CyberPower VALUE2200ELCD UPS Review. We’re going to check out the VALUE2200ELCD UPS from CyberPower. We’ll also pull out the power while running a computer to simulate an outage and demonstrate how well it works.
Alright so first let’s start off with what a UPS actually is, and why you should care. Have you ever been using the computer and the power goes out causing you to lose whatever you were working on at the time? I know I have, which is a problem that a UPS solves. A UPS, or Uninterruptible Power Supply, is essentially a battery backup that you plug your devices into. When the power goes out everything plugged into it will still be running off of battery power, allowing you time to safely save work and shut down your computer in the event of an extended outage.
So I’ve actually had this model of UPS for over 5 years now, however in the recent weeks I’ve found that swapping over to battery power now fails despite the batteries showing a full charge which basically makes it useless. As this sort of problem is typically expected after this period of time with a UPS and I otherwise had no issues with it, I’ve recently bought a brand new one which I’ll be covering here.
The batteries are user replaceable, however I was not able to confirm the problem was purely battery related so didn’t bother trying to replace them in my original unit. Inside the box we have a USB cable, power cable, phone cable, user manual, warranty information and of course the unit itself. Unboxing it is pretty awkward, as the UPS weighs over 14kg or 32lb. This particular model provides 2200VA or 1320W with 4 outlets and is designed for home or small office use. It can also filter RJ11/RJ45 network ports, which is awesome as I’ve had a modem die in a lightning storm which came in through the phone line and killed it. Let’s take a quick physical look at the unit.
Most of the action is on the front panel where we have a power button to turn the UPS on or off, as well as an LCD display. There’s also a display button which is used for cycling through the display options. When we first turn the UPS on it will audibly beep and display the output voltage. We can then press the display button to continue cycling through other information such as the estimated run time in minutes, this is based off of the current load.
We will also see the percentage of load, in this case it’s showing 0% even when I recorded a video with, a laptop, and lighting plugged into the UPS for testing. Next we have the battery capacity, we can see here our battery is 100% full.
Finally the input voltage detected from the wall is shown. On the back we have the four outlets that we can plug the devices we want to protect into, as well as the AC power input. On this model I’ve got 4 Australian plugs, however different connectors are available as you can see here, so keep this in mind when you’re looking. There’s also a small exhaust fan, however I’ve never noticed it make any audible levels of noise while it runs on main power on the floor under my desk, it actually does make a bit of noise on battery as we’ll see later.
The back also has the network ports previously mentioned, and a serial and USB port for monitoring. Apart from that there’s not much else going on on the UPS, there are some air holes on the sides to allow air to flow in, and on the bottom there are some well needed heavy duty rubber feet. The UPS weighs 14.5kg or 32lb, the batteries really do weigh quite a lot which can make it interesting to transport.
The dimensions of the unit are 180mm by 140mm by 326mm, so it’s really heavy for its size. There are two 12V / 9AH batteries inside which have a typical recharge time of 8 hours from empty. The UPS is rated to run for 8 minutes at half load, or 2 minutes at full load. While this does not seem like much, with my desktop PC, main monitor, router, and NAS plugged in, it estimates that I have a 18 minute run time which I think is plenty, though I don’t run it anywhere near it’s maximum rated load. With these four devices running off of battery power, the UPS advises that it’s at 27% load, of course this will greatly vary depending on what I’m doing on the computer. For comparison, the box claims that this model will run an Xbox 360 and 32” LCD screen, a 200 Watt load, for 35 minutes. With the included software, you can plug the USB cable into your computer and then configure your computer to do things such as automatically power on at a specified time, or even better automatically shut down if the power goes out and you’re away.
Personally I plug my QNAP NAS in with the USB cable, and have the NAS configured to automatically initiate a shutdown if the power has been out for more than 1 minute, ensuring that it safely shuts off while I’m away which is great for my own piece of mind as I leave it running 24/7. In terms of protection capabilities, not only does it prevent complete outages but it also provides protection against power surges or spikes and brownouts, so even very temporary or intermittent issues will not cause you any problems.
The typical transfer time is rated at 4ms, meaning that it will swap over to battery after around 4ms of a problem being detected which is fast enough for your plugged in electronics to keep working just fine. So with all of that in mind let’s actually perform a real test. I’ll record the audio during the test so you can hear the sounds of the UPS. When it cuts over to battery it makes regular audible beeping alarm sounds to let you know it has no power.
The unit itself also makes a louder buzzing noise compared to when it’s receiving stable power, this is expected and normal. As you can see here the computer and monitor are plugged into the UPS and running off of it. I then pull out the power cable that is powering the UPS to simulate an unexpected power outage and we hear the UPS swap over to battery power while our computer remains fully operational. There are smaller models available at cheaper prices, this model was $285 AUD, or $205 USD which seemed more than fair to me. I simply got this one because of the larger batteries and the larger capacity which are great if I need to plug in anything more powerful in the future. For a standard desktop PC however I think this is more than adequate.
So what did you guys think of the CyberPower UPS? Having been saved countless times over the years from using one I personally consider it essential to have in my home computer setup. Be sure to let me know your thoughts down in the comments, and leave a share on the post if you found it useful.