This list is now maintained at http://www.videofoundry.co.nz/ianman...driverlist.php. Enjoy.
The list below was Last edited by TorchBoy; 09-13-2008 at 11:04 PM.
We'll see how this goes, shall we? This is in roughly increasing input voltage order, with regulators that can boost the voltage split out. All boards linked may also be available in other quantities or from other suppliers. The ones linked may not be the best prices but are in stock at time of writing. All prices in US$.
Is there any point in being exhaustive with the links? Suggestions please.
Boost and Boost/Buck Regulators
Joule Thief 1x AA. Make your own. 0.35-1.5 V in. For driving a single 5mm LED from an alkaline AA (do not use with NiMH). There's a handy instruction video on YouTube.
"3W/5W" 1x AA. $3.96. Boost board; output voltage and current not constant, approximately 0.8-1.5 V in. 1.0 V in gives 0.3A out, 1.4 V in gives 0.7 A out. Run on two fresh NiMH it gets very hot - not advised. 20 modes in three groups.
5-Mode 1-2x AA. $3.00. Boost board; output voltage and current not constant, approximately 0.8-3 V in, almost 700 mA output with two fresh AAs. Modes are high, low, and three different strobes!
Madmax. $13. Boost regulator, 0.8-5 V in. Unknown output regulation. Two flavours, Lite and Plus. Maximum power output ~0.75 W (Lite) or ~1.5 W (Plus). Maximum current output ~700 mA (Plus). Efficiency 76-88%. 14 mm diameter.
"2.5W" 2x AA. $10.66 for 5. 100~700 mA out. 15mm diameter. Test data discussion (in which someone points out the test data is wrong).
20 mode, 1x AA and AAA. $3.96 (AA), $4.50 (AAA). Boost boards; output voltage and current not constant, 0.8-7 V in. I believe these are identical in operation but the AAA board is narrower and taller.
19 mode 1-2x AA. $4.26. User-adjustable output voltage (not current) up to 7 V. Capable of ~700 mA output from a single AA NiMH cell, or ~1000 mA from two. Efficiency 60-91%. 17 mm diameter. To disable user modes (so many strobes and SOSes!) see this post.
Badboy. Mostly $13, but $16.50 for 750 mA & 1 A versions. Boost regulator, 1.5-9 V in. Vin must be less than Vout. Maximum Iin 1.5 A. Constant current output, board available as a "blank" (add set resistor), or preset to 300 mA, 400 mA, 500 mA, 750 mA, or 1000 mA. Efficiency 82-90%. 14 mm diameter. Must always have a load connected.
GD. $18-20. Buck/boost regulator, 1.8-5.4 V in. Constant current output, board available as a "blank" (add one or two SMT set resistors), or preset to 500 mA, 750 mA, or 1000 mA. Maximum output voltage 5.4 V. Efficiency: 85-93%. 14mm diameter. Must always have a load connected.
BB Nexgen. $20-21. Boost regulator, 2-6 V in, but apparently needs to be started with Vin between 3.4 V and Vf to start the full current regulation mode, otherwise it starts in semi-regulated mode, whatever that is. Constant current output, maximum 1 A. Board available as a "blank" (add set resistor), or preset to 400 mA, 500 mA, 750 mA and 1000 mA. Efficiency 80-91%. 14mm diameter. Must always have a load connected.
Fatman. $22. Boost regulator, 2.7-12 V in. Vin must be less than Vout. User adjustable constant current at 3-16 V, up to 1000 mA. Optional external adjustment. Efficiency 80-96%. 20 mm diameter. Must always have a load connected.
MaxFlex. $32. Boost regulator, 2.5-20 V in. Vin must be less than Vout. User configurable constant current, 350-1200 mA at up to 24 V. Efficiency 83-93%, uController UI, status LED. 23 mm diameter. Open circuit protected.
Shark. $20. Boost regulator, 2.7-20 V in, although Wayne says "The Shark has a hard time at voltages below ~4V". Vin must be less than Vout, and should be >1/3 Vout (preferably >1/2 Vout). Maximum input current 4 A. Regulates on voltage or current, output current adjustable from 50-980 mA (or greater by changing set resistor, although that would remove load protection) at maximum 26 V. Open circuit protected. 19.1 mm diameter. Some questions are answered in this CPF thread.
$9. User interface board for Shark driver. Available in two flavours - Plain (Low, Medium, High) and Special (Low, Medium, High, SOS).
Blue Shark. $25. Boost regulator, 2.7-25 V in. Maximum input current 4 A. Regulates on voltage or current, output current adjustable from 50-980 mA (or greater by changing set resistor, although that would remove load protection) at maximum 32 V. 19.1 mm diameter. Includes copper heatsink; improved thermal performance and higher output voltage over standard Shark.
CCHIPO. $45. Boost regulator, 4-30 V in. Vin must be less than Vout. User adjustable constant current output up to 2 A or 39 V (45 W max). Optional external adjustment. Efficiency 84-92%. Open circuit protected, but if doing so, LED(s) must not be connected until output has discharged from 39 V.
