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Adapting a USB device to plug into AC - converter to buy?

By PFHappy ยท 4 replies
Dec 18, 2012
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  1. Hello!
    I have a tiny USB fiber optic Xmas tree that was given to me as a gift and it can only be used when plugged into a USB port when the computer is on. Then the tree lights up, the colors change, and all that.
    I would like to use this device when the computer is not on, thereby plugging it into a wall outlet. It is a very small simple little fiber optic tree 5V, and I'd rather not burn the little thing to pieces by purchasing the wrong adapter.
    Some adapters are for charging only, aren't they? I'm not really charging this device just letting it run. Any advice?
    Thank you in advance.
  2. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,546   +429

    The charging adapters will be just fine, all they are doing is supplying the correct voltage. The more expensive ones can provide more milliamps for bigger USB devices (like a 10" tablet as opposed to something like an iPod Shuffle). I'd say you could buy the cheapest one possible, but you may want to check the tree for its amperage draw and be sure you don't get a wall adapter that provides less than the tree wants.
  3. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 2,887   +626

    As SNGX says above, something like the Apple iPhone/pod wall charger adapter will work fine. A lot of phones come with the wall-socket-to-USB adaptor.

    Also, a lot of newer computers support USB charging when the PC is turned off. How old is your PC?
  4. PFHappy

    PFHappy TS Rookie Topic Starter

    My computer is almost 5 years old - a Lenovo desktop unit... I don't see where I have this support when the computer is turned off... I don't see where here.
    There is a page that have a lot of them for sale, really cheap. Are these standard USB-size holes? I guess that's my problem... can't tell whether it's for an MP3 player or what here...
    Thanking you in advance.
  5. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,546   +429

    Any of those will work, provided the milliamp output is at or above the milliamp draw for your tree. USB is a standard size, it will fit. It makes absolutely no difference what the plug's intended use is, its just power.

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