Jan 27, 2012 12:18 PM, By Bennett Liles
The poor state of the U.S. power grid and the delicate nature of modern digital AV gear are opposing trends that have created a big market for power conditioning equipment. The term “power conditioning” normally includes hardware that provides voltage regulation, EMI/RFI filtering, and surge suppression, but we have broadened the field from single rack units offering any two of these functions to very sophisticated gear providing all three and UPS capability. Regardless of the specific style or configuration, the mission of these products is increasingly vital.
The S15BLK from APC combines EMI/RFI filtering with surge protection and voltage regulation through a variety of connections on the rear panel including 12 AC outlets. The internal battery offers UPS functionality while surge protection is provided for coax, Ethernet, telephone, and power connections. The unit includes a DC trigger port along with a push-to-reset circuit breaker. Power up/down sequencing can be programmed from zero to 10 seconds. The front panel includes indicators for battery condition, delayed outlet activation, filtering, automatic voltage regulation activity, overload warning, estimated battery run time, and input/output voltage levels. A USB port allows the unit to communicate with the included PowerChute Personal Edition software.
For voltage regulation, line filtering, and surge protection in a 1RU design, Art Pro Audio configured the PR8 PRO to maintain 117V ±5V on the outputs under conditions in which the incoming voltage may vary from 97V to 130V. A front-panel LED indicates output voltage in the design range and a fast-acting breaker protects the entire unit. Using an eight-tap toroidal autoformer, it minimizes magnetic stray field leakage and compares the incoming voltage to an internal reference, switching taps on the transformer during the zero voltage part of the cycle. The PR8 PRO uses common mode and differential mode topologies in the filter design.
For both fixed and temporary setups with light requirements, Atlas Sound offers the ECM-20SH single-housing power conditioner and AC spike suppressor. With RFI/EMI filtering, the device has two AC outputs, 20-amp fuse protection, a manual bypass switch, and top-mounted LEDs to indicate incoming AC, active status, and AC fault. The unit can be used in standalone configuration or in conjunction with the Atlas Sound EDS-6RM or the ECS-3 up to 1000ft. away, and it can automatically shut down AC outlets when the incoming voltage goes above 132VAC or below 102VAC. It includes EMI/RFI filtering to reduce noise from switching power supplies and electric motors.
The Belkin PureAV Home Theater Power Console PF30 works to protect various home entertainment components with its Phase 3 PureFilter Circuitry, and it includes a HiCurrent outlet for power amplifiers. The design provides eight AC outlets and one pair of gold-plated coaxial connections for cable TV and other RF or video lines. It offers 3245 joules of surge protection and a 165,000A maximum spike current rating. The unit is UL1449-rated, and it includes an 8ft. SD500 HiCurrent power cord with a right-angle plug.
The BC6000 Recording Reference Standard AC power line filter and conditioner from Blue Circle Audio includes 157 internal power filters covering a frequency range from 120Hz to more than 50GHz along with double wire runs to three hospital-grade duplex AC outlets. It also features a standard 20A Neutrik PowerCon twist connector and BC62 premium power cord. For rugged operation, the entire filter network is encased in silicone. Surge protection is included, and there are optional black or rackmount faceplates available, along with a stainless steel cover. Maximum power handling is 2400W, and the unit weighs in at 9.5lbs.
The Raxxess NAPDH11L surge arrestor from Chief Manufacturing is a 1RU with 10 NEMA-15R AC outlets on the back panel and one on the front. The device provides 30dB of EMI/RFI filtration from 100kHz to 1Mhz, a rating of 2400 joules and >1 nanosecond response time. The power switch is also a resettable circuit breaker, and the front-panel includes pullout lights with a dimmer. Also on the front are LEDs to indicate power on, protected status, and ground. The unit comes in a black brushed anodized aluminum finish.
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