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Constant Vigil Lite UPS for UFB
Posted on 30-Oct-2016 17:03 | Filed under: Reviews

Constant Vigil is about to release a new UPS that can neatly integrate into your UFB setup.


Back in the ancient times of POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) and rotary phones we didn't have to worry about power when placing our phone calls. The electricity needed to power the old analogue phones came down the copper lines and the exchanges had their own generators, for use in case of mains failure. This explains why it was possible to place phone calls even when the entire neighbourhood was in the dark.


With Voice Over IP things changed a bit. We are now talking about a modem/router that needs power, a digital to analogue voice converter that needs power and suddenly we could no longer place voice calls in case of power failure (even though most handsets have a battery, other bits of the whole structure still needed external power).


With fibre being deployed to more and more New Zealand homes things went even further. Copper is no longer available in some areas and the only option is to use a technology that can no longer carry its own power. A few companies started offering more and more accessible battery backup options and Constant Vigil engineered a solution that could power both the ONT (the bit that connects the fibre network to your own network) and your router. Its original design required external batteries but the company is about to launch a new version that comes with its own built-in battery.


The new Constant Vigil Lite UPS is small enough and lite enough to be mounted next to the ONT. Its operation is very simple: plug the mains to its input and both the ONT and router to the outputs and you will have a backup battery that can operate these two pieces of equiment for hours. The only thing you will notice is a LED that will turn red if the mains power is down.




The new model comes with all the cables you need. One converter to connect it to the mains (its input is 15v - 20v) and three cables: one for the ONT connector and two (a short one and a long one) for your router. The total output is rated at 20 Watts.


In my case I have a review unit powering the ONT and a Synology Router, including a USB drive plugged to this router and its WiFi. I have not measured total time but did have more than an hour with no mains power to the UPS, with those two devices powered on, before turning the mains back again.


An important thing to note is that instead of storing power and outputing 220v (which then need to be converted by each device's own power converter down to 12v), the Constant Vigil Lite UPS outputs 12v directly. This should extend the available timeas there's less power waste during conversions.



You can also reduce power usage on your router by unplugging unnecessary devices, turning WiFi off or stepping down ethernet speed from 1Gbps to 100Mbps.


The fact this new model comes with built-in battery and the cables you need, ready to use makes it an interesting option for those getting UFB installed now at their homes.


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