Let's Take A Trip Inside Budget Power Bars, Part Two

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daveys93

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I have a powerstrip/surge protector that powers off some of the powerstrip outlets based on the on/off state of one of the outlets. For example: I have my water-cooled PC plugged into the master outlet on the strip and then my speakers, monitors, etc. plugged into the slave outlets on the strip. When I put my PC in windows sleep mode or turn it off, the power strip senses the low power state and turns off the monitors, speakers, etc. There is even a few outlets on the strip that are not linked to the master so I can have my router and cable modem plugged into those and they will not be powered off when I put my PC to sleep. When I wake my PC with the keyboard or mouse, the power strip senses the master outlet on the strip as active and turns my monitors and speakers, etc. back on.

I am generally not a fan of Monster products, like their cables and what not are just overpriced and bulked up to look expensive, however their "Greenpower" powerstrips are great and I think good value for the money and the unique power saving feature. I love not having to power down 3 monitors and my speakers everytime I put my PC to sleep or shutdown.

http://electronics.monsterproducts.com/search?site=allsites&asug=&view=grid&w=greenpower
 

Daniel Sauvageau

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There are countless generic bars out there and it would be nearly impossible to have a look into all of them. Many of those will simply be re-branded variants of something else and at a glance, the "Koppla 6" I am seeing on Ikea's website looks an awful lot like the Sunbeam unit from part one so I would expect it to be the same thing except possibly for the non-missing thermal shut-off.
 

HarrisburgPA

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Ever thought about pulling apart something beefier like a Tripp Lite Isobar? I realize this series focuses on budget strips, but it would be nice to see a well-built unit for comparison.
 

daveys93

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I have a powerstrip/surge protector that powers off some of the powerstrip outlets based on the on/off state of one of the outlets. For example: I have my water-cooled PC plugged into the master outlet on the strip and then my speakers, monitors, etc. plugged into the slave outlets on the strip. When I put my PC in windows sleep mode or turn it off, the power strip senses the low power state and turns off the monitors, speakers, etc. There is even a few outlets on the strip that are not linked to the master so I can have my router and cable modem plugged into those and they will not be powered off when I put my PC to sleep. When I wake my PC with the keyboard or mouse, the power strip senses the master outlet on the strip as active and turns my monitors and speakers, etc. back on.

I am generally not a fan of Monster products, like their cables and what not are just overpriced and bulked up to look expensive, however their "Greenpower" powerstrips are great and I think good value for the money and the unique power saving feature. I love not having to power down 3 monitors and my speakers everytime I put my PC to sleep or shutdown.

http://electronics.monsterproducts.com/search?site=allsites&asug=&view=grid&w=greenpower
 

Daniel Sauvageau

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I did not have much success getting manufacturers to send me review samples the first time I asked for some but now that I have a few of these out, I might have better luck.
 

Steelwing

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I'd love to see a review someday that included non-sacrificial surge protectors (that don't use MOVs), such as units from SurgeX, Brickwall, or Zero Surge.

From what I'd seen and heard, they can deal with extremely high surges with no problems, and they (supposedly) don't wear out. They are considerably more expensive, though. There are a few videos on YouTube of them being tested.
 

eidol

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I've stopped reading articles in this ridiculous picture-flip format. It's annoying on both a smartphone and a desktop. Is there any way to switch them to a full-form article?
 

Daniel Sauvageau

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You can read them in "printer-friendly" format instead - click the printer icon that should be on the page's left-hand tool bar.

I have considered doing these in normal review format but from the freelance writer compensation side of things, the picture story format gives a much fairer compensation for image-intensive stories.
 

JonnyDough

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So I went back and read part one. I'm wondering if for Part 3 you can show us what a good brick looks like. Perhaps something from Monster Cable that costs a lot more or something like that? Or maybe toss in a Part 4?
 

eidol

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Thanks for the solution, and the explanation of why so many articles have changed format. It was quite puzzling.

 

ander

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Besides the technical info itself, I think it's great seeing people get this excited about something like power strips. It shows you how interesting even everyday things can be. It's also encouraging to know that not everyone's attention span has been shortened to the length of a 5-minute sitcom segment.
 

Daniel Sauvageau

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Probably not a bad idea. I would recommend APC's P74 (covered in part three which should be out some time this month) if you can find some on sale for ~$12.
 

eiganvalue

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If you want to read more about Zero Surge's technology, you can find links to articles and reviews here - http://www.zerosurge.com/technical-info/technology-articles/ It is true that their technology is far superior and has an indefinite lifespan. Nothing inside is made to degrade or wear out.
 

Daniel Sauvageau

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Where "far superior" means ~30X more component cost and ~10X more complexity for only ~100V better clamping/blocking than good quality MOV-based devices, not counting the fact that series-bucking of surge voltage using an inductor or transformer ("surge reactor" as SurgeX calls it) to reduce surge current and voltage let-through works equally well with MOVs.

As far as lifespan goes, the 6kV/3kA spec is only a worst probable case most people will not see in their lifetime. For lesser everyday surges, like those generated by large household appliances, power tools and local power distribution disruption, MOVs can survive thousands of them. For example, LittleFuse's V20E MOVs are rated for a million 100A surges. The NIST Surge Anthology (2002) estimates that only about 2.6% of USA households see surges worse than 1.2kV annually.
 
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