UPS vs. Surge Protector

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by jrm01, Aug 23, 2007.

  1. jrm01

    jrm01 New Member

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    I currently have a Monster Power Center surge protector for all my AV equipment (DLP TV, Tivo S3, AV Receiver and DVD). It has worked quite well and I have not had any problems even though we have had several power outages recently during storms.

    I even have connected the cable coax thru it (even though many people say that degrades the signal) and I found that doing so improved the sound quality on my analog stations.

    After reading several other posts I am considering adding a UPS system to the setup. My questions:

    1. Is a UPS really needed and will it provide additional protection (other than the obvious of preventing a tivo restart after failures).

    2. If so, what should I look for in a UPS. I have read posts of some fairly expensive systems ($100 to $500), but would think that I could get something a little cheaper. (I do get an employee discount from major CE retailer, so I'd be paying 60-70% of list).

    3. Most of the systems I see appear to be designed for computer systems, even providing the software linkage. Would one of these work?

    4. What size would I need (KVA rating?) if I just wanted to use it for the tivo and tv?

    5. Should it be placed in line with the surge protector, or as a separate feed?

    Thanks for any guidance you can provide.
     
  2. Amnesia

    Amnesia The Question

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    1. The main (only) advantage you'll get is the battery backup. The value of that is up to you.

    2. See answer 4. You don't need anything too complicated.

    3. Yes. Obviously the software connection won't come into play...

    4. Go to APC.com or equivalent site. They have tools to determine the size you need based upon the draw and how long you want the battery backup to last.

    5. Most modern UPS also have built-in surge protectors, so you won't need your surge protector at all.
     
  3. rainwater

    rainwater Active Member

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    A UPS is important for a TiVo because it allows it to continue running through small outages. Otherwise, you will miss whatever is recording while it reboots. For a TV it is not so important. I use a UPS on all of my TiVos but not on any of my TVs or audio equipment (they just go into the surge ports).
     
  4. jrm01

    jrm01 New Member

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    Thanks for the info. I guess I've narrowed it down to getting a UPS just for the tivo (let everything else remain on the surge protector).

    I'm still not sure of size though. The APC site seems geared to businesses and computer systems, couldn't find info on PVRs, etc. My Google turns up a lot of "What Brown can do for you", but not any calculator sites for sizing.
     
  5. Amnesia

    Amnesia The Question

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    Go to APC.com and choose "selectors" from the top. Pick the middle choice below. Determine the draw for your TiVo from the back of it or the manual. Continue.
     
  6. dianebrat

    dianebrat wait.. I did what? TCF Club

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    a 1000VA unit will do fine for 2 Tivos, the higher VA rating will just mean a longer run time.
    (if anything a sizing calculator will say this is too much)

    My system is as described by the others above, TV, and all other units except the 2 Tivo's are on surge only, the Tivos and upstairs network switch are on the UPS.

    In the basement the cable modem, router, house switch, and Terastation are all on a UPS, also make sure that if you use any video amps, that they are also on the UPS.
     
  7. jrm01

    jrm01 New Member

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    Thanks for being my GPS system for the APC site.

    Looks like 420 VA system will provide 1/2 hour for 80 watt S3 load.
     
  8. RoyK

    RoyK New Member

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    It's very important that the TiVo also be on a surge protector. If the UPS you choose doesn't have a good one then I'd put one in line between the UPS and the TiVo.

    The size of the UPS required really is up to you. In my area the vast majority of power failures are very short - from a few seconds to a minute or two. A small UPS can handle that with no problem.

    Roy
     
  9. jrm01

    jrm01 New Member

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    Thanks.

    Would you put it wall > SP > UPS > Tivo

    or wall > UPS > SP > Tivo?

    Any concern with "transformer generated interference" with the connection?
     
  10. GoHokies!

    GoHokies! O2->CO2 Converter

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    You should really consider putting the TV on the UPS also - when you turn your TV off, a fan continues to run for a few minutes to cool off the bulb. Obviously, this can't happen when your power goes out unless you have a UPS on there. Running the TV off the battery would kill it pretty fast, but by turning the TV off manually when the power goes out and having the battery there for an orderly shutdown/cooldown is important (to me at least).
     
