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Choosing the Right AC Power Supply for Your Storage System: A Buyer’s Guide

When we talk about storage systems, their efficiency and performance are often at the forefront of the discussion. However, one critical component that often gets overshadowed but plays a essential role in the system’s overall function is the AC power supply. This guide will explore how to select the right AC power supply to maximize your storage system’s potential.

Introduction to AC Power Supplies

An AC power supply is a device that provides electrical energy to other components. It converts mains AC voltage into a DC voltage suitable for the system it supports. In essence, the power supply is the heart of your storage system, and like any heart, you want to ensure it’s robust, reliable, and fit for purpose.

Factors to Consider When Selecting an AC Power Supply

  1. Wattage Requirement: The wattage requirement is pivotal. If you select a power supply that can’t provide the wattage your system needs, you risk poor performance or potential damage. For those with high-power demands, the PWR-C1-1100WAC-P stands out with its 1100 watts. Conversely, the 071-000-036-04 power supply provides 1050 watts and is designed for specific EMC systems like the VNX5200 & VNX5400. Always check your system’s maximum power consumption and go slightly above to be safe.
  2. Compatibility: Just like you wouldn’t use diesel in a petrol car, you must ensure your power supply is compatible with your storage system. Specialized power supplies, such as the ASR-920-PWR-A, are tailored for particular series like the Cisco’s ASR-920. When shopping, always keep your system’s model in mind and verify compatibility.
  3. Voltage Specification: Voltage is another pivotal factor. While many devices operate at standard voltages, some might require specific ones like a 24v AC power supply. Check your storage system’s voltage requirements and ensure the power supply matches it.
  4. Brand Reputation and Reliability: The market is flooded with AC power supplies, but not all are created equal. Renowned brands, such as Cisco and EMC, associated with part numbers we’ve discussed, have built a reputation for delivering quality and reliability. It’s always wise to invest a little more in a reputed brand than to cut corners and face issues later.
  5. Future-Proofing: Technology evolves rapidly. Today’s cutting-edge system can become obsolete tomorrow. If you’re planning to upgrade or expand your storage system in the foreseeable future, it’s prudent to opt for a power supply that can accommodate the increased demand.

Why Does the Right AC Power Supply Matter?

  1. Enhanced Efficiency and Performance: The right power supply ensures your storage system operates at its peak. From faster data retrieval to reduced chances of downtime, a suitable power supply can be the difference between a mediocre and a high-performing system.
  2. Safety First: Electrical components are not to be trifled with. A mismatched or low-quality power supply can be a potential fire hazard and may damage other parts of your system. Safety certifications and protections against surges, over-voltages, and short circuits are crucial.
  3. Increased Longevity: Consistent, stable power extends the life of your storage system. Voltage fluctuations or inadequate power can lead to wear and tear, reducing your system’s lifespan.

Real-World Applications: Matching Systems with Power Supplies

When setting up a storage system, real-world application matters. A one-size-fits-all approach may not cater to the unique demands of every organization. Here’s how certain power supplies align seamlessly with particular storage requirements:

Scalable Enterprise Systems: Organizations that handle vast amounts of data, often requiring high-speed access and robust backup mechanisms, need something substantial. With systems that fall under this category, power is non-negotiable. Cisco’s PWR-C1-1100WAC-P is a great example, delivering 1100 watts to ensure there’s no compromise on performance.

Specialized Storage Solutions: Not all storage units are built the same. Some are optimized for particular tasks, such as the VNX5200 & VNX5400. These units, backed by EMC’s reliability, pair harmoniously with the 071-000-036-04 power supply, ensuring that both power and performance align with the storage system’s specialized function.

Network-Centric Operations: Organizations relying heavily on network operations, especially those using Cisco’s ASR-920 series, need a power supply that understands its nuances. The ASR-920-PWR-A is crafted keeping this in mind, ensuring that the storage not only stays powered but also communicates effectively with the broader network infrastructure.

By understanding the specific demands of a storage system and pairing it with a compatible power supply, organizations can avoid potential pitfalls and ensure seamless operation.


As we embrace the digital age, the importance of robust, efficient storage systems cannot be overstated. However, the backbone of these systems, the AC power supply, deserves equal attention. Whether you’re considering the high-power PWR-C1-1100WAC-P, the specialized 071-000-036-04 for the VNX series, or the ASR-920-PWR-A for the Cisco lineup, always prioritize compatibility, reliability, and quality. Remember, a storage system is only as good as the power supply backing it. Choose wisely, and your system will serve you effectively for years to come.

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