Best Gaming PC Surge Protector – Guide to Choosing the Right One for 2020

7

Power Surges.

The sworn enemy of all gamers.

It was raining outside – with occasional lightning and thunder.

You were glad to be at home playing your favorite game on your newly purchased gaming computer. You were asked to get a surge protector for your gaming PC but you decided to take the chances. “What could possibly happen?”

A few lightnings came by – closely pursued by loud distant thunders.

You heard loud sparkling sounds (seemingly from your PC) and the lights in your room flicker.

Your computer screen went blank and there was burning smell coming from the PC.

Silence.

Besides the pouring rain outside the windows, the room was silent.

You knew your computer has lost power. Intuitively, you immediately reached for the power-on button.

Nothing happened.

Nope, you did not hear the familiar sound of hard disk spinning and the monitor screen remains lifeless.

Fingers-crossed, you hit the power-on button again.

The gaming PC remains lifeless.

Damned.

It gradually dawned on you that your new gaming PC is down. And that burning smell. Something must have been damaged.

You silently wished you had taken the advice from the guy at the computer store to get a gaming PC surge protector.

Next day, you brought your gaming PC to the computer store. Thirty minutes later you were told both the motherboard and power supply were fried. Data on the hard-disk was also corrupted.

You spent an additional few hundred dollars to have the motherboard and power supply replaced. Unfortunately, they could not salvage your precious hard-disk data. 🙁

This time round, you ordered a gaming PC surge protector immediately upon reaching home.

Precious time and money could have been saved had you bought one in the first place.

Lesson learnt.

The above scenario could happen to anyone when a thunderstorm or power surge comes by. If you are an avid PC gamer, you will definitely want to seriously consider getting a surge protector for your gaming computer.

Be sure to read till the end and check out our six editorial recommendations that have been proven to shield computers and laptops against power surges and transients.

For now, you will want to know how to go about choosing the right surge protection device for your gaming needs. You do not want to jeopardize your gaming PC by choosing the wrong type of surge protector for it.

More on that later.

Having a good surge protector will indirectly increases the lifespan of your gaming PC.

Without much ado, let’s get started.

Gaming PC Surge Protector – 5 Must-have Features

Most people have the impression that choosing a surge protector is a no-brainer task.

Well, it depends.

It is definitely not the case if you are getting one for a very specific type of application.

For example, a typical 6 outlet surge protector would not be suitable for surge protection of large appliances like ovens.

Surge protectors for large appliances usually come in the form of a single outlet plug. Likewise, there are specific features you will need in the case of a gaming PC.

Response Time

In the case of a surge protection device, response time (measured in nanoseconds) is the amount of time it takes for the active surge protection to kick in. The shorter the response time the better.

A longer response time could mean a higher chance of connected devices getting hit by power spikes.

Protection Active LED Light

This is a no-brainer. Just look out for one that comes with an “Active Protection” LED light. An active protection LED light informs you that the surge protector is still in active protection of your gaming PC, monitor and other connected devices.

High Joules Rating

While having a surge protector with a high joule rating is not the most important criteria – it is a must-have if you are looking to get one that could protect your gaming PC for a long time.

A high joule rating basically means it is capable of absorbing more “hits” when power spikes occur. The higher the joule rating of the surge protector, it can also mean the longer the lifespan it has.

Whenever a power spike comes along, the joule rating will get depleted by a certain amount. The surge protector will continue to shield against until it’s joule rating is entirely depleted.

When hunting for a gaming PC surge protector, you will want to get one with at least 2000 joules rating.

USB Charging Ports

In this day and age, it would be rare to know anyone who does not have any USB-based device on them.

Having 2 USB charging ports allow you to charge your phone and another USB device while having active surge protection for your gaming PC.

Comprehensive Connected Equipment Warranty

Most people do not look at warranty period whenever they purchase electronic appliances. Until something happens.

Be sure to get one that comes with a comprehensive warranty coverage that includes connected devices.

Typically a 12 months warranty is good enough if you stay near a lightning-prone area.

