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Old 11-11-2008
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,306


I] Usefulness
II] Features
III] Types of UPS
IV] Miscellaneous

Special Note: Remember to ask about the guarantees provided by the manufacturer of your UPS on the equipment you connect! It is very important to validate the registration procedure appropriately.

I am not a specialist of UPS, but like you I needed a day to get information on it. So I did research (fast for now but there are good foundations to know before buying). This mini case presents the results of my research and if you have more detailed information, please try to update or add here. You can also send me a personal message.

I] Usefulness (What is it that this widget is for?!) ->
  • Micro-cuts, ie cuts electrical few thousands of a second can lead to restarting the computer.
  • Power outage, for a break in power for a time.
  • Surge, ie a nominal value greater than the maximum specified for the normal operation of electrical appliances.
  • Under-voltage, ie a face value less than the maximum specified for the normal operation of electrical appliances.
  • These surges act instantly (for a very short time) and high amplitude. These peaks, due to the cessation or initiation of high power devices, may ultimately damage the electrical components.
  • Lightning, representing a surge suddenly very important speaker in inclement weather (storms).

II] Characteristics of UPS
  • The power of the UPS: expressed in VA (or KVA) it will determine the ability of the inverter to power your equipment in case of power failure. Generally it is advisable to apply a factor of 1.4 to 1.5: a PC for consuming a total of 300W for a real inverter 420VA or more is ideal.
  • Type: for a particular model a classic off-line will generally be appropriate. you have very frequent and extensive electrical disturbances type voltage drops a "line-interactive" will be a plus and a voltage regulator can be considered. Finally, if you want to have a maximum electrical safety you opt for a model on-line.
  • The mark: the most famous include APC, MGE (Merlin Gerin - UPS), Best Power.
  • Connection: Some inverters have a USB or serial make it possible for UPS to communicate its status to the PC and need to stop as the PC when the UPS battery is exhausted.

III] Types of UPS
  • Off-Line -> This is the technology easier to understand (and cheapest). The inverter delivers the power sector (in the filter) until it is sufficient. At a certain threshold (a big drop in voltage for example) the battery from the UPS takes over (there is a small time "empty" during the changeover on the battery) until the voltage returns. This type of UPS discharges over time, we must remember to plug itself into an outlet to recharge its batteries.
  • On-Line -> This is the most interesting technology, this type of inverter draws the "juice" directly into the battery, and there is tension or a power outage does not change. But how can he take only with the battery? When sector operates the battery is recharged at the same time it provides the current devices connected to it. The technology used is more complex and it is felt on the selling price.
  • Line-Interactive -> They have an operation similar to that of an off-line UPS from the fact that in case of voltage, instead of switch on the battery they are able to compensate for the voltage drop (they include therefore a voltage regulator)

A big thanks to a freind for this detailed list of APC & MGE
If it can interest, I did a small survey of the UPS market, for the 2 major manufacturers:

Protection Center Prize = corrugated
Ellipse ASR = Off-Line
Ellipse = Premium Line-Interactive Square
Evolution = Line-Interactive Sinus
Pulsar Evolution = Line-Interactive Sinus
Pulsar = On-Line

Back-UPS CS, ES = corrugated Prize
Back-UPS HS = Off-Line
Back-UPS RS = Line-Interactive Square
Smart-UPS SC = Line-interactive Square
Smart-UPS Line-interactive = Sinus
Smart-UPS XL = Line-interactive Sinus
Smart-UPS RT = On-Line
IV] Other
Laptops: For portable inverter is not necessary (you already have a battery with the laptop), but when you connect to power, the laptop is in potential danger.To avoid this and minimize costs, you can purchase a para-surtenseur which will protect your laptop as effectively as a UPS.

MGE -> http://www.mgeups.com/indexus.htm
If you have any additional info please post here.
Just as you can leave your impressions on your own UPS (give the make and model)
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