do 56k modems go bad?

July 12, 2011 at 16:26:52
Specs: Windows XP
I have dialup and I have to buy new modems often. This one is one year old, previous was 6 months, one before about 2 years. I average about 49k for the life until they start slowing down and making me attempt several tries for a dialtone at a decent speed. New computer and cat5e wire to the jack. Had a computer guru tell me they don't go bad and it is Verizon's fault. They work beautiful for a while. Any thoughts?

See More: do 56k modems go bad?

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#1
July 12, 2011 at 16:58:34
He's full of it. Any electronic device has a useful life. I went through a lot of modems in the early years, mainly due to lightning strikes. Even when it was plugged into a surge protector. If you don't have it in a surge protector, I suggest you buy a Good quality one especially designed for electronics and use it. If you anticipate a storm, unplug the phone wire from the computer. See what others have to say.

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#2
July 12, 2011 at 17:14:08
Like grasshopper mentions, if you live in an area prone to thunderstorms, then expect your modem to suffer; unless, of course, you unplug it from the phone line (and AC line if it's external) first. Your "guru" is wrong.

"Channeling the spirit of jboy..."


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#3
July 12, 2011 at 17:59:42
Get a decent 56K external.

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Related Solutions

#4
July 12, 2011 at 19:22:42
I had a US-Robotics Modem for years and never had a bit of trouble with it. I still have it stashed away somewhere gathering dust in perfect working order the last time it was plugged in.

Its a case of you pays your money and takes your choice; the cheapest isn't always the least expensive. Thunderstorms apart, there is no reason why most electronics should not last for many, many years providing you buy something made with quality components to begin with. I have a box full of the stuff.

Stuart


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#5
July 12, 2011 at 19:33:33
"I average about 49k for the life until they start slowing down and making me attempt several tries for a dialtone at a decent speed."

That's pretty good. You never actually get the full 56k speed.

You tend to get the most reliable connection and faster speeds from a "hardware" modem rather than a "sotware" modem ("winmodem"), but they're more expensive and harder to find new these days..
As in, a "hardware" modem has all that's needed built into it's board, it works in Dos, a "software" modem has fewer chips and requires software built into Win 95 and up operating system.
I have an old Zoom external 56K modem (serial) that is a hardware modem and it works fine. I only use it when someone insists I send them a fax, which hasn't happened for a few years.

You can buy anti-surge / anti-power spike devices that are just for the phone line.

Your problems may not be due to the modem.
(The following also applies to a DSL or ADSL high speed connection, except the max distance to the nearest phone exchange is a lot less.)

The farther away you are from the nearest phone exchange, the more electric and electronic noise that can get picked by the phone line, the lower the speed and the less reliable the connection is likely to be.

E.g. I have a friend who lives in the country - his 56k modem never gets a connection speed faster than 28.8k - the nearest phone exchange is in the nearest town, a long distance from his house..

The shorter the typical cheap flat phone cable between your modem and the wall socket is, the better, regarding picking up less noise where the modem is.
It's like an antenna regarding what it picks up..
Keep all the cheap flat phone cables that connect to the same phone line in your abode as far as you can from things that may generate noise - motors, florescent lights, unshielded speakers, AC cords, open computer cases, monitors, etc. - twice the distance- 1/4 the strength of what is picked up.

If it's a lot longer than 6 feet / 2 meters, you should run a standard twisted pair telephone cable (the same as is normally used between wall sockets) from connections behind the nearest wall socket ,and have a connection box on the other end you can connect a short flat cable to (use wires in the same twisted pair- a color,the same color with a stripe).
If you don't have standard twisted pair telephone cable between your wall sockets, if you can, run a twisted pair cable to where the telephone line enters your abode.

"New computer and cat5e wire to the jack. "

Same goes for the network cable. It has 4 twisted pairs of wires. If you're using that to connect to the nearest phone line wall connection, for the best result, to have it pick up the least noise, you must use a twisted pair in the cable - a color and the same color with a stripe.

Using a twisted pair cancels out most of the noise that would otherwise be picked up.


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#6
July 12, 2011 at 19:55:09
Using a guaranteed supressor and unplugging it in storms and when leaving for an extended period of time. The cable is very short and is twisted pair. I read on another forum that an expert says that using a supressor slows down the speed and an answering machine plugged into another jack in the house can alter it. What kind of baloney is that?