What Else to Look for When Buying a Surge Protector for Gaming PC?

No. of Outlets

Go for a minimum of 6 outlets if you are not a huge gadget junkie like me. Your PC and monitor, printer and desk light may already take up 4 slots.

That will leave you with only 2 more outlets for charging things like mobile phones, iPads, smartwatch, headsets etc.

You will need one with more outlets if you have things like additional monitors, cable modems, security cameras, switches and routers and so on…

Length of the Power Cord Matters

Unless you stay in a super small room and have easy access to all the A/C outlets on the wall, you will want to get one with a lengthy power cord.

Most of us, including me, have far-flung A/C wall outlets and having a surge protector with long power cord can be a life saver.

Go for a minimum length of 6 foot and not any shorter.

Wall-mount Capability

If you do not have sufficient floor and desk space for a long surge protector or one with a big footprint, you may be looking at wall-mounting it.

Mounting a surge protector on the wall is definitely a good way to space precious real estate especially if you are an avid gamer with lots of gaming equipment and peripherals lying around on the table.

Are Surge Protectors the Best Protection for Gaming PCs?

Well, the short answer is No.

Not really.

If you really want seamless and zero-interruption game play, getting a UPS (Uninterrupted Power Supply) may be your best bet.

All UPS systems come with a built-in backup battery.

When there is a power outage, your gaming PC or laptop would be able to fall back onto the backup batteries and have enough time to perform a graceful shutdown.

UPS systems will protect against over voltages (power spikes), like a surge protector, and will continue to provide power to your gaming PC during a blackout.

You will want to invest in a UPS battery backup surge protector if you are a professional gamer and have no tolerance for unexpected power outages.

CyberPower CP850AVRLCD Intelligent LCD UPS System, 850VA/510W, 9 Outlets, AVR, Mini-Tower

CyberPower CP850AVRLCD Intelligent LCD UPS System, 850VA/510W, 9 Outlets, AVR, Mini-Tower

  • MULTIFUNCTION LCD PANEL: Displays immediate, detailed information on battery and power conditions, including: estimated runtime, battery capacity, load capacity, etc
  • AUTOMATIC VOLTAGE REGULATION (AVR): Corrects minor power fluctuations without switching to battery power, thereby extending the life of the battery

Gaming PC Surge Protectors - 6 Editorial Recommendations for 2020

[1] Huntkey 12 Outlets Surge Protector Power Strip [Huntkey SMC127]

Huntkey SMC127

Besides having a more than decent lifespan of 2390 joules, this cost-effective surge protector is an excellent choice for protecting gaming PC and laptops from damaging power spikes. We like the clean and sleek look offered by the black color housing.

This power strip surge protector comes with 2 block-space outlets which can easily handle over-sized plugs like printers and modems.

You will be glad to know it is also made of fire-prevention material and it offers overload protection (over-current) to help safeguard against overheating.

Core Product Features

Joules Rating: 2390
Number of Outlets: 12 Outlets
Power Cord Length: 1.8 meter (6 feet) long power strip with flat plug
USB: 2 x USB Charging Ports
Warranty: 3 Years Warranty

What We Don’t Like

The 2 USB ports (5V2.4A combined) is not the fastest but we won’t complain so long it gets the job done. 🙂

Huntkey 12 Outlets Surge Protector Power Strip, 2 USB Ports 5V/2.4A, 6-Foot Heavy Duty Extension Cord, SMC127

Huntkey 12 Outlets Surge Protector Power Strip, 2 USB Ports 5V/2.4A, 6-Foot Heavy Duty Extension Cord, SMC127

  • 2390-Joule energy rating, 2 USB charging ports with smart IC technology sharing 2.4A power; auto-detect your devices and supply the maximum charge speed for your devices.
  • All-Round Protected, Fire-prevention materials, Overload Protection, Integral Copper Bar and Heavy Duty Extension Cord.

