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UPS or Surge Protect Poll

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by ctsmd, Apr 21, 2008.

  1. Apr 21, 2008 #1 of 139

    ctsmd AllStar

    Aug 9, 2007
    I'm curious if you guys and gals are using a UPS or just a surge protector on DVRs.

    My thoughts are a UPS will allow some run time before power is abruptly cut off so may be good for short outages and also provide surge protection.

    Or just use a surge protector and DVR will just loss power on any interuption.

    Or other option Nothing.

    So who uses what?
  2. Apr 21, 2008 #2 of 139
    Greg Alsobrook

    Greg Alsobrook Lifetime Achiever

    Apr 1, 2007
    UPS all the way....
  3. Apr 21, 2008 #3 of 139

    xzi Icon

    Sep 18, 2007
    UPS will do an OK job of protecting you from brownouts, but unless you get an expensive one it still relies on the DVRs power supply for when the voltages are low or hi, or when the UPS transitions to battery and back again. They do tend to have surge protection built in, but its the same technology as a surge suppressor if it's not an "online" UPS system (i.e. thousands of dollars). Even a voltage boost/trim UPS is usually very expensive and is still not an online system typically anyway and it's functionality can be found in home theater power conditioners that aren't UPSs.

    Since the UPS can't tell the DVR to power down safely anyway when it dies, it still goes down hard when the battery dies during extened outages anyway.

    I guess my point is since UPSs are designed for computers, and the DVR can't communicate with it, the money is probably better spent on a better quality A/V power conditioner than it is on a UPS that has computer features you're paying for that you can't use anyway in an A/V environment.
  4. Apr 21, 2008 #4 of 139

    Indiana627 Hall Of Fame

    Nov 18, 2005
    UPS for sure.

    Where's the poll?
  5. Apr 21, 2008 #5 of 139

    Hansen Hall Of Fame

    Jan 1, 2006
    I use UPSs on each of my 3 HD DVRs. I do not expect them to keep running for hours on end during an extended power outage but they do keep them from abruptly shutting down in very short power outages. It avoids those shutdowns and restarts that will occur even if the power blips for a couple seconds. Really stinks when that happens and it's recording something. With the UPS, it keeps chugging along during those little blips.
  6. Apr 21, 2008 #6 of 139

    sbl Icon DBSTalk Club

    Jul 21, 2007
    I will disagree strongly with xzi. The great advantage of a UPS is that the DVR will continue to run uninterrupted when the power goes out for a short time. Momentary power glitches (under a second) are frequent killers of DVRs and their hard drives.

    The difference between the inexpensive and more expensive UPS models is that the "line interactive" models will regulate the voltage better, but DVRs are essentially computers and have switching power supplies that can handle this ok.

    When the UPS battery gives out, which will typically be 45 minutes or longer later, it shuts down cleanly which the DVR can deal with. The power won't get restored until the AC has stabilized for 10 seconds or so.

    Bottom line is that a UPS will extend the life of your DVR, especially if your AC power is prone to "glitches". A surge protector will do none of this.
  7. Apr 21, 2008 #7 of 139

    rkicklighter AllStar

    Nov 29, 2007
    Living in the lightning belt.......UPS's on virtually everything electronic in my house.
  8. Apr 21, 2008 #8 of 139

    Redlinetire Icon

    Jul 24, 2007
    Why would I spend money to protect a device I don't own?
    Recording TV isn't THAT critical to me.

    Put me down for nothing...:D
  9. Apr 21, 2008 #9 of 139
    Chuck W

    Chuck W Icon

    Mar 26, 2002
    Absolutely a UPS. I have them on all 3 of my DVR's. I actually don't have many power problems, at all, but the few I've had, have come at an inopportune times. As sbl said, keeping the box running thru the short power outages and even allowing it to power off via the UPS, is a lot easier on the DVR.

    I only have a small UPS on my DVR, which will keep it running for maybe 10-15 minutes, max, but that is usally enough time for the power to come back, in many of my cases.

    I do it to save the harddrive and what I have recorded. THAT is the most important to me. Besides, even tho you don't own the box, the hassles of exchanging a dead box and waiting for a new one, thus not having ANY Directv, would be the most annoying for me.
  10. Apr 21, 2008 #10 of 139

    GlennJ84 Mentor

    Sep 27, 2007
    Call me crazy, but generally both are neccessary. Most UPS's aren't rated that high in surge protection. Cheap surge protectors can be rated in the thousands of Joules and most UPS's are only rated in the low 3 to 4 hundreds. Why not have both. Surge protector to UPS to Devices.

