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This review is from: APC BR24BPG External Battery Pack for Back-UPS RS/XS 1500VA
Pros: At least triples your UPS battery run time.
Cons: APC will not exchange this unit. They do not offer a battery refresh kit for it and will not take it back at the end of it's life cycle.
APC software only allows runtimes of up to 8 minutes with or without the BR24BPG. This means that even if your machine could run for an hour or more on batteries, the APC software doesn't allow for more then 8 minutes before it starts to shut it down.
Other Thoughts: The BR1500G comes with two batteries. This unit comes with 4 more of the same battery.
The first con is something the user can get around if they have a local shop that deals with batteries. The batteries are an industry standardized size. While it says that there are no user serviceable parts inside, the batteries can be replaced. This is only recommended for people that have and know how to use a DVM and know what series and parallel mean in circuits. The battery shop might be will to help.
The BR1500G said it could hold the load of my computer setup for 10-12 minutes at idle and 5 minutes at full load. This BR24BPG extended these times to 52 minutes and 25 minutes respectively.
The software is rather irritating. I have power issues regularly and would've liked the option to keep the system up and running for 15-20 minutes. I'll probably end up killing the software after a few minutes of a power event.
This review is from: APC BR1500G Back-UPS Pro 1500 VA 10 outlets Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS)
Pros: Protects electrical investments from transient power fluctuations/power outages.
Assists in saving electricity by giving the user the ability to automatically remove power from unnecessary components when the primary device is powered down.
Displays power usage (both current and 30 day past) and approximates cost.
Has protection capability for Ethernet and cable.
Has a aux power input port to hook up a secondary battery pack for longer run times. (The stock UPS has 2 batteries. The BR24BPG has 4 more of the same batteries).
Nifty Windows software that tracks power events, unit status, tracks battery replacement date and the last self test result.
Nifty Linux software tracts and displays the same. I want to say I found a webserver mode to it that allowed remote tracking of multiple units.
Cons: None for this unit.
Other Thoughts: I am now on my 4th BR1500G for myself, and 6th I've bought total. No complaints.
On initial turn on or after power event the unit's fan may run for a while. This may be the case even if the batteries show full.
I have a fairly serious gaming rig that pulls ~400-700 watts. This 1500 will power it for 5-8 minutes depending on what I'm doing. I thought I was going overkill when I bought this thing but I'm not sure I'd want anything smaller. The addition of a BR24BPG took me up to a comfortable 25 minutes at a high load (650 watts).
You can get 4 years out of a unit, but be sure to inspect the batteries regularly when past this point. At around 5 years the batteries will expand and possibly burst. The primary concern here is damage to the UPS. A replacement kit is available at APC.com for much cheaper then a new UPS. The box they come in will have return shipping included for the old batteries. The batteries are of standardized sizes and will likely be available locally for cheaper if you choose to go that route. I'll have to double check, but I believe this void's the UPS's warranty.
Basically, if you have a serious gaming machine or a computer with irreplaceable or costly data, you'd be crazy not to invest in something like this. The recommended usage period for this device is 3 years. This means that for (unit cost/time) $79 dollars per year or 6.5 dollars per month, you are guaranteeing that power issues will not kill your computer.
Pros: Slim and flush with the exterior of the laptop.
The manual is in English.
It works great after the correct driver is installed.
Cons: It's a good thing that Newegg packs things well because there is no padding or isolation in the box.
The manual is pointless and incorrect. You get more information here on Newegg then you do in the manual. The incorrect part deals with the drivers.
The website is easy to navigate, but it only gives a single driver install file which either doesn't work, or it just doesn't work on Win 7 X64.
The box it comes in is big enough for a standard CD, but it comes with a mini CD. This WILL be an issue if you have a slot load optical drive (which is fairly common on laptops, which is funny because this device was made for laptops).
The manual mentions AutoPlay functionality on the CD which is funny as there is no file for the computer to call for the AutoPlay function.
There are 7 folders on the disk. Only one will work on your computer. Only one will work for your computer. Pick one and hope, or run the EXE file in every one until your computer finally recognizes the controller. A simple batch, VBScript, or 5 minutes in Visual Studio could be used to simplify this, but they didn't care enough to do it.
There is a aux power jack on the card to supplement the card's power output. They supply a USB to power jack cord for this purpose, but if you use it, you're using one of your existing USB connectors. This means that this $50 card only gives you one extra USB connector.
Other Thoughts: Bottom line: It appears to work very well.
It's just irritating when manufacturers give obvious short comings.
There's no reason not to have good drivers available for all required platforms on the website. Many people don't even bother with the disks that come with a product. The most up to date version will usually be on the website, so they go there first.
Have some quality assurance check the website data/downloads.
If the manual is going to have the same data as the box, either save the money and don't print one, or make a single page installation card.
Have some quality assurance fact check the manual.
MiniCD's are fine for desktop products. Most Desktops will have tray loading optical drives. Laptops often have slot load drives. If a user forces the disk into the drive, the disk may end up getting stuck in there.
There is no reason not to have an executable (AutoPlay) that will check the version of the computer's OS and install the correct file. I could write even a simple bat file that could do it in 15 minutes. This is the case even if I were hungover, had a broken hand, and could only use a keyboard with all the vowel keys broken.
Installing this thing is like jumping in a car that has it's steering wheel and pedals hidden somewhere else in in the car. Sure, the car works great after you find and install them, but wouldn't be great if things were where they should be?