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  • UPS Battery Backups

    So after many many years, I decided to finally buy a UPS due to power outages during storms I've been experiencing lately. Totally interrupts my work. I bought a Tripp-Lite G1000U from Costco for about $100. I can't believe I've never used one of these before! Not only does it let me continue running my computer for a while in case of power outages, but it stabilized the power going into my pc. It has a voltage display on the front, and I can't believe the fluctuation I'm getting from the incoming power!!! It bounces around from 117-122 volts as my apartment's air conditioner kicks on and off.

    I don't know if it's harmful to our pc's to have constant fluctuation, but it does give some piece of mind knowing that I'm now getting good clean power into my computer. I believe they offer superior surge protection too.

    So what's your take on UPS's? Are they worth it? Are they a must have item for the pc enthusiast, like a good PSU is? This is my first, so I'm honestly kind of unfamiliar with them.

    This is the one I have:
    http://hombasics.com/tripplite-g1000...3eae4b40366f2a
    "Common sense is not so common." -Voltaire

  • #2
    Re: UPS Battery Backups

    Originally posted by War.mongeR1 View Post
    I can't believe the fluctuation I'm getting from the incoming power!!! It bounces around from 117-122 volts as my apartment's air conditioner kicks on and off.
    I don't know if it's harmful to our pc's to have constant fluctuation, but it does give some piece of mind knowing that I'm now getting good clean power into my computer. I believe they offer superior surge protection too.
    Voltage of 117 to 122 is far superior to anything that must be provided. Normally manufacturers will not provide such numbers since UPSes are mostly sold on myths and outright lies.

    If voltage fluctuates more, then worry about damage to less robust appliances - refrigerator, washing machine, air conditioner. Yes, those appliances are why the utility must keep voltage variations so stable.

    So how much voltage variation is perfectly ideal power to electronics? Incandescent bulbs can dim to 50% intensity. And all electronics (and computer) must work normally. Yes voltage variations, that can be harmful to motorized appliances, are perfectly ideal power to electronics. That is one of many functions that electronic power supply must perform.

    So what does that UPS do? It connects AC mains directly to electronics when not in battery backup mode. UPS manufacturers encourage all sorts of myths to promote cleaner power. All quite legal when a majority only read sales brochures - where they can say any lie and it is legal. For example, did you view the numeric specs for that surge protection? It only protects from a type of surge that typically does no damage. And its protection numbers are so small as to be virtually zero. But near-zero surge protection can be advertised as 100% protection in sales brochures. Most everyone who recommends a UPS for 'clean power' only read subjective advertising claims. That would be more than 70% of those who might post.

    So when does electronics see 'dirtiest' electricity. This 120 volt UPS in battery backup mode outputs two 200 volt square waves with a spike of up to 270 volts between those square waves. The manufacturer calls this a modified sine wave or stepped sine wave. And the manufacturer did not lie. Those square waves and 270 volt spike are nothing more than a sum of sine waves (Fourier Series as taught in high school math). So they did not lie. But that power is so dirty as to be harmful to small electric motors or power strip protectors.

    Notice what happens to your 'clean' power once subjective claims are replaced with numbers.

    That UPS has one function. To provide temporary (and dirtiest) power so that data can be saved. Do not endorse junk science that promotes 'clean' power or that claims voltage fluctuations are harmful. Claims without numbers are also called lies. Subjective claims encouraged to promote sales.

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    • #3
      Re: UPS Battery Backups

      Hi westom, welcome to TG! It's always interesting when someones first post is a rant, but ok. Where do you get your information?

      Anyway, I use a rack-mount Powerware 9125. It's running my desktopmachine, both monitors, my amp, and a network switch. I still only load this beast to 25%. I don't use it for voltage variations as much as I live in the mountains and suffer frequent power outages from storms, fires, and tourists running their cars into poles. I would never again be without one. It's an in-line UPS so I never have switch over time and I'm protected from voltage changes right before the power dies or the power comes back on. Brownouts were not nice to my computer.


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      • #4
        Re: UPS Battery Backups

        So given if it does really provide dirty power, I'd imagine the damage that would do is minimal compared to the damage of constant power outages instantly shutting off your computer, right?
        "Common sense is not so common." -Voltaire

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        • #5
          Re: UPS Battery Backups

          I think a UPS is necessary only if you truly rely on your PC. If you consider your gaming rig important enough that you are willing to spend an extra couple of hundred bucks for the benefit of being able to play right through brown outs and to shut down properly during a blackout, then go for it. I don't think the average computer owner needs one, though.

