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Power Conditioners in Action

Mar 29, 2013 11:37 AM, By Patrick Barron

A look at two IP-addressable options.

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Remote access from the Internet is another important aspect of using an IP-enabled device. You can access the device remotely by configuring port forwarding in the router and using the built-in Wattbox DDNS feature (or you can use other popular DNS providers like DynDNS). The configuration of DDNS is done through the Network tab in the GUI. The instructions for setting up remote access are defined in the help sections of the Network tab and in the manual: “This setting provides access to the WattBox from outside the network through a web browser. If outside access is not desired we recommend leaving this at the default setting.

Note: To access a WattBox product from the web, port forwarding must be configured within the router. See the software manual for more information. DDNS Provider: Service provider for the DDNS. While any preferred DDNS provider can be used, we recommend the use of our free service be used. Domain Name: Name to identify and access the WattBox from anywhere. To avoid confusion this should be the same name set under Hostname if it is available. Chose a name that will easily identify the WattBox.”

If port forwarding is not possible or modifying the network settings are not allowed due to network security restrictions, the integrator could set up remote access using a secure VPN connection through the router, a hardware-based VPN server, or a remote desktop session on a computer located at the client site. At times, these options are not cost effective, feasible, or even possible on a client’s network. In cases where editing networking settings are not possible, there is an answer to this perplexing question that will be discussed toward the end of this article as well.

Overall the WattBox was an extremely potent and useful power conditioner. I was unable to measure the electrical performance of this unit, and the focus of the review was on the unique features enabled with the IP port, not the performance. According to the written specifications, this power conditioner provides powerful surge protection for power, coax, and telephone/Ethernet cables. It automatically disconnects equipment during sustained under/overvoltage conditions and reconnects once it’s safe. The filtration removes noisy interference coming from other components/ electronics, providing the best performance possible. Outlet banks are isolated from one another to prevent cross contamination between components. The full specifications can be found on SnapAV’s website. With a MSRP price of $719, this product provides much needed protection of equipment along with the enhanced features found through IP control at an extremely affordable price.

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