EspoTek Labrador

A small, portable, USB-connected electronics lab-on-a-board that includes an oscilloscope, waveform generator, power supply, logic analyzer, and multimeter.

Available for pre-order

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Apr 10, 2017

Project update 13 of 17

Reliability vs. Performance in the Power Supply

The issue with the power supply mentioned in the last update has been fixed, and the power supply now cannot overheat.  The new design files will be sent to the manufacturer tomorrow morning and everything will continue as planned.

Unfortunately, this has come with a performance hit.  The nominal power output has been halved, from 1.5W to 0.7W, and the maximum output voltage has been dropped from 15V down to 12V.  I tried several workarounds, but none of them seemed to do a lot.  A complete redesign of the board would rectify the performance issue, but frankly that’s a very slippery slope to go down and we’ve already had enough delays.

Of course, 0.7W is not a lot of power.  But then again, neither was 1.5W.  That’s why there is the power supply extension header on the board.  Using this header, you can hook up Labrador to an external voltage source and generate much more power - in excess of 5W.

For those that need to use a power supply with a bit of oomph, rest assured I will design a board to supply well in excess of the original 1.5W through the extension header.  I know the cynical folks out there will see this as an excuse to sell more hardware, so to clarify: said extension board will be completely open-source, designed using off-the-shelf, through-hole components and tutorials will be provided that show how to build it yourself. I’ve even changed the shape of the header slightly so that it’s easier to connect up to homemade perfboard circuits.

This way, both reliability and performance can be attained, without causing any further delays.


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