Electronics and Gear
I find myself doing (or at least, trying to do) quite a lot of electronics repair work, particularly old computers. I've also been having fun working on electronics projects in general. Mr Carlson (YouTuber) is an excellent resource for things to build - well worth checking out his projects and videos.
At some point I may update this page to include a list of projects. I usually tag entries on my blog as
:electronics: if they actually relate to electronics, so you can find those here.
This stuff gradually accumulates as you need it, which I guess is what happens for many hobbyists. Although I should also confess that I just really like fancy test equipment…
- HP 6632A DC Power supply
- 20V 5A with GPIB
- Thoughts: Very nice to work with, little bit difficult to ramp the voltage up and down as you have to manually type in the voltage or current limit you want. I've yet to play with its GPIB interface.
- Eventek KPS305D - 0-30v, 0-5A
- Cheap current limiting power supply off Amazon. Actually quite happy with it.
- HP 1630D Logic Analyser
- 43 channels
- 1024 points per channel
- Thoughts: This analyser does what you would expect. I think its main disadvantage is that you cannot save layouts and assigning the labels and channels takes quite some time.
- Farnell DT12-5 Oscilloscope
- Two channel
- XY mode
- Thoughts: It's the first scope I actually bought (although my Dad gave me one which he picked up for free when I was a kid). I think I paid about £20 on GumTree. It's nice to keep an analogue scope around, particularly an analogue scope with XY mode.
- Tektronix TDS420A Digital Oscilloscope
- Four channel
- Enabled Options:
1M120,000 Point memory
2FAdvanced Digital Signal Processing math
- Thoughts I am an enormous fan of this oscilloscope. It is fast, easy to use and feature-full. If you are looking for a digital oscilloscope, I highly recommend this one.
- Siglent SDG810 Arbitrary Function Generator
- Thoughts Pretty happy with this unit although the rise time is quite slow.
- Kasuntest 6000 TRMS Digital Multimeter
- £30 or so on Amazon. Decent meter for the price, does the usual plus frequency, temperature and capacitance.
- Unknown Brand 858D Rework Hot Air Station
- Up to 450C
- Variable airflow
- Thoughts: It's okay for what I paid (£35 or so). In terms of air flow it certainly doesn't compare to an expensive Hakko or the likes. With a decent air gun you can literally blow solder out of holes, this one doesn't really have the force behind it to be able to do this.
- KATSU 312087 Soldering Station
- Up to 450C
- Thoughts: Includes a few extra tips which is nice, and they are a standard fit if you want to use something a bit more fancy. I have stuck with the original tip. I tend to keep it on about 350C and then if I have a very large solder joint which sucks the heat away, I increase it to 400C or 450C. The temperature is very easy to change, just two buttons for increase and decrease. Simple to use interface. The main disadvantage of this iron is not particularly sturdy. Occasionally I bend a pin up while it is heated, and I have one more than one occasion found the iron to fall apart slightly. Generally, I highly recommend this soldering station for the price, but you have to be aware that it is not as sturdy as many others.