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Sossity

macrumors 65816
Original poster
May 12, 2010
1,316
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Looking for one that protects against fluctuations, gives me time to properly shut down, in a power outage, and unplug external hard drives, and protects against a surge when the power comes back on.
 

Micky Do

macrumors 68020
Aug 31, 2012
2,173
3,106
a South Pacific island
Wherever you are you will likely find a number of brands. APC is one that seems to be known internationally, and has a good reputation, albeit a bit pricey.

I suggest you discuss your needs with a sales assistant at a reputable store. You should get a UPS with enough capacity to last 15 to 20 minutes.

Most, if not all will protect against power surge, but make sure it has a three pin plug, and your household circuit is earthed.

For a UPS that protects against power fluctuations look for one that has AVR (Automatic Voltage Regulation).

I got my first Mac Mini in 2005, when I was living in Thailand. The neighbourhood had a very poor mains power supply, and outages were frequent. I was at the end of the line and some evenings there was not enough grunt to kick the fluorescent lights into action. I got a fairly basic UPS, which gave me back-up and supposedly surge protection, but without AVR the power supply brick that came with the Mac Mini was working hard. Not helped by having only 2 pin plugs in the apartment.... if I touched the computer I felt a little tingle.

That UPS failed nearly just over a year later, out of warranty but repaired at no cost to me.

In 2008 there was a massive power surge that cut the electric power supply to most of southern Thailand for several hours. It destroyed that UPS, but the computer survived.

I went looking for an APC, but none were available, so I got another brand. Cannot remember what it was, but they reckoned was OK, ensuring I got a 600VA model with AVR. It was a little more expensive than some others, but it had the features I knew I wanted. With the permission of my landlord I drove in a 2 meter copper stake beside the building I lived in, and earthed a couple of the sockets so I could use three pin plugs. No more tingling if I touched the Mini.

Soon after that the electricity supply to the neighbourhood was upgraded, so we could rely on getting a decent voltage.

However, after 4 years of hard work, the Mac Mini power supply was getting a bit dicky. When the HDD failed in early 2009, replacing it and the power supply would have set me back more than half the cost of a 2009 Mac Mini. Replace rather than repair the 2005 original was the sensible decision.

With the upgraded and earthed mains supply, the new UPS worked fine. Had the battery replaced and a general check over every three years or so.... it was still good when I left Thailand late 2019.

The 2009 Mac Mini was still in use here in my home country until recently, with the power supply still working fine. Still with the original HDD, it was getting a little noisy, so I reckoned it was time to replace it with an M1 Mac Mini about five months ago.

Where I live now the mains supply is reliable, with a steady voltage and power outages are rare. Not many folks bother with a UPS, but I still think it is prudent to have one.

Not sure what brand I got, but it says SAFEGUARD and DYNAMIX on the case. It is 600VA capacity (so probably good for 20 - 30 minutes with my set-up), and has AVR. There are 3 back-up sockets and 3 more surge protected sockets. It has a USB connection to the computer, which monitors the condition of the battery.
 
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Sossity

macrumors 65816
Original poster
May 12, 2010
1,316
29
Wherever you are you will likely find a number of brands. APC is one that seems to be known internationally, and has a good reputation, albeit a bit pricey.

I suggest you discuss your needs with a sales assistant at a reputable store. You should get a UPS with enough capacity to last 15 to 20 minutes.

Most, if not all will protect against power surge, but make sure it has a three pin plug, and your household circuit is earthed.

For a UPS that protects against power fluctuations look for one that has AVR (Automatic Voltage Regulation).

I got my first Mac Mini in 2005, when I was living in Thailand. The neighbourhood had a very poor mains power supply, and outages were frequent. I was at the end of the line and some evenings there was not enough grunt to kick the fluorescent lights into action. I got a fairly basic UPS, which gave me back-up and supposedly surge protection, but without AVR the power supply brick that came with the Mac Mini was working hard. Not helped by having only 2 pin plugs in the apartment.... if I touched the computer I felt a little tingle.

That UPS failed nearly just over a year later, out of warranty but repaired at no cost to me.

In 2008 there was a massive power surge that cut the electric power supply to most of southern Thailand for several hours. It destroyed that UPS, but the computer survived.

I went looking for an APC, but none were available, so I got another brand. Cannot remember what it was, but they reckoned was OK, ensuring I got a 600VA model with AVR. It was a little more expensive than some others, but it had the features I knew I wanted. With the permission of my landlord I drove in a 2 meter copper stake beside the building I lived in, and earthed a couple of the sockets so I could use three pin plugs. No more tingling if I touched the Mini.

Soon after that the electricity supply to the neighbourhood was upgraded, so we could rely on getting a decent voltage.

However, after 4 years of hard work, the Mac Mini power supply was getting a bit dicky. When the HDD failed in early 2009, replacing it and the power supply would have set me back more than half the cost of a 2009 Mac Mini. Replace rather than repair the 2005 original was the sensible decision.

With the upgraded and earthed mains supply, the new UPS worked fine. Had the battery replaced and a general check over every three years or so.... it was still good when I left Thailand late 2019.

The 2009 Mac Mini was still in use here in my home country until recently, with the power supply still working fine. Still with the original HDD, it was getting a little noisy, so I reckoned it was time to replace it with an M1 Mac Mini about five months ago.

Where I live now the mains supply is reliable, with a steady voltage and power outages are rare. Not many folks bother with a UPS, but I still think it is prudent to have one.

Not sure what brand I got, but it says SAFEGUARD and DYNAMIX on the case. It is 600VA capacity (so probably good for 20 - 30 minutes with my set-up), and has AVR. There are 3 back-up sockets and 3 more surge protected sockets. It has a USB connection to the computer, which monitors the condition of the battery.
OK, thank you, right now, I am in a place that was built in the 1950's and some of the rooms that have not been remodeled still have 2 prong outlets in the rooms, and that is where my computer and office is right now. What I did to mitigate this was to get a 2 to 3 prong adapter, and use a small screw to screw in the little metal ground part to the outlets. I now have some Belkin multi-outlet surge protectors plugged in with my mac and monitor plugged, with another surge protector plugged in with all my peripherals plugged in.

There are power outages in my area, we have at least one per year, sometimes 2 or 3 per year. One year my whole city lost power for several hours.

I found this; https://dynamix.co.nz/upse600, is this what you have had? This looks like a European plug, I am in the united states, so I am looking for one to use in the US.
 
Last edited:

HDFan

Contributor
Jun 30, 2007
4,719
1,777
I have used a CyberPower PRL1500 LCD for years. Chose CyberPower due to their Mac App which can tell you such things as the cost of power you used this month.

You should test monthly and replace the batteries every 3 years or so. I wasn't testing but thought everything was OK. At the 5 year point when I ran a test, it failed, and the UPS stopped working. There is a different model series which will run if the batteries are dead. The battery swelled up and was a #$%$# to remove but now with the replacement it works fine. Learned my lesson and am testing monthly now.

Screen Shot 2022-12-27 at 00.58.06.png
Screen Shot 2022-12-27 at 01.08.30.png
 

Micky Do

macrumors 68020
Aug 31, 2012
2,173
3,106
a South Pacific island
OK, thank you, right now, I am in a place that was built in the 1950's and some of the rooms that have not been remodeled still have 2 prong outlets in the rooms, and that is where my computer and office is right now. What I did to mitigate this was to get a 2 to 3 prong adapter, and use a small screw to screw in the little metal ground part to the outlets. I now have some Belkin multi-outlet surge protectors plugged in with my mac and monitor plugged, with another surge protector plugged in with all my peripherals plugged in.

There are power outages in my area, we have at least one per year, sometimes 2 or 3 per year. One year my whole city lost power for several hours.

I found this; https://dynamix.co.nz/upse600, is this what you have had? This looks like a European plug, I am in the united states, so I am looking for one to use in the US.
Looks like I have the 750VA, a couple of models up in the range, chosen because of the number of power outlets available, so don't need a power board. NZ sockets because that's where I am (obviously). I do like that it has the USB connection to monitor the battery; saves having to test it.

I don't know what brands you have available where you are, but it does give some idea of the features available. Some APC brand models also have plenty of sockets.

Screen Shot 2022-12-27 at 22.51.25.png


Well done on getting the sockets adapted to three pins. Having the earth allows the surge protection to work properly.

In my apartment in Thailand I installed the earth wire myself. Ran down the side of the building; I was on the fourth floor. New buildings in Thailand all have earthed three pin plugs, now required by the building code. Where I worked they had the buildings rewired to comply with the new code.

A power cut or two a year seems acceptable, and about what I would expect here. Where I was in Thailand it was more like a cut once or twice a month.
 

Sossity

macrumors 65816
Original poster
May 12, 2010
1,316
29
Looks like I have the 750VA, a couple of models up in the range, chosen because of the number of power outlets available, so don't need a power board. NZ sockets because that's where I am (obviously). I do like that it has the USB connection to monitor the battery; saves having to test it.

I don't know what brands you have available where you are, but it does give some idea of the features available. Some APC brand models also have plenty of sockets.

View attachment 2133358

Well done on getting the sockets adapted to three pins. Having the earth allows the surge protection to work properly.

In my apartment in Thailand I installed the earth wire myself. Ran down the side of the building; I was on the fourth floor. New buildings in Thailand all have earthed three pin plugs, now required by the building code. Where I worked they had the buildings rewired to comply with the new code.

A power cut or two a year seems acceptable, and about what I would expect here. Where I was in Thailand it was more like a cut once or twice a month.
In my area, there was a nuclear power station that was built in the 1960's but has now been shut down, and is slowly being dismantled. As a result, some are saying that the power might be more unstable now, since that nuclear station provided a complementary source of power in my area.

Wow, that shows how old the place I am living in has become, that even so called "developing" nations have more modern building codes. It was supposed to be military housing, but it did not pass the standards for that, and so became residential housing. The homes were built along a canyon edge, and the grounds were really graded like housing is today.
 
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