do you trust about Eaton Protection Strip/station or similar products?

Discussion in 'hardware' started by mantra, Aug 18, 2013.

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  1. mantra

    mantra Registered Member

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    Hi

    may i ask you a question ?

    do you trust about product like Eaton Protection Strip , 3 lines of protection ?

    like this _http://www.amazon.co.uk/Eaton-Protection-Strip-DIN-68583/dp/B004TSHYOE

    or _http://pulsar.eaton.com/Products-services/Backup-Power-UPS/Protection-Station.aspx?cx=145

    i have both

    do you think it can really protect a hardware like eaton declares?

    do someone use such products?

    i did notice a strange noice with i turn off them clicking the power off /reset button

    thanks
     
  2. FreddyFreeloader

    FreddyFreeloader Registered Member

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  3. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    I've had good experience with these: -http://pulsar.eaton.com/Products-services/Backup-Power-UPS/EX-RM.aspx
     
  4. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    Surge and Spike protectors are little more than fancy and expensive extension cords that whack off the tops (clamps) of the sine waves of high-voltage anomalies (surges and spikes) while doing absolutely nothing for low-voltage anomalies (sags - opposite of surges, dips - opposite of spikes, or brownouts - long duration sags).

    A "good" UPS with AVR - automatic voltage regulation - on the other hand, reduces high voltage events while cleaning up the sine wave AND it will use the batteries to boost low voltage events. This, in turn, reduces the strain on regulation circuits of all your connected devices.

    Notice I've said nothing about battery backup in the event of a complete power outage. That's because backup power is the just the icing on the cake. The AVR is the good stuff.

    A surge and spike protector - if it works - will simply cut power during extreme events. That can easily result in lost or corrupt data, and corrupt hard drives.

    So IMO, all computers (big screen TVs and expensive home theater audio equipment too) should be on a "good" UPS with AVR.

    Note I keep saying "good". Like computer power supplies, there are cheap and "good". A cheap UPS will have less capable regulation and slower cutover times. Better UPS will clean up the voltages better and have a very fast cutover. The best UPS have pure sine-wave outputs, and some run off battery full time (for zero cutover times).

    You don't need the best, but you need "good". I have a APC 1500VA UPS. That is more than enough to support my i7, 4 DDR3 RAM sticks, 4 drives, a decent (read: power hungry!) graphics card, my wireless-N router, a 4-port Gbit Ethernet switch, cable modem, USB hub, PDA cradle, and my home phone - oh, and TWO 22" widescreens. And it will provide power in the event of a full outage for about 15 to 20 minutes. 20 to 25 if I immediately turn off one monitor.

    It will keep my network alive (and most importantly, all my IP assignments and VOIP telephone) for more than a day (with computer and monitors off). With more and more users going with Internet phones, keeping the network connection alive during power outages is becoming more important.
     
  5. FreddyFreeloader

    FreddyFreeloader Registered Member

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    I just bought an Obi100 and programed it with a Google Voice number, so was looking for backup power. Thanks for the APC 1500 link, Bill_Bright!
    Do you have to install any software to use this?
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2013
  6. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    No. But most UPS come with a USB cable and if connected to your computer, later versions of Windows will detect and do basic monitoring of the UPS for you.

    APC UPS come with PowerChute that you can install if you want to monitor your UPS. It provides much more information than the basic Windows program - but again, it is not necessary to install for full and complete protection.

    One nice feature of PowerChute and similar programs is they will monitor how much battery run time you have left, and automatically save any open documents, exit running programs and Windows, then "gracefully" shut down power before the batteries run out. A really nice feature should you be away from your computer during a power outage.
     
  7. FreddyFreeloader

    FreddyFreeloader Registered Member

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    Ok, thanks, Bill.
     
  8. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Well I just upgraded a bunch of stuff. Two of my trusty APC 1500 BPS units, just were at end of life and needed replacing. Also just replace one of my desktops.

    Some of the reviews I read still rated APC very high, but pointed out with some of the newer PFC power supplies you needed Sinewave power not the typical UPS square wave. APC makes them but they are expensive.

    Another brand CyberPower was also well rated and they have some units that have AVR and Sinewave power on battery. Price point was reasonable so I bought one, liked it and bought another. So far they are doing fine, and test well.

    On the surge protection front, years ago a friend put me on to zerosurge.

    www.zerosurge.com. They aren't cheap, but they work well. I plug them into the wall, and the UPS units into them. Seems to provide good protection.

    Pete
     
  9. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    "Allegedly" some PFC (power factor correction) PSUs reported to have problems, but I have never seen that personally, or in any documented case with quality PSUs. I note surge and spike protectors clamp the tops of the voltage sine waves causing the resulting voltage to more resemble a square wave than pure sine wave and they have no problems.