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#7
July 12, 2011 at 20:28:52
I stopped using the 56k modem constantly about early 2001 when an ADSL connection became available - it cost less for that than for a second phone line and the dial-up ISP's service.
That independent ISP used Stacker hardware to improve max data transfer speeds.

"I read on another forum that an expert says that using a supressor slows down the speed ...."
I have always used one - for the phone line only - for the 56k modem and for my present ADSL connection - no noticable difference in max speed in comparison to not using it .I have another two surge suppressors for everything else.

On the other hand, I DO have an intermittent phone line noise problem, between my adode and the telephone exchange, that causes me grief.

"....and an answering machine plugged into another jack in the house can alter it."

If it's cheap flat phone cable is picking up noise, or if it's introducing noise into the phone line, that will have an effect, but otherwise ???


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#8
July 13, 2011 at 06:45:13
> Had a computer guru tell me they don't go bad and it is Verizon's fault. They
> work beautiful for a while. Any thoughts?


Unfortunately many computer people do not have good electrical knowledge. He is correct that it should work (essentially) forever. But whose fault is it?

Verizon is required to install a surge protector where their wires meet yours. But that protector, like all protectors, is only as effective as the item that does protection - single point earth ground. Only you are responsible for maintaining that ground. The Verizon protector (like all protectors) is ineffective if that connection to ground is too long (ie more than 10 foot connection), has sharp wire bends, and is not earthed to the same ground used by AC electric, cable TV, and satellite dish.

Surges are an electrical current. Electricity means an incoming path and a separate outgoing path must exist. To have a surge, the most common incoming path is AC electric. Do you have a 'whole house' protector earthed on AC electric? Then again, only you are responsible for modem failure. Once a surge is permitted inside, then it will hunt for and find the better connections to earth.

Verizon would have earthed a protector on the phone line. So an ideal path from AC electric to earth through that Verizon protector is via your modem. A second (and more common) reason why modem damage happens.

It that 'noise due to distance' is solved by any protector, then the Verizon 'installed for free' protector has already done it. Again, so many if not most do not have basic electrical knowledge. Do not even know about the protector found on every subscriber interface.

Once a surge is permitted inside the building, then nothing (no plug-in device) will stop or absorb that surge. Either the energy is connected harmlessly to earth before entering your building. Or it will go hunting for earth destructively via your modem. Only you make that choice. Only you decide if a surge is absorbed harmlessly outside. Or is hunting destructively inside. In every case and without exception, a protector is only as effective as its earth ground. Plug-in protectors do not have that dedicated wire always necessary for earthing. If any protector at the service entrance is not properly earthed (ie single point ground), then you did not have effective protection that modem designers expect.


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#9
July 14, 2011 at 16:33:43
Thanks for your help. The question I should have asked is what is the life of these devices? I'm on #5 or 6 in 10 years. That seems a bit much. Just took me 6 tries to get a decent connection and I'm headed to Micro center to get a new one this weekend.

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#10
July 15, 2011 at 09:48:57
Any device that has electrolytic capacitors can have one or more of them fail eventually, especially if they were not properly made, but usually that doesn't happen for at least two years after you have installed the device.

If you have AC power problems where the computer is, including problems that produce power spikes or surges, that can damage any device.
If you get lightning strikes in your area, that can damage anything even when you are using a device that protects against power spikes and surges, even when the computer is not running or it is not receiving live AC power - if the computer is plugged in, a lighting strike can produce voltage spikes that can get through a protection device and jump the contacts of a switch that is switched off.

In order to protect your computer properly from power spikes and surges, EVERYTHING connected to the computer must be plugged into to a protection device - ALL devices that plug into the computer that plug into AC directly or via an AC to DC adapter, and the cable that provides the connection to the internet when that applies, if the device it connects to is connected to your computer directly or via a network cable connection - the telephone cable for dial-up or DSL / ADSL modems or combo router / high speed modems , the coax cable if you're using a cable modem.

Other than that, dial up modems are very reliable.

E.g.
I constantly used a 28.8k modem for about 4 years, a 56k for about 2, and they never had a problem regarding retaining their original speeds.
They were/are both "hardware" modems.

However, I DID have and I DO have intermittent problems with line noise on the telephone line causing a slower speed on the internet or no connection at all.

When there was/is no problem with line noise, those modems, and my ADSL modems, have no problems regarding their max speed on the internet.

