Powercool Smart UPS 850VA

1565_PCUPS850VA_1_BigProductImageToday I picked up a very cheap PSU.  This was admittedly an experiment to see what this thing is good for.   The idea was to purchase this as a ups that I could dedicate to my ReadyNAS 104 in order to give it some protection from power outages.  Well that was plan A.  Plan B, is was to put it to use on my Desktop PC to give that some protection if it wasn’t suitable for the ReadyNAS.  Plan C & D is to use it elsewhere in my house to provide some resiliance to my network.  I’ll be explaining why in another blog post.

Turns out that this UPS whilst the spec look quite good on paper, it turns out that this isn’t really good for either my Plan A or Plan B.

I bought this UPS for the bargin price of £33.60, so for that price it’s good.  Actually, I’m thinking about getting another in a couple of weeks if I can get one for under £40, but I’ll not pay any more than that.  From my list of plans above, I’m going to use this UPS for either Plan C or D.

So that’s my verdict – it’s OK, but not brilliant.  So what’s the problem?   Turns out that this UPS is a a Chinese import.  It’s got USB connectivity, which is a useful for monitoring the device.  However, the implemented protocol is a proprietary one rather than something more standard.  In short, it won’t work with my ReadyNAS 104.  This means that my ReadyNAS can’t monitor the UPS and receive a shutdown notification if the battery falls below a threshold.   It’ll keep my ReadyNAS running, but it won’t monitor, so if there’s a powercut it’ll just delay the time until the ReadyNAS looses power.  That’s an improvement, but not ideal.


So why not use it for Plan B.  Again, because it’s a Chinese import, I’d rather not put their software, which already looks old and dated, onto my PC.  So, again no monitoring.


So, it’ll be employed in helping to keep my network running.  That means I’ll put it to keep either my upstairs switch, router and cable modem running, or put it downstairs to keep a switch and wifi access point up.  For those devices it does not matter if the power goes out after a while.  This UPS is cheap, but for unmonitored devices that’s fine.   This will keep my home network infrastructure protected enough, that should I loose mains power I can keep using my network.

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