Customer Reviews: Monster GreenPower Digital PowerCenter MDP 650 - 6 outlets, 2160 joule rating
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The concept behind this Monster Power MDP650 Green Powercenter is good, though hardly "revolutionary" as claimed. I have purchased the Smart Strip LCG5 Energy Saving Power Strip more than two years ago, and it operates on exactly the same auto-off principle. Basically, you need to draw a minimum amount of current or power from the 'Master' device, before all four of the 'Slave' devices can power on. Once the Master device is turned off, or its current drops below a lower threshold, all the Slave devices are tripped off.

Compared to the Smart Strip LCG5, the Monster MDP650 has one major drawback: its current-detection threshold is non-adjustable. The manufacturer did not disclose what is the minimum current (or power) of the Master device required for reliable detection. The following is my own measured data based on one unit (your result may vary):

- When the Master device draws over 0.4A of current or ~48W power at 120V [*see REMARK below*], all Slave devices are turned on
- When the Master device's current drops to below 0.22A (or ~26W or power), all Slave devices are turned off.

So here lies the problem: if I plug in a Master device that consumes less than 50W of power, it may not be able to turn on all Slave devices. For example, my Samsung 23" LCD TV in the bedroom consumes ~40W, which is below the detection threshold. Same problem applies for most SFF (small-form-factor) computers, because their power consumption is typically under 50W. In contrast, the Smart Strip LCG5 has an adjustable current detection threshold, so it is more flexible in terms of the Master device you can use.

I got this Monster PowerCenter during Amazon Lightning Deal for just one-third its list price of $60, so it is still an acceptable value. Otherwise I recommend going for the Smart Strip LCG3 because it offers adjustable trip level and 10 outlets.

The auto-on/off trip levels are based on current, not power. For a purely resistive load, power and current are related by:
[ Power = Voltage * Current ]
For example, a 40W 120V incandescent bulb consumes roughly 0.33A because 120V*0.33A = 40W.

However, a typical electronic appliance does not behave like a pure resistor. Its current consumption is always slightly higher than that of a resistive load at the same wattage. So you cannot simply calculate its input current based on power consumption rating. You have to measure its current consumption directly, using a power meter such as the P3 International P4460 Kill A Watt.
11 comment| 53 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on March 28, 2012
I got this on a gold box sale for use with a mac mini. Because the mini uses so little power when it's on and not doing much, it would periodically cause the power strip to shut everything off at random. I tried various combinations of devices daisy chained with the computer to nudge power consumption up to stay above the "computer" port's sleep threshold. Ultimately, combining my external hard drive with the mini on the computer port has worked reliably for a few weeks so far.

After fixing that glitch, I tried putting the computer to sleep. Sure enough, I heard a faint click sound from the strip. My two monitors, printer and a usb hub (ipod & phone connected) appeared to power down completely. Unfortunately, everything powered back on almost immediately and there were a slew of "improperly disconnected" / "your device may have lost or corrupted data" messages on my screen. I tried sleeping the computer while booted into Windows with the same result.

I should have expected this to happen (just as it happens when you unplug any USB "drive-like" device), so it's not a fault of the power strip ... just a bit annoying. Putting my hub on the "router / always on" port fixed it. These workarounds are not how I imagined the power strip functioning, but the device works as advertised, should work without hacks for many people, cuts power to four devices when I leave the desk, and it may actually save me a few dimes a month. I wouldn't pay the price it's listed at now, but for the 50% off deal price, it should pay for itself in maybe 3-4 years. :O Hooray for being eco-friendly!
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on May 3, 2012
Buyer beware! This item does not do what the manufacturer claims it will.......

