• on Miscellaneous Electronics
  • Published in issue 1/2006 on page 0
About the article

Four Steps to LEDs on the Mains

A guided approach

Four Steps to LEDs on the Mains
Sure, there are many ways to power an LED from the mains. However, in good philosophical (and GPRS) tradition, the shortest way to success or any target for that matter is not necessarily the fastest — or, in EE-speak, the simplest circuits are not always the best. A lot can go wrong: a too small series resistor can vastly reduce the lifetime of the LED, while designing too many components into the circuit makes for a lot of wasted heat resulting in a really saddening efficiency figure.
Here’s a four-step design guide we publish in reply to a question we hear a lot lately: how do I make an LED light from the mains? Read and think along with us, ‘mind the steps’ here and there and find inspiration for your own designs!
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