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I've been doing some research into my first computer build and have come to a cross-roads when choosing my CPU fan.

I have been told of various bearing types such as ball, sleeve, rifle, magnetic and fluid.

I'm sure there's no outright winner from any of these fan types (Because every rule has its exceptions). I'm looking for the type that tends to be most reliable as well the quietest.

I'm aware that this may come across as an opinion-based question. If answers could possibly give examples of past experience or even records of comparisons between different types(both noise and reliability) I think that would avoid that problem.

Any input is much appreciated, thanks!

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

Ball bearing, to be more precise, two-ball bearing fans are by far the most reliable.

Life expectancy in average is 95,000 hours at 25C or 55,000 at 60C, compared to sleeve bearings 80,000 hours at 25C or 30,000 at 60C for top models. But ball bearing is probably the noisiest of all. But noise effect is not strictly proportional to bearing type.

Aerodynamics and the fin design are of huge influence on noise. So instead of looking for the bearing type, it is better to look at some fan tests and choose the CPU fan that best suits your needs.

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Just learned about two other types on Newegg. Do you anything about HYPRO and Long life bearing types? Long life sounds like a cheap trick of you ask me. –  Robert English Oct 7 '13 at 23:00
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HYPRO by Adda (HY for "Hydro-dynamic wave" and PRO for "Oil protection system") is just one of sleeve bearing variants. Others are Hydro Wave by Panaflo (Panasonic, and now part of NMB), Sintec by EBM/Papst, and the latest, Fluid Dynamic by Sony (according to Jaro Thermal's promotional comparison, FB is the most advanced and best performing of all fan bearings. –  Nikola Dimitrijevic Oct 7 '13 at 23:53
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Thanks for that. This was very helpful. I'll upvote when I can :) –  Robert English Oct 9 '13 at 11:14
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