THE REVIEW THAT COULD SAVE YOUR HOUSE OR YOUR LIFE: CyberPower 625AVR UPS System
Jun 7, 2008
Pros: voltage regulation, UPS gives you 17+/- minutes of time during power failure, roomy outlets.
Cons: could cause a fire, melts, causes many erratic computer problems when it starts to fail
The Bottom Line: This unit had wonderful potential-roomy outlets, nice design, but it melted-and could have cost us our home-or our lives.....
It is overwhelming to purchase a new computer system. The TV ads do not tell you about all of the extra expense involved in setting up a system. That $495 price for a TOTAL COMPUTER SYSTEM translated often runs well over $1000 once you have purchased all of the extras that you need for running a good solid system well protected from viruses, power surges, meltdowns, you name it. One of the things that most people do not factor in with the purchase of a new computer system is a really good surge protector. If you have any kind of risk of power surges, it is essential to have an excellent surge protection not only for surges in the power lines, but for the occasional risk of electrical storms, power outages (when they turn the power back on), and even fluctuations in power.
What is a person to choose?
WHY WOULD YOU WANT TO CHOOSE A UPS SYSTEM?
In addition to the surge protection that you might need on a computer system, another factor you need to consider is the factor of power outages.
If you happen to be on the computer during a power outage, you will instantly lose a lot of information and sometimes very important interactions that you could be in the middle of.
I used to think- well, I just won't be on the computer during electrical or wind storms.
At our house, that would mean about 35% of the time at least!
However, we have had at least 5 occasions where we have lost power on a perfect beautiful sunny day for no apparent reason that we could have predicted.
We decided to get a UPS unit for our computer after that.
A UPS unit is short for UNINTERRUPTED POWER SUPPLY. That means that if you happen to be on the computer at the time of a power failure, the battery backup will kick in and you will have anywhere from 5 to 75 minutes of time left in which you can finish what you are doing and get off the computer. This is very helpful as computers are more sensitive these days to power shutting off in the middle of running programs.
WHAT IS THE CYBERPOWER 625AVR UPS SYSTEM LIKE?
Another thing that you want to consider is something that not only protects against power surges, but something that will regulate the voltage so that you will end up with protection from power variations that could cause your computer to run erratically, therefore causing small level problems with your computer.
The CYBERPOWER 615AVR UPS SYSTEM is a surge surpressor, a power voltage regulator and a UPS system which will give you time to shut down your computer in the event of a cut off of power for whatever reason.
Here is what CYBERPOWER says about this unit:
The CyberPower 625AVR not only guards against surges, spikes, sags, brownouts and other power abnormalities, but also protects your computer system and valuable data during a power outage. PowerPanel Software is included with each model. In the event of a power outage, PowerPanel Software automatically saves and closes open files and then shuts down the computer system in an intelligent and orderly manner.
* Battery Run-times from 17 to 24 minutes * PowerPanel Software Included in the box * Compact design * All outlets are surge-protected * Internet-ready with phone / fax / modem protection * $125,000 Connected Equipment Warranty
WHAT IS AVR?
Again, I find that the explanation of this unit is best from the owner's manual of the CYPERPOWER PRODUCT:
These machines provide complete power protection from utility power that is not always consistent. The CPS625AVR features 600 Joules of surge protection, and provide long lasting battery backup with a 7.2AH battery for loss of utility power and voltage sags. The CPS625AVR ensures consistent power to your computer system and include software that will automatically save your open files and shutdown your computer system during a utility power loss. AUTOMATIC VOLTAGE REGULATOR The CPS625AVR controls utility power voltage levels that can be inconsistent. The incoming utility power may be at a damaging level to important data files, but with the Automatic Voltage Regulation of these units, the computer will only experience a consistent voltage level. An Automatic Voltage Regulator automatically increases low or decreases high voltage to a consistent, computer safe 110v/120v. The units powerful 7.2AH battery will provide power only if the incoming voltage drops below 92v or increases above 140v.
UNIT FEATURE DESCRIPTION
--Battery Back-up and Surge Protected Outlets Provides three battery-supplied outlets with Automatic Voltage Regulation (AVR) for consistent output power to connected equipment.--These outlets are for the essentials- what you want to keep running on your computer should the power go off.
