Maker Pro
Maker Pro

Home made boosters


Apr 14, 2015
Apr 14, 2015
Hello, my first question! I am in the process of building a virtual pinball machine and due to a long ago work injury, I am very limited on funds. This machine runs on a 3 monitor setup and uses a 46" tv that I removed from the case. I will use a 32" tv for the backglass and a 17" pc monitor for a DMD. This will have many "toys" that I need to power. It runs on a PC I am putting together from my old pc parts with a few upgrades. I have the control boards that communicate with the pc for things to happen at certain events(solenoids firing when you push a flipper button, ect). The control boards I already have include a Ledwiz and a pacled64. They both provide PWM currents.

My problem is I can only work on it a little at a time(due to pain)and need a way to boost the power to provide the amperage to fire the toys. The ledwiz is a 32 channel controlboard that puts out 500ma per channel, the pacled64 provides 20ma per channel for a total of 96 outputs. They sell booster boards for this but I want to build my own. It would be nice to put all 96 channels on one board but the size would be very large. It will run on 12v DC and 5 volts dc.

I am going to use an old pc PSU for my current connected to a breakout box. I will show an example of a 16 channel bare bones booster but the picture in the link is turned around so you cant see the transistors. I would like to provide 5a per channel. Most will not come close to that amount of power but a few will(fan, gear motor, and shaker motor, all which I will build)I cant use mechanical relays for most due to timing (eg, RGB leds, shaker motor) and need the PWM for the lighting. I just tore apart 2 really old pc PSU's to get some parts (transistors) and am not sure what I need. I have 3 CT34B transistors and 9 others, 2 areC4139 and the other smaller ones I don't think will work with 12v(NT407F). I think those will work with 5v. The CT34B seem to be overkill and I found them for up to $10 a piece on ebay. I am sure it's brand related so I could just use cheapos.

My questions are: Do I need 96+ of these?(I may add more channels, RGB leds use 3 each unless I string the led strips in larger lengths)What is an opto for? The bare bones boards are available in 16 channel only and there is a SMT board that offers 32 channels for $120, the bare bones are $55 and I would need 3 of the first or 6 of the 2nd. This is a link to what I would like to build but with more channels:

I think it says needs 12v for switching because the output will be 12v. I have a Sainsmart clone 16 relay board that will activate the fan and solenoids and large slow acting loads. I also have a arduino but it won't work for this application.
I know the transistors on the board are less then half the size I have here but don't really know what I all need for this. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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