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Ray Carlsen's new C64/128/VIC-20/Plus4 power supplies...

Ray Carlsen, Commodore repair technician, is building a small number of universal C64/128/VIC-20CR/Plus4 power supplies. Here are the details for the RC p.s.:

*Input – 120V, 60Hz (or alternate version 220V, 50 Hz for Europe/Australia)
*Output – 5VDC @ 5A, 9VAC @ 1A
*Fuse-protected, current-limited 5 volt supply
*built-in surge suppressor (Computer Saver)
*metal case, vented
*PS cable has C64 DIN connector for the C64 and VIC-20CR. C128 adapter to C64 DIN available for those who buy the RC p.s. and at extra cost. (For the Plus/4, the user is to send in the DC full-length cable of the original CBM power supply for attaching to the new RC p.s..)
*One-year warranty – If this RC power supply is not acceptable or fails in any way, send it back for repair, replacement, or refund.
*RC power supply price - $100 US (not including shipping)
*C128 adapter to C64 DIN - $15 US (not including shipping)

For more details and photos, go to
http://personalpages.tds.net/~rcarlsen/cbm/universal%20ps/

Check/money order preferred in USA. Paypal accepted for overseas orders.
Contact Ray at rcarlsen(at)tds.net

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Mini-review of prototype #2

Quality. Durability. Ruggedness. Craftsmanship. These words all describe the Ray Carlsen universal power supply for the C64/128/VIC-20CR/Plus4. Though I've been testing prototype #2 for a few months, it has never let me down.

When I received it in the mail a few months ago, I was immediately impressed by its construction. It had a metal, vented case with striking black and white paint. It used thick insulation over its heavy gauge output cable. It sat on 4 sturdy rubber feet. Inside, there was plenty of air space for the components - a new, modern 5VDC unit putting out 5 amps, a new, modern 9VAC unit putting out 1 amp, and the Ray Carlsen Computer Saver which cuts out the 5V line should it go over 5.40 volts. Everything was neatly, firmly screwed down to the metal case. There was no messy mass of wires, just an orderly placement of the wires. On the outside of the case was one LED which showed the power supply had power.

The power supply had the looks, but did it deliver the goods? A big YES! I've had it running for hours, and it barely emitted any heat through the vents on the case. In fact, the Commodore computer to which it was attached felt much warmer. Whether on a VIC-20CR or a C64 or a flat C128, it never failed. It endured the SuperCPU, a notoriously power-hungry device. Thus, it should easily cope with the 1541 Ultimate cartridge and even good, old Super Snapshot - both which need a little more oomph in the
power department. Screen interference on the CRT monitor? None!

Ray hand-built it, testing and tweaking it until it met his critical standards. He showed me some oscilloscope screenshots of the 5V it outputs -- just clean power. He also showed me the oscilloscope
screenshots of a new power supply from a different company -- spikes all over the place... no clean power at all. In fact, that company's p.s. had such bad regulation that it varied from 4.9V to 5.3V.

Now the production model of the Ray Carlsen power supply has been released. Each power supply is hand-built and tested by him. The production model uses a slightly bigger, metal, vented case than the
prototype, because his supplier had the other one on back order. The production model has an improved, internal Computer Saver.

Reluctantly, I will return prototype #2 to Ray when I see him in the summer. However, I will then get the production model! I'm thinking about getting one for the C64/VIC-20CR and one for the flat C128. Then I'll be set for life. :)

Thanks for the review!  5V DC

Thanks for the review!  5V DC adapters are pretty easy to get (no telling about stability, like you mention) but 9V AC is a bit more challenging.  Getting both in a single unit is near impossible unless you get an actual CBM power supply which of course are getting hard to come by.  The closest thing I heard of was US Robotics power supply for external modem... never tried one myself, but I imagine those are just as hard to get as CBM ones.  So I guess the real thanks goes to Ray!
 
Looking at his photo, it is a really clean design.  I'm guessing that little board between the 9V transformer and the 5V regulator is his "computer saver"?  I mean it looks like a little relay to switch off the 5V like you said.


I'm kupo for Kupo nuts!

Re: Thanks for the review! 5V DC

Hydrophilic wrote:

> ...5V DC adapters are pretty easy to get (no telling about stability, like you mention)...

Right. Ray doesn't use bargain-bin, surplus 5VDC units. He uses new ones, and he tests every one of them.

> ...9V AC is a bit more challenging.

Ray looked long and hard for one that would work with North American power and with European/Australian power.

> I'm guessing that little board between the 9V transformer and the 5V regulator is his "computer saver"?

Yes. On my prototype #2, it is mounted along the side of the case.

Truly,
Robert Bernardo
Fresno Commodore User Group
http://videocam.net.au/fcug
July 26-27 Commodore Vegas Expo v10
http://www.portcommodore.com/commvex

Re: Ray Carlsen's new C64/128/VIC-20CR/Plus4 power supplies...

Ray has nearly sold out on his first production run of power supplies and has ordered parts for a second run.

Truly,
Robert Bernardo
Fresno Commodore User Group
http://videocam.net.au/fcug
July 26-27 Commodore Vegas Expo v10
http://www.portcommodore.com/commvex

Re: Ray Carlsen's new C64/128/VIC-20CR/Plus4 power supplies...

Speaking of power supplies in another thread...

On May 11, 2014, I wrote:

> (For the Plus/4, the user is to send in the DC full-length cable of the original CBM power supply for attaching to the new RC p.s..)

For those who cannot send in that full-length cable, Ray now offers a Plus/4 adapter for his new power supply. See

http://blog.retro-link.com/2014/08/plus4-adapters-for-ray-carlsen-power....

Also, Ray now offers a 1581/1541-II power supply for $35 and a "dual" power supply for the C64-C128 with 1581/1541-II cables for $135. (That dual power supply is an interesting design!) See

http://personalpages.tds.net/~rcarlsen/cbm/universal_ps/

and click on the appropriate links.

Truly,
Robert Bernardo
Fresno Commodore User Group
http://www.dickestel.com/fcug.htm

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