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UPS that is a bit hidden away, any out there?

ups

#1

Hi all,

So I might be coming back here quite a bit, cos you lot have some proper knowledge that I definitely don’t have!

My question is, is there a discrete looking UPS out there anywhere? One that doesn’t just look like another block in a room like the one I have (hopefully pic attached).

At the moment, the floor to ceiling height should be around 2.3m (just over 7’ 6") - I was EVEN thinking about building a high level shelf against the ceiling and some how rack mounting my computers along with the UPS (thinking a server one might do the trick?). This may be stupid, but I welcome in other suggestions, no matter how silly (so long as they’re not too expensive - as usual!).

The outputs I’d like would be something like:

3 x Monitors
2 x Towers
1 x Spare may be

I guess the other bits and pieces are not so important, like router, speakers

Cheers! Chris

BACKGROUND INFO:

After years of being self-employed and having an ‘office’ in peoples spare bedrooms, my own bedroom and various other weird places, I’m in a position where I can actually build one. It’s going to be small’ish, around 3.2 x 5.5m (10’ 6" x 18’) and after years of cables everywhere and a generally embarrassing looking setup, I want something that actually looks half decent.

I’m hopefully going to create a 3D model showing how it’s going to be, as after years and years of bodging stuff, I want an actual intentional setup for a change!


#2

From the plugs I would guess you are in the UK?

There are some that look more or less like a PC case. Would that work for you?


#3

If you are starting off with a blank slate and don’t like everything being exposed, then having either a closet or custom desk to hide things away might be a good idea. If you plan it from the beginning and leave a little room for later expansion or equipment changes, then you could get the room to look the way you want and keep it that way.

I would highly encourage anyone building an office from scratch and not building furniture themselves to find a competent carpenter/cabinet maker to build a custom desk. I look at threads on forums of people’s desks/offices/battlestations where they jam a couple Ikea desks together in a corner with legs sticking out and appear to be outrageously uncomfortable. If this is where you are going to be spending thousands of hours of your life then it may be worth making it comfortable, and making space for all of the associated hardware as you see fit.

After sitting at some miserable desks long ago, I sat down in a chair and built a desk around myself. I can’t even imagine spending any length of time at another desk that wasn’t built around me.


#4

This is the one I have and if you turn that front display off you don’t see nuthin.


#5

What a lot of good points and OMG, thank you very much! Damn good idea about getting a carpenter involved - I can cut would, but masonry is my thing…and I’m not going to make a desk out of that! Absolutely right, I am going to spend thousands of hours, in fact I’ve spent that amount of hours with the current config (hopefully attached), which is OK, but a bit of a bodge and making use of what I’ve already got. So I kind of have a wrap around desk, but it would be great to have a curved desk all around me and not just one side.

If you don’t mind, as a produce visuals I’d be glad for your and everyone elses input! I’m definitely going to have a good think about it though, cheers!


#6

That looks way better than the ones I’ve seen, and has USB as well, good find! :+1:


#7

I don’t know what kind of budget do you have but a really descreet solution could be buying a rack mount UPS. They’re 1U in height and with some rails you could even screw it into a cabinet and have holes in it with plugs. Also, depending on the workload, I think one UPS might not be enough to power two towers and three monitors if the power goes out. Another thing: if your PCs have PSUs with APFC going with a pure sine wave UPS is almost mandatory. I had a really basic one with square wave connected to an Antec HCG620 and every time power went out the USP freaked out and PC shut off. When I got a pure sine wave I’ve never had that issue anymore.

I don’t suggest you to mount PCs and UPS up highs for obvious safety reasons (if the UPS falls down the battery will crack open and burst into flames, not good), maintenance like dusting the PCs will be really hard, hot air and humidity collects up high on the ceiling and usually pipes go through that (if you’re in an apartment) so if one cracks for whatever reason you might have water on everything.


#8

That’s honestly better than most setups that I see, but I’d imagine it gets old dealing with the legs and feet being in the way when you are trying to go back and forth, or trying to turn around to stand up. Plus sharp corners tend to snag you if you are in a hurry. I made a corner desk a long time ago with short walls (I framed houses at the time) along the back against the walls and another short wall on the left side that sticks out further from the wall. It’s quite similar in concept to what you have but with short perimeter walls instead of legs. I covered the walls with thin red oak plywood, then stained and polyurethane everything to match.

That desk is about 15 years old now and I’ve refinished it twice. It’s a solid desk, but I’m looking to build something new this spring, so the thought of getting everything how I want it and being happy for another 15 years is in my mind.

If you want to save a bit of money, you could probably have someone build the lower cabinets and put together a top similar to what you already have. Maybe some sort of everyday storage facing outwards with plenty of leg room at the ends, and bulk storage for all of the power and electronics in the back corners.

