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This question already has an answer here:

I cannot find a clear answer to my question on the web, so I hope you can help.

I have a Sony VAIO VPCX11s1e/b netbook (11.1 in.) with a 10.5V input for a powersupply. I want to use it with a solar power system, but the lowest DC output on this is 12V.. Will it work ? Does anyone know about this specific VAIO model ? Thank you so much in advance :)

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marked as duplicate by Leon Heller, Gustavo Litovsky, Kortuk Mar 12 '13 at 0:06

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

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The topic is more complicated than you think. Yes, 12V can be reduced to 10.5V with a DC/DC converter (assuming a high current), or, you can just get a car inverter that takes an input of 12V (just like in the car), converts it to 110/220 and then you use your own adapter. This will work (except for some more loss).

The bigger issue is that the 12V is not likely constant. Depending on the sun and other factors it will vary and at some point the inverter won't be able to provide power and everything will come crashing down. So the issue needs to be addressed with some backup battery or some other system (switch over to AC for example).

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    \$\begingroup\$ It's a netbook, presumably it already has a battery of its own. Still, you do make some good points. \$\endgroup\$ – Ilmari Karonen Mar 11 '13 at 22:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ just get a 10 volt voltage regulator. I dont think .5 voltage difference would do any harm! \$\endgroup\$ – skyler Mar 11 '13 at 22:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ @skyler: A regular voltage regulator cannot dissipate the heat that would be generated. This can be several watts of lost power. A DC/DC solution would be more appropriate. \$\endgroup\$ – Gustavo Litovsky Mar 11 '13 at 23:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ I bet your laptop would be fine at 12 volts \$\endgroup\$ – skyler Mar 12 '13 at 2:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for replying. I'm going to use the solar battery and not the panel directly. I guess I need a cigarette lighter adaptor that converts 12V - 10.5V, as long as it doesn't use (too much) power itself. \$\endgroup\$ – Heine Nemborg Mar 14 '13 at 12:42

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