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What UPS to get for my setup?

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July 20, 2011 4:18:06 AM

Hey all, the duplex I'm living in is a bit old and the power seems kind of shoddy, I probably should hire an electrician to come out and fix it up but my father is paranoid and isn't really open to it since we are only renting here. So, I was just wondering if anyone could help me pick a good quality UPS for my rig, I honestly have not a clue what my power draw is so I'll list the things I'll have plugged in.

--PC
Processor: i7 980x
Motherboard: Rampage III Extreme
RAM: 24gbs DDR3 1600 Corsair Vengeance
Graphics: 2x 3gb gtx 580 sli
Storage: 128gb ssd and 1.5tb 7200rpm both Sata III
Audio: Can't remember its like Creative Fatal1ty or something
Optical: 12x Blu Ray and 24x Dvd rw
PSU: Corsair 1200 watt

--Monitor
ASUS VG236H 23-Inch 120 Hz 3D Ready

Also I will probably want to plug in my cable modem and router, not sure if I need a UPS with an RJ45 ethernet plug or coaxial? Don't know if that is even an option it probably ups the price a bit I would guess.

Ok I think that is all. I'll also have a 7.1 surround sound setup. Does this need to be plugged into the UPS as well, or should I just get a separate surge protector for that and any other miscellaneous non-crucial peripherals?

Thanks in advance! Oh btw I'm not on a super short budget or anything if you think I need to spend 300 or maybe even 400 dollars for solid protection that isn't a problem.


Eeek! After using APC's UPS Selector tool the cheapest one they list is 1500W for just over 1,000 dollars!! I hope I messed up or this is just an overestimate!

More about : ups setup

July 20, 2011 4:38:19 AM

If you based 1500watts off of the power supply you are using that is not the way you really should be sizing your UPS. What type of battery run-time are you looking for? What is the actual draw of your current computer? My guess is that you'll find you're only drawing fraction of the 1200w (thats output wattage, input is generally slightly higher due to heat loss, fans etc).

Let's say you're really drawing 4amps at 110v, thats 450watts and let's say another 1/2 an amp at 110v for the rest of your gear, that would be roughly 500watts. If you were to put in a 1000w UPS you'll have a runtime of approximately 2 hours.
July 20, 2011 4:39:27 AM

If you only want to cover small brownouts and very breif interruptions, almost any decent quality UPS will do for your setup, no need to spend $1,000.
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July 20, 2011 4:50:25 AM

Ok cool that makes a little bit more sense to me now, thank you for the speedy reply. The APC UPS Selector had me entire like my processor series, monitor type, hard drives and whatever peripherals it didn't actually ask about the power supply at all.

Honestly I have no clue what the actual draw will be, I don't think they have even shipped the parts yet at all so it will probably be at the very soonest next week before they start arriving. And on top of that, I don't actually know how to figure out the actual draw of it =\ Sorry I'm a little clueless in this area.

And for the battery run-time it doesn't need to be anything crazy substantial although at least 20 minutes or something would be nice.
July 20, 2011 7:15:37 AM

my powernet is fairly stable here so i dont get much power outages.
i do have an UPS for when it does happen and i have a +-10 minutes to restore power, which is more than enough (if you need more, you prolly need several hours...) i got one of $300 and 1500 VA (230V)

so an UPS of $300 is more than enough in most cases (unless you have a server that must keep running...)
July 20, 2011 7:24:41 AM

a 500w UPS will give you 30min of runtime with 1000w load on it.
July 20, 2011 2:53:19 PM

UnsureConsumer said:
And on top of that, I don't actually know how to figure out the actual draw of it =\ Sorry I'm a little clueless in this area.

Most computers draw less than 200 watts. May draw a sudden and intermittent 300 watts. Since most computer assemblers do not measure power and do not learn how electricity works, then component manufacturers sometimes recommend 600 and 900 watt supplies. Their solution to consumers without technical knowledge.

Battery in a UPS has a life expectancy of maybe three years. Battery will degrade quickly because a UPS is so often made so cheaply. So, to provide 300 watts even three years later, get a UPS that is maybe 500 watts.

If power is dodgy due to household wiring, get the potential human safety defect fixed. Never cure symptoms with a UPS. Too many want to cure symptoms to ignore a potential house fire. Nothing even in 1920 wiring should cause computer problems. If any household wiring is causing computer problems, then stop everything. Immediately solve what in some rare cases can be a house fire. Always fix the problem. You are asking about a UPS to cure symptoms.

July 20, 2011 9:57:58 PM

westom said:
If power is dodgy due to household wiring, get the potential human safety defect fixed. Never cure symptoms with a UPS. Too many want to cure symptoms to ignore a potential house fire. Nothing even in 1920 wiring should cause computer problems. If any household wiring is causing computer problems, then stop everything. Immediately solve what in some rare cases can be a house fire. Always fix the problem. You are asking about a UPS to cure symptoms.


