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Thread: Smart UPS?

  1. #1
    Newbie Mongrat's Avatar
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    Smart UPS?

    Hello,

    I was wondering if anyone has ever used or considered a Smart UPS Battery Backup With Power Inverter as an option?

    It seems you can get a nice APC Rack-Mount 250watt for about $199.
    This would handle Shutdown, and it would Condition the power.

    Just a thought.

    ~Mong

  2. #2
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    I tried this once and didn't have any luck. According to APC at the time it was due to the inverter putting out a modified square sine wave instead of a pure sine wave. The UPS basically thought it was experiencing power problems all the time.

    Might have just been this model of UPS or inverte..
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  3. #3
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    Not surprising. Also note that the UPS puts out a modified sine wave as well. You don't get full sine wave outputs until the 700+ watt range.

    However what you could do instead (probably) is pick up a cheap used UPS in the 200-400W range (one that uses a 12V battery), toss out the battery (or use it in the car with an isolator, or whatever), and plug the UPS directly into the car, basically using it as an inverter with a computer interface. You can attach a smart signalling cable to the UPS and your computer and get information on temp, voltage out, voltage in, etc, etc.
    IN DEVELOPMENT -- '96 Mustang, lilliput with PII/450 laptop, custom DC-DC power supply, 60GB; Garmin GPS; 802.11g; compact keyboard, small graphical LCDs, OBDII.

  4. #4
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    Cool Greetings and sallutations

    Hey folks I've been reading this forum for a few months now but have been busy building my projector. Now my projector is done and the weather is nice enough for me to think about working on my car I've been planing to build a "carputer" for a while...so no time like the present.

    I have an APC UPS it's a "back-ups 200" so no "smart cable".. anyhow...the batteries are dead and I can buy a new unit cheaper than putting batteries in this one. So what I've done is strip the unit down ..remove the bateries...remove the AC "in"... send DC from the car into the leads the gel cells attached to...set the alarm for "silent". Then I'll plug the carputers regular desktop PS into it. I understand that this unit puts out a modified sine wave..now the computer "must" be able to run with this...or how could they sell them? What I'm guessing is that this modified sine wave is going to really mess wih the quallity of the sound I can get out of my carputer..."noise or static" any ideas?

    I have to put my mainboard together before I can test the unit...all of my current gear will draw WAY too much for this unit (all upper end AMD stuff). The mobo I want to use is a cheapie "PCchips" with a celeraon 333 on it, it will have a 10 gig HD. So far no thoughts on the interface to use to access my music, nor have I thought about what OS to use..I might just try Linux on this box. As time goes by I will get an LCD screen for this...when I get a few "scheckles" together I'll pick up a VIA board.


    Any thoughts ? I'm oughta my league with building power supplies.. and blew my DIY budget on my LCD projector.


    zardoz....glad to be here

  5. #5
    Newbie Mongrat's Avatar
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    I dunno mon, I had thought about the UPS idea, and after reading the boards I think its too much trouble.

    I have decided on that OPUS 150 Watt DC-DC Supply. I did read somewhere that OPUS is coming out with a 250 Watt one.

    ~Mong

  6. #6
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    back-ups 200 should have a dumb cable at least that you can use to get simple information out.

    it's not that different than an inverter, so yes the PSU might not like it. The reason that they can sell it is they are designed to give you enough power to safely shut down and withstand short blackouts and brownouts, not run your computer on them for extended periods of time. If you get into the expensive units (smartups-700+) then you get full sine-wave output because they are designed to allow you to run with the power off for a decent length of time (and they're expensive enough to do proper power inversion)

    I still think that it's an easy solution considering how you can pick up UPS' with dead batteries for cheap, and thus get a computer interface to go along with it. Still not going to be any more efficient than an inverter, but it probably puts a lot more effort in to giving you cleaner AC output with less noise.

    I'm not sure but I would imagine that they have a low-voltage cutoff as well, so that might work well also. With the smart-ups you can get voltage information so easily write your own software based shutdown controller, but with the backups "dumb" cables I don't know if you can do that.

    The only thing that I don't know is how well the UPS will handle the voltage ranges, I would imagine OK since it's designed to run off of battery anyway, but 15V might be too high. Oh and also how to turn them on, as they generally don't like to turn on without an AC input. I did it on mine once, but I'll be damned if I know how. You'd want to hook up an auto-turn-on circuit as well, etc, etc. This might be more trouble than it's worth if you don't have a smart UPS.

    Oh yeah, you better make sure that your UPS battery is either a double 6V in series or a single 12V, because a lot of them use either 6V batteries or 24V batteries, which won't work in the car.
    IN DEVELOPMENT -- '96 Mustang, lilliput with PII/450 laptop, custom DC-DC power supply, 60GB; Garmin GPS; 802.11g; compact keyboard, small graphical LCDs, OBDII.

  7. #7
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    Telek

    Nope not any cable connects whatsoever..except of course for the power. It's a moot point anyhow...what I took for dead batteries was actually the inverter side of the unit is dead. So I'll salvage what I can for parts.

    I have been reading on AT/ATX 110 volt mods to remove the effects of the "modified sine"...specifically.. http://mp3swift.magnetikonline.com/hardware_doc.php

    Any thoughts on this? I'm a computer tech and have done a fair bit of LCD work..but PSU's for me have allways been a "throw away item" untill now of course

    zardoz

  8. #8
    I'm sorry, and you are....? frodobaggins's Avatar
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    Re: Telek

    Originally posted by zardoz
    Nope not any cable connects whatsoever..except of course for the power. It's a moot point anyhow...what I took for dead batteries was actually the inverter side of the unit is dead. So I'll salvage what I can for parts.

    I have been reading on AT/ATX 110 volt mods to remove the effects of the "modified sine"...specifically.. http://mp3swift.magnetikonline.com/hardware_doc.php

    Any thoughts on this? I'm a computer tech and have done a fair bit of LCD work..but PSU's for me have allways been a "throw away item" untill now of course


    zardoz



    Only do this if you check it first, what you do to check it is turn on the car, run the computer off the invertor, listen to the sound quality. Then leave the car on, but run the computer off house power (extension cord for you numbnuts ) If it's any better, then you can do this mod,

    If you don't have a problem, leave well enough alone
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