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Surge Suppression in Theater?

Discussion in 'General Advice' started by gafftaper, Aug 21, 2007.

  1. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    Occupation:
    Theater Manager & T.D.
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    So is it a good idea to put a high quality surge suppressor on my new light console or is it kind of pointless with all the power around the place? I'm thinking about a good tripplite with ethernet supression as well to protect it down the line to the dimmers.

    Am I nuts?

    What about the audio gear? Can I do anything there? The college is in an area that is very well known for power surges and outages in the winter... lots of tall trees to fall down and blow up transformers.
     
  2. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    I have my light board, sound board, and computers tied into a triplite 1500w power conditioner/surge suppressor. No such thing as being too safe. We have lousy power in downtown Portland.
     
  3. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    Put all the lighting gear AND your ethernet switch on a UPS unit. Not only will it provide great power, but it will also protect you from those power dips. For audio gear, you can not beat furman.
     
  4. Chaos is Born

    Chaos is Born Active Member

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    As for overkill on surge protection... our entire building will shut itself down if there is a big enough power fluctuation... takes about 15-20 mins to power back up...

    (if you have seen jurassic park... its almost like that system...)
     
  5. Charc

    Charc Well-Known Member

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    That's the funniest thing ever. I wish I had a picture of that panel to power up the building ago. That panel in Jurassic Park had so many buttons...

    Kinda interesting when you think about it, kinda like AI, in that the building has self preservation instincts...
     
  6. Grog12

    Grog12 CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    My first response on seeing the title of the thread is YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!

    I also agree that a good UPS is nessecarry for your light console especially if it doesn't have one of its own. Same goes for any sound computer ect you might be using.
     
  7. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    So how far do you go with the surge suppression?

    Is there surge supression built into a dimmer rack? If the answer is no.. and I've got a couple of movers that will be powered from non-dim relay units in the dimmer rack, should I put a suppressor on each of those lines with some little eddison/gsp adapters?

    Should I have half a dozen supressors in my catwalks for PSU's and things that don't require PSU's.... I-cue, Right Arm, Rotators, DMX IRIS, Seachangers, Scrollers etc...?

    Yeah it's obvious that the computer running the sound effects needs it... but how far do you take this and not be considered insane?

    (I'd much rather have my sound effects computer toasted by a surge than a Mac 700 or a Seachanger)
     
  8. Grog12

    Grog12 CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    If the non-dim relay has a breaker on it I wouldn't be as concerned with using a Surge protector.

    As for the things with PSU's ect.

    Blue Sky Answer: Yes, if its not going into a non dim relay.
    Real World Answer: I've never once used a surge supressor on and of the things you've listed unless I was plugging multiple things into the same extension cord.

    With our 120v movers we used to run them to a typical wall outlet with a GFCI on it.

    This new space of yours...is it just a theatre or is it inside another building? Where does your power come from?
     
  9. koncept

    koncept Active Member

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    if it is new construction or you can isolate the panels you are converned with they can install a whole panel surge supression system (my rec center just had several installed becuase of lightening and surges blowing alot of equipment out) I would look into something like that if you are having power/surge issues.

    i would still run a ups on all sound/light gear (i personally like libert). as mentioned above furman is wonderful...

    edit:
    small addition, sorry for the spelling mistakes...
     
  10. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    The theater is attached to another building and the power comes through there first. Then from there I think the actual source is on the other side of campus somewhere. I need to ask about getting surge suppression installed at the panel itself. That makes a lot more sense, who knows it may already be done, I just hadn't thought to ask.
     
  11. Grog12

    Grog12 CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    Good call....regardless spend the money for the UPS's. Help the LD who won't help themselves by saving often.
     
  12. SHARYNF

    SHARYNF Well-Known Member

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    Living in the land of poor power, frequent sags, peaks and surges...

    The whole building units are only effective for massive problems, and don't help on really sensitive equipment

    Here are some ideas from my experience
    Your standard power strip units are somewhat of a joke, are prone to internal failure what can cause more problems, so they definitely are not the best

    The Furman rackunits are ok but don't help with sags, and IMO sags are more the cause of the problems or sags followed by surges

    I use a combination of the tripp lite power conditioning units, which have an ability using tap switching to boost and cut power levels, and I also use quality sine wave continuous UPS. Most of the cheaper ups are back up and DON'T CONDITION or clean up the power.

    Forget about using them on amps, most of the pro setups don't use them in fact it is a good idea to NEVER USE A power strip for power amps but instead use a quad box. There are amps with built in DSP that could use the conditioning, but the problem is that the cost of conditioning ups unit that would support more than a modest amp rack is significant.

    SO IMO use conditioning units that correct sag and surges at a minimum on consoles mixers, dsp racks etc if you have the budget get quality on line sine wave ups units APC and TRIPP LITE make them you and don't waste money on back ups IF what you want is power conditioning

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0000514G8/?tag=controlbooth-20

    THESE ARE NOT CHEAP BUT REALLY CLEAN UP THE POWER
    http://www.tripplite.com/products/ups/ups_smartonline.cfm

    Sharyn
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2007
  13. avkid

    avkid Not a New User Fight Leukemia

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  14. museav

    museav CBMod CB Mods Departed Member

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    I agree that it probably isn't necessary to put amps on a surge suppressor or UPS, but anything with a processor probably should be. My standard is SurgeX suppression for all gear other than amps with a good quality, true sine wave UPS (Liebert, APC, TrippLite, etc.) off that unit to serve any devices with processors. I am interested to get some feedback on the new Furman series mode products.

    Instead of power strips or boxes, I prefer to use the Middle Atlantic (http://www.middleatlantic.com/power/mods1.htm), Juice Goose or Lowell modular rack power distribution strips. These let you put together the strip to meet the individual rack requirements as far as number, type and rating of circuits as well as how many receptacles on each circuit.
     
  15. SHARYNF

    SHARYNF Well-Known Member

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