Yeah I totally agree honestly, I wish it was up to me. I guess I could just call an electrician and pay out of my pocket against what my dad thinks regardless. Its not so much the wiring is bad, they just combined so many receptacles on one circuit that its very verrrry easy to overload and trip the breaker. So I don't want my computer's power to be cut instantly because someone turned a window air conditioning unit or vacuum on.

How much do you think it would cost me to have an electrician install another breaker or whatever and give me a receptacle on a separate circuit for my rig? Or at least wire one of the two receptacles in my room on a separate circuit? There are 2 outlined slots that aren't punched out/in use in the circuit breaker so I figure there is room for it right? Also just for a reference point, the outlets are all probably at the most 20 feet away from the breaker box, but its probably even less than that.

My dad thinks that for some reason the landlady would completely object and throw us out because I want to add an additional circuit.. I think he is crazy.
July 20, 2011 11:02:13 PM

Is it at all possible to just move a few other devices to another circuit breaker in the residence? Are they all over-loaded? Does your lease agreement state the amount of power tha twould be supplied?


Getting a UPS is a good idea, but in this case it is a bandaid to a bigger problem. You will not need a large UPS for this purpose either.
July 20, 2011 11:13:01 PM

UnsureConsumer said:
How much do you think it would cost me to have an electrician install another breaker or whatever and give me a receptacle on a separate circuit for my rig? ... My dad thinks that for some reason the landlady would completely object and throw us out because I want to add an additional circuit.. I think he is crazy.

I am not yet sure what your problem is. Your computer consumes trivial power just like multiple incandescent bulbs. Each circuit is good for over 1000 watts. Are you blowing circuit breakers? I never saw any such problem defined. I only saw speculation about 'old wires means inferior power'.

If the house is unpowered, then a landlady should be very happy to have additional circuits installed. So that her properly does not burn down.

How much does that cost? Anywhere from less than $100 to many hundreds of dollars. Nobody here can say what you have. How complex the installation would be.

But again, better help means first define 'shoddy' power. Wires even from the 1930s may be more than sufficient if properly installed and maintained.


a c 243 ) Power supply
July 20, 2011 11:28:12 PM

tokencode said:
a 500w UPS will give you 30min of runtime with 1000w load on it.
:o 
July 21, 2011 1:09:14 AM

westom said:
I am not yet sure what your problem is. Your computer consumes trivial power just like multiple incandescent bulbs. Each circuit is good for over 1000 watts. Are you blowing circuit breakers? I never saw any such problem defined. I only saw speculation about 'old wires means inferior power'.


Not really sure what I'm leaving out. Like I said it's not that the wiring is bad, it's that there are too few circuits, and I wasn't implying that old wires means inferior power at all or anything in the first post. Calling the power shoddy definitely wasn't the correct way for me to describe the issue though, and I shouldn't have implied that the problem had any relation to the age of the building.

I'll fully detail it out. There are only 3 circuits in this house. One circuit is for every light and fan fixture, the next is for EVERY 120v receptacle in the house, every single plug is connected to the same circuit, the final circuit is a single 220v receptacle.

So tokencode, I attempted that until I discovered that everything is on the same circuit. :pfff:  I guess I'm going to have to disassemble some light fixture and run an extension cord down the hallway into my bedroom.
July 21, 2011 3:16:36 AM

UnsureConsumer said:
... the next is for EVERY 120v receptacle in the house, every single plug is connected to the same circuit, .

OK. Now we have numbers. One more question. Is that one circuit on a 15 amp or 20 amp circuit breaker (or fuse)?

Wow. You do have a woefully undersized circuit. Whereas many items can work without problems, the rare high power device (ie iron, hair dryer) will cause overloads and tripping breakers. Is that breaker tripping?

Appreciate that breakers are only like the secondary O'rings on Space Shuttles. An emergency backup device. Circuit breakers are not intended to be the only protection. If tripping a breaker often, then a serious human safety issue exists.

Kitchen should have its own circuit. Refrigerator should have its own circuit. Laundry room (washer or clothes iron) should have its own circuit. You don't have any of those. So installing 2 twenty amp circuits is not just helpful. It may be a human safety issue. I don't think I have ever seen a home or apartment so underpowered.

Worse case, the landlady should be gleeful if you dad pays for a least one new circuit. Currently her property is at risk - not to mention your lives.

Get an electrician to put forth an estimate. Then talk to the landlady.
July 21, 2011 5:23:14 AM

westom said:
OK. Now we have numbers. One more question. Is that one circuit on a 15 amp or 20 amp circuit breaker (or fuse)?.


