View Full Version : UPS surge protection advice.

24-11-2002, 12:20 PM
i want some advice: UPS.

Las yr i fried my laptop modem costing me $400.
I am thinking of getting one for laptop like:

Also a powerboard by APC for the desktop, printer etc etc.. w/ telephone line protection too.....'

So how do i select one?? Is PC Company's $15 ones ok??
Am thinking for laptop, desktop and others, the TV equip too.... (lounge).


24-11-2002, 12:49 PM
I have always used a surge protector and despite having a reasonably heavy duty one costing close to $200 it was enough to protect my computer a month of so ago when an oppossum fried itself and put the North Shore in darkness, but it was not strong enough to prevent the computer from having one hell of a fright. It took 20 minutes the next day to boot up to the Win logo. I have since invested in a APC Back-UPS 500 VA 325 Watts. If there is a power failure you have approx 10 mins to save your work, close programs and turn the power off. If you are not at the computer the UPS software will gently turn off your computer after a period of, say, 5 mins - you set the time. From memory the UPS cost about $400, but I think it is well worth it. You can plug up to 5 things into it.

Heather P
24-11-2002, 01:14 PM

I was busy researching UPSs back in August (and still haven't done anything about it although I should).

The Press F1 thread is available
here (http://pressf1.pcworld.co.nz/thread.jsp?forum=1&thread=23423&start=0&msRange=15)

Billy T
24-11-2002, 01:30 PM
Hi Ray

Priority is a good UPS because it is brown-outs and sudden power cuts that lose you data. These effects are more frequent than spikes unless you live in an industrial area.

The average UPS is virtually straight through when operating on normal power, with just a little input noise filtering but no spike suppression unless specifically mentioned. The input filters do have inductance and capacitance that will take the edge off a transient voltage spike but they can't help with major over-voltage incidents as may occur when transformers blow or cars pick a fight with power poles.

I would get the best UPS you can afford then add good quality spike suppression for both your power feed and your phone line. Don't go for a cheapie, they can be one-shot wonders i.e. the spike destrys the spike suppressor and after that it's just an ornament. If you can get one with an indicator that tells you when its time is up, so much the better.

There are two basic types of spike suppression, the metal oxide varister or MOV and the gas discharge tube. The MOV goes low impedance when a voltage spike hits, but every hit eats a little of its internals away and in the end they cease to work. The gas inside the discharge tube ionises when a voltage spike hits (just like a neon bulb) but usually they can't absorb the energy of a longer duration incident and would overheat and self-destruct if they stayed conducting too long.

Change the UPS battery every two to three years otherwise you may find that it swells up and you have to destroy the UPS to get it out. I keep an eye on Jaycar's specials as they regularly offer very keen pricing on SLA batteries. DSE are too costly.

Every computer installation deserves the best electronic condom you can afford.


Billy 8-{)

24-11-2002, 01:59 PM
is the link i provided adequate for a laptop?? this is for both at home when i use laptop w/o battery, when i travel will use laptop battery.

if i do not require a UPS. is a surge enof?? like for the desktop and the lounge.
a question on the side, if the laptop has the battery is this enof to act as its own UPS?


Billy T
24-11-2002, 02:31 PM

Your link did not open to a specific product, leastwise not in my browser.

Either rework the link or provide the specific product name/number and I'll have a look.


Billy 8-{)

24-11-2002, 02:33 PM
APC SurgeArrest Notebook
APC SurgeArrest personal

Graham L
24-11-2002, 03:43 PM
You wn't need an UPS to give you an orderly shutdown when the power fails (as long as the laptop has reasonable capacity). There are power strips which have phoneline surge suppressors, which would probably be better than nothing. They may have MOVs n the power lines too, but they fail gradually, and nvisibly (usually :D).

The old master sockets had a gas discharge protector; I'm not sure about the 2-wire ones. But more protection is better.

Billy T
24-11-2002, 05:28 PM
There's no protection in the new 2-wire sockets Graham, at least there wasn't in the ones I bought. You have given me an idea though, I kept all my old sockets (squirrel that I am) so I think I'll transfer surge protectors to my adsl outlet and snail-modem outlets.


Billy 8-{)

Billy T
24-11-2002, 07:42 PM
Hi Ray

Either of those two are ok (reputable brand) but I'd get the multi-outlet unit as it can also protect printers etc.

Sorry, I overlooked that your computer was a laptop and of course its own battery is a built-in UPS, however my cojmments and advice stand for other readers who are using desktops without protection.


Billy 8-{)