    Since PFC is a directed requirement in all EU countries and elsewhere, PFC PSUs are more common than not. Also, the better UPS output a "stepped approximation to sine wave" (APC's term) which active and passive PFC PSUs can handle.

    I think those "rumors" started when APFC (active PFC) PSUs first started flooding market 5 or 6 years ago and a few from less reputable companies had problems. And then some UPS makers - wanting to push their upper (and more profitable lines) got behind the rumors.

    The problem - as I understood it, was APFC PSUs needed quicker cut-over times which some "cheap" UPS could not meet.

    There's two problems here. (1) With cheap UPS, that may be true. So avoid budget models. And (2) and this is where rumors get smashed, the ATX Form Factor standard for ATX PSUs requires all ATX PSUs to "hold" voltages for 19ms (milliseconds) during abnormal power events. A "good" UPS can react (sense and cutover) easily within that time frame.

    Also, the best UPS can easily cost $400 or more and most people cannot, or will not budget that kind of money. And because the UPS makers want to sell UPSs, they cannot afford to limit their sales to just high end so they ensure their "good" lines have a fast enough cutover to ensure a clean cut.

    After all, APC and others market many of these approximation sine wave supplies as for computer equipment. They cannot afford to pi$$ off all their customers.

    So bottom line - if your PSU balks with a "good" UPS with AVR - get a new PSU.

    I have never had to replace an APC UPS. I still use a 20 year old 900VA SmartUPS. Of course I have had to replace the batteries several times, but not the UPS.
     
  10. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

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    Same for me. Recently I bought a CyberPower PFC and I am very pleased with it.

    Panagiotis
     
  11. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Hi Bill

    Two things.

    First, I wanted the AVR feature, and reviewing the documentation I saw no evidence the old APC units I had have this feature. Given the cost of the batteries, replacing the units made sense.

    Second, replacing the PSU's if they can't handle the APC units makes no sense, as the computer that triggered this is a high end unit that I just ordered and have had about a week. Replacing the PSU to work with an old UPS makes no sense, as opposed to just replacing the UPS.
     
  12. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    My apologies! Yes, I agree, in that scenario, (old UPS with no voltage regulation and new computer/PSU), it makes no sense to replace the PSU.

    That said, "AVR", if I remember correctly, was coined by APC many years ago. And 1500VA is (and always has been) a big UPS (for home computer systems.) And the larger models tend to have more advanced features so I am surprised yours did not have AVR. I would replace the UPS too in that case - especially if I had bought a good 80+ certified PSU from a reputable maker and it failed when connected to the UPS, but not when connected directly to the wall outlet.

    I assume you mean UPS and not PFC. I have used CyberPower too with no problems except I could not disable the annoying beep when it flipped to battery power. I live in Nebraska, in the heart of Tornado Alley so we have frequent severe weather. By far, most power outages are little more than "flickers" (which are very hard on electronics) but some outages last for a couple hours - especially those caused by crispy critters who forgot to let go of one cable before grabbing the other - blowing a transformer fuse.

    My latest APC 1500 lets me disable the beeps between set time periods (like when I trying to sleep during severe weather o_O ). I really like that feature.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2013
  13. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

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    PFC is the name of their pure sinewave series.
    http://www.cyberpowersystems.com/products/ups-systems/adaptive-sinewave-series.html
    I bought the 1500VA EU model and is great. You can disable/enable the beep noise both from the software and from a button on the ups.
    Also it seems to allow the user to control (with the software) the sensitivity of the UPS to switch to Battery Mode by selecting UPS shutdown voltage range. According to the manual the higher the sensitivity, the easier the UPS will switch to Battery Mode.
    (I have not tested the sensitivity option since the default setting works fine in my home.)
    Another thing that I like is that the UPS can be instructed to shutdown after the pc is powered off; and to restart again automatically when the electric power returns.

    Panagiotis
     
  14. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    Ah, I see. Thanks. That does indeed look like a nice UPS. While still not cheap, I am glad to see sinewave output UPS prices coming down.

    As for the beep, my old CP UPS had a front panel button to silence the beep, but you had to press it every time. So next time the power went out in the middle of the night, I had to get up and press the button again. :(.

    Yeah, that is standard and how my APC works too. But note it can also mean the UPS kicks in at any hint of power anomaly - which may or may not be a problem, depending your facility power.

    Since years ago when "personal" UPS (that is, not whole facility systems) started being marketed, they were first intended for servers and other devices that needed 24/7/365 uptimes. So it was common to restore power to connected devices when power returned BUT ONLY AFTER the batteries had recharged enough to support another "graceful" shutdown should grid power fail again.

    But note, for computers anyway, that means you need to go into the BIOS Setup Menu and change the defaults so the computer will automatically restart when power is restored. The default is to stay off.

    If you mean the UPS itself will power off when the computer is off, I have not seen that, and I would not want that because I have all my network devices connected to my UPS and I don't want my network going down just because I power off my main PC. But if all you have connected is your computer, then no problem.
     
