Re: Dell Power Question

Discussion in 'A+ Certification' started by Ghost, Sep 12, 2003.

  1. Ghost

    Ghost Guest

    In article <>, "Glenn \(SBfan2000\)"
    <> wrote:

    > My Sister is going to France for 7 months to teach English! She wants to
    > take her laptop and I informed her she needs an adapter! However I have
    > never seen on or been to France so I have questions! First, does the
    > adapter just change the "shape" of the outlet or convert power over to 120??
    > Dell told her to just plug it in and the laptop would automatically adjust!
    > This seems alittle obserd but is it true?
    >
    > I guess the info I need is; What do I need and where do I get it! My
    > sisters a procastinator and needs this ASAP. Leaving in two weeks!
    >
    > Thanks
    > Glenn




    All of Europe is on a 220VAC standard. US and Canada is 120VAC. You
    cannot just simply "plug it in" and it will adjust. Besides being twice
    the voltage we use, the plug shapes are definately different. She needs a
    vlotgae transformer. Sh can pick them up in Circuit City, Radio Shack,
    etc.
    Ghost, Sep 12, 2003
    #1
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  2. On Fri, 12 Sep 2003 13:29:53 GMT, (Ghost) wrote:

    >In article <>, "Glenn \(SBfan2000\)"
    ><> wrote:
    >
    >> My Sister is going to France for 7 months to teach English! She wants to
    >> take her laptop and I informed her she needs an adapter! However I have
    >> never seen on or been to France so I have questions! First, does the
    >> adapter just change the "shape" of the outlet or convert power over to 120??
    >> Dell told her to just plug it in and the laptop would automatically adjust!
    >> This seems alittle obserd but is it true?
    >>
    >> I guess the info I need is; What do I need and where do I get it! My
    >> sisters a procastinator and needs this ASAP. Leaving in two weeks!
    >>
    >> Thanks
    >> Glenn

    >
    >
    >
    >All of Europe is on a 220VAC standard. US and Canada is 120VAC. You
    >cannot just simply "plug it in" and it will adjust. Besides being twice
    >the voltage we use, the plug shapes are definately different. She needs a
    >vlotgae transformer. Sh can pick them up in Circuit City, Radio Shack,
    >etc.


    Right..better safe than sorry...just get the appropriate adapter and
    forget about it. :)

    Tom
    Tom MacIntyre, Sep 12, 2003
    #2
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  3. On Fri, 12 Sep 2003 23:38:01 -0400, "Glenn \(SBfan2000\)"
    <> wrote:

    >her "power supply is a nice size box outside the computer! Says 120-240v
    >input 20v output, so this supply can accept both, correct?


    The receptacle may not be the same, though...I am not all that
    knowledgeable about European power hardware, but it is a possibility.

    Otherwise, that should be correct.

    Tom

    >
    >Glenn
    >"Ghost" <> wrote in message
    >news:user-1209030929530001@1.0.0.101...
    >> In article <>, "Glenn \(SBfan2000\)"
    >> <> wrote:
    >>
    >> > My Sister is going to France for 7 months to teach English! She wants

    >to
    >> > take her laptop and I informed her she needs an adapter! However I have
    >> > never seen on or been to France so I have questions! First, does the
    >> > adapter just change the "shape" of the outlet or convert power over to

    >120??
    >> > Dell told her to just plug it in and the laptop would automatically

    >adjust!
    >> > This seems alittle obserd but is it true?
    >> >
    >> > I guess the info I need is; What do I need and where do I get it! My
    >> > sisters a procastinator and needs this ASAP. Leaving in two weeks!
    >> >
    >> > Thanks
    >> > Glenn

    >>
    >>
    >>
    >> All of Europe is on a 220VAC standard. US and Canada is 120VAC. You
    >> cannot just simply "plug it in" and it will adjust. Besides being twice
    >> the voltage we use, the plug shapes are definately different. She needs a
    >> vlotgae transformer. Sh can pick them up in Circuit City, Radio Shack,
    >> etc.

    >
    Tom MacIntyre, Sep 13, 2003
    #3
  4. Re: "All of Europe is on a 220VAC standard. US and Canada is 120VAC."

    True

    Re: "You cannot just simply "plug it in" and it will adjust."

    Wrong .... sort of.

    In most cases, the switching power supplies used in laptops will work
    with anything from about 90 volts to about 260 volts, and with any
    frequency from well under 50 Hz to well over 60 Hz.

    It's not that they "auto-adjust", it's that they just don't care, no
    adjustment (auto or manual) is necessary.

    A more detailed explanation of this requires some knowledge of how
    switching power supplies work, but the bottom line is that in most
    switching power supplies, the incoming AC is simply brute-force
    rectified to high voltage DC, and the power supply can run with that DC
    over a very wide voltage range (more than 2:1). Frequency doesn't
    matter either, because the diodes don't care, and the capacitors that
    provide filtering of the high voltage DC don't care either, again,
    within limits (very broad limits).

    [If you want to know "the rest of the story", the high voltage DC is
    switched on and off rapidly (20 to 100 KHz) through a pulse transformer,
    and the output of that transformer becomes your laptop DC power.
    Filtering is trivial, because at 20KHz to 100KHz, a very small capacitor
    can provide LOTS of filtering. The output voltage is determined by
    pulse-width-modulating (PWM) the switching of the primary (the switching
    of the high voltage DC), which is turn is done by comparing the actual
    output voltage to the desired output voltage.]

    But the bottom line is that the power supplies for 90% of all laptops
    will work on 90-260 volts, 50 or 60 Hz, with no adjustments or changes.
    Obviously, the plugs are different in different countries, so you will
    need either a different cord or an adapter plug.

    You can verify that this is (or isn't) the case by looking at the label
    on the power supply itself.


    Ghost wrote:
    > In article <>, "Glenn \(SBfan2000\)"
    > <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >>My Sister is going to France for 7 months to teach English! She wants to
    >>take her laptop and I informed her she needs an adapter! However I have
    >>never seen on or been to France so I have questions! First, does the
    >>adapter just change the "shape" of the outlet or convert power over to 120??
    >>Dell told her to just plug it in and the laptop would automatically adjust!
    >>This seems alittle obserd but is it true?
    >>
    >>I guess the info I need is; What do I need and where do I get it! My
    >>sisters a procastinator and needs this ASAP. Leaving in two weeks!
    >>
    >>Thanks
    >>Glenn

    >
    >
    >
    >
    > All of Europe is on a 220VAC standard. US and Canada is 120VAC. You
    > cannot just simply "plug it in" and it will adjust. Besides being twice
    > the voltage we use, the plug shapes are definately different. She needs a
    > vlotgae transformer. Sh can pick them up in Circuit City, Radio Shack,
    > etc.
    Barry Watzman, Sep 15, 2003
    #4
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