[2] Witeem 12-Outlet USB Power Strip Surge Protector

Witeem Surge protector

The feature profile of this 4360 joules Witeem surge protector is somewhat similar to that of Huntkey surge protector above if not better. 🙂 The features worth highlighting are the Overload Protection and Flame Resistant housing which are critically-important for serious gamers.

There is a overload protection system that guard against power overload and the housing of this Witeem surge protector is made of Flame Retardant material which is able to withstand temperature of up to 1,382℉(750℃).

This surge protector is both FCC certified and ETL listed. This means you can fully indulge in your gaming experience without any worries.

Core Product Features

Joules Rating: 4360
Number of Outlets: 12 Outlets
Power Cord Length: 6 feet heavy duty extension cord
USB: 4 x USB Smart IC Technology (5V/6A,30W) Charging Ports
FCC certified and ETL listed

What We Don’t Like

None.

Give it a shot. It’s fire-retardant casing will provide additional peace of mind during bad weathers and high transient spikes.

Witeem 12 Outlets Surge Protector Power Strip with 4 USB Charging Ports (5V/6A,30W) and 6' Heavy Duty Extension Cord, for Home, Office, Computers, Appliances, Equipment (4360 Joules) - Black

Witeem Surge Protector with 12-Outlet (1875W/15A,4360Joules) and 4 USB Charging Ports

All-Round Protected – Witeem 4360Joules Surge protector with overload protection protects against spikes and fluctuations, fire-retardant casing which is able to stand temperature up to 1382℉(750℃), and an internal safety shutter ensure peace of mind for you and your family. ETL Listed and FCC Certificated.

4 x Fast USB Charging Ports – Build in smart charging technology

[3] Plugable 12-Outlet USB Power Strip Surge Protector [PS12-USB25]

Plugable Surge Protector

There are quite a few things we like about this 12 outlet surge protector from Plugable. Besides having built-in EMI/RFI Filter and circuit breaker switch, this 4320 joules surge protector comes with a 25 foot long extension cord. This is especially helpful for playing your favorite game outdoor while tapping onto the indoor A/C outlet.

There is also a 6 foot power cord model if 25 foot is way too long for you. 🙂

On top of that, we are also impressed with its sliding safety covers. They are especially useful when you have little ones at home.

Core Product Features

Joules Rating: 4320
Number of Outelts: 12 Outlets
Power Cord Length: 25 foot
USB: 2 x USB (2.1A shared)
Warranty: 1 year limited parts and labor warranty

What We Don’t Like

The 1 year product limited parts and labor warranty definitely raises our eyebrows especially for the price it is asking.

 

Plugable Surge Protector Power Strip with USB and 12 AC Outlets, Built-in 10.5W 2-Port USB Charger for Android, Apple iOS, and Windows Mobile Devices, 25 Foot Extension Cord

Plugable Surge Protector Power Strip with USB and 12 AC Outlets, Built-in 10.5W 2-Port USB Charger

  • Built-in EMI/RFI Filter. 2-in-1 power / circuit breaker switch. UL/cUL Rated
  • Sleek black design with sliding safety covers protect users from accidental contact and keeps dust and debris away from unused outlets. Four corner outlets have extra-wide spacing for large “wall wart” power adapter bricks

[4] Bestek 10-Outlet High Joules USB Surge Protector

Bestek USB Surge Protector

Beyond it’s asethetically pleasing white or black design, this 4000 joules Bestek surge protector not only comes with a long lifespan, it also comes equiped with dual auto 5V/2.4A smart USB charging ports as well as coaxial cable and RJ11 phone line (1 in, 2 out) protection. So if you have cable box or satelite connections at home, this could be an ideal one for you.

If you have big-size plugs at home, you will be glad to know that it comes with two widely spaced out AC outlets. We like the fact that Bestek places the power switch near the cable cord to help guard against accidental turn off.

Core Product Features

Joules Rating: 4000
Number of Outelts: 10 Outlets
Power Cord Length: 6 foot
USB: Dual 2.4A USB Ports
Warranty: 18 months product warranty

What We Don’t Like

The 18 months product warranty is definitely not the most ideal but if it is not much of a concern for you, this is actually quite a value for money surge protection device for gaming PC.

