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Matching the DC Power Supplies to the Application

DC power supplies are used for a wide range of applications from training the next generation of electrical engineers to developing breakthrough ultra-low power, wearable products. Whether you need a programmable DC power supply that provides power sourcing or one that pushes the limits of performance by delivering thousands of volts, choosing the appropriate variable bench power supply is critical to obtaining successful test results in teaching, research, design, and manufacturing.



How to Choose the Best DC Power Supply

The most common selection criteria are:

  • Number of output channels (single or multi output)
  • Output voltage, current, and power
  • Setting resolution and accuracy
  • Ripple and noise
  • Features and programmability
  • Advanced features like current measurement with nanoamp resolution, sequencing, analog inputs, digital I/O, and  programming features

DC Power Supply Basics

Keithley DC Power Supplies


Technical Brief

DC Power Supply Technical Information

DC power supplies are a foundational tool for testing and design that provides a regulated DC output to power any component, module, or device. Explore what a DC power supply is and how they operate in this brief.

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Application Note

Power Measurements on AC-DC Power Supplies

AC to DC power supplies are fully integrated into our daily lives. Learn more about what AC-DC power supplies do and how they are the heart of all our electronics.

5 Series B Double Pulse v1 995
Product Selector Guide

Selector Guide - General Purpose Bench Power Supplies, Special Purpose Power Supplies, and Electronic Loads

Choose the best DC bench power supply for your application. Tektronix and Keithley offer a comprehensive portfolio of bench power supplies to address your power sourcing needs.


DC Bench Power Supply Fundamentals

DC Bench power supplies are a staple of every engineer’s bench. Here are six things you should know about bench power supplies.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can a DC power supply be used for both prototyping and production?

Yes, many DC power supplies are versatile enough to serve both prototyping and production needs. Programmable units are particularly beneficial in production environments where different test scenarios may be required.

How does a DC power supply work?

A DC power supply works by providing a regulated direct current to power a component, module, or device. Most DC power supplies have two modes of operation. In Constant Voltage (CV) mode, the power supply controls the output voltage based on the user settings. In Constant Current (CC) mode, the power supply regulates the current.


How do you use a DC power supply?

A DC power supply is easy to use. These instruments connect to a device that’s being tested via leads that are inserted into the DC power supply panel. Using the front panel display, engineers can set voltages or current levels to power the device for testing.

What is a DC power supply?

A DC power supply provides direct current (DC) voltage to power and test a device under test such as a circuit board or electronic product. A DC power supply typically sits on an engineer’s work area or bench and is often referred to as a bench power supply.

What is a programmable DC power supply?

A Programmable DC Power Supply is a device that provides a stable and adjustable DC voltage and current output. Unlike traditional power supplies, programmable ones allow users to set and control the output parameters digitally.

Why would I need a programmable DC power supply?

These power supplies are essential in various applications, such as electronics testing, product development, research, and manufacturing. Their programmability allows for precise control in testing scenarios.

What is the purpose of using a DC power supply?

A programmable DC power supply is used by engineers to test a component, circuit or electronic device, such as IoT devices, medical products, mobile phones, and remote industrial sensors. The DC power supply allows engineers to set and supply specific voltages to power the device to confirm it’s working as intended.