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Where can I get actual surge protectors that work? (specs)

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by oscy, 22 Jun 2018.

  1. oscy

    oscy Member

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    I once bought one off Amazon that... didn't work when the moment came. (The PSU did, so nothing else was damaged.)

    I saw one article that said a real one needs the following:

    - Clamping voltage below 400V
    - Joule rating of at least 600
    - Response time of 1 nanosecond at most
    - Indicator light to know it's still working

    The ones in the shops (like Wilko) and Amazon seem to just be crap placebos for the uninitiated that don't meet those specs (or don't have any specs at all).

    Is there anywhere that sells ones that actually work?
     
  2. lancer778544

    lancer778544 isnt really an ultramodder...

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    I think Belkin are pretty well respected. One of these will probably do the trick and they come with a connected equipment warranty too so if one does fail to protect the stuff connected to it, Belkin will fit the bill. There's also APC.
     
  3. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    Yeah, Belkin's good. I had no end of trouble with a cheap APC UPS, though, so I'd personally avoid 'em unless you're buying their top-end stuff.

    Speaking of: if you want proper protection, consider a UPS. Aye, it's more expensive than a surge protector, but it's also much better: not only do you get surge protection, you also get protection against over-voltage, under-voltage, brownouts, and blackouts (the latter depending on how much power you're pulling.)

    I'm a huge fan of the CyberPower I've got on my server. It's an older version of this, without the screen the shiny new one has, and it can still run my server for about an hour despite the battery being around a decade old at this point. £60 from Amazon normally, but it's out of stock at the moment and the next cheapest is £70.

    This, though, might be the bargain you're looking for: 360W line interactive UPS, £39 plus delivery. If I didn't already have one, I'd be snapping that up - but bear in mind it uses IEC sockets, so if you're connecting three-pin BS plugs you'll need to rewire 'em or wire up an IEC-to-BS adapter (that's what I did.)

    If you're protecting stuff that draws more than 360W, though, things start to get expensive. This ugly beast is good for 600W, and has normal BS sockets - making things a lot easier. £88 delivered. Above that you're looking at £140 for a 720W or £168 for a 1.3KW - and frankly, I'd pay the extra £28 for the 1.3KW over the 720W version.
     
  4. oscy

    oscy Member

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    I'm just gonna use a regular surge protector and back up important stuff on USB.

    I've only ever had one apparent surge problem and one computer death (all on event, and it was just a PSU death, evidently the surge protector didn't protect it) since my first computer in the past couple of decades.
     
  5. Paradigm Shifter

    Paradigm Shifter de nihilo nihil fit

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    I wouldn't touch Cyberpower UPSes with a ten foot pole after my experiences with them both and work and personally.

    They buzz like hell if you happen to be near a power distribution hub; read: your line voltage is >230V AC - UK mains is 230V +/- 10%, which means that worst case you can have mains at 252V before the power company will try to do anything about it. I know this because where I used to live was basically at 252V 99% of the time, with it dropping to 246-250V when everyone and their dog has their Christmas lights turned on (there used to be an unspoken competition between several of my neighbours who could have the most extravagant Christmas lights) and the only time I got anyone at the power co. to care was when I photographed 255V as the input voltage on my UPS... they were out like a shot then.

    I had five of the things at work, and two died when the power went out. UPS? Not so much. A third died in the night randomly, even without a power cut. Extremely frustrating. Perhaps just bad luck? I dunno.

    I've also used Eaton; they're pretty good for the price (or they were, they fluctuate quite a bit...) two Eaton UPSes are still kicking (and doing their job) which replaced the Cyberpower ones.
     
  6. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    How funny: my experience is the exact opposite! My CyberPower works absolutely perfectly, with no buzzing and great software; my Eaton is awful, with software that won't even let me tell it to keep running everything until it reaches X% charge then start shutting down - I can only tell it to wait X minutes before shutting down, which isn't very useful when the load is variable...
     
  7. Mister_Tad

    Mister_Tad Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    And here I am entirely content with my two APC Back-UPS units that have been performing just fine. Probably fair to say that all of them in the "potential for home use" price range are variable in their performance.
     
  8. Paradigm Shifter

    Paradigm Shifter de nihilo nihil fit

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    I love it when consistency is something computer kit can't seem to manage...

    Ah well, I guess as with everything on the internet, YMMV!

    Load isn't so much a problem for me, as the systems on UPSes are 100% all the time...
     
  9. The_Crapman

    The_Crapman Don't phone it's just for fun.

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    Why do you need protecting from this little fella?
    [​IMG]
     
    GeorgeK, Mister_Tad and RedFlames like this.
  10. oscy

    oscy Member

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    Do you have any personal experience of these? Because reviews won't tell me if they ever failed, and those negative reviews aren't ignorable.
     
  11. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    I haven't bought a surge protector since the late 90s, but the Belkins I had back then were fine. Can't speak to their modern equivalents, though.
     
  12. RedFlames

    RedFlames ...is not a Belgian football team

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    Whilst i'm reasonably confident that a surge gaurd wouldn't have prevented either of the household PC's PSU shitting themselves to death, this topic is also of interest to me...

    For Surge protection [or UPS] do you cover only the core things or as much stuff as you can manage.
     
  13. David

    David RIP Tel

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    I bought a Cyberpower 1500 unit for work (my old work) about four years ago because the flakey mains supply kept killing the phone system, which was basically a glorified PC.

    The system hasn"t gone down once since I hooked up the UPS.

    It was £200+ at the time but it saved around £1500 a year in callout charges.

    I'd definitely buy Cyberpower again .
     
  14. oscy

    oscy Member

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    I'll just stick to my random old surge protector then.
     

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