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Old 02-23-2019, 04:47 PM
corsican corsican is offline
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Question which of those 2 fans has greater LIFESPAN: true fluid dynamic (FDB) or ball-bearing?

suppose we got 2 fans of same size blades design etc.

one is a a true FDB fan

the other's a (double) ball bearing fan

both spin at same constant speed 24/7

which one will kick first?

I ask cause FDB at its core is suppose to be a super-sleeve bearing fan and sleeve-bearing fans are suppose to last much shorter than ball-bearing. does this apply to FDB too? I know FDB lasts a lot longer than reguler sleeve-bearing but how does it compare to the best ball-bearing fans?
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Old 02-24-2019, 07:50 AM
c-attack c-attack is offline
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In theory, the ball bearing fan lasts longer but is louder at the same rpm. There are a lot of names for the sleeve bearing, but it is an attempt to reduce noise, particularly at lower and middle speeds. Like always, a well made example of anything is going to outlast the poorly made “long lasting” model of something else. I have hundreds of fans. I am not sure I have ever worn a bearing down to the point of failure. Most often with these FDB variants the tone becomes coarser and suddenly less desirable somewhere down the road.
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Old 02-24-2019, 11:48 AM
corsican corsican is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c-attack View Post
In theory, the ball bearing fan lasts longer but is louder at the same rpm. There are a lot of names for the sleeve bearing, but it is an attempt to reduce noise, particularly at lower and middle speeds. Like always, a well made example of anything is going to outlast the poorly made “long lasting” model of something else. I have hundreds of fans. I am not sure I have ever worn a bearing down to the point of failure. Most often with these FDB variants the tone becomes coarser and suddenly less desirable somewhere down the road.
ok thx for the info

my Seasonic is a double ball-bearing so I guess can safely keep it running at a minimum speed (plus my 2nd PC has PSU at the top so the PSU must have a constant running fan to exhaust the rising air, zero fan mode could be dangerous if PSU at the top of case)

but my Corsair's an FDB fan :/ I guess I know now why the RMi default fan setting is zero-fan: if the fan were set to custom with a minimum speed say 800rpm minimum then it might not last 10 years with this constant friction

so I guess a zero-fan mode is compulsory for PSU's with any type of sleeve bearing fans even FDB

(fortunately my main PC's a modern case so PSU's at the bottom so zero-fan mode is much better cause heat rises plus I don't want the PSU sucking in dust or who knows what from beneath the case & having to flip the case to clean that filter)


so to summarize:
- PSU with FDB fan should be kept at zero mode & preferably in case with PSU at bottom

- PSU with ball-bearing fan can be kept running in non-zero mode & ideally should be put in case with PSU at top


but why thef won't everyone use double ball-bearing? those are clearly superior from what you said AND they know how to keep them quiet (my seasonic ball bearing doesn't make a sound in hybrid mode @ 40% fan speed can't even hear it it's a Sanyo something)

Last edited by corsican; 02-24-2019 at 11:52 AM.
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Old 02-24-2019, 12:21 PM
c-attack c-attack is offline
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I don't know that I would phrase it like "compulsory". We're talking percentages and probabilities. A ball bearing fan is more likely to last 10 years than a FDB bearing fan. That doesn't mean FDB fan fails at 4.5 years. The last and only PSU I've ever had to RMA was done so on a fan issue. It's ball bearing fan was no longer turning on when it should, at less than 12 months since brand new. All fan types can fail and not necessarily a bearing failure. I would never base my long term behavior around something like a fan bearing. It's too inconsequential given the length of time in discussion.

Why doesn't everyone use ball bearing fans in their PSUs? I know some people who ask that all the time and they prefer the time tested ball bearing design. Lots of cheap, poorly made FDP bearing types on the market and it gives the design a bad reputation. However, the answer is the same why we don't all use ball bearing case fans. The FDB style bearing (and all the other variants as well) generally make less noise. The aforementioned replaced PSU had an "Eco Mode" that was similar to Corsair's control. I loved Eco mode, because the PSU fan was so much louder and different in tone than all my other fans. It could be clearly heard above everything else. My current Seasonic Titanium has a non-controllable zero mode as well. Fortunately, it doesn't need to run very much either, except when I cross the 50%/500W line. It also can be clearly heard when it spins up.

So your question of whether or not to use zero rpm mode should be made on your usage or needs, not fan longevity. If the fans wears out and you are still using it, it can be replaced inexpensively 5-7-10 years down the line or never. I think most people should use it because of the noise reduction benefits and no immediate need for active PSU cooling. When should you not? 1) If your normal usage constantly jumps across the turn on point and thus the fans spins up/down/up/down/up/down. That is annoying. Change the turn on point if you can or set a low fan speed you hopefully can't hear. 2) If this is an unmonitored server or workstation that is going to have a pretty steady stream of activity with a 200-250W or more. If you have a constant load, I am more inclined to use a constant fan.

I think your rationale on the bottom PSU and dust is logical and reason enough. I don't know about the top mount PSU. Even if the case is quite warm, the PSU will force the fan on when it gets to it's temp point. If the case design sets up the PSU as the only source of rear exhaust, then it may have some value.
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Old 02-24-2019, 12:58 PM
corsican corsican is offline
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wasn't the double-ball bearing design meant to solve the single-ball flaws? (even more durable/stable AND more silent almost like FDB)

my seasonic's a double-ball set to hybrid (40% speed minimum) and I can't hear it though it been running for years now 16h a day
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