It is a 20 amp, and the light fixtures are on a 15 amp.

westom said:
Wow. You do have a woefully undersized circuit. Whereas many items can work without problems, the rare high power device (ie iron, hair dryer) will cause overloads and tripping breakers. Is that breaker tripping?


Yeah. We don't have any central heating or air conditioning, so there are 2 window units running 24/7 since it's been a very hot summer. Now that I'm more aware and thinking more logically I'm assuming that those units combined with the refrigerator are probably the biggest culprits causing the overloading.

I brought up the fact that it is a fire hazard and safety issue also, not to mention it is a reasonable request/improvement without even considering that, but my dad thinks for some reason the landlady is just completely against letting us modify/improve anything at all. I don't know why, I guess just because she doesn't really care or seem inclined to spend much money at all on anything. Then I think he doesn't want to spend money himself to improve this place either since we won't live here forever, or he is just assuming it will cause problems or be a big ordeal so he is avoiding confrontation. But I don't know, his logic doesn't make sense to me sometimes and that's a whole other story.

Anyway, that sounds like a good plan to start out with. I may just have to spend my own money on it if it comes to that. Thanks a bunch for all the help even though this has become a completely different issue lol but as you said at least I'm no longer trying to just put a band aid on the problem.



Also one more question, until I get this straightened out, do you think putting an outlet in place of one of the light fixtures on the 15 amp circuit and running an extension cord to a UPS/surge protector (if necessary) will be suitable to plug my computer rig into? There are 2 average size ceiling fans that run constantly and only about 7 or 8 lights on that circuit and a few are rarely ever on. Or would it be smarter to run one of the air conditioning units on that?

July 21, 2011 12:16:14 PM

UnsureConsumer said:
until I get this straightened out, do you think putting an outlet in place of one of the light fixtures on the 15 amp circuit and running an extension cord to a UPS/surge protector (if necessary) will be suitable to plug my computer rig into?

Last thing you want to trip (especially if a fire occurs) is the light circuit. That, more extension cords, and one repeatedly tripping circuit is worrying enough. The UPS (which is not a surge protector no matter what advertising says) is not really addressing the problem. A problem that concerns me greatly due what is being powered by that one circuit.

Even a receptacle attached to the AC fuse box and on its own 20 amp breaker would be a far more useful solution.

Understand how circuit breakers work. For example, how long does it take 25 amps to trip a 20 amp breaker? Maybe as much as two hours. That assumes a breaker that has been tripping often is still functioning properly. They are not intended to trip repeatedly like that. It may eventually fail; not trip on any overcurrent. Also important for human safety is to not trip out the lights. And not draw excessive power out of a light socket only intended for a 100 watt light bulb. You already have too many threats to human life. I would not add more.

July 21, 2011 6:15:15 PM

UnsureConsumer said:
Hey all, the duplex I'm living in is a bit old and the power seems kind of shoddy, I probably should hire an electrician to come out and fix it up but my father is paranoid and isn't really open to it since we are only renting here. So, I was just wondering if anyone could help me pick a good quality UPS for my rig, I honestly have not a clue what my power draw is so I'll list the things I'll have plugged in.

--PC
Processor: i7 980x
Motherboard: Rampage III Extreme
RAM: 24gbs DDR3 1600 Corsair Vengeance
Graphics: 2x 3gb gtx 580 sli
Storage: 128gb ssd and 1.5tb 7200rpm both Sata III
Audio: Can't remember its like Creative Fatal1ty or something
Optical: 12x Blu Ray and 24x Dvd rw
PSU: Corsair 1200 watt

--Monitor
ASUS VG236H 23-Inch 120 Hz 3D Ready

Also I will probably want to plug in my cable modem and router, not sure if I need a UPS with an RJ45 ethernet plug or coaxial? Don't know if that is even an option it probably ups the price a bit I would guess.

Ok I think that is all. I'll also have a 7.1 surround sound setup. Does this need to be plugged into the UPS as well, or should I just get a separate surge protector for that and any other miscellaneous non-crucial peripherals?

Thanks in advance! Oh btw I'm not on a super short budget or anything if you think I need to spend 300 or maybe even 400 dollars for solid protection that isn't a problem.


Eeek! After using APC's UPS Selector tool the cheapest one they list is 1500W for just over 1,000 dollars!! I hope I messed up or this is just an overestimate!


I bought this one to have just as overkill for my gaming PC: http://www.amazon.com/Cyberpower-CP1500AVRLCD-UPS-Displ...

It works very well, my power is shady as well, has a nice warning beep to let you know when something is going wrong with the power, has a sexy display and looks nice sitting on my desk next to my PC. The display can cycle through things such has the estimated runtime on battery, how much battery is life, the current power draw, etc.

I personally have my monitor, my PC and a desk lamp plugged in for when the power goes out and I'd like a light. I leave my speakers disconnected because it's a waste of battery life when the power goes out, but to each his own.
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