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I have a 12V power supply that I am using to power some lights in my garden. I want to also power (in parallel) a set of 12V LED lights which (of course) require a 12V DC supply. Is there a simple method of AC->DC conversion that I can use? I am pretty handy at electonics so I could make a simple converter given the correct guidance.

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You might have better luck getting an answer at the Electonics Stack Exchange site. –  Doresoom May 17 '11 at 20:30
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Possible dup on the EE site: electronics.stackexchange.com/questions/515/… –  BMitch May 17 '11 at 20:41
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You need a rectifier. –  Tester101 May 17 '11 at 21:47
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actually, an LED is a rectifier, a diode. It will illumminate with 12VAC –  shirlock homes May 17 '11 at 22:38
    
@shirlock - Technically true, but LEDs can be fried by too high an opposite-polarity voltage ("reverse polarity breakdown"). Different LEDs have different tolerances, but 12V is too high for most, so at best these LEDs would have a shortened lifespan (and at worst they'd fry almost immediately.) In addition, US AC cycles at 60Hz, which would produce an annoying flicker. For most people, the "flicker fusion rate" is about 75Hz. –  MT_Head May 18 '11 at 1:14

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Not to get all techy on you, but to do what you want to do with a 12 vac power supply, you will need a bridge rectifier. Besides converting to 12vdc, you need to fill the 60 hz reverse polarity portion of the AC wave. This requires a voltage divider, then reassemble the two rectified polarity sections into one same, continuous polarity voltage source. Keep in mind, if the AC source is sine wave AC, not switched AC, the DC result will only be apx 70% of the AC peak to peak voltage, or 17 vdc. Think the geeks at electronics exchange may have a simple circuit they could share with you. Realistically, since the Led lights probably have such a small amp draw, you probably could pick up a 24VDC power supply for cheap money online or maybe even your local Radio Shack, and save your self a lot of hassle.

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I already have a power supply for the lights but I have the ac supply drilled through the wall with a dusk to dawn sensor fitted so wanted to use all of this. Will post on electronics for a simple rectifier. –  Matt Wilko May 18 '11 at 12:32

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