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Enthusiast Power Protection: Four-Way 900 W UPS Roundup

Opti-UPS Durable Series DS1500B

Opti-UPS might be considered a high-value brand in the traditional consumer market, but none of its consumer products were ready to support active PFC power supplies. Stepping up to server-grade parts, it still had to go upscale to support the high loads of an enthusiast-class PC. The DS1500B is so upscale, it’s the only unit it today’s comparison to use double-conversion topology.

Double-conversion means that 100% of the output power comes directly from the batteries, while the input side is isolated from the output side through the batteries. Two completely separate power circuits are required to make this all work, but the chief benefit is that a double-conversion unit can tolerate far greater input power fluctuations without impacting stability on the output side. Because the outputs run continuously from the battery, there is no need to switch between power sources, and the batteries themselves become part of the voltage and current buffer.

A simplified front panel is less verbose than that of some competitors, but a little patience still allows users to “get the job done” without relying on software. Of course, those who don’t have much patience can just as easily install the control software to access advanced functions.

Besides having the highest capacity of today’s competitors at 1050 W, the DS1500B is also able to have the longest run time through the addition of external battery packs. On the other hand, the added cost of a double-conversion power unit means that many end users won’t have enough money left to purchase external batteries.

Two power groups allow users to configure load shedding, turning off unneeded peripherals to conserve battery life.

We were very surprised to find that the DS1500B does not include a USB cable, since very few modern systems have retained the nine-pin serial interface. The older interface is still common on servers however, and that’s the primary market for this high-end unit.

Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.