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Power Conditioning and Battery Backup (1 Viewer)

Michael Merrell

Stunt Coordinator
Mar 14, 2002
I'm upgrading most of my HT audio equipment and I'm thinking of making power conditioning part of that upgrade.

Currently, I have a surge protector (from Home Depot, forget the brand) plugged into the wall. Both coax cables from the satellite run through the dual connections on the surge protector, then to the DirecTiVo. Same goes for the phone line. Everything but the DirecTiVo plugs into the surge protector. I have a consumer grade 500VA battery backup plugged into the surge protector, and the DirecTiVo plugged into that.

The purpose of the battery backup is not to allow continued viewing during a brown or black out, but to keep the DirecTiVo up and running in that event. This way, no recordings get cut off in the middle due to a reset.

To the meat of the matter:

I am considering the Panamax 5300, primarily due to the twin satellite coax inputs. Otherwise it is overkill. While my upgrade includes a power amp (Parasound HCA855A), the high current outlets aren't necessarily a requirement for me. If they should be, let me know.

I would like to keep the DirecTiVo on battery backup. Can I simply replace my powerstrip with the 5300, plugging the battery backup into the Panamax? Will the UPS affect the video output? If so, would I be better of getting two lower-end Panamax units (with one satellite coax connector each) and run them in parallel, plugged into the UPS, and the other plugged into the wall?



Bill Kane

Feb 5, 2001
That's an interesting question; I cannot advise directly since satellite and a PVR still are in my future.
What I wonder about is your UPS capability (you didnt say the type/model). I think for the most part, UPS is designed for computers and "mission critical" aps outside of home entertainment. For example, I have a Belkin 450VA Resource UPS Surge Protector for my computer station. It only allows 3 MINUTES -- enough time to shut down the computer via a Windows CD-ROM program in milliseconds in the event of AC power loss.
True extended-use UPS can cost well over $1,000. TrippLite has a line (again for computer/mission critical use) topping out at 10,000VA (7000watts) that lasts just 8 hours.
My UPS plugs into the wall outlet, since it incorporates surge protection @ 1260 Joules. If your UPS has a surge suppressor, plugging it into a Panamax Max 5300 might be redundant (?)
Panamax neatly separates the SAT and CATV coax terminals (different clamping levels) and as you surmise will answer your needs here.
You may have read the Panamax 5300 thread elsewhere in this Tweaks board. Notwithstanding the cautionary advice about warranty protection from Link Removed there, I see today the 5300 is priced at $320.
And who knows, you might get an outboard amplifier in the future and wud have the hi-current outlet available on the 5300. I'm plugging my 200Wx5 directly into my 20A wall outlet, with a surge unit for the rest of the gear on the same circuit.
edit: and of course there are "true" sine wave/square sine wave issues with A/V.

Michael Merrell

Stunt Coordinator
Mar 14, 2002
It's a Blackout Buster UPS, and since the DirecTiVo only draws 40W it would probably last for a good 30 minutes. My primary intent in the case of my current setup is to smooth out power blips, so that a recording isn't lost due to a 2 second power outage. With the battery backups I have for the aquarium pumping and heating systems, I should just break down and get a generator...

In any case, I guess I'm down to determining whether the UPS affects the picture quality from the DirecTiVo (Nothing else will be plugged into the UPS). If not, a 5300 will fit the bill. I'll plug the UPS into it, and the DirecTiVo into the UPS.

If it does, then I'll consider splitting the power conditioning duties. Both ways will cost about the same, so the sole criteria is function.

I (will) have a Parasound amp, but I'm not sure what the criteria are for needing the high current outlets. The amp is rated at 5 x 85W @ 8Ohms, as opposed to some of the 5 x 200W monsters out there. If I get the 5300, it will be moot point, I guess.

Thanks for your feedback,


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