If you are not careful, the thing that powers your gear will also be the one that will kill it. Electric power is useful if it is utilized properly. However, when it is unbridled, it can wreak havoc to your priceless equipment like your home theater system or home theater projectors. If you don’t handle power surges and brownouts properly, your gears may suffer especially if these power anomalies occur in your location frequently. It is very expensive to have your gears repaired. Therefore you need to know how to protect your gear from dirty power. Here are some tips on how you can do this.
Use Equipment That Protects Gear From Power Supply Anomalies
There are several devices that are commonly used to protect gears and appliances from any power supply anomaly. They include the following:
- Electric Surge Protectors
Surge protectors are equipment that controls and manages electricity surges that occurs from time to time. Among such equipment are HDMI surge protectors, speaker line level, RJ45 and coaxial cables. However they are a bit expensive. But if your gear is also costly, you need to invest in one of these devices for protection. It is better to protect than to replace an expensive gear. Another disadvantage in using these surge protectors are they could cause the deterioration of the signal coming from your equipment, although this does not occur every time. But if you have very long copper wire connections, installing surge protectors are recommended.
If you have gears such as speakers or video displays that are installed outdoors, these surge protectors will also provide protection. These protectors can stop electric surges of the electrical wires and electronic installed outdoors from invading the electrical wiring inside your house.
- Power Strips
If you want a cheap way to protect your gear, use some power strips. They are the most common method of protecting expensive sound and video systems. Power strips are also good at controlling small amounts of power surges. But they cannot give protection for all types of dirty power. They should not be the only method to use. But having them installed in your gear is better than to have nothing at all.
- Power Conditioners
Power conditioners are electrical devices that are used to improve the quality of the power supply. They are used to protect sensitive equipment like computers and sights and sounds gears. Power conditioners control the supply of voltage to enable the gear and equipment to properly operate. They are commonly regarded as voltage regulators that improve the power supply by correcting the power factor, protecting the transient impulse and suppressing the noise. This method of power conditioning is recognized by the NEMA, IEEE and other electricity standards.
Dirty power can damage your AV gear’s sensitive components because of the spikes and small dips in voltage. If this happens regularly and over time, these sensitive components will no longer operate properly causing your gear to malfunction.
- Uninterruptible Power Supply
One of the key equipment that can protect your expensive AV gear is the UPS or uninterruptible power supply. With a UPS, you gear will not suddenly shut down because of a brown out. The UPS will provide the supply of power at a certain length of time. Some UPSs are able to provide extra power for one hour or more after the power supply from the grid suddenly is suddenly cut off.
There are many different types of UPS. Some are designed for computers while some are for AV gear. A high quality UPS with a double-conversion feature should be preferred for high-end audio-visual systems. It could eliminate electrical line noise and harmonic distortions. A UPS with a line-active feature cannot eliminate these two dirty power problems. However, a UPS with double conversion feature is a lot more expensive. If your AV gear is top of the line, type of UPS is a worthy investment.
To give the best protection against dirty power, your AV gear should use a combination of protectors. In other words, if you really want complete protection for your expensive audio visual system, you need to use a high quality UPS, a power conditioner and power strips. With this set up, you will have confidence that your gear will be protected against any over or under voltage in the power supply, sudden power cut-offs, and power surges.