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Power Supply Degredation/Output Loss

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Was in another thread today where the issue of PSUs losing power over time came up. I am well aware that electronic parts (especially electrolytic caps) can degrade over time and become out of spec. However, I'm curious to know if this actually results in a steady and measurable loss in power output over time. By this I mean within the reasonable lifespan of a PSU. Sure, I would expect a 20yr old PSU to lose power, but that's not really relevant. I was unable to find any hard proof of this and I'm wondering if anyone has hard data available or would be willing to continuously measure the output of their PSU over time.
post #2 of 10
Power supply degradation refers to loss of maximum power output. For someone to measure over time they'd need fairly expensive equipment to put accurate fixed loads on a PSU and be able to accurately measure the PSUs ability to deliver power.

Aging happens, how much it will affect a unit likely depends on the units quality in the first place (many good PSUs are overspecced in the first place, many bad ones are underspec). I wouldn't expect a ton of hard data on the matter though.
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post #3 of 10
There isn't a lot of hard data, but it's been established that a quality unit will retain its output capability for years, usually exceeding the warranty period by a notable amount. The only caveat is that capacitor degradation and failure can cause output ripple to increase and possibly exceed ATX specs. With Japanese capacitors this will take 5-10 years, depending on the exact series used and a few other factors. Mid-range caps like OST, SamXon, and Teapo may last 3-7 years. Cheap garbage like Canicon or Fuhjyyu may fail after 6 - 36 months.


Aside from the capacitors, the other components don't degrade extremely quickly unless continuously pushed at high capacity. And that doesn't just mean having a high-end computer, than means having a high end computer and using it to its max capabilities all the time, like with near-24/7 folding/bitmining/gaming/benching, with little downtime.

A high quality PSU that has Japanese capacitors (and has them replaced every ten years) could conceivably last twenty years with light to moderate usage and still be able to provide its rated output or close to it.
post #4 of 10
Electrolytic capacitors degrade faster when hot than when cold for any given load. I'm unsure whether or not heat has anywhere near as significant an effect on the lifespan of other kinds of caps or not. But certainly keeping the insides of your PSU cool will lengthen the lifespan of it.
    
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post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phaedrus2129;13296248 
Aside from the capacitors, the other components don't degrade extremely quickly unless continuously pushed at high capacity. And that doesn't just mean having a high-end computer, than means having a high end computer and using it to its max capabilities all the time, like with near-24/7 folding/bitmining/gaming/benching, with little downtime.

A high quality PSU that has Japanese capacitors (and has them replaced every ten years) could conceivably last twenty years with light to moderate usage and still be able to provide its rated output or close to it.

I was also under this same impression. I see audio amplifiers lasting decades (granted it's not the same thing, but comparable in ways electronically) - it would make sense that they should last quite a while under normal use. I was interested in seeing if there were any stories of people who had seen significant output loss - one that would, say, render a video card unusable. I'm actually surprised there aren't more concrete numbers on this frown.gif
post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phaedrus2129;13296248 
With Japanese capacitors this will take 5-10 years, depending on the exact series used and a few other factors. Mid-range caps like OST, SamXon, and Teapo may last 3-7 years. Cheap garbage like Canicon or Fuhjyyu may fail after 6 - 36 months.


I find it abhorrent that you'd put SamXon capacitors in the same league with the infamous Teapo's mad.gif
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post #7 of 10
There are various ranges of Teapo caps, the infamous failing ones were their lowest cost range I believe (or were made with a bad chemical mix), they make better ones, especially these days.
    
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post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by ()ut[@st;13327983 
I find it abhorrent that you'd put SamXon capacitors in the same league with the infamous Teapo's mad.gif

In PSUs, they're all on a par. Or at least, I have yet to observe any great reliability disparities between them.
post #9 of 10
Okay fair enough... I've replaced many Teapos but never a SamXon (yet), the OEM capacitors failed on Mainboards where the replacements (SamXom / Hitano) continued to operate flawlessly ever since (distributed computing) thumb.gif


I have heard talk of the SamXon GF series giving people some issues but I guess that would be comparable to the Nichicon's HM(M) series, I wont use either...
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post #10 of 10
Consider that the Teapos used in PSUs are usually 105C, high-capacitance, 10-25V, tall&narrow electrolytics (Teapo is rarely used for primary caps, usually secondary side only). What do they use on motherboards?

Probably just differences in quality between series.
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