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Rechargeable Battery Supply for MC Step Up
Rechargeable Battery Supply for MC Step Up
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Old 13th August 2018, 09:39 PM   #1
spaceistheplace is offline spaceistheplace
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Rechargeable Battery Supply for MC Step Up
Default Rechargeable Battery Supply for MC Step Up

Iíve just finished a Boozhound step up and currently have it powered by 2x12V standard batteries with a simple switch. I plan to add another stack of 2x12V for increased playtime.

However, Iíd like to be able to swap them out (or recharge them) before they get too depleted.

Iím looking for examples of power supplies (24V via 2x12Vx2 ideally to avoid chassis reconfiguration) that use rechargeable batteries, which switch to charging mode / mains power only when the battery is low. Maybe with LED indicator?

Should I just use regular lead acid batteries? Lithium ion?

I suppose it would have to switch from series to parallel to initiate charging from a 12V wall wart?

Iím assuming seamless charging to battery switching while listening is not advised?

An example would be the Ray Samuels Nighthawk ( Ray Samuels F-117 Nighthawk MC/MM Phono Preamplifier A real game changer in phonostage preamplification. Review By Wayne Donnelly )

Most out of the box battery circuits it seems are designed for non-interruption in the event of power failure.

And most diy examples Iíve seen here from searching are related to portable boombox type implementations.

Can anyone point me in the right direction? Has anyone designed something like this?

Is there something out there thatís drop-in that will provide minimal headache? That would be ideal. Iím short on DIY time these days unfortunately.
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Old 16th August 2018, 03:36 PM   #2
chromenuts is offline chromenuts  United States
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I’ve been through exactly what you are describing. I built the Boozehound standard MM phono stage several years back and went through many stages of trying to resolve a quiet power supply. I did not implement a system that automatically charges, but it is rechargeable and monitor-able. I also recently went through replacing the rechargeable supply in my ZYX CPP-1 in the same manner.

I had what I thought was a quiet laptop supply for a while but it crapped out. Ultimately I ended up with a couple 24V NiMH supplies from Batteryspace.com. I have no affiliation with them, they just had a good selection of battery supplies and chargers at reasonable prices.

I’ve attached a pic of a supply as they came to me as well as few pics of my solution.

Ultimately, I felt the 24V supply was over driving the circuit as the charger was bringing it up to about 26V on full charge and I was hearing distortion. I was plugging the supply into the 5.5X2.1 jack on the back of my case that I installed for the laptop supply. I wanted to integrate the supply as you mentioned and control charging as well as monitor the state of charge without having to use a multimeter and etc. I sort of used the ZYX as a model.

I opened up the 24V supply and removed two cells to bring it’s full charge capacity down to about 22V. The charger I bought still works with it as it can be used with anything from about 19-24V. Even the thermistor monitoring circuit still works properly. I simply had to bridge the last two cells on the altered pack with some wire and reinsulate the pack by completely rewrapping it with electrical tape. You can just buy a 22V pack to start with if you like.

I also used a multi switch system that has a center off 2 position switch to select between sending voltage directly to the battery for charge or using an external power supply to directly power the circuit. The battery charging supply is not appropriate to power the circuit. A secondary single pole switch controls whether the battery is connected to the circuit. A single LED indicates when power is reaching the circuit. I also integrated a momentary switch that activates a voltage meter I sourced off eBay so I can simply push a button to monitor the supplies voltage level. The voltage meters circuit was too noisy to be left running all the time.

I came up with a solution to use the voltage meters (since I got 3 for like $10) on the ZYX as well without modifying the unit. I machined a removable pod that plugs right into the power inlet on the ZYX. When the charge switch is activated it displays the battery supply voltage level. When it requires a charge I simply remove the pod and plug in the charger I bought for the 10.8V NiMH supply I installed in the ZYX (sourced from the same supplier).

I find these supplies are dead quiet and have over twice the capacity (in the case of the ZYX) of the original NiCD packs that were used.

Last edited by chromenuts; 16th August 2018 at 03:43 PM.
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Old 16th August 2018, 09:57 PM   #3
spaceistheplace is offline spaceistheplace
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Rechargeable Battery Supply for MC Step Up
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Wow! Beautiful work!

Iíve been looking at Rod Elliottís design here:

Automatic Charger for Battery Operated Hi-Fi Preamps

Ideally Iíd prefer to have the charging seamless and not require removal. The likelihood I will be able to make such a neatly machined pluggable charging pack as you did is low.

But I will definitely take a closer look at you implementation, and get back to you with a more fleshed out response.

Thanks!
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Last edited by spaceistheplace; 16th August 2018 at 10:03 PM.
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Old 17th August 2018, 02:32 PM   #4
chromenuts is offline chromenuts  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spaceistheplace View Post
Wow! Beautiful work!
Thanks. Took me a while but I like to build things.

Quote:
Originally Posted by spaceistheplace View Post
Iíve been looking at Rod Elliottís design here:

Automatic Charger for Battery Operated Hi-Fi Preamps
I donít see why you couldnít use Rodís article to try and build an automated charging system if you have the time and skill. Iím not sure if your Boozehound MC needs 12 or 24V, but he does outline building a +/-12V rechargeable supply. Iíve been to his site many times, but most times the projects like the one you pointed to seem a little over my head. I donít have the confidence to fly solo and try to build a circuit from scratch with a diagram and he specifically says there is no support for the design in the article.

Quote:
Originally Posted by spaceistheplace View Post
Ideally Iíd prefer to have the charging seamless and not require removal. The likelihood I will be able to make such a neatly machined pluggable charging pack as you did is low.
As long as you have a way to connect and disconnect a charging system externally through switches and/or laptop style DC port thereís no reason not to mount the rechargeable pack in the case and leave it there regardless as to whether the charging system is automated.

The pod you refer to as a ďcharging packĒ does not charge the battery or do anything related to charging. It is a removable voltage meter to monitor the charge level of the internal NiMH rechargeable power supply. It uses the same laptop style 5.5X2.1 power port on the front of the ZYX that my charger would have to be connected to in its place to charge the internal supply once I note that the level of the supply has fallen below the desired nominal voltage with the meter.
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Old 17th August 2018, 05:19 PM   #5
spaceistheplace is offline spaceistheplace
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Rechargeable Battery Supply for MC Step Up
The documentation suggests 12-24 VDC which is a bit of a spread.

I might go for 18?

https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/02...PrePre.pdf?112

The Rod Elliott articles can sometimes be over my head as well, but I like a good challenge.

I will see if I can make headway and report back.
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