NOTE that line noise isn't always audible to a person when they pick up a telephone connected to the same telephone line as the modem, and listen. It can be beyond the range of a human being able to hear it.
Some diagnostics program can test for the presence of problems related to line noise problems even when you can't hear it yourself. E.g. the free versions of Sysoft Sandra have such a test in it's suite of tests. It's a test of your internet connection that tests for the relative amount of dropped packets - the higher the percentage of those, the more of a line noise problem you're having.

It's well known that when you DO have a line noise problem, you are more likely to get a more reliable connection and get a higher max speed with a more expensive "hardware" modem rather than a cheaper "software" modem (a.k.a."soft modem", "win modem" , "winmodem") .
E.g.
If it can be used in Dos 6.x and lower operating systems, it's a "hardware" modem.
If it requires the Windows 95 and up operating system, Dos 6.x or lower is not listed, it's the latter.

I can be very informative regarding the reliability and max speed to read user reviews for a modem - e.g. that's often available in ads on the newegg or TigerDirect web sites.


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#11
July 15, 2011 at 16:38:41
> The question I should have asked is what is the life of these devices?

That answer was already provided:
> He is correct that it should work (essentially) forever.

Also listed is the most common source of surges that damage modems.
> Surges are an electrical current. Electricity means an incoming path and a
> separate outgoing path must exist. To have a surge, the most common
> incoming path is AC electric.

And then an only and well proven solution to avert that damage was described:
> Do you have a 'whole house' protector earthed on AC electric? Then again,
> only you are responsible for modem failure. Once a surge is permitted
> inside, then it will hunt for and find the better connections to earth.

Any protector inside a building can sometimes make damage easier. Either that surge dissipates harmlessly outside (via 'whole house protector and earthing). Or your modem only has good protection required to be inside all modems. Damage means superior internal protection was overwhelmed. A surge was permitted inside. Permitted to go hunting for earth destructively via appliances. It found a best connection to earth via your five modems - maybe.


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#12
July 15, 2011 at 20:23:30
As stated before I have a quality supressor by SL Waber that has a guarantee to replace anything damaged even if by lightning. These devices not only use fuses and mov's but also coils that absorb the surge and filter out any noise on ac or the rj11 jack. It has an alarm that sounds when it is no longer working. I doubt that a surge has taken out any of my modems. I have a long background in electronics and was just wondering if anybody else was having the same problem. Thanks to one and all.

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#13
July 16, 2011 at 09:04:26
> As stated before I have a quality supressor by SL Waber that has a guarantee
> to replace anything damaged even if by lightning. These devices not only use
> fuses and mov's but also coils that absorb the surge and filter out any noise
> on ac or the rj11 jack.

Read what SL Waber really says. For example, fuses never stop surges. Fuses take milliamps to blow. Surges are done in microseconds. 300 consecutive surges could flow through a fuse before it even thought about blowing.

MOVs do not stop surges. Do not even claim to. You ignored what was posted. You have again recited myths from advertising. The hardest part about protection is first unlearning those myths.

View SL Waber's spec numbers. How does it hundreds of joules absorb surges that are hundreds of thousands of joules? Scammers hope you always ignore the numbers. Numbers say it protects from surges too tiny to cause damage. Sufficient to then claim 100% protection in advertising, sales brochures, and urban myths. Even your numbers say it is near zero protection.

And finally, read fine print found on many SL Waber products:
> This Surge suppressor is not a lightning arrestor and may not protect
> against lightning induced voltage surges

It does not even claim to protect from typically destructive surges ... for how many reasons and numbers? Informed consumers earth one 'whole house' protector to have protection even from lightning. And to protect that SL Waber.

Does the $40 price on a $4 power strip with some ten cent protector parts prove 'quality'? Read numbers that matter. Learn what happens when a surge - hundreds of thousands of joules - must be magically absorbed by the SL Waber. Or learn from its fine print.


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#14
July 17, 2011 at 19:51:54
I do beg to differ only because I sold this product for many years. The series is Wave Tracker and it is absolutely guaranteed under any and all circumstances. You are very correct that most surge suppressors state that they do not protect against direct lightning hits but this series does. Out of the hundreds and hundreds I sold there was only one claim that the device that did now work and SL Waber paid for the damaged products. I stated not only fuses and mov's but inductive coils that react instantly so no ten cent protector parts here. I have seen these actually catch on fire or melt but they served their purpose over 99.9% of the time. I'm not one to argue but I do know this product and its history. Check it out for yourself and you'll see this is no $4 strip at Walmart. They guarantee if even hit by lightning. Period!

