Which are the best tattoo power supplies? What are the top brands?
Tattooing is a precision art. Therefore, it’s crucial to have a reliable, professional tattoo power supply.
As you shop for tattooing accessories, it helps to know the best brands.
That’s why today we reviewed a variety of power supplies from the top manufacturers.
Let’s talk about how to choose the best one for your tattoo machine.
Which is the best power supply for a tattoo machine?
It’s easier to find the right power supply if you sort them by the amount of voltage they provide.
Always pick one that provides sufficient power for your tattoo iron.
The most common rating would be for a maximum of 18 V and 1.5 A. Rotary pens use a lot less than this.
Moreover, you can get wireless power supplies for rotary machines.
Next, you need a connector that’s compatible with your machine. For example, does yours have RCA?
After that, what kind of display would you prefer? The best tattoo power supplies for beginners have digital readouts because they are easier to set up and control (1).
Finally, will you need extra accessories, or is everything in the box? Does it come with cables and a foot pedal?
Those are the essential points to consider when shopping for a tattoo machine power supply.
Beyond them, it’s nice to have a warranty or satisfaction guarantee in case things go wrong. And you’ll also want to see how hard it is to clean or cover the power supply to keep your workspace sanitary.
How to set up a tattoo power supply
Due to the current world crisis, it’s been harder to find tattoo power supplies from some brands. You might find yourself settling for a lesser-known manufacturer.
That’s why I’ve put a little background information about most of the brands in the reviews below.
Now, here’s how to check your new tattoo power supply and prepare it for use.
I know it’s annoying, but please read the instructions first. Sometimes they’re a little difficult to understand, so look for a setup video, too.
Start by plugging in all the connections. Does everything click into place and stay put?
Once you turn it on, does your tattoo machine run smoothly? How does it sound and act when you adjust the voltage?
On a coil tattoo machine, rub your thumb against the armature bar. This will slow down the action, but as soon as you remove your thumb, the iron should recover.
Just for fun, try tattooing an orange. Are there any strange smells or sounds, or is everything working okay?
Hopefully, you’re good to go.
Best Tattoo Power Supplies & Top Brands
Now, let’s find you the perfect power supply for tattooing.
Some top brands won’t sell unless the buyer can prove they are an established tattoo artist or apprentice.
Fortunately, the German company Cheyenne isn’t picky like that. They’ve been around since 2007.
Their origins are in medical technology, which is why they emphasize hygiene and safety. Besides power supplies and tattoo machines, they manufacture needle cartridges and grips.
Cheyenne Tattoo Machine Power Supply PU1
Cheyenne’s PU1 power supply is compatible with any standard coil tattoo or rotary machine. They recommend it for the Cheyenne Hawk because of the jumpstart chip.
The compact form factor makes it ideal for traveling, not just sitting in the shop. It’s sleek and easy to keep clean.
It has a touchscreen digital display that allows you to adjust the voltage quickly. Plus, you can change the stroke frequency between 60 to 160 per second.
The manufacturer offers a 1-year warranty.
Cheyenne Compact Power Supply PU4
If you have a Cheyenne SOL tattoo machine, the PU4 is an excellent choice. It’s also compatible with tattoo machines from other brands as long as you have the adapter cable.
You can mount the power supply in a variety of ways as it has a magnetic bottom and a clip-on stand.
It’s lightweight and has a small form factor, too.
The output ranges between 4.7 and 12.5 V with 0.1 V increments. It provides precise control, and you can view the stitch frequency on the display.
Moreover, it has a stopwatch to keep track of time.
Hildbrandt is based in British Columbia. It was founded by two brothers back in 2004.
The company offers a standard 6-month warranty on their products.
Tattoo Power Supply HILDBRANDT Afterlife
Why be boring when you can have a digital power supply that looks like a coffin?
The Afterlife runs two tattoo machines at once. You can plug in both your liner and shader and set them up beforehand to save time.
There are six memory settings for each individual machine. Then, the touchscreen displays the voltage, amps, speed, runtime, and duty cycle.
The voltage adjustments are incremental – increase or decrease by 0.1, 0.2, or 0.5 V.
What’s more, the power supply has 2.3 A overload protection. Even if the power goes off, it will retain the presets and the time in its memory.
Stand it on its legs or use the suction cups to secure on a smooth surface in your workspace.
It’s CE-approved for safety and runs on worldwide voltage as long as you have a plug adapter. Just remember that you’ll need to buy the foot switch and clip cord separately.
BRONC is an Asian manufacturer registered with the US Trademark Office.
They are a tattoo equipment supplier with their own factories. You might recognize him under the brands Hummingbird and Bigwasp.
BRONC Professional Tattoo Power Supply
This economical power supply is a top seller. It’s popular with beginning tattoo artists as well as pros who want an inexpensive portable power supply.
The package includes a power cord and holder parts, but no foot pedal. But it comes with a 1-year warranty and a satisfaction guarantee.
There is an LCD that allows you to control the output between 3 to 18 V. You can also view the stopwatch there.
The maximum output current is 3 A with +/-0.1 A accuracy. Outstanding for a cheap power supply!
Reviewers say that this is a simple yet reliable power supply for a single tattoo machine.
