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Do you think a UPS would fix this power issue?

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June 30, 2009 12:03:42 PM

Hey,

I've had a problem with my system since I upgraded it and I've being doing some research to try and fix it and I think maybe getting a UPS would help, but I thought I'd get a few extra opinions before splashing out on one (as they seem fairly expensive).

I upgraded from a fairly oldish system to a new fairly new one and upgraded most of the components in my system. So the new rig includes a quad core phenom 2, a 4870x2 graphics card and 2 sata harddrives etc.

In order to provide the power needed by the new system I initially got a 1000watt coolermaster psu. When I tried connecting it however I believe the PSU blew as I lost all fuses in the surge protecter and in the cables. I replaced the fuses and tried again and got the exact same thing, so i returned the PSU and got a replacement of the same model. When I tried with this one, it not only blew all fuses connected to the PSU it also tripped the main house fuses =)

I replaced the 1000watt with a 900watt coolermaster which seemed designed to handle dodgey currents - Coolermaster 900W UCP (Ultimate Circuit Protection) PSU - 80% Silver Certified Efficiency. After replacing with this PSU I can now turn my computer on without blowing all my fuses, but sometimes I need to turn it on and off several times (the record is 20-30) before it actually boots up. I get power and fans whirring but nothing happens. Once booted the computer normally works fine, but in the last few days its started randomly rebooting (no crash/freeze just straight from game -> reboot).

I suspect that all this points towards dodgey power in the flat? But I can't figure out why my old 450watt power supply and the laptops used in the flat never had any problems at all, as I'd expect if there was something so wrong with the supply it can blow fuses on modern high power psu's that it would make a mess of old PSUs as well. And if this is likely to be a power problem would getting a UPS be likely to fix it?

I tested the setup using my old PSU + old graphics card and had no problems, but cant test with old PSU and new graphics cards because it's way below the requirements.

Cheers for any input,
Kevin

More about : ups fix power issue

a c 144 ) Power supply
June 30, 2009 4:14:14 PM

No, I doubt if a UPS would fix this problem.

It's time for you to post complete specs for your system and ask for help.
a b ) Power supply
June 30, 2009 5:15:40 PM

svetz said:
Hey,

I've had a problem with my system since I upgraded it and I've being doing some research to try and fix it and I think maybe getting a UPS would help, but I thought I'd get a few extra opinions before splashing out on one (as they seem fairly expensive).

I upgraded from a fairly oldish system to a new fairly new one and upgraded most of the components in my system. So the new rig includes a quad core phenom 2, a 4870x2 graphics card and 2 sata harddrives etc.

In order to provide the power needed by the new system I initially got a 1000watt coolermaster psu. When I tried connecting it however I believe the PSU blew as I lost all fuses in the surge protecter and in the cables. I replaced the fuses and tried again and got the exact same thing, so i returned the PSU and got a replacement of the same model. When I tried with this one, it not only blew all fuses connected to the PSU it also tripped the main house fuses =)

I replaced the 1000watt with a 900watt coolermaster which seemed designed to handle dodgey currents - Coolermaster 900W UCP (Ultimate Circuit Protection) PSU - 80% Silver Certified Efficiency. After replacing with this PSU I can now turn my computer on without blowing all my fuses, but sometimes I need to turn it on and off several times (the record is 20-30) before it actually boots up. I get power and fans whirring but nothing happens. Once booted the computer normally works fine, but in the last few days its started randomly rebooting (no crash/freeze just straight from game -> reboot).

I suspect that all this points towards dodgey power in the flat? But I can't figure out why my old 450watt power supply and the laptops used in the flat never had any problems at all, as I'd expect if there was something so wrong with the supply it can blow fuses on modern high power psu's that it would make a mess of old PSUs as well. And if this is likely to be a power problem would getting a UPS be likely to fix it?

I tested the setup using my old PSU + old graphics card and had no problems, but cant test with old PSU and new graphics cards because it's way below the requirements.

Cheers for any input,
Kevin



Kevin, Since you used the word flat, I'm assuming you are not in the US so we're talking a UK area electrical power wiring situation, and I'm not familiar with that typical setup so I'll be using our US references as there should be some comparative similarities.

jsc is right a UPS will not fix your problem as your problem is more related to an inadequate power line load handling capability, your first choice of a 1000W P/S was probably right on with a 4870X2 and maybe just squeaking by actually, but your problem is the amperage supplied to the wall outlet is insufficient to handle the load your slapping to it.

In the US a line load circuit of wall outlets is supposed to be 20A on 12G wire, all lighting circuits can be 15A on 14G wire, I don't know the available Amperage of the circuit you're plugged into but it should be listed on the breaker or fuse you're using, not all electricians here in the US wire like they're supposed to, and some manufactured homes have their outlet circuit on 15A breakers, way insufficient for solid higher wattage power supplies that meet todays computing needs.

OK from here lets just say you're plugged into a 15A circuit, your 1000W P/S is using apprx. 3/4ths of that circuits capability by itself, not counting your monitor draw, and any powered speaker draw on the circuit too, so if anything else is plugged into that same circuit in another room drawing power, you're overloading the circuit and blowing the fuses.

My advice is to discover how much amperage is the circuit supplying that the computer is plugged into?

How many other things may be plugged into that same circuit possibly in another room?

It would be ideal if it was a 20A circuit, but that probably wouldn't be tripping unless the computer is online at the same time your GF or Wife is blow drying her hair with a 1500 to 2000W hair dryer, that will trip or blow the fuse for sure.

Can you replace a 15A with a 20A fuse, of course you can but you need to be fully aware of the [wire] load carrying capability, as in a 20A load requires a 12G wire to safely run on so it won't overheat and catch on fire.

I had the exact same problem as you and I solved it by running a dedicated power line of 12G wire to my office on a 20A breaker in my panel box, that isolated my 1000W and additional 750W setup from any other devices drawing power, but I own my home and could do that, I don't know if your situation would allow such as that, but that will solve your problem.

A UPS is a great thing to have it has saved me so many times from power outages and surges, but in your case it will just add to the power inadequacy you already have.
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June 30, 2009 10:28:57 PM

Wow, cheers for the detailed reply! I shall do some investigation of the electrics around the flat (and you guessed the uk bit right) and see if I can find anything useful out.

Theres normally quite a lot of electrics in the flat (2 laptops, desktop with 2 monitors, 2 tvs (one 37"), blu ray player etc and the flats not particularly big, only 3 rooms. I might try moving the desktop into a different room and seeing if any of the sockets are on a different circuit by trial and error. As living in a rented flat I think it's extremely unlikely I'll be able to get any detailed information easily from the landlord!
I can also try running the desktop in a different house for a week or two to confirm that the problem is location specific.

I think I'm better not doing anything potentially dangerous like upping the fuses as the blocks of flats are a bit old and dodgey and I'm not sure I'd trust them not to set on fire, so if i can't solve the problem by moving the around I'll have to consider trying to find somewhere else to live.

Cheers,
Kevin
June 30, 2009 11:02:30 PM

Does the new computer work at another location, if not there may be something wrong with the build. Assuming it runs fine somewhere else then it would be the house wiring.

Also be aware that UK is a 50hz 120v system were as the US is 60hz 120v, depending on where you got the power supply this may or may not be an issue.

Two problems 1 a computer can blow the fuse and 2 the flat is wired with fuses. With that in mind you most likely have two more problems 1 no ground 2 rag wire.

If you do not KNOW what you are doing have someone competent look at it. Old wiring is a mess to work with, but it shouldn't be hard to add a separate circuit that will meet your needs.
!