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Project Notes

#433 Adjustable Power Supply Kit

Building a popular 30V/3A adjustable power supply kit, making an enclosure and testing.



The 0-30V 2mA-3A Adjustable DC Regulated Power Supply DIY Kit is widely available from most hobby electronics markets (aliexpress, Banggood, eBay).

It features continuously variable output voltage, and a variable current limit with overcurrent indicator/shutdown.

It appears this design may have originated from SmartKit in Greece, improved by various people, and at some point the “canonical design” was picked up for mass production (instantly identifiable by the red PCB and tall cap).

I’m certainly not the first to build the kit - it’s a common project, just search YouTube for 0-30V power supply - for example this build by Boris Dusnoki:


Kit Specifications

  • Material: PCB
  • Color: Red
  • Input Voltage: 24V AC
  • Input Current: Max 3A
  • Output Voltage: 0-30V (continuously adjustable)
  • Output Current: 2mA-3A (continuously adjustable)
  • Output Voltage Ripple: Max 0.01%
  • Assembled Item Size: 9 * 8.5 * 3.5cm / 3.5 * 3.4 * 1.4in
  • Package Size: 15 * 11 * 2cm / 5.9 * 4.3 * 0.8in
  • Package Weight: 86g / 3oz


Qty Refs Description Note
1   0.47Ω 5w  
1   33Ω 1/4w  
1   82Ω 1/4w  
1   220Ω 1/4w  
2   1kΩ 1/4w  
1   1.5kΩ 1/4w  
2   2.2kΩ 1/4w  
1   2.2kΩ 1w  
1   3.9kΩ 1/4w  
1   4.7kΩ 1/4w  
5   10kΩ 1/4w  
2   27kΩ 1/4w  
2   56kΩ 1/4w  
1   270kΩ 1/4w  
2   B10kΩ variable pot  
1   100kΩ trim pot  
2   100pF  
1   330pF  
1   100nF  
1   220nF  
1   10µF 50V  
2   47µF 50V  
1   3300µF 50V  
1   1N4004  
4   1N4148 extras supplied
4   1N5408  
2   5V1  
1   3mm white LED replaced this with a red LED in the final build
1   L7824 24V 1A Positive Regulator  
1   9014 NPN Small Signal Transistor  
1   9015 PNP Small Signal Transistor  
1   D882 NPN Power Transistor datasheet
1   D1047 High power NPN bipolar transistor datasheet
3   TL081 JFET Input Op Amp  
1   2-pin terminal block  
1   3-pin terminal block  
1   heatsink  
2   XH2.54 3P female plug and wire  
2   XH2.54 3P male PCB socket  
1   2 pin header  
4   M3 screw  
    22pF extra 3 in the kit for some reason!




The board is an easy build. At this point I tested it to verify operation. Note that it requires an AC supply to operate correctly.


How It Works

More information can be found in various places, such as:

Here’s a partial schematic of the main power supply circuit. I’ll probably tidy and complete this later (e.g. it does not include the 24V fan power supply).


Enclosure and Additional Hardware

To trick this out as a finished bench power supply, I opted for the following:

A 6.7” x 5.1” x 3.1” Blue Metal Enclosure Project Case


Mains power supply via fused socket and switch:


A 15W, 24VAC step-down transformer


A Volt/Ammeter display for the front panel. I’ve covered this component in detail in LEAP#289 VoltmeterAmmeterModule It is powered from the 24V fan power supply, in parallel with the fan.


I’ve mounted a 40mm 9 blade 24V fan on the side of the unit, without any additional heat-sink on the main power transistor. It turned out to be a noisy bugger. My power requirements are minimal for now, I will proabbly re-assess in the future and make some temperature measurements under load.


For the front panel power connectors, I’ve used a nice dual banana binding post.


Finally a metal bezel for mounting the current-limit LED on the front panel


Final Build






There are three calibration points for my build: zero volt offset for the regulator, and voltage/current adjustment for the panel meter.

The VR1 (blue pot) on the PCB is to zero the voltage offset of the power supply:


The meter has adjustments for voltage and current on the rear of the unit. With a 50Ω load (actually 49Ω according to my DMM), I’m reading 0.19A at 11.8V according to the panel meter. The voltage is spot on, but the current is off from the expected ~0.23A, and I later made the adjustment to get this within 10mA of actual.


Over-current Test

The current-limit setting (blue knob in my build) works as expected. When current limit is exceeded, the output shuts off:


Final Comments

This is a nice kit and a fun build, but a couple of draw-backs:

  • the voltage output is only as accurate as your meter, and fine adjustment is tricky. I’ve seen build variations that include course and fine voltage adjustments; this would be a good variation on the build (two pots or large and small resistance in series would work fine)
  • the current-limiting feature works well, but suffers from the fact that there is no feedback on what the setting is (without tripping it to test.
  • the fan is a very noisy heat-management solution - my own fault for selecting the fan I did. I would be interested in seeing how much power the unit could handle with heatsink alone.

All in all, a good general purpose power supply for the bench, especially where voltage/current limits do not have to be extremely precise. I think I still prefer my DPS-3005-based power supply as a more accurate and featured solution - see LEAP#407 DPS3005BenchPowerSupply for more on that project.

Credits and References

Project Source on GitHub Project Gallery Return to the LEAP Catalog

This page is a web-friendly rendering of my project notes shared in the LEAP GitHub repository.

LEAP is just my personal collection of projects. Two main themes have emerged in recent years, sometimes combined:

  • electronics - usually involving an Arduino or other microprocessor in one way or another. Some are full-blown projects, while many are trivial breadboard experiments, intended to learn and explore something interesting
  • scale modelling - I caught the bug after deciding to build a Harrier during covid to demonstrate an electronic jet engine simulation. Let the fun begin..
To be honest, I haven't quite figured out if these two interests belong in the same GitHub repo or not. But for now - they are all here!

Projects are often inspired by things found wild on the net, or ideas from the many great electronics and scale modelling podcasts and YouTube channels. Feel free to borrow liberally, and if you spot any issues do let me know (or send a PR!). See the individual projects for credits where due.