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I recently thought about building a lab bench power supply, it comes in cheaper and I love to build things...

But then I also have a LiPo charger an iMax B6AC, that I had bought for my quadcopter, then came the idea of whether I can use the charger as a lab bench power supply...

My questions is, could this work and how could I make it work?

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  • $\begingroup$ Ha, this question got bumped and I thought, "Yeah, but I made a bench power supply out of an old ATX power supply. I should mention that," and then I saw exactly that comment already... from 4 years ago. $\endgroup$ – Chuck May 22 at 13:08
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You could trick the charger into providing power for you by applying a voltage to the balance sensing lines. However the control you have over it would be limited.

Switching power supplies are ridiculously cheap these days. Search ebay for "switching power supply dc 24v" for whatever voltage you want. I just keep a pile of these in the closet for the voltages I use the most (5, 12, 24 and 48). That plus one low power bench supply with current limiting to debug new boards with.

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  • $\begingroup$ Ah, alright... I'm thinking about making my own lab bench power supply - as seen on GreatScott!'s channel... It might come in useful.. Thanks for the advise though! $\endgroup$ – SidS Aug 19 '16 at 8:09
  • $\begingroup$ @SidS You might consider a bench power supply from a computer ATX power supply. I made one of these myself. I left the power supply in the computer case and added voltage indicators for each bus, which are all installed in the side of the case. Now I've got a big box with a removable side that doubles as a storage case and a power supply. $\endgroup$ – Chuck Aug 19 '16 at 13:24
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The LiPo charger probably doesnt put out enough current to be very useful, and it likely doesn't have the circuit design to provide power at a stable voltage and current.

You would be better off converting a switching power supply for a desktop PC.

Here's a good example

http://www.instructables.com/id/Convert-A-Computer-Power-supply-to-a-Bench-Top-Lab/&ved=0ahUKEwj2pZ6VoMzOAhUFySYKHXXmBXsQFggbMAA&usg=AFQjCNEC2GWbuuvQinSSW4sJptmYU3irHg&sig2=sin4n44XrDZmciFVh_QTKg

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This seems to be the only place I'm finding with information regarding this question. The imax b6ac has a power mode function that you can set voltage and amperage up to 20v 5a, those values can also be altered real time without need to reset the function. I guess it's also worth noting I have the knock off version as it was maybe $20, but otherwise it's the same thing.

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I strongly recomend you to use the iCharger X6, it has the "Power Output" function, this function allow you to adjust the Output Voltage from 2.0V to 26.5V in 0.1V increments, you can limit the output current from 1.0A to 30.0A ("""YES 30A""") in 0.1A incrmentes. Honestly I found this functionality lovely. Most Bench power supplies are very limited in output current typically 2 to 5 Amps. Just be carefull this function is only available on X6 and X8 modeles only, the other iCharger models don´t include this functionalitiy

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