Putting the finishing touches to your home theater is a bigger job than many people think. I found that after buying all the fun bits of tech, you still need to go ahead and get all the accessories to go with them. One of the most important of these are surge protectors.
What is a surge protector? Well, it’s a pretty self-explanatory device actually. A surge protector is designed to protect your electronic devices from spikes or fluctuations in the power supply. This is an issue experienced more in some places than others, particularly if you experience a lot of thunderstorms.
Surge protectors also have another useful function: they let you plug multiple devices into the same socket. Most multi-plug adapters have built in surge protectors, but not all do, so make sure you’re looking for the right thing.
The Best Surge Protectors For Home Theaters Available
To help you make the right decision, here is a list of the best surge protectors to use in your home theater.
- Belkin 12-Outlet Power Strip with Surge Protector
- Panamax M8-AV-PRO 8-Outlet Power Management System
- TOPEREK Power Strip with Surge Protection
- APC 6-Outlet Smart Power Strip with Surge Protection
- APC 6-Outlet Smart Power Strip with Surge Protection
- HOLSEM Surge Protector 12-Outlet Power Strip with 3 Smart USB Ports
- Pyle 19-Outlet Power Distribution Supply Center
- CyberPower CPS1215RMS 12-Outlet Power Strip with Surge Protection
- APC H15BLK 12-Outlet H-Type Power Conditioner
These are all available online, but you shouldn’t have much difficulty finding them in physical stores either. Much like other pieces of tech, the money you spend on them is reflected in the quality of materials.
1. Belkin 12-Outlet Power Strip with Surge Protector
This is a great choice for using in your home theater because it comes with a total of 12 power sockets, 8 of which rotate, meaning there’s much more room for devices with bulky power cables.
This surge protector would obviously be much more suitable for those with plenty of devices in their home theater, but you can look for a smaller one if you currently have fewer devices.
This Belkin power strip is designed to work with devices that have an input voltage of 125V. However, one of the biggest drawbacks is that each device isn’t individually protected, although you usually have to pay more for this. Considering this is a more budget option, it’s quite good value for money.
This surge protector also reduces interference from EMF, so will provide your devices with much cleaner energy, which is a big advantage for things like TVs and record players. It has an 8-foot power cable, which is also very helpful, and has the option to be wall mounted.
Other than the lack of individual device protection, the only other major drawback is that the power strip doesn’t come with any dedicated USB slots, which are obviously very useful for phone charging.
However, while this is an inconvenience, it just means you need to keep hold of your plug adaptor. Overall, this is a good choice for your home theater, and is on the lower end of the price scale.
2. Panamax M8-AV-PRO 8-Outlet Power Management System
When it comes to dedicated home theater surge protectors, you can’t do much better than the Panamax. This one is actually designed for home theater management, and while it comes with fewer input sockets than the Belkin, it offers plenty of advantages that make up for this.
It comes with 8 standard plug sockets, which are suitable for devices that use 125V input voltage, and it also has 2 COAX sockets, and a LAN input. This gives you much more flexibility with what you plug in, and all sockets have outstanding EMF filtration.
This means you’ll get a much cleaner voltage than with some others on this list, although the difference won’t be noticeable for most. This is because “dirty power” isn’t a massive problem in modern power networks, but can be affected by thunderstorms.
One big advantage (although hopefully you’ll never need to use it) is that this surge protector comes with a warranty. This protects your devices from any damage resulting from power surges, and covers up to $5 million! This is very helpful because it gives you peace of mind that your home theater equipment will be safe, no matter what.
The main thing that will put most readers off this surge protector is the price. After all, it’s not cheap, but it’s designed specifically for home theater management, and so you know it’ll do the right job. I actually used one of these for years, and it always did exactly what I needed it to.
3. TOPEREK Power Strip with Surge Protection
As you might have noticed from the previous reviews, one of my biggest bugbears with surge protectors is their usual lack of USB slots. After all, this is becoming something of an expectation for most users, not just home theater fanatics. Well, if you think you want some USB slots on your surge protector, then this is a good one for you.
