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any experts here on stitching together power supplies?

Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:01 am
by killedaway
i just bought a Boss SE-50 for twenty bucks. the catch? no power supply. presumably it works, but Boss was extra adorable the day they designed this thing: it has a barrel-type jack on the back, but the center of the thing is enormous, and no amount of hunting around the house could find a suitable replacement.

on the off chance i can find a proper plug that fits (perhaps from Radio Shack's select-a-plug line, or whatever it's called), can i just splice it onto the end of an adapter with suitable specs? it seems so, but i thought i'd ask before i did it. for the record, the proper power supply is a boss BRB-120, which is AC, 12V, 1500mA, though it would appear the SE-50 is only asking for 1000mA. also, to my knowledge, there is no polarity issues with AC (vs. DC) adapters, right? do i need to orient the leads on the plug in any specific way (ie: hot and cold)? lastly, is wattage a factor? the BRB's input specs say 23W -- do i need the replacement adapter to match that exactly?

my other options are to replace the jack on the unit itself, solder the wires of the plug straight to the 'board inside (both of these options are a hassle), or buy a new BRB, which i don't want to do because it will completely offset the great price i paid to begin with.

any ideas?

Re: any experts here on stitching together power supplies?

Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 1:55 am
by Old Iron Giant
Also check Thrift-stores.
They always carry Odds-n-ends like that.
most of my IEC power cables, came from goodwill :lol: a bulk buy for under a dollar.

Re: any experts here on stitching together power supplies?

Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 3:19 am
by gmeredith
Yes, i know about those large centre pin Boss jacks - I replaced the same type of one on my Boss DR660 drum machine with a more popular size one for that very reason. I also have an SE-50 and know exactly what you mean, fortunately mine came with the original power pack.

You can try drilling out the centre hole of the power plug to make it larger - I've done that before - but you need to have a few spare plugs handy to stuff them up with the drill before you get one that survives. Buy a handful of blank plugs from Rat Shack or Jameco. Buy ones that have the largest hole in them you can get to start off - using the smaller ones usually means the whole plug runs out of metal when you drill it and disintegrates in your hand. Also make sure the outside barrel is the right size before you drill them out or it still won't go in.

Here is a 2.5mm hole plug that might take drilling out: ... tId=297289&

Once you've drilled it out and it fits the SE50, now you can solder the plug to a new AC 12V power adapter.

Here is one suitable for the SE50 for $12.50, also from Jameco - an AC-12V 1600mA: ... tId=307838&

Generally you should use a similar wattage one to what it was meant for - if you go too low, the power pack will work harder and could overheat and burn out. Slightly higher wattage is OK because the SE50 will only use what it needs from the power supply, so long as the voltage is the same.

You don't need to worry about polarity because it's AC, just solder the plug on to the power pack wires in any way and it will work.

If you just can't drill the plug out without it destroying itself, the next thing to do is just replace the socket in the SE50 with a smaller one - or permanently wire it to the SE50 internally, as you mentioned.

Cheers, Graham

Re: any experts here on stitching together power supplies?

Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:12 am
by killedaway
awesome info there, thanks Graham!

the drilling thing is intriguing; i never thought of that. however, i'm not excited about the prospect of possibly ruining several plugs on my way to a winner, so i might just have to bite the bullet and replace the jack in the SE-50. that, on the surface sounds like a major pain, but i expect i can find a more suitable jack for not much money, and then i can breathe easy that i won't be a slave to the original's odd shape/size if i ever need another PSU later on.

before i go down that road, however, i'll likely go on a thrift store hunt, as mentioned by Giant up there, and just bring the SE-50 in with me, plugging away, as it were, until i find something that fits.

thanks, guys.

stupid Boss/Roland!

Re: any experts here on stitching together power supplies?

Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:35 am
by gmeredith
It just occurred to me that you could pick one up from a printer power supply from a Goodwill op-shop or garage sale - they usually have a large diameter hole. Just cut it off and solder it to the AC power supply.

Cheers, graham

Re: any experts here on stitching together power supplies?

Posted: Wed Jul 13, 2016 6:38 am
by seeahr
Posting this here for anyone who comes across this in the future and needs to power their SE-50/SE-70.

I am powering my Boss SE-50 using a universal power supply with a 6.3mm x3.0mm tip, see links below.

I picked up the SE-50 a few months ago as a "free toss in" along with some other gear because it had no power supply. It sat in the closet until I decided to look into a power supply last week, I had a Hosa universal adapter lying around but no appropriate sized tip so I did a bit of digging to find the right size and came across this post which specified the 6.3mm x 3.0mm tip. ... =1&t=71554

A quick trip to eBay and I found an Enercell branded version of the Radioshack Adaptaplug Q tip for $3, works like a charm!

Here's the Radioshack branded tip, the Adaptaplug Q. ... 2088498245

Here's the universal adapter I'm using, although I would imagine there are others that would work as well, I'm too lazy to search for you though. ;) ... 0Z31%20G3M

Re: any experts here on stitching together power supplies?

Posted: Thu Jul 14, 2016 12:28 am
by gmeredith
So you run it on a DC power supply, even though the Boss one is AC12V? And it runs?? Cool!!

I know basically that an audio device runs off DC voltages, even though its power supply might be AC - it just does the converting on the inside of the device, while some get the power supply to convert to DC. But sometimes they don't work, for some reason (a good example is my black MMT8 - it won't run on a DC plug pack, but the grey MMT8s will).

Good to know that the SE50 will work on DC, because you can get some ultra light weight DC adapters nowadays with high current suitable for this purpose.

Cheers, Graham