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#15
July 18, 2011 at 02:43:50
I would say that anything that bursts into flame in order to do its job is not something I would like in my home. What do I do if it happens at 4:00 AM when there is nothing little short of an earthquake that would wake me.

Great if it saves your £2000 pound computer from being destroyed but not so great if it burns down your £100,000 home in the process.

Stuart


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#16
July 18, 2011 at 06:28:35
> I do beg to differ only because I sold this product for many years.

Well, you have had how many damaged modems? And have designed how many protection systems? Modems should be working long after a computer has retired. You recommend SL Waber products due to their 'quality', but are then asking if ridiculously excessive failures are normal? As a salesman of protectors, you should have known that failure rate is well beyond abnormal.

Damage can be made easier by protectors too close to electronics and too far from earth ground. Normal is for protectors with inductors and MOVs and without the always required earthing to do no effective protection. To sometimes catch fire when grossly undersized. Inductors, MOVs, and fuses do nothing for surge protection especially if a short connection to earth is missing.

Do you have a 'whole house' protector earthed on AC electric? If not, only you determine that resulting modem failure. Once a surge is permitted inside, then it will hunt for and find better connections to earth. Nothing stops a surge. Nothing. Not even a 'whole house' protector. And definitely not MOVs, fuses, or inductors. If a protector does not have the always required short (ie 'less than 10 feet') connection to earth, then that protector will not avert surges.

Effective protectors earth even direct lightning strikes. And remain functional. Grossly undersizing a protector means no protection and damage that promotes myths and sales. Any protector that fails provided no effective protection. Sometimes, a grossly undersized protector will catch fire. That also gets the most naive to recommend it. If it burned, it was not just undersized. It was grossly undersized.

Defined was a most common and destructive current path through modems. Also defined was an effective protector that must exist. But a Verizon 'installed for free' solution may be compromised if you do not provide or inspect what is necessary to make it effective. This and other above paragraphs simply repeat what was already posted.

Moving on. Destructive surges are typically once every seven years. Can be more frequent due to other factors including geology. If suffering annual or semi-annual surge damage, then you have no protection. Protection inside computers can be compromised when a protector too far from earth ground is also too close to electronics. I can only tell you what was made obvious by decades of designing and well proven by over 100 years of industry experience throughout the world. Modem damage annually or semi-annually implies your building has serious defects.

Of course, surges are only one of many possible reason for excessive damage. To say more means, for example, defining what parts on each modem were damaged. The above assumption was damage due to surges. Damage even made easier when a protector is too close to electronics and too far from single point earth ground. Other reasons have not been discussed due to no posted facts concerning those other 'suspects'. But your modem failure rate says you have a serious defect in your venue / home.


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#17
July 18, 2011 at 20:34:50
The supressor caught on fire because it did what it was designed to do. Absorb a direct hit of lightning and protect devices that are plugged into it. Better replacing an $80 unit than a tv, home entertainment system, dvr, etc. Possibly thousands of dollars that would have caught on fire if not for the supressor. Anything, I repeat, anything that is hit by lightning can and will catch fire. It has nothing to do with a grossly undersized protector. My question is why hasn't anything else plugged into this supressor failed? My monitor, printer, fax and tv are all fine. Fact is I have seen many more whole house units fail than the one Wavetracker. Sorry but I'm more than an electronics salesman but a technician also.

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#18
July 19, 2011 at 02:40:11
The supressor caught on fire because it did what it was designed to do.

What a load of baloney.

Question: What the difference between TV and a failed surged protector if it catches fire at four in the morning?

Answer: None at all ,they are both are likely to burn the house down.

Designing something so it is expected to catch fire is the most stupidest thing I have heard for a long time.

Stuart


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#19
July 19, 2011 at 07:58:57
> My question is why hasn't anything else plugged into this supressor failed?

That was explained repeatedly. Protection is about where a surge current is absorbed. That current is incoming to every appliance in the house (because a 'whole house' protector was not properly earthed). Everything sees that surge. Voltage increases as necessary so that current will flow. Voltage increases until something is overwhelmed. That overwhelmed appliance carries the current to earth. That overwhelmed appliance acts as a surge protector for others.

Protection means that surge was not inside; was not hunting for earth destructively via appliances. Once that current is inside, then nothing but protection inside every appliance can avert damage.

