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Dealing with Vintage Power Supplies

Your new vintage computer will need power.  Some people prefer a modern power supply to go with their not modern computer.  There are good reasons for this preference.  Some original power supplies (notably Atari and Commodore units) may fail "hot", passing high current or voltage into the computer itself.  Cases of this happening, and taking integrated circuit chips with it, have been reported, though we've never experienced it in restoring dozens and dozens of computers.  But there is a (small) risk, depending on the specific power supply.  

However, a new power supply does undermine the originality of the overall system.  And the chances of an old power supply failing (barring the notorious Atari "ingot" power supply) are very low.  

Commodore 64 power supplies and the Atari "ingot" type 5V power supply are a particular point of contention among vintage computer enthusiasts.  Some are filled with resin, which over time degrades and loses its thermal transport properties that the power supply was built around.  While we have seen dead C64 power supplies show up on our benches, we have never personally seen one fail and do any harm to a Commodore 64.  Further, replacements for these Commodore power supplies, since they are both 5V and 9VAC supplies, are prohibitively expensive if our prices are to remain competitive on these units.  But anybody who wants a new power supply with an old Commodore 64 should consider these: https://www.keelog.com/power-supply/ 

Atari 5V power supplies are easily replaced with inexpensive, modern units (which we have available for sale).  Anybody who purchases a system with an Atari "ingot" 5V power supply has the option of requesting a free, modern replacement from us at the time of purchase (we'll keep the "ingot" supply).

The bottom line is: using a new power supply or a vintage power supply is a personal choice, and we let you make that choice.  We create new 5V power supplies for Atari 600XL/800XL and XE computers and have them for sale by request.  We source new 9V AC power supplies for Atari 400/800/1200XL computers and Atari disk drives from reliable sources as necessary.  And we have a large selection of original power supplies available for sale.  By default, we include original, well-tested power supplies with the computer you buy from us, unless stated or requested otherwise.

NOTE: To minimize any risks, we test all power supplies under load on an oscilloscope, looking for transients, over/under voltage, or malformed signals, while also checking for proper operating temperature.