    My $0.02
    Peace Out
  11. Apr 21, 2008 #11 of 139

    bpratt Godfather

    Nov 24, 2005
    Salt Lake...
    Surge protectors on two ReplayTV since 1999, added two HR10-250s in 2004 and two HR21-700s in 2008. I have never used a UPS and have never had a single disk failure on any of my DVRs.
  12. Apr 21, 2008 #12 of 139

    SubSlr08 AllStar

    Dec 4, 2007
    UPS all the way! Here in FL we often have brief outages and the UPS will just coast the DVR through these without a glitch. Without the TV on mine will last 45 minutes - keeping the hard drive spinning safely. It'll even go 15 minutes with the TV on!
    I originally put one on the PC to avoid all the hassles and liked it so much I added one to the DVR/TV set up. Pretty cheap insurance for about $100 bucks. In all the years it was on the HR-10 it only reached it's limit once during a 4 hour outage.
  13. Apr 21, 2008 #13 of 139

    RegGeek Legend

    Mar 14, 2007
    I also use a UPS. I disagree with the comment about not protecting something you don't own. I for one would rather NOT have my recordings lost because the box dies.

    But my DVR really isn't the main reason I have a UPS, the TV is. I have a DLP. It was recommended to me on several occasions that my TV will be much happier in the long run if the cooling fan is always allowed to run when turning it off. Should the TV be on when a power failure occurs the UPS allows me to turn of the TV while it's still recieiving power and can do a proper shut down.
  14. Apr 21, 2008 #14 of 139
    Michael D'Angelo

    Michael D'Angelo Lifetime Achiever

    Oct 20, 2006
    I have UPS's on a few things in the house so far like PC's and my PI for my SWM.

    I will be adding them for my DVR's but I am been picking one up at a time when I get the money for them.
  15. Apr 21, 2008 #15 of 139

    Redlinetire Icon

    Jul 24, 2007
    Unless you backup the drive every night you run the risk of 'losing your recordings' - it's FAR more likely that the box will die due to some internal component failure as opposed to being fried by the electrical system.

    And when 99.99% of what you record is available via DVD or the internet, it makes no sense - convenience or money wise - to buy a UPS to "protect" a piece of equipment you don't own.
  16. Apr 21, 2008 #16 of 139
    Greg Alsobrook

    Greg Alsobrook Lifetime Achiever

    Apr 1, 2007
    it's not about being "fried" by the electrical system... it's about not shutting a hard drive down properly... if there is a bad sector on these hard drives, they will format automatically...
  17. Apr 21, 2008 #17 of 139

    rlnoonan Legend

    Jan 5, 2007
    As you can see from my sig below, I have one setup with a UPS and one with only surge/conditioning. The setup with the APC was done more with the DLP TV in mind than the DVR. My thinking was that if I was watching the TV (so the bulb was nice and hot) when the power went out, I'd like to be able to shut if off and have the fan still work to cool the bulb. If the power went out and the fan couldn't run, there would still be a possibility for damage to occur due to the heat.

    On my setup with the Panamax I wasn't too worried about being able to maintain power when it goes out because the LCD TV doesn't have the whole "hot bulb" issue. The Panamax does a great job of protecting/conditioning the power and I don't experience the "short glitches" very often at all. So on that setup I felt the UPS wasn't needed as much.
  18. Apr 21, 2008 #18 of 139

    spartanstew Dry as a bone

    Nov 16, 2005
    Wylie, Texas
    I have a UPS on all my systems (living room set-up, HT, computer). I've been using them for at least 5 years.

    I don't care if I own the equipment or not, I want to be able to use it. We don't have power outages very often, but when they occur, I'm ready.

    Last summer, we lost power for about 30 minutes. We continued to watch TV as if nothing happened. This only happens once or twice per year and I like knowing that not only is my equipment protected better from quick shutdowns, but it also has surge protection and allows me to continue watching TV if I choose during a power outage.

    If the power is out too long (which hasn't happened yet) and the UPS' battery gets low, I can just shut down my equipment correctly.

    Seems like a no brainer to me. Especially since it's not just about the DVR, but also about my TV, receiver, projector and everything else that I DO own.
  19. Apr 21, 2008 #19 of 139

    Redlinetire Icon

    Jul 24, 2007
    'Improper shutdown' is not the root cause of bad sectors - heat and age are.

    Just look at the postings on this forum. Most reports of an 'automatic reformat' is after a software push to the DVR, which is done with a proper shutdown. Again, a UPS will do nothing to prevent that...
  20. Apr 21, 2008 #20 of 139

    Redlinetire Icon

    Jul 24, 2007
    If I was that worried about protecting my electrical equipment from damage, I would just unplug it from the wall and wait for the storm to pass! :lol:

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