  15. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    I chuckled about the beeps waking you up. Both my desktops are gaming machines, have windows, and blue leds. Since the machines are in the room where I sleep that didn't work, so I shut them down everynight.

    I know in many ways it's better to just leave them running, but I just have a heart to heart with them, and tell them that's the way it is.:D Over the years I've never had a problem.

    Pete
     
  16. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    I give my vote to UPS. I have four of them! They power everything including desktops, printer, screens, modems, routers, external disks. And yes, when there's an outage, the beeps from four devices can be awfully alarming.
    Mrk
     
  17. innerpeace

    innerpeace Registered Member

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    I've been running a UPS with my computer ever since Bill_Bright was preaching about them at CastleCops :D.

    Last year was a rough year here in the mountains of WV. Last summer lightning either came in through my cable line or through the power line. Everything was plugged into the UPS except my printer. My cable line had no protection. It took out my router, Vonage device and my NIC. Strangely it didn't harm the cable modem.

    Last fall we got the heavy wet snow from hurricane Sandy and it destroyed many trees, limbs and branches. If you had a tree it was damaged. The cable lines to our building fell down from the weight of the snow. As the power was cycling on and off it somehow damaged my CyberPower CP1350PFCLCD. Not sure if it was the rapid cycling or a bad surge but it killed the UPS. It would have been nice to have the UPS around to charge cell phones during the power outage but that didn't happen. The lightning strike in the summer could have also damaged the UPS.

    With that said my warranty was almost out so I wrote CyberPower. They said to send in the UPS and they would send me a new unit. There was no communication after sending the UPS but the new unit finally arrived and I was happy.

    In all honesty if the power starts fluctuating again I will unplug the unit from the wall. I'm not taking any more chances. Let this serve as a warning to those with similar units.
     
  18. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    And similar weather conditions :)
    Mrk
     
  19. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    lol Yeah, I have been harping about their advantages over less-capable and unsophisticated surge and spike protectors for a long, long time. And still do.

    And yeah, an UPS can be destroyed by lightning too - hopefully, just your UPS and not the equipment connected to it.

    And glad to hear CyberPower stood behind their products - though not sure I would want to pay shipping costs to return one - they get pretty heavy. ;)

    The problem with many power outages caused by winds, snow, lightning, etc. is they typically are not clean cuts, or clean restorals. But rather a period of extreme instability and severe fluctuations than can wreck havoc on electronics. A "whole-house" suppressor can help with extreme high-voltage events coming off the grid (that is, from outside the house), but again, nothing can protect you from a direct hit - except total isolation (unplugging from the grid) and distance.

    And of course, a whole-house suppressor will not protect you from anomalies originating from within your home, like when your $15 1500watt hair dryer made in some obscure factor in China fails and sends a huge anomaly through your house wiring.
     
  20. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

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    It is not cheap but compared with the APC Smart LCD 1500VA which has similar features costs more than double (at least i Greece).
    This one remembers the setting and won't wake you up. :)

    This specific model can be configured to shutdown, after it shuts down the pc and also you have the ability to schedule the pc to power on (as you said the user should have correctly configured the bios) at specific time (have not tested though the power on schedule).

    Panagiotis
     
  21. innerpeace

    innerpeace Registered Member

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    Yeah, you talked me into getting an APC unit a while back and I used it until the batteries died. I knew I would be building a new machine for Windows XP EOL so I grabbed the larger CyberPower unit. I wanted a PFC unit and I just couldn't justify paying the extra it would have cost for a similar APC unit. I was lucky and got the CP unit for $150 on sale.

    I did buy a couple of non-APC brand batteries for my older APC unit. They have worked great since April 12th 2012 as protection for my PlayStation. I picked a seller with the lowest cost and highest reputation and have no regrets.

    It was around $20 with insurance if I remember right. I really didn't have much of a choice since I already had $150 invested.

    You know, I'm only 42 and I have been in 3 different buildings that lightning has hit. I think I may be a magnet lol. I unplug everything important if I can.
     
  22. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    Yeah, I never buy replacement batteries from the UPS maker. The only tricky part is ensuring you get the right connectors. Fortunately it is not hard to figure out (F1 or F2). And if it comes to it, adapters are easy to find; F1 to F2 or F2 to F1. That said, some battery compartments are a pretty tight fit so best to get the right ones to be safe.

    Yeah, but I would never do this for my personal computers. I just don't want devices powering up by themselves. But also, in addition to configuring the power on option in the BIOS (which is easy) the problem is you then need to configure the system log in to your user account - meaning no password. And every computer user account should require a password - not just for "operational" security, but for "physical" security too - so a badguy breaking into your house and stealing your computer (or a nosy house guest) has another obstacle to get around before accessing your data.
     
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