--Always-on Outlets Provide Maximum Surge Protection Provides three surge-protected outlets to protect connected equipment against surges and spikes.--These outlets are for your non-essentials should the power go out an example would be printer, speakers, anything that would not be harmed badly if the power suddenly was cut off.
-- Power Switch Can be used as the master on/off switch for computer equipment connected to the battery power supplied outlets.-- This means that you can just use the one switch on the unit to turn everything off, and not use each item's power switch individually.
Power On Indicator This LED is illuminated when the utility condition is normal and the UPS outlets are providing clean power, free of any surges or spikes.--This is a little green light that stays lit on the bottom left corner.
--Electrical Wiring Fault Indicator This LED indicator will illuminate to warn the user that a wiring problem exists, such as bad ground, missed ground, or reversed wiring. If this is illuminated, user is advised to disconnect all electrical equipment from the outlet and have an electrician check the outlet to insure proper ground. --This is a little red light to the right of the Power On light.
--Circuit Breaker Located on the side of the unit, the circuit breaker serves to provide circuit overload and fault protection. Under normal conditions, the circuit breaker is flush with the unit. --this is a little black button that stays pushed in unless there is an overload.
--Serial Port to PC The UPS communicates its status through the serial connection to the PowerPanel software. The use of the software is optional.-- I stopped using the software after my first experience with it. IT is not essential.
--Communication Protection Ports The communication protection ports are designed to protect standard modem, Fax, Telephone or network line.--These are clearly marked IN and OUT in black so that you do not have to guess which is which.
HOW DO YOU DECIDE IF THIS UNIT IS FOR YOU?
HOW TO DETERMINE THE POWER REQUIREMENTS OF YOUR EQUIPMENT (taken from the owner's manual with my comments added)
1. Make sure that the total Volt-Amp (VA) requirements of your computer, monitor and peripheral equipment does not exceed 1200VA. That means that you add them together to see if the total is over 1200VA.
2. Insure that the equipment plugged into the three battery power-supplied outlets does not exceed the UPS units rated capacity (625VA/325W for CPS625AVR). If rated unit capacities are exceeded, an overload condition may occur and cause the UPS unit to shut down or the circuit breaker to trip. Again you add together the VA and watts of all that you want to plug into this unit to make sure that it does not exceeed 625VA or 325Watts.
3. If the power requirements of your equipment are listed in units other than Volt-Amps (VA), convertWatts (W) or Amps(A) into VA by doing the calculations below. Note: The below equation only calculates the maximum amount of VA that the equipment can use, not what is typically used by the equipment at any one time. Users should expect usage requirements to be approximately 60% of below value.
TO ESTIMATE POWER REQUIREMENTS: Watts (W) x 1.8 = VA or Amps (A) x 120 = VA Add the totals up for all pieces of equipment and multiply this total by .6 to calculate actual requirements. There are many factors that can affect the amount of power that your computer system will require. The total load that you will be placing on the battery-powered outlets should not exceed 80% of the units capacity.
LIST OF SUMMARIZED FEATURES OF THE CYBERPOWER 625AVR UPS SYSTEM
UPS Type Line-Interactive
INPUT Voltage 110Vac / 120Vac Frequency 60Hz +/- 3 Hz Plug Type NEMA 5-15P Plug Style Right angle Cord Length 6'
OUTPUT VA 625 Watts 325 On Battery Voltage 120Vac +/- 5% On Battery Frequency 60Hz On Battery Waveform Simulated sine wave Outlet Type NEMA 5-15R Battery / Surge Protection Outlets 3 Surge Protection Outlets 3 Transformer Spaced Outlets 6 Overload Protection Internal circuitry limiting / circuit breaker
Voltage Regulation Yes Transfer Time 4ms
BATTERY Run Time 12 - 20 minutes Battery Type Sealed lead acid Battery Size 12V/7.2AH Replacement Battery BB Battery - BP7.2-12 Battery Quantity 1 Surge Protection and Filtering Surge Supression 825 Joules Maximum Surge Current 36,000 Amps Phone / Ethernet RJ11 / RJ45 1 in, 1 out combo Management & Communications Serial Port Yes Management Cable Serial cable LED Indicators Power on, wiring fault Audible Alarms On battery, low battery, overload Software PowerPanel
ENVIRONMENTAL Operating Temperature 32 °F to 104°F / 0°C to 40 °C Operating Humidity 0% - 95% non condensing Certifications Certifications UL1778, cUL, FCC DOC Class B Warranty Product Warranty 3 Years Limited Connected Equipment Guarantee Lifetime CEG Amount $125,000
PURCHASE PRICE: Around $80
MY COMMENTS AND EXPERIENCES
I bought this unit about 2 to 3 years ago. I was very excited to have a UPS AND Voltage regulator on my unit as we tend to have a lot of power failures where I live in a rural area.