  11. Amnesia

    Amnesia The Question

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    Most name brand UPSs (like the APC ones) have surge protectors built in. Check the feature list and don't try to skimp by getting a no-name UPS. Cheap name-brand UPSs are only like $50...
     
  12. Jonathan_S

    Jonathan_S Well-Known Member

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    Its usually recommended to go wall > SP > UPS > TiVo.
     
  13. jlb

    jlb Go Pats!

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    I use the APC 350 for my TiVos. Usual price most retail stores is ~$40. Often there may be deals to be had. The battery in a UPS is quite heavy, so buying from a web-site tends to be more expensive than retail.
     
  14. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    Consider your DLP. It needs to cool off, or else the bulb will have its life shortened dramatically.
     
  15. windracer

    windracer joined the 10k club

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    Interesting ... I didn't think you were supposed to chain power strips like that (too much drain on a single outlet or something like that)?
     
  16. SCSIRAID

    SCSIRAID Active Member

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    Yup... You want your surge protection as close to the wall plate as possible to provide the best ground (to shunt the spike current into). Everything in the system should be attached to this 'first' protection device so all see the same ground reference.
     
  17. moxie1617

    moxie1617 Member

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    Read the UPS warranty very carefully. Belkin will not honor any warranty if the UPS is plugged into a surge protector or a surge protector is plugged into the UPS. I can't remember the APC warranty but their restriction was only on one side of the UPS.
     
  18. SCSIRAID

    SCSIRAID Active Member

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  19. bmgoodman

    bmgoodman Member

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    APC doesn't want you using surge protectors in conjunction with their UPS models either:


    Using surge strips with APC's Back-UPS and Smart-UPS products.
    Question


    This document will explain why APC recommends against the use of any surge protector, power strip or extension cord being plugged into the output of any APC Back-UPS and Smart-UPS products
    Answer


    APC recommends against the use of any surge protector, power strip or extension cord being plugged into the output of any APC Back-UPS and Smart-UPS products. This document will explain why.


    Plugging a surge protector into your UPS: Surge protectors filter the power for surges and offer EMI/RFI filtering but do not efficiently distribute the power, meaning that some equipment may be deprived of the necessary amperage it requires to run properly – causing your attached equipment (computer, monitor, etc) to shutdown or reboot. If you need to supply additional receptacles on the output of your UPS, we recommend using Power Distribution Units (PDU's). PDUs evenly distribute the amperage among the outlets, while the UPS will filter the power and provide surge protection. PDU’s use and distribute the available amperage more efficiently, allowing your equipment to receive the best available power to maintain operation.

    However, please note that the UPS is designed to handle a limited amount of equipment. Please be cautious about plugging too much equipment into the UPS to avoid an overload condition. To understand the load limit of your particular model UPS please consult the User's Manual, or visit APC's Product Page at www.apcc.com/products.


    Plugging your UPS into a surge protector: In order for your UPS to get the best power available, you should plug your UPS directly into the wall receptacle. Plugging your UPS into a surge protector may cause the UPS to go to battery often when it normally should remain online. This is because other, more powerful equipment may draw necessary voltage away from the UPS which it requires to remain online.


    Maintaining EPP and Warranty: Plugging any non-APC surge protector, power strip, or extension cord into the output of an APC brand UPS could void your Equipment Protection Policy (EPP). However, the standard 2 year product warranty is maintained. If, after taking into consideration this knowledge base document, you choose to use an APC brand surge protector in conjunction with your APC brand UPS, your warranty and Equipment Protection Policy will be maintained.



    If you have any additional questions regarding your set-up, please call APC technical support at 800-800-4272 (Mon-Fr 8am-8pm EST).

     
  20. windracer

    windracer joined the 10k club

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    Ok, so that's probably what I was thinking about.
     

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