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Old 25 November 2018, 03:40   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Salem, OR
Posts: 1,393
basic (VERY) electronic win!

I didn't really have anywhere to post this, but wanted to post somewhere. ;-)

I have a label printer that runs on 6 AAA batteries, or an adapter (not provided).
But I have LOTS of adapters, so no biggie, right?
Well, first thing is that it is center negative, which isn't as common.
So I dug up a 9V adapter and swapped the wiring.... and...
it didn't work... OK, that is interesting...

Just to be sure (in case I plugged in an adapter of the wrong polarity at some time before reading (not that I would ever have done that ;-), I opened the case and checked the power board. Looks fine. No diodes or resistors blown.

I did notice that all of my 9V adapters are giving off closer to 12V, but that's with no load, so I thought it would be fine.

Maybe the plug power input is just broken totally.
I do have a 6.0V/7.5V (that's what it says) center negative adapter, so I try that and... it works! But not well. Dim screen and told me low battery...
Wouldn't print.
Now, I did get these adjustable buck converters for my arduino stuff a while ago. I got 5 of the for not much. They have a dial where you can adjust your output voltage. So I hook it up inline with my 9V (or 12V according to my multimeter) adapter, and twist the dial to get it down to 9V.
Looks good. Solid 9V.
Plug it in... Screen comes up, not dim, no low battery warning.
And it prints!
So apparently when this label printer says 9V, it REALLY means 9V.
(Note, I tried with 3 different 9V DC adapters and they all read about 12V on my multimeter and none of them worked with this label printer.)

I suppose I need to make a nice little case for the buck converter now.
(I don't intend to print labels for hours at a time, so something that works for 5/10 minute jobs every 3 months or so is fine.)

And if some of you are wondering why I had those converters lying around and hadn't I used them in any of my arduino projects yet....
Shut up.. I haven't gotten to (any of) those projects yet!! (I tend to buy inexpensive electronics for them and then not start a lot of those projects for some reason..)
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Old 09 February 2019, 23:43   #2
Asking stupid questions
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Syd.Oz
Posts: 149
Congrats on the solution, but focus on your meter, borrow another and compare?

I've seen plenty of cheap meters give inaccurate readings as soon as their internal battery starts to die, often before the warning indicator comes on.
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