I bought this item as a Lightening Deal on March 17, 2012 in anticipation of Earth Day, put it away and forgot about it until May 2, 2012. I set it up for the computer workstation in my home and made connections as shown in the instructional video, matching my peripherals to the labeled outlets on the power strip as follows:

1) "Greenpower Control/Computer" - Mac Mini 2.26 GHz Core 2 Duo

2) "Monster Greenpower Controlled Outlets" /
"Monitor" - HP w1858 18.5 inch widescreen HD flat panel monitor
"Printer" - Dell p1500 monochrome laser printer
"Speakers" Harmon/Kardon Soundsticks
"Accessory" - Belkin 7 port USB hub used for keyboard, mouse, iPhone charge/sync, iPad sync, digital camera, etc.
"Modem" - unused (I had hoped to connect an external drive here)

After making all connections and powering up the computer the following happened: after entering password to log on to the computer, the monitor was turned off by the Monster Digital Powercenter. Then a loud sound from the speakers. Next the printer powered on. Then began an annoying intermittent series of sounds from the speakers that would not stop.
I then plugged the monitor into a separate power strip to get it powered on, rebooted the computer and logged on. I turned off the monitor and plugged it back into the Monster Digital Powercenter and turned it on again. Within 20 seconds the Monster Digital Powercenter turned the monitor off again. Then came the annoying sounds from the speakers again.
I have since removed the Monster Digital Powercenter from my computer setup and am considering what to do with it.
Does anyone out there have any suggestions?
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on July 15, 2016
Did not detect that my desktop PC was powered up and thus did not power up the other outlets. A complete failure. That's the whole point of this product - to autodetect when the PC is powered, then provide power to all the accessories. I was replacing a Smart Strip power strip that worked very well (and was adjustable) but had developed a buzz when you turn it on.
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on April 7, 2015
It's an interesting concept, and the hardware is quality equipment. The other bad reviews are due to buyers saying "I can't understand" or "that's a stupid concept." Well, they should have read the description before they bought it.
If you're ok with a situation where 2 outlets are continuously available, and the 4 others are offline until one of the items run (I've got a continuously running filter, for example, so all 6 outlets are always available). this high quality 2000+ joules protector is a great buy.
I am docking a point, since a continuously running light socket timer was apparently not enough power consumption to make the other 4 outlets available.
**Update: I've got to drop 1 more point, noting that the device doesn't have a standard on/off switch. You have to simply unplug the whole thing, or hope both of your devices plugged into the continuously-running plus have their own on/off switch.
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on May 3, 2016
Does the job, it hasn't had to protect against a surge yet, I had another green switch from another brand that I got from a big box store that didn't work. So I order this and it fits the bill, I love switching off equipment that I don't use, and to do it automatically, it gets done!
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on April 20, 2013
I guess that perhaps I just got a "bad apple" so to speak, and given the fact that it was designed to be in line with it's expensive price, I expected a better product than I received. After day 3 or so, one side of the unit's indicator lights went out so that was my first indication that it was perhaps defective, then some of the ports wouldn't work anymore either, despite the fact that I made sure as to NOT overload the PowerCenter or use it for some major items that weren't fit for this power source. I tried everything possible to make sure that I was using it properly, but I didn't expect using a Monster PowerCenter like this could be so complicated and difficult to use, if I remember correctly (it's been a while since I purchased this and because I returned it immediately I am giving the details that I remember from my experience). Perhaps you'll get a better product than I did and will have better luck keeping it in working order. I bought it because I've never had problems with Monster's more expensive/better quality products.
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on January 15, 2013
I was surprised how little difference this unit made. First, it has fewer ports for your electrical hardware than most standard surge protectors. I had to leave some of my electronics plugged into my old surge protector so I could plug my computer and accessories in this unit. My computer and printer go to sleep, but hours later, nothing happens. My printer finally shut down two days after not in use. Based on a typical ROI, this will pay for itself in about 10 year.
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on November 20, 2015
I had a problem with my computer monitor not going to sleep when my computer shut off or went to sleep when connected via HDMI. Then I read that they sell these surge protectors that switch off peripherals when you shut off the main component. This thing works beautifully. I plugged the computer into the "control" plug, which is "always on" or always "hot" and you plug the monitor into the one of the switched plugs which is switched on/off based on the control device. When the computer turns on, the monitor comes on, when you turn the computer off, the monitor turns off. Freaking awesome. It's got a couple more plugs for anything else you would want to turn off like a printer or a second monitor. I needed something small and this thing is nicely sized and doesn't have a large footprint.
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on April 5, 2012
This item was a great pick up, if you are using it for a computer.
It is set up to shut three plugs off unless the main CPU is active.
I would not recommend this for an entertainment system.

Should be helping my parents save money in the future as well.
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