According to your reasoning, that overwhelmed appliance should also burst into flames. A power strip burned because it was so grossly undersized. Even protection inside every appliance is more robust. Therefore the overwhelmed appliance did not burn - did not create fire.

Grossly undersizing a $4 power strip with ten cent protector parts makes the $40 or $150 protector offensively profitable. Monster also sells these for up to $150 because the obscene profits are so easily reaped. Grossly undersizing also means tiny surges might cause a fire. Then that failure gets the most naive to recommend it.

MOV manufacturers are quite blunt in datasheets. No MOV must fail catastrophically. Only acceptable failure is to degrade. Even a failed MOV must remain intact. Only its internal voltage changes 10%. Only those who know this stuff would even know that numbers - 10%. Any other failure (ie failing by burning) violates what MOV manufacturers state. No MOV can vaporize or burn. But a grossly undersized protector uses that failure to promote sales.

Your failures are classic examples no surge protection. Described again is why one appliance fails while others do not. Surge damage to any appliance means internal protection in all other appliances was not overwhelmed. Protection that may be compromised if a protector too close. An event that should never happen if one 'whole house' protector were properly earthed.


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#20
July 19, 2011 at 15:47:51
Okay, out of the hundreds and hundreds of Wavetrackers sold only one has caught fire. One! No they are not desgned to catch fire but this one did due to the direct hit. As for MOV's not burning, I would like to have a dollar for every RCA and NTE replacement I sold to replace burnt ones. Maybe the amount would settle our debt problem. Sorry but my reasoning was not the overwhelmed appliance should burst into flames. Do yourself a favor and get a data sheet on Waber's Wavetracker line and you will see no ten cent parts. Unless you are familiar with this line like I am please don't doubt my word. I have 32 years in electronics to back that up. Again I have seen many whole house protectors fail and only one Wavetracker. Waber guarantees it to protect devices plugged into it or they will buy you new replacements. They wouldn't make a $4 product with that kind of promise.

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#21
July 19, 2011 at 16:35:15
The supressor caught on fire because it did what it was designed to do

No they are not designed to catch fire but this one did due to the direct hit.

Make your mind up. One minute they are designed to catch fire. The when the stupidity of that is pointed out you say they are not designed to catch fire.

That is a failure as always when an electrical device catches fire.

Stuart


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#22
July 19, 2011 at 20:07:34
I now see why Steve Carlton refused to speak the press for most of his career. Everything is taken out of context. It caught on fire because it did what it was designed to do. IT ABSORBED THE LIGHTNING STRIKE AND PREVENTED IT FROM DAMAGING DEVICES PLUGGED INTO IT. I never said it was designed to catch on fire. This is my last post because I have better things to do than to be misquoted. I am so above this quarrelling and picking.

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#23
July 19, 2011 at 20:55:16
IIT ABSORBED THE LIGHTNING STRIKE AND PREVENTED IT FROM DAMAGING DEVICES PLUGGED INTO IT

It didn't absorb it all though. The device converted some of the electrical energy into thermal energy with the risk of burning the whole building to the ground. A surge suppressor that is likely to burst into flames is no good to man nor beast.

Turning electrical energy into thermal energy is never a good way of dissipating the former - it tends to kill people. The huge amount of electrical energy in a lightening strike , anything up to 10 billion jules, has to be absorbed by something and the only thing big enough to absorb that amount of energy without damage is the earth.

Stuart


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#24
July 20, 2011 at 09:12:24
> It caught on fire because it did what it was designed to do. IT ABSORBED THE
> LIGHTNING STRIKE AND PREVENTED IT FROM DAMAGING DEVICES
> PLUGGED INTO IT.

No protector does that. But that myth sells $4 power strips with ten cent protector parts for $40 and $150.

Why do we increase joules in a protector? So that a protector absorbs LESS energy. You said you were an electronic tech. That means you know this simple reality. Nothing is known until numbers from datasheets are learned. Read multipage data sheets for MOVs. Nothing in those datasheets says MOVs protect (effectively) by absorbing energy. Defined in a previous post (and still ignored by you) is how MOVs fail. They degrade. Their voltage changes by 10%. Did you read any datasheets? Or just know because retail lies were confused with information?