What I loved about this unit is that it lays flat, everything is very clearly marked (so you don't need a microscope to read it) and EACH PLUG HAS PLENTY OF ROOM AROUND IT. That means that you can plug in little transformer plugs without any problems. Nothing will crowd upon each other- THAT IS A DELIGHT.
Despite there only being 6 plugs, I really liked the layout of this unit and would have preferred 8 plugs.
We probably had about 8 total power failures since owning this unit in which time I was on the computer and had plenty of time to shut down everything.
When the power failed, a beep would sound and keep sounding to remind you that you were on battery back up and you should quickly leave as soon as possible.
I also liked that feature. It was helpful to remind me not to get caught up online or anything, lest I lose power on the battery by taking too long.
The fax, phone, protection worked fine and I never had any problems with it that I knew of. All seemed fine.
WHY THIS REVIEW COULD SAVE YOUR LIFE
I was under a lot of pressure to meet a deadline and when I turned on my computer a few months ago, nothing happened.
I was puzzled. I rarely have computer problems, so I thought that perhaps my computer died.
However, half of the components in my system were running, just not the computer, and later I discovered a few other parts not working.
Upon closer examination, I was horrified to see that my CYBERPOWER 625AVR UPS SYSTEM had MELTED !!!!
The entire unit had melted down the battery half and the other half was working still- the non- battery outlets were working.
The stress of it all left me feeling almost faint- realizing that the overload button had not even popped and the only thing that was not working was the power light.
The thoughts of what could have happened should that unit have caught on fire, left me thanking God for the miracle that it didn't.
I have since read of many other people who have had similar experiences with the CYBERPOWER 625AVR UPS SYSTEM.
I still saw a lot of these units at the Best Buy when I went to purchase another unit, and I noticed that they were all still packed on the shelves, yet the APS UPS systems were all completely sold out.
That is most likely why.
I have since learned that CYBERPOWER seems to has replaced this unit with another (CP685AVR), but I still see quite a few for sale on the shelves, so there has not been a recall that I know of.
I would highly recommend that you research any UPS unit that you might want to purchase in the future. I have currently been using a simple APC unit which does not have voltage regulation on all of the outlets, only on the battery.
But, after the battery on the CYBERPOWER melted, I am not sure it really matters to me anymore.
Having the UPS unit was a fabulous thing to have for our computer system, I am glad we got it, but also glad that we did not lose our computer system, house, or even our lives had this caused a fire during the night.
If you need warranty information, and you happen to have one of these units, you can find it here:
I was called to do a job at a home with the CyberPower 625AVR UPS systems and there were lots of problems with the computer that could not be explained.
I had asked on the phone for the client to check the UPS system thoroughly and was told that everything looked fine. It was a few weeks before I could schedule an in-home appointment, but when I did, I grew very concerned. I had told my client to order another unit right away (different UPS system) and thankfully they had.
When I got there to look at the unit- it was melted and brown on the bottom- this is the 2nd unit like this that I have seen since I wrote this review.
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About the reviewer
Capri G (Caprig)
I am a woman of many hats. I am an artist with makeup and other media. I am a clothing designer. I have such a huge list of things that I like to do that sometimes … more
The CyberPower Systems 625AVR is designed for mid-level computer systems. This unit has battery run-times up to 24 minutes and 6 transformer spaced outlets. With built in phone/fax/modem protection, and PowerPanel software included in the box , this unit provides total protection at a great price!