Belkin Conserve Surge Protector with Remote Switch

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Today, I would like to bring you another edition of Otaku Project, which is more or less a continuation of the last project Ikea Dioder Cable Management.  During the last project, I decided to finally clean up the wiring mess that has been hiding behind my entertainment center for better part of one year; and by the end of the project, I was able to clean up that whole mess and organized it into a manageable form, mission accomplished!  However, the victory was short lived, I soon realized that I really wanted more than 6 outlets to be controlled by one outlet strip so I decided to stop by HomeDepot to shop for a new outlet strip.  As I was browsing through the whole selection of outlet strips, big and small, something really caught my attention.  The Belkin Conserve Surge Protector with Remote Switch.

About 30 years ago, there was this product called X10, which is an industry standard for communication among electronic devices for home automation, such as turning outlet on and off, lightning control, status request on the appliances etc.  Perhaps the product was before it’s time, it never really took off like it’s supposed to.  Fast forward 30 years, we are in the middle of a recession and the rising cost of energy has become the talk of the town again.  A whole new array of energy conserving products has popped up in the market and this Belkin Conserve Surge Protector with Remote Switch is one of them.  So, without getting into too much details, the biggest selling point of this surge protector is the added ability to use a remote control to easily turn on and off portions of the outlet to help conserve power.  The particular model I picked up consist of 2 always on and 6 switchable power outlets.  So, why did I get it?  Besides the feel good factor of trying to help conserve energy and bring the cost of the electricity bill down, it’s the ability to turn on/off all the Ikea Dioder with a flick of a switch without even getting up from my desk XD.

So, this is what it looks like after I installed everything:

It doesn’t look as nice as the old black outlet strip but I can deal with it since I can control it remotely now XD.  There is also dip switch in the outlet and the remote unit to allow you to adjust how many outlet strips you can control with one remote.

And this is the switch

Before I turn on the switch

With one flick of a switch… see that little green led under my thumb?

And everything turned on!

This outlet strip run me about $40.00 at HomeDepot, a little bit on the pricey end of the spectrum.  Then I found out today that Amazon.com has a rebate program going on for it which can bring the price down to a little over $29 with free shipping.  Personally, I think it’s a brilliant deal since most decent surge protector would run close to $20 without any form power conserve function or remote control for that matter.  With an extra $10, you get the remote switch and the feel good factor of trying to conserve energy (I have no idea how much electricity cost I can save at this point), I think it’s well worth it for the coolness factor alone :P   There are quite a few smart outlet strips out in the market now, like the one made by Smart Strip, but this particular Belkin unit seem best suited for my application since all 7 sets of my Ikea Dioder are all “dumb” electronics and there is no way to control them remotely otherwise.

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