood or had a couple houndred volts passing through you. Otherwise what's the point, right? :D 


Some people get satisfaction from doing things right the first time and not dying.
August 18, 2006 11:32:53 PM

But if you do it wrong and DON'T die, you learn a lot more :) 
August 19, 2006 12:55:04 AM

Quote:
First i'm going to give you the smart answer. No do not attempt to do this. PSU have Large capasitors that can hold a charge of up to 300+v. Any attempt to modify a PSU may result in personal injury and/or death. Not to mention voiding any warrenties.

Ok now that the disclamer is out of the way.

You can sure give it a try. It will be tight and most likely you will run into all sorts of heat issues when your done. But you will have to be very creative. The only real problem you may run into is the placment of heatsinks on the power regulators. they may sit to tall to fit or may not fit due to the shape of the PSU's caseing.


Hilarious...

Yeah, I'm pretty sure you REALLY shouldn't do this. Spare your life and get a new PSU or case. Plus, if you muck up the PSU and it blows in this girl's computer, I'm relatively certain she won't like it.
August 19, 2006 5:08:01 AM

I ran a home-modified power supply for three years! It started out a cheapy that blew caps, I opened it up and saw it had an excellent design with lots of filtration so I replaced all the caps. It lived under an extremely high load during that time, powering an overclocked P4 with lots of RAM, a big SCSI array, and a bunch of cards. One day it started falling out of the case, stripped screw holes, so I put it in another housing: An SPI 230W housing. And people thought I was running all that stuff off a 230W power supply. And they started wondering why it had all the extra power connectors, which I had cut out of other dead power supplies and soldered in.
August 19, 2006 2:16:32 PM

Quote:
So no one else here has played with large capasitors.


Not sure where you got that idea. I've built power supplies from scratch, repaired burned out junk and have modded high-current power supplies in scientific instrumentation. For example, I modded the power supply for a VG MM-15 mass spectrometer to allow the mass analyzer to run 30% above its stocck maximum mass. I got to play with large caps repeatedly before finding parts that could handle the load reliably.

Quote:
Back in high school my friedns and i would have little wars with capasitors in electronics class. nothing big just some 50v electolitic capasitors. We would charge then up and zap eachother with them. Left some nice little marks. It was alto fun to blow the cap off them too.


Tossing a charged cap into the high school locker room shower gets people's attention...

Quote:
Hey anyone ever make a tazer from the flash cuircut of a disposible camera? :twisted:


Actually, yes...

Quote:
Spot welded a screwdriver to the contacts of the capasitor with one of those.


I witnessed a rep at the CES bridge the outputs of a high current audio amp with a huge screwdriver - and it melted the screwdriver! Now that was some serious power - dangerous too!
August 19, 2006 2:21:27 PM

Quote:
Had a buddy that was a line-man for the electric company, didn't check voltage on a line, grounded himself and lost both arms, not pretty.


I good friend of mine lost his life doing maintenence on 600V lighting towers due to a faulty breaker. It was horrifying - I was on the HS football team and we were practicing nearby and witnessed it. You really don't want to know what 40A of 600V does to a person that's 50' off the ground.
August 19, 2006 3:18:09 PM

Just for future knowledge (no disrespect)...it's capacitors. :wink:
August 19, 2006 4:03:27 PM

If you're planning on opening and working on a power supply, I suggest leaving it unplugged for 24-48 hours before work.
August 19, 2006 4:38:06 PM

I suggest unplugging the system with the power supply connected to the board and leaving it for a couple minutes. Which is probably what you do when you remove a power supply anyway. The motherboard will drain off most of the current through the standyby circuit.
November 30, 2006 7:48:44 PM

I have an Aria and wondered the same thing about the PSU but never got around to it. I have opened many TVs, PSUs, and other gadgets safely and it can be done, but if you don't know what you are looking at it is best to stay away.

Also, I always love the VOLT VS AMPS argument by people. People always line up to correct someone that the "amps are what kills you not the volts". You are all wrong. The watts kill.

That's right V * A = W and watts are the measure of work done by electricity. Any given voltage can kill if there are enough amps, and any given amperage can kill if there are enough volts. Therefore it makes sense that watts are the true measure of what does what. Had to throw that in for fun.
December 1, 2006 4:24:36 AM

You don't need the 24 pin, just plug in the regular 20 pin onto the 24 pin socket.
December 1, 2006 5:04:23 AM

Just buy a new one, it is not worth your live :?
!