Darkroom Voltage

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Justin Low, Oct 20, 2004.

  1. Justin Low

    Justin Low Member

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    I live in Singapore and our power supply here is 220V.

    If I were to get a timer from eBay, say a Gralab 500 which is rated for 110V, would it work with my enlargers?

    The enlargers in question are a Meopta Opemus 6 Color and a Durst M370 Color.
     
  2. Shesh

    Shesh Member

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    Timers use the frequency for measuring clock speed. US uses 110v/60hz. I believe Singapore is 230v/50hz. Therefore, a US clock (connected via a step down transformer) would run a little faster in Singapore. However, since all that matters for exposure in an enlarger is consistency this should not be a problem.
    An easier way to go about it would be to buy a timer from eBay - UK.
     
  3. Loose Gravel

    Loose Gravel Member

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    If you are going to use US equipment with 220VAC, I'd suggest you get a converter. If you already have most of your darkroom equipment, just get a big one and run everything from one converter. Even if you could plug a 110VAC item into your 220VAC outlet, something would burn up: fuse, snubber, transistor, transformer, etc. If it doesn't do it right away, it will eventually. Not a good thing. Your other choice is to buy 220VAC equipment. Maybe get a converter for the things you already have and if you buy new things, get them locally and use 220VAC.
     
  4. Loose Gravel

    Loose Gravel Member

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    Not all timers use the line frequency (50 or 60 Hz) as the time base. Timers that do would be analog type with clock motors or cheap digital clocks. If the timer has a microprocessor in it, then the micro probably has a crystal for a time base. This means that the timer will work without regard to the input voltage frequency.
     
  5. Dave Mueller

    Dave Mueller Member

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    The short answer is NO. Connecting a 110VAC device to your 220VAC will cause damage. Using a converter ("step down transformer") won't work, because then you would be feeding 110VAC to the enlargers as well (unless you A- step the voltage back up or B- the enlargers need 110VAC). Remember than when you cut the voltage in half, the current will double - you might exceed the ratings on the timer. You'll be much better off with a timer designed for 220VAC than stringing together converters. The Gralab 500 is a digital timer, so the line frequency is irrelevent for timing. It is important depending on the power suppy design inside the timer, but this timer is rated for 50/60Hz.
     
  6. Shesh

    Shesh Member

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    Dave and Loose Gravel are right, freq will not matter for a digital timer. I stand corrected.
     
  7. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Buy from the UK Ebay site, or Europe as our equipment if 50hz 220 - 240 volts

    link: www.ebay.co.uk

    But in reality timers are being skipped as pro-labs go digital, I know a man to ask . . . . he has at least 5 5"x4" enlargers, lenses, timers etc just lying ripped out and no home to go to.
     
  8. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

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    Then he should put them on eBay where 5 x 4 enlargers are selling well; unlike 35mm.
     
  9. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    He might except it takes too long compared to the orders he's taking for digital camera's on his online store
     
  10. Justin Low

    Justin Low Member

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    Thanks guys! I'll probably follow Ian's advice and go for eBay UK. I can buy a timer here, but there is pretty much only one model on the market and it doesn't look very sturdy. Expensive too.

    Ian, would your friend be interested in selling his timer? :wink: