Drop dead easy battery backup – MSRP $90 – Joe
SUMMARY: Drop dead easy battery backup – MSRP $90.
The good guys at ULTRA Products were nice enough to send a sample of their 850VA Power Protection Unit to test out. This is a UPS (Uninterruptable Power Supply) sized for 425 watts. I used this on an Abit AI7 motherboard with an Intel P4 3.2E; the power supply is rated for 600 watts.
The unit features both status LEDs and a beeper – not very loud, about the same noise level as a microwave oven beeper:
There are three ports on the side – one for the USB cable, one for a telephone line input and one for output:
It can also be mounted, although screws are not included – note that the unit weighs 9.1 pounds:
The software that comes with the unit gives users the ability to fully monitor what’s going on. Install the software, plug in the USB cable, run the Monitor program and activate the USB port:
An icon shows up in the task tray – open it and you get this screen (this at idle):
Everything looks great – I cut the AC power and saw this:
The unit started beeping to warn that the AC was off. I then ran Prime 95 to see how much the system load:
The best part of this software is the flexibility it gives the user – In System Configuration you can set basic parameters:
You can then schedule various events:
You can be paged for various conditions…
There is a graphing function…
and an Event Log to view events:
In use, once you set it up it just sits there waiting for a power fault to kick into action. I ran various programs, turning off the power to see if it would interrupt or abort the program, and none failed.
Running ULTRA’s 850VA Power Protection Unit without the software will give a single PC sufficient protection from power shutdowns. Unless you’re a real power user running very cycle-intensive apps, this unit rated at 425 watts should be more than enough for the “average” user.
The UPS Monitor Software extends the unit’s capabilities nicely and gives users the ability to tailor the unit to their needs. It’s an easy install and the Help Manual is quite thorough – if there’s a question, there is a user’s forum on ULTRA’s website for additional questions.