Buying new "everything" after a power spike(?) fried it all

Hi guys,

Lost my PC when plugging in one of my Yamaha HS80M monitors :frowning:
The PC was due for an upgrade.
Not sure how, but the HS80M still powers up…but doesn’t sound happy…after a few seconds, the cone starts flapping around. Have written that one off.
Fortunately my display monitor and X-Station were not affected, so that’s something.

Anyway…wondering if someone can help me put together a new Win 7 PC. It’s been years since I’ve looked at hardware and the choices are more bewildering than ever.

Will be buying a UR44 for sound and I am running Cubase 7.5
Will also be getting a Furman PL-8CE to hopefully prevent this happening again.

Budget would be around $1300-1400 (do not need monitor / keyboard / mouse)

Any pointers you can offer would be very helpful,


apart from the other advice you will get, I suggest buying an uninterruptible power supply (UPS). look for one that has filtered and surge protected sockets. basically it’s a battery backup. I have 3 of them in my studio and they have saved me many times when outages affect my building. look for ones with higher ratings like 800 or 1200VA… ed

Aloha d.
Major bummer! Sending much Aloha your way.

Yes yes yes yes yes etc etc etc.
What eddiemacarthur said! Can’t stress this enough. Did I say yes? Yes!

When I lived in Toronto the studio never once had a black or brown out. (ok maybe once :slight_smile: )

Since moving to Maui (and way up the mountainside about 4k feet) it is not uncommon
to have this happen two maybe three times a year.
So battery back-up is essential here (and should be for you as well).

As for the 'puter, if you are going to run Cubase 7.5 as yer main DAW,
one consideration might be getting the model HP computer that Steinberg (the makers of Cubase)
suggests for Cubase 7/7.5.

Good Luck!

uninterruptible power supply (UPS). I have one, run everything through it.

As for building the PC, I have a core i7 an early one, its always delivered with 12 gig. Some would say eight gig is sufficient (64 bit of course).
Go to Tom’s Hardware for the latest info and discussion. Think about inputs and outputs, USB3 is backward compatible.

First off…thanks for the replies guys…really appreciate you taking the time.

Am starting to pick up on the the general vibe that a UPS would be a good idea :slight_smile:
So does a UPS do what a power conditioner does plus provide (temporary) power when the mains goes off?
The place we rent also seems to have issues with “noise” ie would sometimes hear crackling in the speakers and plugged in electric guitars would be more noisy than they were in our previous place…was hoping that the conditioner might help with that.

Thanks for the Aloha curteye…sounds like you live in a nice spot ! …sending you a g’day from here in Sydney :mrgreen:
I didn’t realise Steinberg had recommended a specific HP model…have you got a link to that info?

Re my new PC…from the reading done so far…was also thinking of :

CPU - Core i7-4790 3.60GHz
Motherboard: Some sort of "x"97motherboard but this is my current dilemma …too many to choose from !
RAM: 16gb (2x8gb) dual channel ram (expandable to 32 if required later) but no idea which memory yet
No video card just yet…was going to see if onboard GPU could do the job to start with and then get one later
SSD - (Crucial MX 100 512gb)
Quiet case (currently thinking Nanoxia Deep Silence 5)
PSU - one that will be able to handle the above plus the video card when I get one later 650W maybe?

If I could decide on a motherboard that would help me figure out the rest I think


Ok…30 minutes of research on UPS’s later…have come up with this one:

Seems to have more than enough capacity to allow me to plug in all of my computer gear / synths / and hopefully the new Adam F5 monitors that I have my eye on. And it’s cheaper than the Furman PL-8CE that I thought I ought to be getting !

Noob question…this has 4 inputs on the back…do I simply plug in a power strip into one of these so that I can plug in all of my gear?

Check with the Cyber Power folks to make sure.

I say this because I use APC stuff and the manual says
to NOT use a power strip. It has several plugs right on it.

Also I’ll try and find that HP/Cubase link for you.

