Best Back-Up Battery Sinewave UPS? Anyone own a CyberPower?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by zettabyte, Jul 3, 2015.

  1. zettabyte macrumors regular


    Jun 6, 2015
    I need to buy two more units. Upon doing a lot of research, I've come to realize that APC's are not the best choice as there seems to be something better. (According to numerous detailed write ups by electricians.)

    Bottom line: "Not all power is created equal."

    Therefore, the unit that seems promising with "clean" power looks to be the:
    CyberPower CP1500PFCLCD PFC Sinewave UPS 1500VA 900W PFC Compatible Mini-Tower

    Can someone (hopefully there are electricians in here) confirm if this unit is indeed the best unit to buy around the ~$200 price range? I'm willing to spend more...

    Fellow Electricians are these true/false?

    1. Keep the VA under 70% of the capacity of the unit. So for the unit above keep it under 1050VA. Correct?

    2. There's really no such thing as a back up UPC being able to generate a True PURE Sinewave, however, the high end units like the one above does such a good job of taking DC and making a good enough AC for it to be more than adequate for our Macs. HD's etc... True?

    Daisy Chaining: (What's the official scoop on doing this?)

    * I've read that it can void the warranty of the Backup Battery Unit?

    The CyberPower 1500VA Unit above has 5 Battery "Backup & Surge Protected Outlets" + 5 "Surged Protected ONLY Outlets."

    Would it be safe to plug in my Belkin 12 Outlet (3940 Joules) Surge protector into one of the 5 (Backup+Surge Protected) plugs? The components plugged in would be very light gadgets like my phone chargers, led lamp, etc...Being careful not to overload it.


    Could I plug in something smaller like a 6 Outlet (1080 Joule) unit into one of the Battery + Surge outlets?

    Here's what my set up would look like:

    Battery + Surge Protected Outlets:
    1. rMBP Power Cord
    2. NAS Unit (WD My Cloud 4-Bay DL4100 Model)
    3. WD 5TB External Hard Drive (Primary)
    4. Samsung 4K Monitor
    5. Logitech 5.1 Surround Sound
    Additional gadgets I'd like to plug into the Battery + Surge Protected Outlets, hence the reason for the daisy question above.
    1. Smartphone #1 Charger
    2. Smartphone #2 Charger
    3. NAS Unit Power Cord #2 (The NAS has a 2nd power plug on the back next to the primary.)
    4. Router
    5. Modem
    6. External HD #2

    Surged Protected (Only) Outlets:
    1. Battery Bank Charger
    2. LED Lamp
    3. External DVD Player/Burner
    4. Router?
    5. Modem?

    Any help on this from anyone would be greatly appreciated.

  2. kschendel macrumors 65816

    Dec 9, 2014
    "Best" according to what metric? Do you have frequent outages or dirty power? Are you looking for price, or the ability to plug pretty much any crap in and guarantee it works, or what? How important is customer service? etc etc. Just being pure sinewave doesn't make a unit "better" unless that is your most important criterion, and there's no overriding reason why that should be so.

    I've used APC for years with Apple and Sun hardware with no problems, but APC makes quite a few different lines and who knows if they are all created equal.

    The 70% rule of thumb is fine. My various MBP's, iMac, and Mac Pro (tower) seem perfectly happy with whatever waveform is coming out of the APC Back-UPS. I don't know that I can answer the daisy chain question.
  3. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    Most of the devices on your list convert AC line voltage to DC at either in the power cord using a transforming brick or an internal power supply. Therefore, the waveform of your voltage input is almost totally irrelevant.

    Even in the case of devices that do not convert AC line voltage to DC, the waveform of the line voltage may be important in very sensitive science or engineering instruments. For computer equipment usually found in a data center with raised floors, then the waveform may also be important. However, you may expect the line voltage that powers a data center to be conditioned as a matter of course. Most homes and offices do not have conditioned line voltage. Therefore, most computer equipment designed for the home or office is designed to accommodate unconditioned power.
  4. zettabyte thread starter macrumors regular


    Jun 6, 2015
    Thanks for the info. Being a perfectionist, what's throwing me off is that all the different manufactures recommend a certain model of CyberPower or APC, however, they are all different models (lower line models) than the CyberPower CP1500PFCLCD model so I'm sitting here scratching my head thinking....what in the world? Seriously? One manufacturer lists that it's compatible with A, B, and C....the other lists something different and so on...

