Bye, Bye Standby – A Warning!

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

While I am a great fan, ever since I was given one of the sets of this device for review on a trade show that I attended some time back (see my product review), I must now issue here a small little warning, though an important one.

DO NOT USE LCD Flat Panel computer monitors with the “Bye, Bye, Standby” units in order to turn the monitor(s) remotely on and off. The power surge into the monitor on turning it on via a “Bye, Bye, Standby” unit at the socket can cause serious damage to the monitor and its circuitry. The spike of power on switching such a monitor on in such a way is very noticeable and even audible; a very distinct “tchunk” noise can be heard and a flash can be seen on the screen . This spike can and will damage the monitor's circuitry.

This just has happened to me after having used the “Bye, Bye, Standby” units with the PC and its monitor for a couple of months now day in and day out. Now the monitor will not “hold” the picture for the first three minutes or so when starting the PC; it flickers off and on until it finally, when it is warm enough I guess, come to rest and settles. It would appear that, as I said, it needs to war up first now ever since it started behaving in this manner. All I can put it down to is the spike from the switching on of the monitor via the “Bye, Bye, Standby” unit.

So, let the user beware!

My serious recommendation is to have the monitor, any LCD monitor (and even CRT, for those that still use them), plugged into a socket separate from the “Bye, Bye, Standby” units and turn the monitor off and on – to conserve power and energy – manually by means of its own power button. This is, generally, located in the center of the buttons on the monitor surround itself, and the power button is, normally, the bigger of the buttons. This should protect the monitor form any such surges while at the same time giving you, the user, the same energy savings as would be by using the “Bye, Bye, Standby” units.

What most people do not realize is that it is the monitor, even an LCD monitor, that takes the greatest amount of energy, more than the PC (as long as it is NOT processing anything) and even in standby the monitor still draws a considerable amount of electricity and is quite an energy guzzler. All you have to do is actually remember to turn the monitor(s) off manually; that is to say each and every one individually.

While, as I said, I do very much like the “Bye, Bye, Standby” units and must say that it helps not having to crawl under the desk every time in oder to turn off devices, had I known the impact it could have on a LCD monitor I would have done as I now advise here.

Using the “Bye, Bye, Standby” units, however, has made it possible, for the first time in years, to, without having to, as said, crawl under the desk, to turn off my “old” scanner. The latter does not have an on/off button which, I must say, I find rather daft.

So, while, all in all, I am very happy with the “Bye, Bye, Standby” set up this is just a little warning to users to beware as regards to their monitors being connected to this system and that the spike caused by the turning on of the supply to the monitor at the socket via the “Bye, Bye, Standby” unit can cause damage to the monitor.

Once again, just beware, and turn monitors on and off manually at their individual power buttons.

© M Smith (Veshengro), May 2008