Brightness Control for small Lamps
Electronic Schematics > Motor, light and power control > Brightness Control for small Lamps

Switching operated 1.5V bulbs

Portable unit, 3V battery supply

Lamp Regulator


P1________________470K   Linear Potentiometer

R1_________________10K   1/4W Resistor
R2_________________47K   1/4W Resistor (See Notes)
R3__________________1K5  1/4W Resistor

C1_________________22nF   63V Polyester Capacitor
C2________________100µF   25V Electrolytic Capacitor

D1,D2___________1N4148    75V 150mA Diodes

IC1_______________7555 or TS555CN CMos Timer IC

Q1_______________BD681   100V 4A NPN Darlington Transistor

LP1_______________1.5V 200mA Bulb (See Notes)

SW1_______________SPST Switch

B1__________________3V (Two 1.5V AA or AAA cells in series, etc.)

Circuit operation:

This device was designed on request, to control the light intensity of four filament lamps (i.e. a ring illuminator) for close-up pictures with a digital camera, powered by two AA or AAA batteries. Obviously it can be used in other ways, at anyone's will.
IC1 generates a 150Hz squarewave having a variable duty-cycle. When the cursor of P1 is fully rotated towards D1, the output positive pulses appearing at pin 3 of IC1 are very narrow. Lamp LP1, driven by Q1, is off as the voltage across its leads is too low. When the cursor of P1 is rotated towards R2, the output pulses increase in width, reaching their maximum amplitude when the potentiometer is rotated fully clockwise. In this way the lamp reaches its full brightness.


  • LP1 could be one or more 1.5V bulbs wired in parallel. Maximum total output current allowed is about 1A.
  • R2 limits the output voltage, measured across LP1 leads, to 1.5V. Its actual value is dependent on the total current drawn by the bulb(s) and should be set at full load in order to obtain about 1.5V across the bulb(s) leads when P1 is rotated fully clockwise.

Title: Brightness Control for small Lamps
electronic circuit
Published on: 2005-02-03
Reads: 734
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