Fanless PSUs are a good choice if you:
- Do not want to hear PSU fans spinning.
- Want to minimize the potential risk of PSU fan failure.
- Want extraordinary power supply efficiency.
Otherwise, it’s best to stick to standard PSUs as the drawbacks of using a fanless PSU easily outweigh the benefits. Let’s see how.
Advantages of a Fanless PSU
The first advantage of having a fanless PSU is—it reduces the overall noise produced by your PC.
You’ll certainly notice a difference between a fanless PSU and a fan-equipped PSU in this regard.
Secondly, the potential risk of fan failure is hugely minimized.
There’s no way the power supply can intake dust from the exterior if it lacks a fan.
This helps prevent dust buildup inside the PSU that could possibly damage the fan bearings in the long run—the most common problem in standard PSUs.
Apart from that, fanless PSUs also have impressive power supply efficiency.
They are typically available only in 80 PLUS Platinum and Titanium variants that offer up to 95% efficiency.
No wonder! A fanless PSU should obviously have higher efficiency values to ensure minimal heat dissipation.
This contributes towards the least power wastage and eventually, a cut down on your power bill.
If you think these things create value for you, no doubt, go for it.
Drawbacks of a Fanless PSU
Fanless PSUs may not be worthwhile if you own a system with high power requirements. As the power consumption tends upwards to the PSU’s capacity, it starts overheating.
In such a case, active cooling is a must, which is only possible with fans. The passive cooling mechanism in fanless PSUs does not perform that well here.
If you opt for a fanless PSU, just forget about overclocking or running your PSU at full load.
Be Quiet!, one of the dominant players of the fanless PSU industry itself states that there’s a problem using these PSUs with high-end systems. They only work well up to a certain limit and overheat beyond that.
You may cancel out this drawback by keeping an extra wattage headroom. But there’s no advantage to doing it.
Now comes the price. The build quality of the components used in these PSUs makes them more pricey than the standard ones.
Conclusion – Is Fanless PSU Worth It?
In all honesty, I don’t recommend getting a fanless PSU. The cons outweigh the pros for most standard builds.
Even if you’re hoping to build a quiet system, there are better alternatives.
Fan-equipped PSUs from reputed brands can be super-quiet if you get ones with zero-RPM fan mode or hybrid fan mode.
Their fans do not spin unless you are heavy on load and are almost near to silent.
On that note, also be aware that a fanless or quiet PSU alone doesn’t guarantee a completely silent working environment.