How to choose an uninterruptible power supply

Uninterruptible power supplies (UPS or UPS) not only help protect important documents from sudden power outages, but also indirectly act as a stabilizer.

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  1. How to choose an uninterruptible power supply for your computer
  2. UPS type
  3. UPS power
  4. Battery life
  5. Availability of control software
  6. Availability of additional sockets
  7. Availability of indicators
  8. Battery replaceable
  9. Summary

How to choose an uninterruptible power supply for your computer: characteristics to consider

Uninterruptible Power Supply for Computer

When choosing an uninterruptible power supply, you must pay attention to the following characteristics:

  1. UPS type (standby, line-interactive, online);

  2. Power;

  3. Battery life;

  4. Availability of control software;

  5. Availability of additional sockets, including telephone line and local network;

  6. Availability of indicators;

  7. Replaceable batteries.

UPS type

The type of UPS determines how it will react to a voltage drop in the network – and how often the battery of the device will have to be changed. Uninterruptible power supplies are divided into:

  1. Reserve;

  2. Line-interactive;

  3. Online.

Standby UPS, also called offline, are the simplest and cheapest. They work according to the following principle – if there is no voltage in the external network for 10 ms or its value is too low, the battery takes over. However, it lacks a stabilizer. And therefore, the low price turns into problems that arise if voltage drops are often observed at home or in the office – the battery wears out and has to be replaced.

Line-interactive UPSs are equipped with a built-in stabilizer that equalizes the voltage in the network, raising or lowering it if necessary. And if it drops too much, then they switch the power to the battery. Therefore, they are great for protection or office equipment.

Online UPSs are the most expensive. However, due to the fact that they constantly generate direct current and feed it to the connected computer, they provide the most rigid voltage clamping (within plus or minus 1%) and zero response time. However, it is not advisable to use such expensive equipment to protect your home or office.

Choosing a UPS by power

UPS power

Power refers to how many devices the UPS can supply without voltage drop. The higher it is, the more computers, monitors and printers you can connect to it. However, the really high power UPSs are very expensive.

The power must be calculated as follows – add up the power of the devices that are planned to be connected to the UPS, and add 20-30% to this 'in reserve'. So, in the end, 350-500 watts are enough for an ordinary home or office PC with an LCD monitor. A gaming computer with a monitor will require 500-1500 watts. But even 1500 W is not enough for a laser printer, but it is worth determining whether it should be used in conditions of blackout?

Battery life

Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to obtain specific information on the capacity of the batteries installed in the UPS. But you can calculate it indirectly. The average time for powering a 200 W computer from a source is 5-7 minutes.

Accordingly, if the power of the source is 800 W, then such a computer will work from it for about 20 minutes. But this is a very rough estimate.

Nevertheless, if it takes 5-7 minutes to close and save all important documents, then you can purchase a UPS with a capacity that is equal to or slightly exceeds the power of a computer. If this time is not enough, then the capacity of the UPS should significantly exceed the capacity of the computer.

Availability of control software

Many UPS models come with dedicated data protection software. It not only allows you to analyze the state of the source, but also starts the automatic saving of files in open applications if the electricity is disconnected for a long time. This will further protect information from loss.

Therefore, the presence of control software is an important advantage of the UPS over other models.

Availability of additional sockets

availability of additional IHD sockets

The UPS can be used to power not only a computer, but also various peripheral devices – office equipment, multimedia, mobile electronics, etc. But, if we talk about the office, then it is desirable that it also provide the local network with electric current. And many UPS models are equipped with dedicated outlets for telephone line and Ethernet cable.

Such sockets are used not only for power supply, but also for stabilizing the current in the network, whose drops can be caused, for example, by the formation of excess voltage in street wires during a thunderstorm.

Availability of indicators

If we are talking about a UPS with a built-in stabilizer, it is very important to receive information about the input and output voltage in real time. In addition, the indicators that show the remaining battery capacity when powered from it and the need to replace it will not interfere.

Therefore, it is worth purchasing a UPS that is equipped with a good indicator system. For example, an LCD display that displays information about the operating parameters of the device in real time.

Possibility to replace the battery and connect an additional battery

Replacing the battery is cheaper than buying a new UPS. Therefore, if you plan to use the device for a long time, you should purchase a model that supports self-replacement batteries.

In addition, many UPS models support scalability by connecting new batteries. These devices are recommended for providing backup power in offices.

Summary

When choosing a UPS for your home or small office, you should be guided by the principle of 'reasonable sufficiency'. The source must support the operation of the required number of devices for a period of time that is sufficient to store important documents.

The best solution would be to buy a line-interactive or online UPS, since a stabilizer is already built into it, so that the device can independently equalize the voltage in the network.

If the mains voltage is usually constant, and outages are extremely rare, a backup (offline) UPS will be sufficient.

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In the following articles, our experts will tell you how to choose a router for home and office, and the secrets of choosing a reliable router.


Attention! This material is the subjective opinion of the authors of the project and is not a purchase guide.

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