View Full Version : Cold Cathode and Inverter Compatiblity Tutorial

06-27-2008, 04:42 AM
Alright, nobody really needs a cold cathode tutorial, as they are really easy to do, but I thought I should post my problems and how I fixed them.

Cold cathode lighting is way cheap and easy to do, but for a lot of people, the cons (such as the dang power inverters exploding) keep many mild case modders, like myself, away from it.

I recently got a few extra cold cathode tubes from a friend (who's power inverter melted) and I wanted a higher quality power inverter.
I found and bought this.
It is a higher quality power inverter cased in aluminum. You can buy the kits from them and not have to worry about the tubes and power compatibility like I had to.

I came to find though that it was made by a different company and had different cables and pins. The cold cathode tubes are made by Sunbeam and the power inverter is by Vibelights.

I needed to use the pci port switch that I got with the cold cathode tubes that converted the 12v 4-pin molex connector to the power inverter 2-pin connector. The Vibelights inverter had a 2 pin power input also, but the pins were backwards. This was an easy fix as the connector on the Vibelights inverter is big enough that you can simply put the other connector in upside down and it still fits snugly.
http://img183.imageshack.us/img183/1830/powerconnectorve4.th.jpg (http://img183.imageshack.us/my.php?image=powerconnectorve4.jpg)

The next problem was the Sunbeam cathode tubes had a 3-pin power input and the Vibelights power inverter had a 2-pin power output. I just used some bent wire and wrapped in electrical tape. (wire is pulled out for picture)
http://img183.imageshack.us/img183/4589/cathodeconnectorhc8.th.jpg (http://img183.imageshack.us/my.php?image=cathodeconnectorhc8.jpg)
Note: Both brands of cold cathodes and power inverters use same voltage.

Powered up and everything is working fine.
http://img136.imageshack.us/img136/2277/powerpm9.th.jpg (http://img136.imageshack.us/my.php?image=powerpm9.jpg)
And now I have higher quality cold cathode lighting that will hopefully last a long time.

This tutorial is just to show my personal problems with the cold cathode power inverter, but can probably be used with other problems or at least show the pins of the different brands of power inverter and cold cathode tubes which I couldn't find anywhere online.

If there are any mistakes, problems, or questions about this mod, please post or pm me.

06-27-2008, 06:17 AM
Very nice first post! The only suggestion I would make would be to cut the wires, solder and heat shrink them. Welcome to TBCS!


06-27-2008, 01:19 PM
Thanks. I was actually planning on doing that, but I am getting a cold cathode sound controller and a new case later, so I wanted to keep this as non-permanent as I can until then.

I mainly made this to show the general compatibility/incompatibility of the different brands of cold cathode kits.