It has 12 normal power outlets, and 5 USB ports! This gives you plenty of flexibility in terms of what you plug in, although you will be restricted by the fact that the power outlets don’t swivel, and so you might have a bit of difficulty if you’re using devices with chunky power cables.
The power strip has a 9.6ft retractable power cord, which gives you plenty of options for room layout, and also means that you don’t have all that spare cable lying about on the floor. If you’re like me, and you dislike messy cables, then this will be a big advantage.
The only real disadvantage of this power strip is that it’s not a particularly inconspicuous shape. It’s quite bulky, and so will be quite obvious unless you have somewhere to hide it.
However, it offers great surge protection, and comes with a level of EMF filtration, although this isn’t as good as some of the more expensive models. This power strip is a good choice for home theaters, particularly if you’re looking for a flexible but budget option.
4. APC 6-Outlet Smart Power Strip with Surge Protection
Who thought you needed a smart power strip? Not me, but here we are! This power strip has 6 power outlets and 2 USB ports, and 3 of the power outlets can be controlled using Alexa voice activation.
Considering you’d be using this in your home theater, this could be a massive advantage, and will also be quite impressive if you have guests round.
The power strip has a 6-foot cord, and the plug is at a right angle, which helps to save on space. Although this power strip has surge protection, it doesn’t have any kind of EMF filtration, although as I mentioned earlier, this isn’t something you necessarily need anyway.
The APC surge protector comes with a lifetime warranty and cover for $150,000 worth of equipment in the event of a failure. This isn’t as much as some other warranties, but should be enough to cover your home theater equipment.
The biggest disadvantage of this power strip is that the smart technology only covers 3 power outlets, which I found quite strange considering the technology has been integrated.
Also, the voice activation is currently only compatible with Alexa, and I wasn’t able to find any information as to whether this is something APC plan to change in the future. However, I don’t know how useful voice-activated power sockets are, but it’s a talking point if it’s nothing else.
5. ECHOGEAR 8-Outlet Power Strip Surge Protector
This power strip has 8 standard power outlets, which all rotate. This is a big advantage if you have several chunky power cables because they can all be fitted to the same power strip.
Considering it’s got room for 8 power outlets, it’s actually quite a slimline device, and will hide away quite nicely in a home theater.
What’s more, it has an 8-foot power cable of its own, which gives you plenty of flexibility with placement. However, the cable isn’t retractable, so you might end up with all that spare cable lying around on the floor.
Also, it doesn’t have an option to wall mount, so it’ll have to sit on the floor. Hopefully you’ll just be able to hide it behind a TV stand.
The surge protection covers you up to 2160 joules, which is one of the highest ratings available, so you can feel confident that all of your devices are going to be protected.
It also comes with a 5-year warranty that covers your equipment up to a value of $25,000. Although this warranty isn’t as long as some others on the list, 5 years is good coverage, and you might very well buy another one within that time anyway.
The biggest disadvantage of this power strip is that it only offers standard power outlets, and also doesn’t offer any kind of noticeable EMF filtration.
However, considering this is on the lower end of the budget scale, you could do a lot worse for protecting your home theater devices.
6. HOLSEM Surge Protector 12-Outlet Power Strip with 3 Smart USB Ports
This power strip is actually one of my favorite surge protectors for using in a home theater. Why? Simply because it does a great job, and is very good value for money.
It has 12 power outlets, with 6 that are spaced quite far apart to accommodate larger power cables. This is a big help with home theater equipment, and just means you can be more flexible with which devices you plug in.
It also has 3 USB ports, 2 of which are smart and so offer 5V/1.3A power. All power outlets are protected with surge protection of 1875W, which is quite high. It also offers good EMF filtration, which while this isn’t completely necessary, is still helpful to have.
The surge protector has a 6-foot power cable, which should be long enough to cover most people’s needs. However, the disadvantage again is that you don’t have the option to retract this cable, but this is me picking holes in an otherwise excellent power strip.
