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Author Topic: UPS Errors  (Read 849 times)

Lee Douglas

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UPS Errors
« on: April 29, 2018, 12:06:51 pm »

While not new to digital mixing and UPS's, I did finally purchase my own mixer.  I use UPS's all the time, but never in a mobile application.  It's always been plug it and it works until it dies in a permanent installation.  If I was mixing on a provided system, other than a precursory look to make sure it was present and in good health, I never really gave a thought beyond that.

When I got my mixer, I also purchased an Eaton UPS, and did about a two week cyclic burn in on the bench to make sure I had issues with either of them.  The mixer failed and had to be replaced (story for anther time) but the UPS worked fine and the board had no problem switching over and working with the simulated sine wave the UPS produced, which was a major concern.  So I pack it all up and go waltzing to my first gig with it, a political event in huge airline repair hangar.  I plug in the UPS and I get an explanation point symbol and an E5 error.  The manual says it's an internal error; contact support.  On the verge of panic, and too far away to run and grab another UPS, I'm thinking that I'm going to have to do this with out the UPS, or pull out the back up board.  But it occurs to me that it worked fine for two weeks on the bench.  Unless I knocked the hell out of it between there and here (I didn't), what could be wrong?  I take the UPS and head into the admin area and plug into the first outlet I find.  Bingo!  Works fine.  So, I take it back out the stage and try another circuit further away.  That one works and I pull a cable from it and I'm good to go.  No issues and no need for the back up analog board I brought, just in case.

I'm thinking hot and neutral were switched, but didn't have a meter with me to test it, which is rare.  First question; do UPS's, or more specifically the Eaton E-Series, shut down when those are reversed?  I would have thought there would have been mention of it in the manual. 
Second question; I've been in places small enough where the additional circuit/outlet may not have been an option.  Should/could I make a very short and very clearly marked (< 6") extension cable to "un-reverse" the hot and neutral?  I know I'm not going opening somebody else's outlets.

Just trying to be better prepared for the next time this happens.  Other than being in a hangar with a five second decay, everything went great once underway.
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Ed Hall

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Re: UPS Errors
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2018, 11:36:21 pm »

A few years ago I bought a APC UPS for a server rack. I plugged it in and all appeared to work fine. Someone else, not paying attention, plugged in a second UPS into the first and received and error in the second one. I learned the new until was wired with hot and neutral reversed. Had the two UPS not been daisy chained and received the error I would have not known.
In your shoes I would still want to know what the error code means. If just to restore faith in the unit.

I did take back the names I called my coworker when he daisy chained the UPS.
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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: UPS Errors
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2018, 06:11:05 pm »

I've been in places small enough where the additional circuit/outlet may not have been an option.  Should/could I make a very short and very clearly marked (< 6") extension cable to "un-reverse" the hot and neutral?  I know I'm not going opening somebody else's outlets.

I wouldn't do that. There's too much danger of it being misused, not to mention the potential liability if there's a problem and investigation discovers you intentionally provided a miswired cord. Even if that cord did not cause the problem.

A contract or rider should specify your power needs, including (though it should be implied) specific language that the power be correctly wired according to applicable codes. Then roll in with enough time to test the provided power and alert the venue to call an electrician if needed.

If you have the opportunity, perform a site visit in advance of the day of the show to identify and test the available power sources. You should also test the power as one of the first things you do when arriving onsite the day of the show -- things can change.

It's the venue's responsibility -- not yours -- to provide proper power. A properly worded contract will help protect YOU from liability and loss of revenue if THEY do not do their part of ensuring performer, staff, and audience safety.
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Lee Douglas

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Re: UPS Errors
« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2018, 08:58:33 pm »

Thanks for the replies, both of you.  I actually did advance the gig and make a site visit.  Unfortunately, they moved the stage to the opposite side of the hangar due to sunset issues through the windows, so any outlet testing I might have done at that time would have been in vain.  Still no reply from Eaton either, but have not had a hiccup from it since then.
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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: UPS Errors
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2018, 01:26:04 pm »

Thanks for the replies, both of you.  I actually did advance the gig and make a site visit.  Unfortunately, they moved the stage to the opposite side of the hangar due to sunset issues through the windows, so any outlet testing I might have done at that time would have been in vain.  Still no reply from Eaton either, but have not had a hiccup from it since then.

If the contract spec's the power they will provide, then if they move the stage they might have to move the power, too. And they are still responsible for proper power. Your recourse is to say "it doesn't meet spec, I'm not plugging in."
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Doug Hammel

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Re: UPS Errors
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2018, 12:04:10 pm »

One thing that I would stay away from are UPS units that put out "simulated" sine waves. I always use double conversion pure sine wave units, CyberPower OL series are what I use.

While not new to digital mixing and UPS's, I did finally purchase my own mixer.  I use UPS's all the time, but never in a mobile application.  It's always been plug it and it works until it dies in a permanent installation.  If I was mixing on a provided system, other than a precursory look to make sure it was present and in good health, I never really gave a thought beyond that.

When I got my mixer, I also purchased an Eaton UPS, and did about a two week cyclic burn in on the bench to make sure I had issues with either of them.  The mixer failed and had to be replaced (story for anther time) but the UPS worked fine and the board had no problem switching over and working with the simulated sine wave the UPS produced, which was a major concern.  So I pack it all up and go waltzing to my first gig with it, a political event in huge airline repair hangar.  I plug in the UPS and I get an explanation point symbol and an E5 error.  The manual says it's an internal error; contact support.  On the verge of panic, and too far away to run and grab another UPS, I'm thinking that I'm going to have to do this with out the UPS, or pull out the back up board.  But it occurs to me that it worked fine for two weeks on the bench.  Unless I knocked the hell out of it between there and here (I didn't), what could be wrong?  I take the UPS and head into the admin area and plug into the first outlet I find.  Bingo!  Works fine.  So, I take it back out the stage and try another circuit further away.  That one works and I pull a cable from it and I'm good to go.  No issues and no need for the back up analog board I brought, just in case.

I'm thinking hot and neutral were switched, but didn't have a meter with me to test it, which is rare.  First question; do UPS's, or more specifically the Eaton E-Series, shut down when those are reversed?  I would have thought there would have been mention of it in the manual. 
Second question; I've been in places small enough where the additional circuit/outlet may not have been an option.  Should/could I make a very short and very clearly marked (< 6") extension cable to "un-reverse" the hot and neutral?  I know I'm not going opening somebody else's outlets.

Just trying to be better prepared for the next time this happens.  Other than being in a hangar with a five second decay, everything went great once underway.
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Doug Hammel

dougcvaudio@gmail.com
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