Buck and Linear Regulators
AMC7135 1x Li-ion/3x NiMH/4x alkaline (datasheet). $varies. Linear regulator, 2.7-6 V in; Vin must be at least 0.12 V above Vf of LED to stay in regulation. Each AMC7135 outputs constant current, about 1/3 amp (~330 mA). Boards come with one to four AMC7135s, and single mode up to 19 mode. Boards can be paralleled to give greater output. Very efficient when input voltage close to output voltage but drops a bit when input voltage is higher; average efficiency for 3x NiMH or 1x Li-ion can be over 90%. Test results and discussion for 3 and 4 chip boards. The AMC7135 has built-in thermal protection but the multi-mode control chips used on the multi-mode boards are much less rugged. Tip: If input voltage is too high you may be able to use another LED in series with the board to drop the voltage. (The set current is <1 mA so both LEDs will get practically identical current. Diagrams and much discussion of use with multiple Seoul P7s and multi-mode boards.) More than one extra LED appears to be not a good idea for use with the lower modes of multi-mode boards since the Vf of the extra LEDs decreases too much at the low current to protect the driver from the battery voltage. Flashing modes appear unsuited to this technique.
3.6-9 V. $6.97 for four-pack. Buck regulator, 800-1000 mA output dependant on input voltage, although a hack for lower output is explained here. 16mm diameter. Efficiency 76%-91%, test data graph.
8 mode 3.7-8.4 V. $7.35 for two-pack. Buck regulator based on Zetex C310 chip. Output 800-1000 mA on high. Modes 100%, 50%, 30%, 20%, 10%, SOS, strobe, fade in & out. With 4 x NiMH cells ability to select modes is lost about when the cells need to be recharged. No reverse polarity protection.
SOB. $18-$20. Buck regulator, 3-16 V in. Constant current output, board available as a "blank" (add one or two SMT set resistors), or preset to 400 mA, 500 mA, 750 mA, 917 mA, or 1000 mA. DD when Vin less than Vf. Efficiency 75-85%. 14 mm diameter, has thermal protection.
Kennan. $3.10 (sold out). Buck regulator based on PT4105 chip, 5-18 V in. Constant current output. Off the shelf it's set to 750 mA, but this can be changed by using a different set resistor (original is soldered surface mount). Input voltage needs to be 1-3 V above output. Efficiency 79-91%. Can output 1 A with more than 9 V in.
Kennan 2. $3.43. Buck regulator based on PT4105 chip, 5-18 V in. Constant current output. Off the shelf it's set to 1000mA (even though that's out of spec for the regulator chip below 9V in) but this can be changed by using a different set resistor (original is soldered surface mount). This thread discusses the control features of this new version. Input voltage needs to be 1-3V above output, but the new components will shut the board down under 6.2V. Efficiency perhaps as low as 60% thanks to running it out of spec and it also runs quite hot because of it. In summary, more versatile but not as useful.
A Kennan variant (PT4105 chip) is available as part of a drop-in assembly with a Cree LED: P4 $10.14, Q5 $12.42, and R2 $12.40. They work out cost effective for an LED, reflector and driver board.
bFlexV2. $30. Buck regulator, 4-20 V in. Constant current out 1000 mA (adjustable) at up to 20 V, uController UI.
CCxW. $15 (350 mA), $18 (700 mA or 1 A). Buck regulator, 4-30 V in. Constant current out 350/700/1000 mA at up to 16 V. 3 models to choose from.
nFlex. $30. Buck regulator, 4-30 V in. Constant current out 1000mA (adjustable) at up to 25 V, uController UI.
P7 "3 amp" 3-mode driver. $12.01. Buck regulator, 5.5-15.5 V in. Constant current out claimed to be 2.8 A high, 1.38 A medium, 0.25 A low. Note that KD's runtime figures don't stack up, and their specs show some confusion about whether high is 2.8 A or 3.0 A. StefanFS here says it gets really hot with 8 AA cells. Efficiency and output current graphs.
12V Ludde. $2.53. Buck regulator, approx 10-14 V in (designed for car lighter socket). Constant voltage output 5.5 V (which is not quite within USB spec). Can do somewhere around 700-1000 mA before dropping out of regulation. Cute little red LED to show it's working.
MR16-base drivers: 1*1 W, 3*1 W, 1*3 W. $2.53 ea. Buck regulator based on PT4105 chip, claimed 12-16 V AC in, although anything over about 13 V AC would be outside the PT4105 spec. Will also work with DC - PT4105 can handle 5-18 V DC in; you wouldn't need the rectifier so you could short that out, but it will still work (slightly less efficiently) with it. Constant current out 320-350 mA for 1 W versions, 650-700 mA for 3W version (not 320-350 mA as stated). There's also a socket available for them.
AC mains-voltage single LED drivers:
- 1 * 1 W, 1 * 3 W. $3.32. Buck regulator, 85-265 V AC in. Constant current out 320-350 mA for 1W versions, and a probable 650-700mA for the 1*3W. Reported to not be very efficient (not normally a major problem for mains power). These are called GU10 drivers but do not themselves have the bayonet pins of the GU10 connector.
- 1 * 7 W. $7.99. Buck regulator, 110-240 V AC in. 2A constant current output, although one buyer claims it's only 1.2A.
AC mains-voltage multiple LED drivers:
Buck regulator, 85-265 V AC in. Constant current out 320 mA.
- 3 * 1 W. $3.32. Approx. 9-10 V out. Called a GU10 driver but does not itself have the bayonet pins of the GU10 connector.
- 5-7 * 1 W. $5.99. 16-26 V out.
- 9-12 * 1 W. $8.28. 27-42 V out.
Buck regulator, 100-240 V AC in. 3-12 V out.
- 1-3 W. $9.15. Constant current out 350 mA.
- 3-6 W. $10.85. Constant current out 700 mA.
Other Boards and Information
D2DIM. $20. PWM dimming only, 3-16 V in. Out <16 V, 3.4 A. This board does no current limiting.
Drop-in Module List (part 2).