 

BESTEK 10-Outlet 4000 Joules Surge Protector Power Strip High Joules Surge Protector with Dual 2.4A USB Charging Ports, 6-Foot Heavy Duty Extension Cord, FCC/UL Listed, White

BESTEK 10-Outlet 4000 Joules Surge Protector Power Strip High Joules Surge Protector with Dual 2.4A USB Charging Ports

10 outlets surge protector with 4000 joules high surge protection energy rating, dual auto 5V/2.4A smart USB charging ports, 4.2A total

[5] Bototek Surge Protector with 10-Outlet + 4 USB Charging Ports

Bototek Surge Protector

If you are a gamer looking for a surge protector that has features like over-current, short circuit and overload protection, high heat resistant and built-in power voltage sensor, this Bototek surge protector may be your best bet. These features will probably offer the best surge protection for your gaming PC.

While it does not have a high joule rating, it does come with a decent 2100 joules which is more than sufficient for gaming needs.

This surge protector from Bototek comes with a decent 2 years warranty.

Core Product Features:

Joules Rating: 2100
Number of Outelts: 10 Outlets
Power Cord Length: 6 feet
USB: 4 x USB ports
Warranty: 24 months worry-free product warranty + 30 days hassle-free returns.

What We Don’t Like:

None. This is a must-buy for serious gamer.

Power Strip, Bototek Surge Protector with 10 AC Outlets and 4 USB Charging Ports,1625W/13A, 2100 Joules, 6 Feet Long Extension Cord for Smartphone Tablets Home,Office, Hotel- Black

Power Strip, Bototek Surge Protector with 10 AC Outlets and 4 USB Charging Ports,1625W/13A, 2100 Joules

Surge protector with overload protection protects against spikes and fluctuations. Intelligent circuitry with built-in voltage sensing detects and responds to your device’s power needs, while safety features ensure that your devices are protected

[6] Tripp Lite 6-Outlet Power Strip Surge Protector with 3 USB Ports [TLP648USBC]

Tripp Lite TLP648USBC Surge Protector

This surge protector from Tripp Lite is not just a gaming PC surge protector, it is a highly portable which means you can bring it with you everywhere you go. This 1080 joules surge protector features a spring-loaded clamp which can be easily attached (up to 2.5 inch in thickness) to your gaming desk which will provide you with more space for your other gaming devices.

If you are looking for one with long power cord, you will happy to know that this tripp lite surge protection device comes with a 8 feet power cord and 3 USB charging ports (dual USB-A ports and one USB-C port for ultra fast charging).

Trying to cut down your electricity bills? You will be glad to know TLP648USBC comes with a On/Off switch control. At a flip of  a switch, it stops flow of a/c power to all outlets hence saving energy when all connected devices are idle.

If you are a serious gamer, you will want to know that it has a built-in breaker to help protect against overloads. 💪

Core Product Features:

Joules Rating: 1080
Number of Outelts: 6 Outlets
Power Cord Length: 8 feet
USB: dual USB A ports + 1 x USB-C port
Warranty: Lifetime Limited Warranty

What We Don’t Like:

Despite it’s low joules rating of 1080, you should not be too worry about it unless you happen to be staying near lightning prone areas or old building in which electrical transients/power spikes are frequent visitors.

Tripp Lite Surge Protector TLP648USBC Desk Clamp 6-Outlet 2 USB-A; 1 USB-C 8ft Cord

Tripp Lite Surge Protector Desk Clamp 6-Outlet 2 USB-A; 1 USB-C 8ft Cord

  • 6 NEMA 5-15R outlets distribute AC power to connected home/office equipment
  • 1080 joules protect your valuable electronics against dangerous surges and spikes
  • 2 USB-A/1 USB-C ports for fast charging of phones, tablets and other mobile devices
  • 8 ft. pivoting power cord with NEMA 5-15P plug easily adjusts to nearby wall outlets

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