choosing the right power supply

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3D Printing Q&ACategory: Technicalchoosing the right power supply
Samuel asked 1 year ago

Hello,I have a quick question about choosing a power supply.Right now I am running 5 steppermotors (12v, 0,4A) and a single E3D Hotend at my 3D printer.Which power supply should I use? (pls send links to amazon if possible)Thank you, best Regards,Samuel Schatz

2 Answers

Best Answer

greg Staff answered 1 year ago

Your main consideration must be power usage.

With 5 stepper motors, a heated bed, a hotend, a driver board, LCD display and possibly lights realistically the more Watts your power supply the better.

Although you might think that a power supply will "just do" this is an area you should not simply try and find the cheapest model. You want to look for something that can ideally handle at least twice your maximum estimated load.

Thanks to the wonders of physics a device will only draw exactly what is needed at the time meaning that you could use a 2 kilowatt power supply and a draw of 5 Watts and it would be perfectly fine.

Drawing too much power from an under-rated power supply will cause voltage drops, brownouts and other undesired events.

If the driver board receives too little power it could reboot causing failed prints.

if the stepper motors receive too little power they skip steps causing blemishes in prints, misaligned layers or under extrusion.

if a heated bed receives too little power bed adhesion could be affected causing warping or prints to separate from the bed.

A further consideration would be whether to get a standard power supply or a switching one.

These days, switching mode supplies are cheap, reliable and able to handle high draw devices with ease so unless you have a specific reason not to go for one then they are a good option.

JamesFitts answered 1 year ago

Hello, Greg. I appreciate your helpful answer.

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