Another big advantage of this power strip is that it’s made with flame retardant materials, which are suitable for temperatures up to 1380 degrees Fahrenheit.
Obviously you don’t want your devices to catch fire, but at least knowing you have this extra level of protection means you know you’re covered.
The power strip also comes with a 2-year warranty, although it doesn’t come with device protection cover. However, you can’t always expect this from the more budget options, and you should expect to spend a bit more money if this is something you want.
7. Pyle 19-Outlet Power Distribution Supply Center
This power strip has an incredible 19 power outlets! 3 of these are widely spaced along the front of the power strip, and the remaining 16 are all flexible outlets along the back of the device.
I’d be amazed if you had enough devices in your home theater to need all 19, but at least you’ll have spares for if you need to charge multiple phones (and a few other devices).
The power strip also comes with USB integration, although this is in the form of a single USB port. This might be fine for when you’re alone, but you might need more if you plan on charging multiple phones at once. However, you could realistically overcome this by buying a separate USB hub and plugging that in.
The power strip comes with surge protection, but doesn’t offer any kind of EMF filtration. Considering this one is on the higher end of the price scale, it doesn’t come with as much functionality as you might expect from an expensive device.
It seems most of the money goes on the fact that you’ll have 19 power outlets at your disposal. However, if you know for a fact that this will be too many, then spend your money elsewhere. You’ll inevitably be able to find one more suitable to your home theater needs.
The power strip has its own 15-foot cable, which can be a massive advantage for larger home theater rooms. It also comes with its own circuit breaker, although it isn’t fitted with individual fuses for all the power outlets.
Overall, this is an impressive piece of kit, but will probably be a waste of money in all but a few specific home theater circumstances.
8. CyberPower CPS1215RMS 12-Outlet Power Strip with Surge Protection
This is quite a rugged power strip, and is made with metal casing, rather than the industry standard of plastic. This means it’ll last longer than many others on this list, but does only come with a 3-year warranty.
It also doesn’t come with any kind of device cover, so bear this in mind if that’s something you’re looking for in your home theater power strip.
The power strip has a total of 12 outlets, 6 of which are nicely spaced to accommodate larger power cables. It offers 1800 joules of surge protection, which is enough, but could be higher.
Also, it does offer EMF filtration but it’s not as capable as some others, which is a bit of a shame considering the price tag attached.
One of the biggest advantages of this surge protector is its design, as it follows a rackbar design, rather than the standard power strip. This just makes it much easier to plug devices in, and means the whole thing sits quite stably when in use.
However, the major disadvantage is the lack of other outlet sockets, such as USB or COAX. This sort of thing can be very useful in home theaters, although most devices will need standard power outlets. Just consider this if you’re looking for flexibility with your power strip.
9. APC H15BLK 12-Outlet H-Type Power Conditioner
This is one of the few power strips specifically designed for home theater use. It also comes from a trusted brand in the home theater industry, and so you know it’s going to do exactly what you want it to.
It has a range of different power outlets that are labeled for different devices, although I don’t see anything wrong with plugging in whatever you need.
Another big advantage is that it comes with modem and antenna protection, so you can cover all your devices that will make up your home theater.
Similarly, it comes with its own screen that allows you to check and monitor power levels, and adjust various settings. This is something none others on this list have, and can be useful if you like having total control over your system.
It has 12 power outlets, which are well spaced to accommodate large power cables. 12 should be more than enough to cover all your devices, particularly with the other outlet options you have.
Unfortunately, considering it’s got a diverse range of power outlets, it doesn’t actually have any USB ports. It offers great surge protection though, and power conditioning. Although it is a much higher price point than others on this list, the extra money is worth it for the flexibility the device offers.
Read my article on power conditioners and their importance for home theaters.
Choosing the right surge protector for your home theater should be as important as any other electronic device. It should offer the right levels of surge protection, and should be suitable for the main devices you expect to find in a home theater.
Although this list isn’t exhaustive by any means, it should hopefully give you an idea of what’s available, and should get you started on your search.