Home / Reviews / Austere VII Series surge protector review: Beautiful protection preciously priced

Austere VII Series surge protector review: Beautiful protection preciously priced

The Austere VII Collection surge projector is a radical departure from the norm. Its rivals are invariably ugly issues, usually fabricated from plastic with little thought afforded to industrial design past what number of plugs they’ll accommodate. Clad in brushed aluminum with polished beveled edges, and an influence wire wrapped in luxurious braided material, Austere’s machine is fairly sufficient you’ll be tempted to go away it in plain view—till you plug issues into its eight shops, that’s. Then you definately’ll cover it away similar to every other surge protector.

The opposite factor that units the Austere VII Collection aside is its price ticket: The eight-outlet mannequin reviewed right here will set you again a cool $200. There’s additionally a six-outlet mannequin for $180, and an Austere V Collection that may deal with fewer energy surges earlier than its MOVs are consumed (the V Collection is rated for 3,000 joules, versus 4,000 joules for the VII collection). Costs for the V Collection are $150 for the eight-outlet mannequin and $130 for the six-outlet model.

This overview is a part of our protection of surge protectors. Click on that hyperlink to take a deeper dive into the subject and discover critiques of competing merchandise.

What do you get for all that money? Along with being lovely to take a look at, the Austere VII Collection gives over-current safety by way of an onboard 15-amp circuit breaker, EMI and RFI filtration that insulates the ability sign from interference that may present itself as noise in your audio system and visible distortion in your video parts, and shops which might be electronically remoted from one another. Austere says it makes use of “flameless” MOVs that gained’t catch fireplace after they can now not soak up voltage above the surge protector’s clamping degree.

austere surge protector plug Michael Brown / IDG

The Austere VII Collection personal plug is oriented at a 45-degree angle, so it gained’t block an adjoining outlet.

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The Austere VII Collection may present energy to USB gadgets. On the tip reverse its personal energy wire, you’ll discover two USB Sort A charging ports, two USB-C charging ports, and one USB-C PD charging port delivering as much as 45 watts. Finally, your machine will decide how a lot energy it’ll settle for, nevertheless; the Google Pixel 2 XL smartphone that I exploit, for example, will solely draw 18 watts no matter how a lot energy the charger can ship. A more moderen pill or a laptop computer, however, might suck down all that juice—which suggests you may depart its energy adapter in your backpack, so that you don’t want to recollect to unplug and pack it each time you hit the street.

austere surge protector usb ports Michael Brown / IDG

The Austere VII Collection affords 5 USB charging ports, together with one USB-C PD port that may ship as much as 45 watts.

Three semi-circular blue LEDs inform you of the Austere VII Collection’ standing: The primary signifies that the strip is powered on, the second lets you realize that the circuit the strip is related to is correctly grounded, and the third lets you realize that the MOVs are intact and offering safety from energy surges. In contrast to some surge protectors, the Austere VII Collection will proceed to offer energy even when its MOVs have been consumed and it might probably now not shield the gadgets plugged into it. For those who purchase one, bear in mind to examine that third LED sometimes to verify your related gadgets stay protected. Austere recommends changing the machine after 5 years, however that may not be essential in case your utility gives regular energy. Simply keep watch over that LED.

The five-foot energy wire connected to the Austere VII Collection is terminated in a plug with a 45-degree angle, in order that it gained’t block an adjoining outlet. The cable itself is wrapped in a lovely braided material, however extra importantly, the cable is exceedingly versatile and may tolerate excessive bends with out kinking. Two rubber strips on the again of the surge protector will forestall it from marring the floor it’s resting on, but it surely has a comparatively giant footprint, measuring about 5 inches broad by 13 inches lengthy. You might stand it edgewise to save lots of room, however this may scratch the strip or the floor it’s on. Two keyholes are on the again do you have to resolve to mount it to a wall or a cupboard.

austere surge protector switch Michael Brown / IDG

The grasp swap on the Austere VII Collection 8-outlet surge protector is backlit by a blue LED. A onboard 15-amp circuit breaker affords extra safety.

The eight shops on the Austere VII Collection don’t supply any fancy options. They don’t rotate or pivot, they usually’re not even staggered or in any other case asymmetrically oriented. Regardless of this seemingly atypical design, I had no drawback plugging in a broad number of wall warts and outsized energy plugs, as you possibly can see from the photograph under. This was a nice shock. What you gained’t get from this surge protector is safety for phone, coaxial, or ethernet pass-through connections. However we don’t think about these options to be value paying for anyway.

The underside line

Is the Austere VII Collection surge protector value $200 when our present high decide on this class—the Belkin BP112230-08—affords 4 extra shops, a cable that’s three longer, and a price ticket that’s $160 much less? To be completely sincere, I don’t know. Is a BMW 740i value $90,000 {dollars} when you should buy a decked-out Toyota Avalon for lower than $45,000?

austere surge protector in use Michael Brown / IDG

Regardless of the seemingly standard structure of its shops, I had no drawback becoming a wide range of oddly formed energy adapters and outsized plugs into it.

Finally, the reply lies within the eye of the beholder. The aluminum-clad Austere Collection VII is an elegant-looking piece of kit, the place the plasticky Belkin BP112230-08 appears vaguely insectoid. Each surge protectors are comparatively related of their means to face up to energy surges; however finally, neither will appear to be a bit of artwork as soon as it’s delivering energy to a bunch of shoppers.

Positive, the Austere VII Collection affords USB charging ports the place the Belkin doesn’t, however is that function value $160? Personally, I’d discover it tough to half with $200 to purchase any surge protector, however I’d additionally by no means look askance at a reader smitten with the Austere VII Collection. It’s awfully fairly, and it’s extremely succesful.

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