Computer Monitor Power Adapter Safety

Thread Starter

robgb

Joined Mar 18, 2024
2
I joined the forum specifically to ask this question. My cat ate through my computer monitor's power adapter cord. The power adapter is 14V 2.5A 35 Watts. I ordered a new generic adapter on Amazon that was advertised as that output, but when it arrived it is actually 14V 3.2A 45 Watts. It's my understanding that the voltage is the most important thing, and that 3.2A and 45 Watts shouldn't really have any negative safety effects.

Is this true?

I checked with the monitor manufacturer for a branded replacement and they want $88, which seems like highway robbery, but I'll spring for if I have to. The knockoff adapter cost me $20.

Any help is appreciated.
 

MisterBill2

Joined Jan 23, 2018
18,986
AS HAS BEEN MENTIONED, THE POWER SUPPLY CAPABILITY is adequate and so, given that the voltage is correct, the supply should be a very adequate replacement. BUT the very first thing to check is the polarity of the output, which in most cases will be a symbol on the label of the supply. You may need a good magnifier to follow it. Most of the connectors show the center as being positive, but some make the center negative, because they are evil. .
Your replacement should match the polarity of the original supply, in which case you are all set.
 

Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
7,956
Was the cat repairable?
Since the health of the cat went unmentioned I'd assume it is safe. Especially since the description of the wire chewed was
I would think it was the low voltage. Had it been house current (120VAC or 240VAC) the story would certainly be a different one.

Tiny wires are not unfixable. Like dl324 said,
I suggest giving it to someone who can to keep it out of the landfill a while longer.
Certainly a worth while endeavor. And if it were mine - and I don't need more power supplies laying around in my PS drawer - I'd simply replace the entire wire with something just a little more robust.

Here's the thing about power supplies: They're like a pitcher of water. You're thirsty. So you take a drink. That doesn't mean you have to drink the whole thing. You take what you need even though there's more than is needed. On the opposite side, it can be likened to a small glass of water and you have a big thirst. The small glass (or PS) doesn't have enough to satisfy the need. Though not drinking enough water won't cause you to overheat, a PS that is overtaxed can. Some will shut down, some will burn out a fuse, some will burn out, some will just burn. It all depends on the quality of the device. More power than what's needed is OK. Just match the voltage and polarity. Like MisterBill2 said:
the very first thing to check is the polarity of the output
Yes, some manufacturers can be evil that way. That's so a person with a "hungry for wire" cat will have to pay $88 for a replacement PS. As a cat owner myself, I'm very happy to hear the cat did not chew through the main power cord, the one you plug into the wall. It would be a completely different story if it were the main cable.
 

Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
7,956
The two critical things about a PS is voltage and sufficient current (or wattage). Wattage is volts times current. But you MUST match voltage and polarity. Here are some polarity indicators you may see. Note the only change is in which end is positive (or "Tip"). Most common is "Positive Tip". Negative tip is what some manufacturers do so you might plug in the wrong power supply and blow out your device. They think they're protecting their intellectual property but the way I see it is it's a way to force the consumer to buy the "Right" PS.

Screenshot 2024-03-20 at 8.29.24 AM.png
 

Ian0

Joined Aug 7, 2020
10,039
Here's the thing about power supplies: They're like a pitcher of water. You're thirsty. So you take a drink. That doesn't mean you have to drink the whole thing. You take what you need even though there's more than is needed. On the opposite side, it can be likened to a small glass of water and you have a big thirst. The small glass (or PS) doesn't have enough to satisfy the need. Though not drinking enough water won't cause you to overheat, a PS that is overtaxed can. Some will shut down, some will burn out a fuse, some will burn out, some will just burn. It all depends on the quality of the device.
[/QUOTE]
“Power supply” translates into French as “boite d’alimentation”: literally “a box of food”
 

Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
7,956
Here's the thing about power supplies: They're like a pitcher of water. You're thirsty. So you take a drink. That doesn't mean you have to drink the whole thing. You take what you need even though there's more than is needed. On the opposite side, it can be likened to a small glass of water and you have a big thirst. The small glass (or PS) doesn't have enough to satisfy the need. Though not drinking enough water won't cause you to overheat, a PS that is overtaxed can. Some will shut down, some will burn out a fuse, some will burn out, some will just burn. It all depends on the quality of the device.
“Power supply” translates into French as “boite d’alimentation”: literally “a box of food”
[/QUOTE]
That looks awfully familiar. From where did you quote it? Could swear I authored that statement.
Wait a minute - I did.
Here's the thing about power supplies: They're like a pitcher of water. You're thirsty. So you take a drink. That doesn't mean you have to drink the whole thing. You take what you need even though there's more than is needed. On the opposite side, it can be likened to a small glass of water and you have a big thirst. The small glass (or PS) doesn't have enough to satisfy the need. Though not drinking enough water won't cause you to overheat, a PS that is overtaxed can. Some will shut down, some will burn out a fuse, some will burn out, some will just burn. It all depends on the quality of the device. More power than what's needed is OK. Just match the voltage and polarity.
 

MisterBill2

Joined Jan 23, 2018
18,986
The wires that I have not been able to repair are a whole lot smaller than those. The ones from the ear-clip to the mic element that are inside that tiny stainless tube, that is about the diameter of a #16 wire. Why a microphone needs to be made so very flimsy is a serious question, except that it assures the sale of replacements, at $250 each.
 

ThePanMan

Joined Mar 13, 2020
800
The wires that I have not been able to repair are a whole lot smaller than those.
The ones I hated were the ones that consisted of magnet wire with enamel coating on them. They were hard to tell the difference in colors and there were several of each so that if you crossed just one wire you had a short. Plus having to strip them of that coating, I found it impossible. That was a set of headphones I never did fix. Got frustrated enough to just toss it in the bin. That was back in the 80's. I don't know if they use that scheme anymore, but with bluetooth stuff it doesn't seem like there will ever be a problem with broken headphone wires again. And the ones Airlines give you - - - - they suck for sound quality. Who'd want to fix those things.
 

MisterBill2

Joined Jan 23, 2018
18,986
I have come across those cables of individually insulated magnet wire. Certainly you are correct that a repair would be difficult. I tried one earphone as a dynamic microphone, they do work, sort of. Not likely to be damaged by high noise level is the main benefit. Also damaged headphone assemblies are easily available, really cheap (FREE). So that makes experimenting reasonable.
 

ThePanMan

Joined Mar 13, 2020
800
When I was a kid I took an old speaker and used it as a microphone. Sound quality was muffled like crazy but what could a 10 year old kid expect from a 12 inch speaker?! Somewhere around the age of 15 I took a plastic cup and held it against a record player needle and spoke into it. That turned out to be another poor example of a microphone. But I never thought of using old headphones as a microphone. Interesting idea. I probably have several broken headphones laying around, not to mention those you get for free on the airlines, the ones that hurt your ear after about 30 minutes of use.

Sorry for going off topic.
 

MisterBill2

Joined Jan 23, 2018
18,986
When I was a kid I took an old speaker and used it as a microphone. Sound quality was muffled like crazy but what could a 10 year old kid expect from a 12 inch speaker?! Somewhere around the age of 15 I took a plastic cup and held it against a record player needle and spoke into it. That turned out to be another poor example of a microphone. But I never thought of using old headphones as a microphone. Interesting idea. I probably have several broken headphones laying around, not to mention those you get for free on the airlines, the ones that hurt your ear after about 30 minutes of use.

Sorry for going off topic.
Many of the earphones offer the advantage of having plastic diaphrams that are very much moisture resistant, some are even waterproof, or at least splash-proof. And always there is the benefit of being very low priced.
And another benefit is that they can conveniently also operate as a speaker.
 
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