Originally Posted by ng2951
While you don't absolutely need a inverter type generator you electrical appliances will definitely run better on them. This also means they will last longer too.
The contractor style generators do not regulate frequency or amplitude very well. Regulating amplitude (voltage) and frequency gets expensive.
These contractor gensets set their frequency from the revs the engine turns. So when you need more power the engine revs up, so the voltage goes up as does the frequency of the voltage.
This is just fine for basic lighting, fans, and a variety of power tools (why they call them contractor grade). The pickier the appliance, the less suitable these gensets are.
The inverter type generators are DC powered devices. The generator supplies DC power to the internal inverter. The inverter is smart enough to correct for load and frequency. When the load increases, the DC generator ramps up to meet demand and everything stays stable.
Good clean power keeps devices running well for a very long time. The mainframe computers on the cleanest power have the best MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures) of all the mainframes I have kept running.
Another thing to point out is you can get by with a smaller inverter genset than a contractor's grade one. I know I could run my old trailer on a Yamaha 2400IS no problem. However, the old 3KW contractor genset never could handle the AC. When I hooked up to 4KW unit it worked just fine.
Well, I agree with the majority of what you say; if you can
afford the inverter type, get it.
But I don't think that we should make the blanket assumption
that all electronic gear will be harmed by contractor type;
that is simply false. As one example I have been tent camping
with a Champion type (contractor) genset for years and using
it with my notebook extensively. No harm at all.
Why is that? Well many modern electronics - like my notebook -
have "brick" type power supplies that work just like an
inverter genset. That is, they take an AC input with a wide
range of voltages and frequencies (think US and Europe),
convert it to DC, turn that back to very high frequency AC,
pass it thru high frequency Xformer to make low voltage AC,
then rectify and regulate that......
The input can vary greatly and the output will be rock stable.
Many modern devices use these supplies instead on the old
linear type for this reason as well as, size, weight, and cost
There are so many different type electronic devices that
a blanket statement is just not appropriate. If you know
the type of devices that you will use, that may, or may not,
dictate which type of genset is appropriate for your usage.....