My Experience with the Eaton 5PX UPS

A few weeks back, Eaton sent over one of their enterprise-class 5PX uninterruptable power supplies for testing and evaluation. If you haven’t seen what Eaton has to offer in the power protection space, I definitely suggest taking a look. I was aware of the company before, but hadn’t had any firsthand experience with their products. Having experimented with the 5PX for a few weeks now, however, I suspect I’ll be using more of their products moving forward.

The Eaton 5PX arrived in a relatively large box and was quite heavy; although I didn’t drop it on a scale, the box had to weigh at least 75lbs (the 5PX alone is 63lbs). Opening the box revealed the UPS itself, some user documentation, mounting hardware, a screwdriver, and of course a power cord. Everything was well packed, and despite the weight, relatively easy to unpack.

As is the case with most UPSes, there is some assembly required with the Eaton 5PX. The device can be rack-mounted, which requires installing some retention brackets on either side. Or is can be stood vertically, which also requires the installation of a couple of stands. In either case, there are only a few screws that need to be tightened, and since the thing came with a screwdriver (and a nice one at that), installing the mounting hardware should be a breeze for anyone. I should also point out that the logo and even the LCD on the unit can be rotated for easy reading / viewing regardless of how the 5PX is mounted.

In addition to installing the mounting hardware, users are required to connect the internal battery. Eaton has made some good design decisions in this regard, as the battery cables are neatly hidden behind a panel on the front of the device. All that’s necessary to get the 5PX ready is plugging in the battery cables and snapping a cover in place over them. It really couldn’t be easier.

Once I had the mounting hardware in place and battery connected, I set the 5PX up in my server closet, with three NAS devices connected (17 drives in total), a home server system, and a handful of networking equipment. Load on the 5PX was minimal to moderate, but in the weeks since it’s been set up, it hasn’t faltered, despite a few brown outs in my area. This is, however, what’s to be expected of a UPS. Stable power and maximum uptime is what a UPS is all about, but they are not all create equal.

The Eaton 5PX’s Front Mounted LCD

Having experienced the Eaton 5PX’s handy front-mounted LCD display and “Intelligent Power Software” suite, I can say the Eaton 5PX isn’t your run of the mill, store-bought UPS. The 5PX’s software is relatively easy to set up and offers all of the features you’d expect from a high-end UPS (elegant shut downs, e-mail notifications, etc.). The front-mounted LCD also offers a myriad of info “at a glance”. If you’d like to see how the LCD works for yourself, Eaton has a cool, interactive demo available on their website.

MSRPs for the various capacity 5PX models range from $739 to $1999, but street prices are considerably lower. At those prices, the Eaton 5PX probably isn’t something most home users are likely to be interested in, but SMBs and enterprise users in need of a high-end UPS should definitely consider Eaton’s 5PX. The Eaton 5PX is well built, easy to set up, performs well, and has some excellent features. There’s not much more you could ask for in the space.

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