Is This Power Backup Any Good?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by NoManIsland, Mar 1, 2011.

  1. NoManIsland macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    #1
    This UPS just came up used near me and I have yet to get one for my MP, but I'm wondering if it is any good. I can't tell whether it is a "pure sinewave" of the type I've seen recommended on these forums. Just wanting to find out if it is any good before purchasing for $90, thanks!
     
  2. DanielCoffey macrumors 65816

    DanielCoffey

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2010
    Location:
    Edinburgh, UK
    #2
    It is the APC Back-UPS range (albeit a heavy duty one) which are not pure sinewave output. It is the stepped sinewave.

    While it can certainly handle a load like a Mac Pro and monitor with headroom to spare, it is not the sinewave output that a MP is advised to use. That is not to say it won't work but it may cause the MP power supply to click and squeal when on battery.

    Before you decide to buy it or not, ask how old the battery is because the batteries deteriorate with age and use. If it is second hand, you would almost certainly have to replace the battery before getting full use out of it.

    EDIT : I see you have said it *is* used. My apologies - in that case you would have to budget for new batteries if the included ones were much more than two to three years old and you would still have the issue of the MP power supply not being happy when on battery. APC.com will quote for the batteries for you.
     
  3. NoManIsland thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    #3
    It's second hand in a sense, as I'm getting it from a person and not a store, but it is still sealed in box, having never been used (he can't find the receipt to return it). I'm assuming this would mean that I needn't replace the battery. What kind of price jump would it take to get a pure sinewave UPS over this one (which is $90)? And can this stepped sinewave one actually cause damage to the MP?
     
  4. DanielCoffey macrumors 65816

    DanielCoffey

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2010
    Location:
    Edinburgh, UK
    #4
    That is a damned good price for an unused UPS of that capacity and pedigree. If unused, the battery will still be good but need charging.

    A Smart-UPS 1000 (SMT1000) direct form APC retails for USD 430-ish. They offer a 20% discount in their Trade-UPS trade-in programme for their own Back-UPS models but you would only be able to trade in that second-hand UPS for the SMT1500 model (or larger) which they retail at USD 559.

    I cannot say if the Back-UPS model would actually *damage* a MP, but I hear that they definitely elicit protests from the power supply. The issue only occurs when the UPS is running on battery. If you could take it on approval, you could check and see (once you have allowed it sufficient time to charge of course).

    By the way, the noise you will hear when a good UPS charges largely goes away when the battery is full.

    EDIT : the model you are looking at is discontinued, by the way - it has been replaced by the BackUPS BR1500.
     
  5. Bubbalicious macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2010
    #5

    The Back-UPS XS is a non sine wave unit, it outputs a simulated sine wave. It's a good entry level unit, it's definitely not a data center quality unit.

    The price isn't bad, but you need to check how old the unit is. How long ago did it get purchased? New units that have been sitting on a shelf for longer than 6-8 months have dead and dying batteries. You could be buying a UPS that has a dying battery and will either provide short run time or need the battery replaced soon.

    The Mac PSU's prefer to have a sine wave UPS. The line interactive UPSs offer better protection and power filtering than the standby ones. You're always better off going with a line interactive UPS. The price difference is more than double for a new unit, but if you pick up refurbished you can save a bundle and have a heavy duty UPS.

    How much equipment are you planning to back up?
     
  6. Bubbalicious macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2010
    #6


    You have to beware of that trade up program, it's not really cost efficient it's a plow to get you to buy from them!


    You're right about the psu acting up on battery, that's exactly when it's noticeable. When the UPS is in idle, it's just a power bar and passes the electricity through, it doesn't do any filtering. When the power goes out, the UPS kicks in and starts feeding the electricity to the PSU, that's when it started buzzing, humming and restarting randomly.
     

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