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I want to buy a Super Nintendo AC Adapter Power Supply. The original ones are rare nowadays. I've read on the web that originals adapter have a component that controls the current to avoid damaging the console while cheaper (generic) ones don't always have.

I'm skeptical and this is why I'm asking:

Is it safe to use an aftermarket / generic AC adapter cable instead of an official one (made by Nintendo), even if the voltage provided are the one needed ?

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    Depends on the adapter, and if it provides the correct voltage. – Frank Apr 11 '16 at 21:57
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    Alternatively, search Ebay specifically for "SNS-002". You will find plenty of used, but original Nintendo brand, SNES power adapters. If you are not in the US, I imagine you could easily find the specific model number for your region. As of right now, you can buy a clean and tested original AC Adapter for $14 w/free shipping. I'd not hassle with looking for one that might have properly working voltage regulator. Instead, I'd go with an original. – RLH Apr 13 '16 at 12:48
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    @RLH Yes, don't ever buy a generic power adapter, even though they seem like a good deal, they aren't. It's dangerous and could potentially burn your house down. – RedEagle2000 May 3 '16 at 23:43
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First, you need to check your connections. If the cable has a black box along it, you have a transformer to step the voltage down, before it reaches the console. If not, you only have to worry about the connection to the console.

Both should have a sticker or engraving to display the electrical requirements for input and output. Provided the plugs match, you generally have to match three things; voltage, polarity, and amperage.

Voltage

Voltage is the most important, as you need to match this exactly, on both ends. Not enough, and your system probably won't start. Too much, and it will probably fry itself.

First, you need to match the power output, from the wall.

Most countries use 240 volts. A few select places, such as the U.S. and Japan, 110 volts. You might even find the console/transformer supports both. If there is a difference, you will have to buy a step down/step up transformer. If you're not sure where to get one of these, you can try an electrical wholesaler, or any store that sells fuses.

If the cable used a transformer, you will have to match the voltage it outputs with the voltage the console accepts.

According to a couple of forums I visited, most notably, a post where a user is attempting to confirm an alternate transformer, the SNES takes a 9V power adapter. You should still confirm with your console. I can not stress this enough, voltage is easily the part I see most, where users mismatch the requirements and do irreversible damage.

If you're not confident in checking the numbers, again, take it to an electrical wholesaler. While they may not, necessarily, have stock of the required parts; they will be able to confirm if the adapter is correct, and offer support, if it is not.

Polarity

I've rarely seen this to be an issue, but if you use positive polarity when you need negative polarity, it certainly will be.

This should not be an issue, at all, if you are not using a transformer. In fact, I have only seen this be an issue with "multi-transformers", where you could actually change the polarity. When I have seen this mismatched, it led to frying the device and/or starting a large fire.

If you are using a multi adapter, included instructions should provide details on changing the polarity. Keep in mind that polarity is often represented by a symbol, as opposed to the words "positive" and "negative".

Example of polarity symbols.

Amperage

Lastly, you will need to match the amps. Generally, this will be displayed as amps (A); but may be displayed as milliamps (mA). There are 1000 milliamps in an amp.

Generally you are allowed to exceed this value, but some argue that you should not go too much over the requirement.

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So long as the power cable's console plug matches the intended console, it should be safe to use... unless your generic cable shorts out or something.

Also, as mentioned by others who've been kind enough to correct me in this regard, it's a good idea to ensure the intended generic cable matches the voltage, and design, of your console.

  • Yes, it matches the intended console, but it's not made by Nintendo. – Galabyca Apr 11 '16 at 20:21
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    I don't think this is a full answer. You should make sure the voltage matches up or your could damage your equipment. – two bugs Apr 11 '16 at 20:22
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    This is also dangerously misleading; just because a plug fits doesn't mean it can, or should, work. – Frank Apr 11 '16 at 21:58

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