How many joules on your SL Waber? Hundreds? That is near zero protection. Destructive surges are hundreds of thousands of joules. Your SL Waber can absorb hundreds of thousands of joules? Absolutely ridiculous. Effective protectors EARTH hundreds of thousands of joules and remain functional - even decades later. Any protector that fails (ie burned) is a scam. At minimum, was grossly undersized. Was not providing protection.

We engineers are constantly retraining techs who know without first learning the numbers. If you *know*, then you have posted numbers to prove that. Otherwise, you have made yourself a victim of scam artists. You never post numbers. That also says why you have modem damage.

You have virtually no surge protection. SL Waber does not even claim that protection. Recited is what English majors invent to reap massive profits from the most naive. That protector failure means no protection.

Some utility cables must be earthed by protectors. Others are earthed only by wire. But in every case, better protection means LESS energy absorbed by that wire and protector.

Another important concept: wire impedance. Also why a protector can even make modem damage easier when too close to electronics and too far from earth ground. How many ohms impedance in a 50 foot AC electric wire? Do you know? Why not?

Most of my techs were never this obstinate - were not that easily manipulated by retail advertising. Each learned knowledge requires datasheets and other numeric sources. You have constant modem damage because you have defined virtually zero surge protection. And do not quote any technical numbers. No protector works by absorbing the surge – except when knowledge comes from a business school shyster.

Those myths explain why modems were damaged. Provided was how to stop modem failure. Why are you denying what an engineer with generations of experience is telling you? Why are you denying what has been well proven for over 100 years?


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#25
July 20, 2011 at 09:24:01
> Waber guarantees it to protect devices plugged into it or they will buy you
> new replacements. They wouldn't make a $4 product with that kind of promise.

Of course they do. They could replace that protector three times over and still have massive profits. A $4 power strip with ten cent protector parts selling for $40 or $150 is why Monster also sells a similar product.

Power strip protectors are sold by hyping big buck warranties. The net is full of people complaining when so many fine print exemptions make that warranty useless.

Learn free market economics. Auto industries best warranties are on GM cars - something like 100,000 miles and five years. Does that prove GM cars are more reliable than Honda, Hyundai, and Toyota? Of course not. Big buck warranties are the first indication of an inferior product. Power strip warranties are full of exemptions. They are selling retail myths; not surge protection.

If is does protection, then you do not have five destroyed modems. Explained by an engineer who does this stuff: a tech who does not backup every claim with technical numbers is only lying to himself.

Properly earthed protectors are missing. Therefore no effective protection exists..

What happens when a protector has even more joules? Then it absorbs LESS energy. Learn how science works. Read datasheets. Learn how retail scams are easily promoted by hyping big buck warranties. If a tech with experience, you should have seen through those lies immediately by reading tech numbers. You have modem damage because an SL Waber too close to a modem can even make modem damage easier.


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#26
July 20, 2011 at 15:20:46
I lied. Just one more post. I should have known you were an engineer Sorry but you guys already know everything. My bad. Let me apologize for the rest of us that are not engineers and obviously not as brilliant. If I had to guess you have a ham radio too. I am now signing off and deleting my profile. Bad vibe here.

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#27
July 20, 2011 at 15:40:46
The answer to the title of this Topic - Do 56k modems Go Bad - is
we have not seen evidence of that, unless it's defective or it has been damaged by something external to it.


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#28
July 20, 2011 at 16:26:55
I should have known you were an engineer

No me, just a fundamental knowledge of basic physics and a highly developed BS detector.

I dont have a Ham radio but I do have an Air Band scanner. Does that count?

Stuart


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#29
July 20, 2011 at 17:11:55
> I lied. Just one more post. I should have known you were an engineer Sorry but
> you guys already know everything.

You were asked for numbers that claim you have protection. An honest request you refused to honor. Provided were numbers for effective solutions. Someone who actually knows this stuff (ie knows what wire impedance is) has defined why you have five damaged modems.

Once that surge is permitted inside, then nothing (not even an SL Waber) can stop a destructive hunt for earth. Due to a 'whole house' protector installed for free by your telco, a best path from AC mains to earth is destructively via a 56K modem. Surge damage because a 'whole house' protector on AC mains was not earthed. And maybe because an adjacent SL Waber made surge damage easier.

We engineers who traced surges have seen that damage repeatedly. Even repaired modems by replacing the one failed part. Posted is one reason for modem damage. Avert future damage by earthing one effective protector from any of more responsible manufacturers. A solution that costs maybe $1 per protected appliance. A solution that should never inspire so much anger and denial.


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