You already have a good model of what you have been using, so I’m sure if you play around with that you can come up with something that fixes all of the problems you have with it while keeping all of the positive aspects.


#9

I use this for my home backup NAS. Works well, good reviews, has that “true” sinewave that won’t fuck with active power supplies, battery replacement is fairly straightforward and finally it’s relatively affordable. Would recommend.


#10

if you are considering a closet of some type as long as you allow sufficient clearance around it for airflow and heat dissipation i see no problem.

a desk is a generic term! If you customize one around your tasks and movements it is not a desk but can be more commonly referred to as a command center


#11

This is a good UPS

You can sometimes find them sold as seen (new other) in Ebay UK auctions & pick them up for around 60 quid (the batteries will be flat) - but new batteries from Tayna Batteries in Scotland for it are 25 quid delivered - there is a video on youtube that shows how ot replace the APC123 type battery.

The pro models show the voltage from the wall & let you disable the audible alarm.


#12

Cheers for that - that’s what I’m talking about :slight_smile: I had thought about rack mount UPS, as well as putting the ‘normal’ computers in rack mounts as well. Oh, 1 UPS might not be enough? That’s a shame - I’m kinda using 1 for 2 PC’s at the moment, although I’ve only plugged in one monitor, figuring that’s all I need to safely shut them down. I’d really like one of them USB links to the PC(s) so that they automatically shut down, that’s a pretty cool function if it works!

When you talk about pur sine waves, I’m afraid I don’t know, but perhaps it’s easy to find out if they have APFC’s…oh, I suppose if I did rack mount, I’d have to have PSU’s that fit in a rack :frowning:

I think you’re right about safety with a UPS at high level, I have had a Belkin UPS go bang and a lot of smoke poured out of it. Still worked though until I’d shut the computer down! You’re right again about humidity collecting at high level.

The new building was also going to have a storage room (about 5’ 6" x 8’ ish), I had toyed with the idea of putting all the computer gear in that, then running DisplayPort and all the rest, but while that saves me having to get new cases, it would make approx. 8m / 23’ cable runs which probably wouldn’t work :-/

Thanks for your input!


#13

Well that’s nice to hear…taken long enough to get this far with a half decent setup. I’ve gotta say, the legs don’t get in the way, if anything the wall at the back of the desk does as I can’t stretch out. The desk is 800mm / 31.5" deep, then set off the wall (because of the monitors bracket) by around 100mm / 4". The sharp corners fortunately aren’t too sharp either, so no risk of injury…we live in a dangerous world eh, hehe :slight_smile: That sounds really nice what you did, especially the finish, noooice.

Well, to get 15 years out of a desk isn’t bad at all, think I’m at the 10 year mark, with about 5 ‘office’ moves.

You really made me think about the desk top, the one I have isn’t perfect, may be I’ll make a new one that’s just right - cardboard demo first of course. That’s the good thing with the ikea legs/frame, I can throw almost anything on it with a few extra bits. You also made me think it might be good to have an upstand behind the monitor, as they’re a bit unsightly from the back and I intend to face out of bi-folds. Having one cab with all the gear in it is definitely a good use of the space underneath, may be I’m over thinking a bit.

Thanks again, really appreciate it. :+1:


#14

Hey Log, sorry, are you referring to the UPS that @RevampedTech mentioned?


#15

Absolutely, and probably a vent grill on the front too…oooh, may be with a little fan…oh dear (I’m OTT’ing again!).

Oooooh, so I’m doing a command centre, I like the sound of that - though when I think of that term, I immediately think of that scene in Die Hard 4 where we see the guys basement with loads of machines and huuuuge monitors. I’m not quite up to that level! :smiley:


#16

Thank you for that mate, and as you’re saying quid, I’m guessing you’re from this pond? I’ll definitely make a note of that, no prob’s with changing batteries :+1:


#17

you should have seen the one i used to have in my old place! :grin:
custom built station with ventilation fans at the sides and security camera monitor beside the server/ desktop monitors
keyboard was on a swing out tray and the ups was in a cabinet below the desktop surface
even the server was out of sight.
wasn’t pretty but it was neat and solid
the new owner of my old house paid me $750.00 extra for it (not the comp equipment just the cabinetry)
Ill have to do up a drawing of it and post it later

kind of like the pic you posted earlier but enclosed with a credenza, sidewalls and closed cabinets below even had speakers built in for tunes while doing forensic work


#18

The exact model I have. I like it


#19

Nice, very nice! :slight_smile:

Says something that the new owner paid that extra money for the cabs, do post your drawing when you get a moment, that’ll be handy :+1:

Wow, built in speakers…wow!


#20

Nice one, cheers for confirming :+1: