Originally Posted by dare2be
UPS units are basically power strips/surge protectors on steroids (ie. they have a battery built in). For very light needs (backing up your DVDR and any other small components you don't want to lose power, even for a second), the cheapest ones will most likely suit your needs. You can get a low-end model for around $40, sometimes cheaper with sales. The low-end ones usually come with 3 battery-backup outlets, plus 3 surge-only outlets. The battery in them typically lasts about 3-5 years, in which a replacement battery will most likely run you almost the cost of a new unit.
Thanks, Dare2be, for the info. And thanks to Wajo and the others for their help as well. I still need a little more clarification on one more issue.
I spent a couple of hours, last night, looking at the things Wajo recommended in his help file, looking at a number of UPS models, and trying to get some basic information on UPS devices off of the Net. I know nothing about electronics and all of that, so I just find my head is still spinning. I really appreciate Dare2be and Wajo's advice, and that gets me going in the right direction. But I came across so much technical stuff, but nothing seemed to answer one final basic question I have: How long of a backup during a power outage will the UPS give me with my 2160A or give my friend with her 515?
From surfing around, I do know that this isn't an easy question to answer, and it all depends on the devices you have on the UPS and the power they draw in standby and the like. And it seems a lot of the stuff I did find on backup duration was centered around how long you can still use the device for a while on the battery backup. I also reread Wajo's Help page today and found the section on runtime, but I am confused about what is meant by 'runtime.'
As it is, I am just looking for power backup during outages for my Maggie unit. I'm not that concerned about loosing a recording or loosing timer setups or the rest: life happens. I just want some backup to help prevent the problem of freeze-up after an outage. I just find it scary when the machine won't come on and worry about it being fried. I perfectly expect that nothing is perfect and that eventually a power outage will be long enough such that the reset procedure is necessary, but I want to try to prevent that as much as I can.
So, let's assume I get a very basic UPS 200W unit, such as Wajo indicated he has. And, for now, let's further assume that I just have my Maggie unit on it for power back up. Is there any way of giving me a rough idea of how long of a backup I'll get, further assuming I am not actually using the unit and it is in standby?
About such a rating as '200W', how does that translate? Is it as simple as: you having 200W to draw on, and since Wajo indicated the our units use 5.7W per hour, doing the division gives you a back up time of a little over 35 hours. That seems impossible; so how does it work?
Finally, when they use the term 'runtime', what does that mean. Is that the time you have if you are actively using the device, of does that also include a situation if the device is in standby all the time?
I hope you guys don't mind these rather simplistic questions. I just don't want to end up spending a lot on a UPS that may give me only 15 or 30 minutes of backup; I'd take my chances otherwise. But a back up of an hour or more would be a lot better.