    According to the info. you've provided, I should be fine with pretty much any of the ones available out on the market for "home use," however, having read reviews (several) on the horror stories got me thinking that it might be a good idea to fine the "best fit," for my particular components.

    In your opinion, this CyberPower CP1500PFCLCD, should be more than adequate for my Mac, NAS, External HD's, Monitor etc..??

    Happy 4th!
  5. zettabyte thread starter macrumors regular


    Jun 6, 2015
    Best as in, what would be the best UPS to purchase around the $200 price range for my needs as listed in the OP.

    I don't have frequent power outages, however, on average about 2-3 a year. More than frequency of power outages, I find the amount of outages irrelevant, because it only takes one time to say, darn. I should have..could have..would have...

    I am looking for a unit that has proven to be reliable in power outages. All the units available are obviously not created equal, therefore, upon reading through a ton of reviews, I have narrowed it down to the one listed above to see if anyone else has any experience with it and/or the brand over the popular APC.

    According to a lot of the reviews (some very detailed ones written by electricians) and for the price range of $200 (give or take) a lot of them use CyberPower over APC. Simple as that. This is why I've started my journey in researching CyberPower as well...because quite honestly, I have never even looked into CyberPower and just have defaulted to APC in the past as that is what was on sale at the time of purchase.

    Price is also not an issue. I just need a unit that allows enough time to shut down properly, which seem to range from $100 to a little over $200+.
  6. Shamgar macrumors regular

    Jun 28, 2015
    I happen to own that particular Cyberpower model. My Mac Pro uses an active power factor correction power supply, and active PFC power supplies can sometimes fail to work if not supplied with sine wave power or a close approximation. The Cyberpower UPS was the most inexpensive sine wave option from a reputable brand, and it does work without issues for me.

    It also comes with two USB charging ports on the front that can be used to charge portable devices. That could replace some of your needs.

    The battery life on that CyberPower is rather limited. I get about 15 minutes on my Mac Pro at typical load. That is enough for a graceful shutdown, and that's all I was expecting. If that is what you are looking for, you can probably streamline your requirements to just what is enough to keep the hard drives, NAS and internal network up long enough for a graceful shutdown. You won't need your speakers, the backup power supply on your NAS, or power to your battery-operated rMBP.
  7. zettabyte thread starter macrumors regular


    Jun 6, 2015
    Thanks Shamgar. Is the active power factor correction power supply that you have mentioned the piece that is a part of the OEM charger? Or its own separate unit? From what I understand the power that is fed to our home is a clean sine wave and most of our devices have a good amount of tolerance to deal with any corrections if necessary before the powers the unit.

    15 minutes is plenty...sounds great.
  8. Shamgar macrumors regular

    Jun 28, 2015
    Active PFC is a technology used in power supplies to improve efficiency in the power supply. Roughly speaking, it adjusts the incoming wave to optimize the conversion to DC and reduce wasted energy. Active PFC is used in many electronic devices these days (especially large computer power supplies) because of that improved efficiency. I don't know if it is used in any of your gear, but I would expect so these days.

    The power out of the wall in your house is a sine wave. Any power supply will readily handle typical fluctuations and provide clean DC power to your electronic device. The issue with a UPS is that it takes the AC power from the wall, but its battery operates with DC. So the UPS converts the AC input to DC to charge the battery. Then when powering from the battery, the UPS has to convert the battery's DC output back to the AC that the power supply in your electronics expects (which then converts to DC for the device itself - super awesome efficiency here.) It's that conversion back to AC power that causes the problem as cheaper UPSs will use a square wave instead of a sine wave, or stepped waves to loosely approximate a sine wave. That's what throws off power supplies with active PFC. A square wave UPS is providing something that the active PFC might not be able to work with to do its efficiency magic, and it just shuts off.
  9. zettabyte thread starter macrumors regular


    Jun 6, 2015
    Awesome. Great explanation. Thanks a bunch!

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8 July 3, 2015