          Originally posted by westom View Post
          But that power is so dirty as to be harmful to small electric motors or power strip protectors.
          Electric motors run better on the smooth curves of a sine wave, not the sharp steps of a square wave, it has nothing to do with how clean the power is... Some of the rest of your post might be true, but I know you're full of it on this one item, which really hurts your credibility here, especially with your first post.

          I'm wondering why someone would post against buying a type of equipment, though. I don't see how someone can make money by encouraging one to not purchase an item for which there is no alternative, so I'm not sure what your angle is.
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          • #6
            Re: UPS Battery Backups

            Originally posted by CingularDuality View Post
            I think a UPS is necessary only if you truly rely on your PC. If you consider your gaming rig important enough that you are willing to spend an extra couple of hundred bucks for the benefit of being able to play right through brown outs and to shut down properly during a blackout, then go for it. I don't think the average computer owner needs one, though.
            You're probably right, Cing. I haven't needed one for years. However, it's SO frustrating when you're wrapping up a project for work and get hit with a power outage. I've learned to save and safe often, but it's still hella frustrating those few times I've accidentally worked several hours without saving and ZAP. Especially when I'm under the gun for strict deadlines.

            So is the consensus that ups's actually put out inferior power when compared to juice straight from the wall socket? That's interesting and something I've never heard before. I did some googling, and couldn't find ANYTHING bad about UPS's, except that they can provide a false sense of security. I couldn't find anything relating to dirty power or inferiority. Hmmmm.
            "Common sense is not so common." -Voltaire

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            • #7
              Re: UPS Battery Backups

              Originally posted by CingularDuality View Post
              I'm wondering why someone would post against buying a type of equipment, though. I don't see how someone can make money by encouraging one to not purchase an item for which there is no alternative, ....
              Which means you never read what I posted.

              Defined in the only purpose for that UPS - to provide temporary power so that data can be saved.

              Defined is what even the UPS does not claim - output cleaner power.

              Defined is what UPS specs do not claim - effective surge protection.

              Defined is what can be harmed by a UPS in battery backup mode - small electric motors and power strip protectors. The manufacturer says to not use protectors on its output. Just does not say why.

              Defined is knowledge from a few generations of engineering - such as why AC mains voltages must not vary beyond 5%. What appliances are harmed by voltage variation (which is not electronics).

              Defined is 'clean' power that only exists when the UPS manufacturer defines it with spec numbers such as THD. Where is the THD number for any plug-in UPS? Not provided so that subjective claims can promote 'clean' power.

              Defined is that power outages are not destructive to electronics as even defined by international design standards over 40 years ago. In fact that standard is quite blunt about what happens in all low voltages. In capital letters is the expression "No Damage Region". But then so few need know standards to design electronics.

              Defines is how much an incandescent bulb can 'brownout' and electronics must work normally. Incandescent bulb even at 50% intensity is ideal power to all electronics. Intel standards demand computers work normally at even lower voltages - 40% intensity. If voltage goes too low, all electronics simply power off. Undamaged - if properly designed. But again, how many also run low voltage on designs to confirm it works normally even when incandescent bulbs are that dim?

              How many own and use oscilloscopes and variacs? A rant is from the ill informed - without numbers. Posted are facts, numbers, and generations of experience that is often disputed by widely believed myths.

              Nothing posted was against buying a type of equipment. Post was what it does, what it does not do, what is needed, what is unnecessary, and how to identify junk scientists who post urban myths.

              Yes this will make many angry because a majority do recommend without first learning basic concepts. Post without numbers. Nothing posted was new. Above are facts that designers must know and that often contradict what is taught by retail salesmen. For example, an overt lie: low voltage causes electronics damage. Total nonsense promoted only by hearsay. And is completely irrelevant to a UPS discussion - because the OP's UPS is only temporary power to save unsaved data or finish work.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: UPS Battery Backups

                Originally posted by War.mongeR1 View Post
                So is the consensus that ups's actually put out inferior power when compared to juice straight from the wall socket?
                And that inferior power is irrelevant because even Intels original ATX spec for power supplies require computers to be so much more robust.

