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Cheap DIY XPS power supply replacement for Variax 300/500/600/700

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After looking at prices of second hand XPS A/B boxes for the original series of Variaxes I decided they were crazy and I'd just make my own. I don't need the DI function of the Line 6 box so this is just a solution to power the guitar via a stereo (TRS) guitar lead.


To make it as cheap as possible it had to use a cheap switched "wall wart" power supply. Typically these produce a lot of noise when used with guitar fx boxes so I looked for low price board that could screen out the noise and reduce the voltage to 7.2v (the working voltage for Variax phantom power).


I chose the XL4016E1 DC 4-40V to DC 1.25-36V 8A Buck Converter. These sell for about £6 if you shop around. I figure everyone has a spare DC power supply kicking about so it just needs to be under 35 volts (9-15v preferred) and 1500mA output or higher (1000mA may work, haven't tested one). There is a pot on the power board to reduce the output voltage to around 7.2 volts.


To keep costs down I 3d printed the box and the design is here - Enable supports which are only needed for the DC socket hole. You can buy a suitable size project enclosure box and drill it out yourself. The ventilation is probably only needed for power supplies that are over 15 volts but best to make a couple of holes to allow airflow.


Parts -

the power board (it is supplied with supports which can be glued into the box).

a box

a mono and a stereo 1/4" socket (I used 2 stereo sockets which were cheaper to buy on ebay)

a socket to match your DC power supply. The 3D printed box has a hole for an 1!mm barrel type.

some wire.

optional - 4 pickguard screws for 3d printed box.


Pictures and schematic below. Tested 100% working without noise on a Variax 600. Definitely not advised for use with any of the later, standard, JTV or Shuriken models. Just to be 100% safe, plug in the power supply after the guitar leads. I've forgotten to do this a couple of times and nothing bad happened but you never know.61APiwYsXaL._AC_SL1414_.thumb.jpg.0db9745cbc05993abadc79a119c8afaa.jpg




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