Pirate Face Tattoo Dual Digital Tattoo Power Supply
If you’re familiar with tattoo power supplies, you might recognize the brand Tattoo Star. They’re the ones that made this model.
The seller is based in the USA, but they offer power cords to match any country’s electrical outlet. That’s because the power supply runs on worldwide voltage.
It supports connecting two tattoo machines like a liner and shader. Use the switch to alternate between them. (Only one can run at a time.)
The dials and digital display let you select between 1.5 and 18 V.
That range of output makes it compatible with virtually any tattoo machine on the market.
Furthermore, it comes with a 6-foot clip cord and a stainless steel foot pedal.
Two artists in Hong Kong started Dragonhawk in 2001. Now they sell tattoo equipment worldwide.
It’s a popular brand partly because it’s less pricey. Happily, they offer a money-back guarantee on their products.
Dragonhawk LCD Dual Tattoo Machine Power Supply
Choose from pink, yellow, or black housing for this compact power supply.
It runs both coil and rotary machines as it has a maximum of 1.5 A and 18V output. Select what you need with the dial and the digital readout.
The box includes a foot pedal and clip cord.
Plus, the CE-listed device also has auto shutdown and over-voltage protection.
Although I didn’t find an online presence for Dragon Art, they get a favorable review from Fakespot.
Dragon Art Dual Digital Tattoo Power Supply
I suspect that this is the same Tattoo Star power supply sold by Pirate Face. But this time, you can choose either a black or red casing.
You can plug in two tattoo machines like a shader and liner with RCA connectors. Then you don’t have to unplug one and reset the voltage to use the other.
But unfortunately, you can’t use both machines at the same time. Flip the switch to switch between them.
Then dial the output from 1.5 to 18 V. The digital readout reveals the current setting.
The power supply comes with a steel foot pedal, two clip cords, and a power cord.
Happily, it includes a satisfaction guarantee.
Aurora II Power Supply, 2nd Gen, by Dragon Art
Remember the Atom power supply from Critical? Here’s a similar model from Dragon Art.
It’s compatible with all rotary and coil tattoo machines, plus the aluminum housing is available in a variety of colors.
You can plug in two machines at once and switch between them with the press of a button. It accepts quarter-inch mono plugs for standard clip cords.
Although it doesn’t have preset voltages, it has an LED for digital fine-tuning.
Also, it supports two foot pedal modes: momentary or maintained.
Secure it to your workspace with the built-in magnet or suction cups.
Tekpower designs power supplies in California and builds them in China. They are a subdivision of Kaito Electronics.
Tekpower HY-1502 DC Power Supply
Here is an inexpensive power supply that you can test for 30 days and get your money back if you’re not happy. It comes with a 1-year warranty, too.
Dial in the output between 1.5 and 15 V with a fixed 2 A current. The setting appears on the LED.
It doesn’t come with a foot pedal or clip cords, but it’s CE-approved for safety.
Mast U1 Tattoo Battery Wireless Power Supply by Dragonhawk
If you use the Mast rotary tattoo machine, it runs on this wireless power supply.
Other rotary pens may also be compatible. Be careful as it may work its way loose while you’re tattooing.
Three hours of charging will give you six hours of work time. Keep an eye on the indicator bars to see how much charge is left.
Recharge it with the standard micro USB cable that comes in the box. It has a built-in defense against short circuits and charging protection.
Users say the runtime is satisfactory, and it doesn’t add much weight to the machine.
Hawink was founded in 2008. Although they manufacture in Asia, they have warehouses located in the USA and Europe.
If one of their products breaks down within the warranty period, they offer free repairs.
Hawink Mini Tattoo Battery Tattoo Rechargeable USB Power Supply
Although not as slim as the Mast power supply, Hawink’s wireless model is well-balanced.
It’s also compatible with a wide range of rotary machines.
You can get it with one of 3 types of connectors: DC, RCA, and audio 3.5mm.
It charges by way of a micro USB port. Once the lithium-ion battery is full, it should last between 5 to 8 hours, depending on the voltage you use.
It outputs between 4.5 and 10.5 V.
Without an apparent online presence, the Illusionist still has positive feedback from Fakespot.
Illusionist Rechargeable Mini Tattoo Power Bank Supply for Rotary Tattoo Machines
It’s not fancy, but it’s lightweight and compact. This rotary pen power supply runs between 5 and 8 hours on a charge.
The voltage adjusts between 4 to 11 V in 0.1 V increments.
It’s compatible with most rotary machines except those made by Cheyenne. Be sure to select the proper connector type for your needs, whether DC or RCA.
The casing is polycarbonate, not metal. But it resists drops and scratches.
When the battery gets low, the LED will blink. Then it’s time to recharge with the included USB cable.
Luckily, it comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
It’s crucial to choose the best power supply for your tattoo machine.
It ensures that you have adequate voltage and precision control for your work.
A digital power supply can make the job easier, especially if you can plug in two machines at once.
And a wireless power supply will give you freedom of movement.
Check back again soon for more reviews of the best tattoo equipment.
1. https://tatring.com/getting-tattooed/Interested-in-Tattooing-Power-Supply-Points-and-Tips by Jason Goodrow, published March 17, 2020, accessed August 21, 2020