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My family’s first computer, bought in the ’80s, was a Commodore 64. Over the next two decades, second-hand computers cycled through my parents’ offices, but it wasn’t until 2000 that my brother and I received our first desktop. Within a few weeks, a thunderstorm gathered and lightning struck near electrical wires in our neighborhood, sending a surge of electricity into our house. Something inside our hard drive crackled and smoked: the desktop died.

In the 15 years since then, I’ve insisted on surge protectors for my computers, and my cautious approach has extended to include video game consoles and TVs. Surge protectors are different from basic power strips — they divert detrimental energy kicks away from valuable electronics. But some surge protectors are better than others; they last longer, divert more energy and why do men take viagra offer additional features.

Tri Cascade’s i-Bright7X Smart Surge Protector is one of those high quality protectors. Despite a learning curve, it boasts impressive base performance and loads of extras. The one big problem is price. The 4-foot, 6-foot and 8-foot i-Brights sell for $110, $130 and $140 respectively. Most customers won’t dish out three or four times the cost of a normal surge protector, but for those who need the particular combination of features it offers, the i-Bright is a solid buy.