                Anything that UPS might do is performed even better by a UPS already inside every laptop computer.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: UPS Battery Backups

                  Originally posted by westom View Post
                  How many own and use oscilloscopes and variacs? A rant is from the ill informed - without numbers. Posted are facts, numbers, and generations of experience that is often disputed by widely believed myths.
                  But you're posting information that I know to be incorrect. I own an oscilloscope, and a spectrum analyzer, and a multimeter. They're collecting dust now, but I used to use them very regularly. Big deal. I've never even played with a variac, as I worked on equipment already designed to a standard, but I know what happens when you feed equipment juice that doesn't meet that standard. And none of this matters, as you still haven't explained why you're posting misinformation in what appears to be an effort to talk someone out of purchasing an UPS.

                  I just want to know why you're here posting in this thread all of a sudden. What do you get out of it? Just satisfaction that you've "educated" someone?
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                  • #10
                    Re: UPS Battery Backups

                    Originally posted by War.mongeR1 View Post
                    So is the consensus that ups's actually put out inferior power when compared to juice straight from the wall socket? That's interesting and something I've never heard before. I did some googling, and couldn't find ANYTHING bad about UPS's, except that they can provide a false sense of security. I couldn't find anything relating to dirty power or inferiority. Hmmmm.
                    No, no, for solid state electronics, the saw wave or square wave that comes out of a UPS is superior. For analog devices, such as motors, it can be harsh and inefficient compared to a sine wave, due to the need to switch back and forth between positive and negative.
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                    • #11
                      Re: UPS Battery Backups

                      What the heck is he referring to as 'Dirty' Cing?
                      |TG-6th|SirNerd

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                      • #12
                        Re: UPS Battery Backups

                        Originally posted by Sir-Nerd View Post
                        What the heck is he referring to as 'Dirty' Cing?
                        Forgive me I've only taken one electrical engendering class (and that was a few years ago) so I might get this one wrong... But Dirty power is in essence not a clean or rather not a uniform signal. This can be caused by many diffrent things from electromagnetic interference, to a ground fault, to crappy wiring in a house or apartment. In short just like you can have static or noise in a radio broadcast you can have noise in power transmissions. Most static is minimal and most consumer electronics are designed to operate within a given range of said interference. However not all electronics react the same.

                        This noise, or rather fear of it, is one the reasons you have to turn off all electrical devices in an airplane during take off and landing, because some think is that it could effect one of the planes systems. (Interesting fact typical AC power in the US is 60 Hz for a jet liner it is closer to 400 Hz, all in order to create a more uniform or cleaner power supply when converted from AC to DC)

                        As to the original post...

                        While living at home, My parents place suffered one or two minor brown outs (lights in the entire house dimming but not complete power loss) a month. I got lucky and picked up an UPS on clearance from a local store and never looked back. It was/is great knowing that I didn't have to worry. In particular some of the image rendering that I do, should I have lost power I would have lost the entire project. Considering some of the renders I have done have taken in excess of 8 hours per frame of video (mind you 30 FPS for a lot of these projects) I could not afford to loose any time due interruptions. Now that I'm out in an apartment I don't seem to have the same power issues in terms of down time, I'm still glad I have a working UPS just in case.

                        ~ Draken

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                        • #13
                          Re: UPS Battery Backups

                          Originally posted by Sir-Nerd View Post
                          What the heck is he referring to as 'Dirty' Cing?
                          This page has some good images and examples of dirty power: http://www.screenlightandgrip.com/ht...enerators.html

                          Basically, anything other than a smooth, crisp waveform is dirty. There are different reasons that different types of interference can affect your electronics.
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                          • #14
                            Re: UPS Battery Backups

                            Originally posted by CingularDuality View Post
                            No, no, for solid state electronics, the saw wave or square wave that comes out of a UPS is superior. For analog devices, such as motors, it can be harsh and inefficient compared to a sine wave, due to the need to switch back and forth between positive and negative.
                            Ah. So THIS must be why the UPS instructions made it quite clear to NOT plug in laser printers into the plugs with the battery backup protection. I'm guessing because of the motors involved in such a printer. I'm only using it for my pc and monitor. I'm guessing I should be fine, then. But now that I think about it, a computer has a bunch of fans, which are motors. I guess the power supply acts as in intermediary?
                            "Common sense is not so common." -Voltaire

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                            • #15
                              Re: UPS Battery Backups

                              Originally posted by War.mongeR1 View Post
                              Ah. So THIS must be why the UPS instructions made it quite clear to NOT plug in laser printers into the plugs with the battery backup protection...
                              I would be more inclined to think that it is because laser printers have such a high power consumption that they would suck the battery dead in seconds...

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