Will do…and thanks again

Here is that link: (scroll down quite a bit)

Made for each other: Cubase and HP
Finest software requires finest hardware. That’s why our best software specialists rely on the world’s leading PC hardware manufacturer. Cubase 7 is quality-tested with HP’s professional Z series workstation computers, ensuring highest performance and maximum reliability packed in a rock-solid chassis. Carefully selected components optimized for recording, editing and mixing allow for efficient audio data transfer rates throughout the whole system. Be it the industry-proven Intel XEON processors or the ultra-fast SSD drives, HP Z machines squeeze the best out of Cubase, speeding up your entire studio software environment.

Thanks ! will check it out

Motherboards, Asus are quality, I have had a dozen or so, very happy. Gigabyte are also respected. For me Asus odften equals Rolls Royce

very bad advice
not built for audio (regardless of what Steiny says)
absolutely NO support for audio or much else
over priced
Xeons not needed

There’s never enough outlets on the back for a studio. Why shouldn 't you use a powerbar as long as a single outlet is not heavily loaded, the UPC shouldn’t have any idea what is plugged in.
At any rate, I’ll never touch APC ever again. The first I received was bashed in on the side - the box it was sent in however had no signs of damage. The replacement unit worked for a while and then for no reason started clicking back and forth between live and BU - for no reason, then it would be alright for a while, then it would do it again. I checked the mains with a scope - fine. I added an APC Power stabilizer, it still screwed up, replaced the battery (expensive) still screwed up. It even did it when none of the loads were turned on! Drove me nuts, so I finally took it out of service (a couple of years) and run only on the stabilzer which also has conditioning.

Thanks Zero…my last motherboard (Gigabyte) served me very well till last weekend…have also had good experience with Asus too.

Hiya Scott…I remember grilling you for info on here the last time I was putting together a system (and from before then too) :slight_smile:
I thought the HP thing was a bit odd…maybe some sort of corporate marketing deal between Yamaha and HP going on? Was interesting to read, but I’ll be building my own system anyway I think

Thanks BriHar…will do more digging on the UPS thing…sorry to hear about your APC experience…but dont feel so bad about not using them myself now.


I had been looking at UPS boxes a while back, the one’s I saw in several different stores were just too low of power, and I would have had to buy at least 3 of them, so I never ended up getting one. I’ve been thinking about building my own UPS system with a very high capacity…basically similar to the back up battery arrays found in solar systems that power your entire house and are located on the exterior of your home. A reminder that I’ve GOT to get going on some kind of back power solution.

I use several multi-outlet strips in my home studio…about 4 of them with surge protection. I can’t think of any good reason why that UPS manufacturer recommends not plugging one into a power strip, except that they don’t trust the end users judgment…which I wouldn’t blame them. The bottom line is not to overload them, or overload anything for that matter.

In addition to my surge protector strips, I plan on installing a whole house surge protector to my main panel box. They’re not that expensive, they come in a circuit breaker form as a small box with pigtail wires that you stick in the existing hot buss lugs in your panel. They’re about $75.00-$100.00.

Thanks for that …I’ve also been told today that I should be looking for a UPS that uses a pure (not simulated) sine wave…which is not on the one I was looking at: … BGUvVcRXmE

…something about the simulated version being harmful to the PSU’s on the gear you plug into it? The pure sine wave versions are a lot more expensive.

Maybe I should go back to my original plan to use a Furman PL-8CE to clean up my “noisy” electrical environment / surge protection?


Pure is good and all, but ask yourself how pure is the electrical power coming into your house? The Furman is sounding like an attractive solution, though in all my years I’ve never used one. Certain things may be a good investment, but we don’t always motivate ourselves to take precautionary measures :bulb:

Yep…I’m motivated now :slight_smile: will also beef up my home contents insurance to cover this sort of issue !

I’m lucky in that my local music shop will let me buy the Furman…and if it doesn’t sort out my noise issues will let me return it.

Late to the discussion, but: once my Fireface 800 got fried here. The firewire chip was gone, the 800 was repaired by Synthax’ service for € 150. Significantly cheaper than a new interface… just saying.

Thanks marQs…I hadn’t really considered getting it fixed…but that’s a good idea…I was considering have someone look at the HS80M that caused all of this…as it still powers on.