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Old 10th May 2012
daemonfowl daemonfowl is offline
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Default AC adapters .. when are they harmlessly exchangeable ?

Hi everybody!

As a general rule, we must use the right AC adapter for the right machine .. Sometimes,though, we are obliged to break the rule because we miss the thing in nearby stores ..
When would such a replacement be harmless ? when would it cause overheat ? or fire even ?
(for instance : replacing Titanium AC Adapter with ibook's or the other way round .. replacing dell's with compaq's .. voltage is the often same but slight differences exist in Watt outputs )
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Old 10th May 2012
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With the disclaimer that I'm not an electrician, I would think:

* voltage should be the same;

* polarity of the DC output must be the same (i.e., which contact is Plus and which is Minus);

* if the substitute adapter is capable of higher power (Wattage) output than the original, that may
be OK; the device will simply draw less. If the substitue adapter is not capable of enough power,
that would be a problem.

<link to above disclaimer>
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Old 10th May 2012
daemonfowl daemonfowl is offline
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Thanks IdOp !
Then in all cases it won't cause a hardware damage ???
(some would argue that wrong Ac Adapters shorten batteries lives .. )
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Old 10th May 2012
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Quote:
Then in all cases it won't cause a hardware damage ???
(some would argue that wrong Ac Adapters shorten batteries lives .. )
Wrong AC adapters can fry devices. Correct adapters can not.

As ldOp said, just make sure the Voltage is the same and the current (Watt) is equal or higher (but not lower) than what's required by the device.
And, of course, make make sure the pin layout is the same. Almost all adapters show them on the casings, and so do most devices (but not all).

When in doubt, better leave it alone.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daemonfowl View Post
Then in all cases it won't cause a hardware damage ???
It looks like my reply could have used a few more words to make it clearer (sorry about that). I meant that the three conditions I listed would be necessary to have it work. I did not mean that the 3 conditions would always be true; in general, they will not be. If they are not true there would be a risk of trouble, possibly quite serious. I agree with Carpetsmoker, when in doubt leave it alone until you can get the proper adapter.
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Old 11th May 2012
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Thanks CarpetSmoker ! Thanks IdOp !
That's what I did in fact : Mr Laptop is enjoying a Rip-Van-Winkle sleep !
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