Selecting a UPS

The choice of UPS for your equipment depends on several factors: the type of equipment you have; the number and size of equipment pieces to be protected (each possibly drawing a different amount of current); the features you require (eg, communication port and smart software); and the length of "uptime" you want in the event of an outage. Sizes and specifications of various units vary tremendously, so you need to carefully consult the specifications for each make/model you are considering, taking into account the amount of power your combined equipment will draw and the time that this equipment needs to be supported. Allow a generous safety margin. Thankfully, these calculations have been made a lot easier by several UPS manufacturers, which provide online guides using databases of real Volt-Amps and Watts (or Wattage)requirements of typical devices. Simply consult the relevant Web site and fill in an interactive sizing guide with your requirements to find a type of UPS that suits (see "Sizing it up", below). Choose the right UPS technology for your situation; for simple power outage protection, off-line is the most economical type of system, and online is recommended for larger system applications. While a UPS is a good idea for almost any computer system, for many household and small business applications which don't require a powered shutdown, such as entertainment systems, a UPS could be seen as overkill. In these cases, a device that provides surge protection, line filtering (and possibly telephone/data line protection) may be adequate.

Sizing it up

Deciding what type and size of UPS best suits your needs has been made a lot easier by the following manufacturers, simply by visiting their Web sites (listed below) and filling in your requirements. APC Systems -- sizing/type selector MGE UPS Systems sizing/type selector

Opti International Corp

Powerware (incorporating Sola Australia)

Other reference links: MGE UPS Systems -- Apple Mac section

MGE UPS Systems -- Open Source section

Power On Australia

Natural Power Solutions

MLA Power Systems

Electronic Power Solutions UPS Solutions

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

IDG Online Staff

Good Gear Guide
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Deals on PC World

Deals on PC World

Latest News Articles


GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy


First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni


For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell


The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi


The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott


My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.


Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?