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Thread: This is what heat does to even the best Japanese caps

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    Default This is what heat does to even the best Japanese caps

    This isn't a PSU, but it's PSU related. I work in IT in a hospital, and I had to replace a computer from late 2004 as part of our Windows 7 migration. Mind you, this computer still works. Slow as heck, but still works. I bring it back to the office to pull the HDD, and I happen to see this.

    Now, the exhaust fan right next to this has long since had the sleeve bearing fail, so there was no airflow over these capacitors. And they are almost touching the CPU Heatsink. And it's a Pentium 4. Yeah, ouch.

    These are also Rubycons, I looked them up. So high quality Japanese caps, + 10 years, + lots of heat. I honestly can't believe this thing still actually booted and ran, I would have expected this to fail years ago with caps like these.

    Anyway, thought people on here would enjoy this.




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    Old MBZ Rubies, eh? Well, they held up as well as they could, I suppose. But you can't touch those Sanyos Fujitsus right next to them... I honestly believe they could stand a blowtorch blast.

    Surprised to see NCC KZE and not KZG on there. Probably a good thing, KZGs from that period would've been goners by now.
    Last edited by McSteel; 03-23-2015 at 10:32 PM. Reason: Led astray by the scoring on the top... Oops.
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    That reminds me of my old Pentium 4 rig:



    That's what you get for using a Codegen :P Not nearly as extreme case, but still.
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    I think those are MCZ, but I could be wrong. Poor things. Didn't stand a chance with that failed fan! It's still working because I'm sure those Fujitsu polymers are still cleaning up the ripple nicely. Thanks for sharing!

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    Note that on modern day motherboards you don't have a row of electrolytic caps right next to the CPU socket. That's just dumb design.
    Last edited by Jon Gerow; 03-23-2015 at 08:05 PM.

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    You have. Just now they are polymer, short and the heatsink mostly hovers over them.

    But you should think about the fact these water-based caps were pushed to the edge, mostly having only 1000 hours lifetime. After so many years, even my heavily custom and BIG Chemi-Con KZN 3300/16V D10×40mm caps only come close in terms of ESR, but still do not surpass those ultra-low ESR caps. With poor cooling, faulty Nichicon HM/HN series and Chemi-Con KZG died quite fast. Rubycon MCZ sometimes followed, otherwise survived around 10 years. I think that is just enough for 1000 hour caps running at 50-70 °C.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Behemot View Post
    You have. Just now they are polymer, short and the heatsink mostly hovers over them.
    My server has electrolytics there (Chemi-con KZG, still fine after all these years), my sister's computer has polymer (Samxon) and my computer has tantalum caps in those spots.

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    About the only really durable ultra-low ESR electrolytic were Panny FJ and FL. It was quite common to see failed Ruby MBZ and MCZ caps in some USFF Dell SX280 PCs (which ran insanely hot and had poor airflow in the chassis). The last time I had to recap one of those PCs, I poly-modded it.
    No wonder it doesn't work! You installed the coils backwards

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    Quote Originally Posted by Behemot View Post
    You have. Just now they are polymer, short and the heatsink mostly hovers over them.

    Yes, but not THAT close. Those guys are right up against the socket. Reminds me of an old PC chips board I had many moons ago. Caps on that board would contact most heatsinks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by McSteel View Post
    Fujitsus right next to them... I honestly believe they could stand a blowtorch blast.
    Actually, those older Fujitsus had some sealage issues where they would take in moisture from the bottom and the ESR would increase until they slightly vented (I believe their equivalent series from the other brands were epoxy sealed and didn't have that issue, IE, Nichicon NA, Chemi-con OS-CON FP, Sanyo OS-CON SP). Not something that occured often but it happened enough for some to deem them unstable. Modern Fujitsus, acqured by Nichicon some 6 years ago, don't have that issue as far as I'm aware.

    Quote Originally Posted by c_hegge View Post
    About the only really durable ultra-low ESR electrolytic were Panny FJ and FL. It was quite common to see failed Ruby MBZ and MCZ caps in some USFF Dell SX280 PCs (which ran insanely hot and had poor airflow in the chassis). The last time I had to recap one of those PCs, I poly-modded it.
    IMO, MBZ handles heat much better than MCZ. I would put MBZ on par with Sanyo/Suncon WG and Panasonic FJ. Panasonic FL definitely has an overall better track record than the likes of Rubycon MCZ, Nichicon HN, Chemi-con KZJ, and Sanyo/Suncon WF, though.

    Quote Originally Posted by cheapie View Post
    My server has electrolytics there (Chemi-con KZG, still fine after all these years), my sister's computer has polymer (Samxon) and my computer has tantalum caps in those spots.
    I take it the KZGs are in the VRM input? They tend to do better in the VRM input than output.

    Quote Originally Posted by Behemot View Post
    You have. Just now they are polymer, short and the heatsink mostly hovers over them.

    But you should think about the fact these water-based caps were pushed to the edge, mostly having only 1000 hours lifetime. After so many years, even my heavily custom and BIG Chemi-Con KZN 3300/16V D10×40mm caps only come close in terms of ESR, but still do not surpass those ultra-low ESR caps. With poor cooling, faulty Nichicon HM/HN series and Chemi-Con KZG died quite fast. Rubycon MCZ sometimes followed, otherwise survived around 10 years. I think that is just enough for 1000 hour caps running at 50-70 °C.
    Those ultra low ESR lytics are usually rated for 2,000 hour load life @ 105*C excepting Panasonic FJ (up to 3,000 hours) and Sanyo WG (up to 4,000 hours). However, I don't think the endurance rating has anything to do with reliability because those aren't wear out tests, and the other reason being that 105*C 1,000 hour GP and 85*C 2,000 hour GP capacitors tend to outlast the really crappy ultra low ESR lytics even in storage (like KZGs). And the 2,000 hour load life low ESR lytics are rated for a much higher ripple rating and lower ESR rating than the higher ESR capacitors so if you were to reduce the ripple current going through the capacitors you'd extend their life anyway. Plus, it isn't about endurance ratings or how many hours the capacitors are rated for, it's about their failure rate. Failure rate means much more than MTBF.

    Quote Originally Posted by KMFDM View Post
    I think those are MCZ, but I could be wrong. Poor things. Didn't stand a chance with that failed fan! It's still working because I'm sure those Fujitsu polymers are still cleaning up the ripple nicely. Thanks for sharing!
    Black and gold PVC sleeves from Rubycon would indicate either the MCZ, MFZ, or MHZ series (MCZ in this case). Blue and gold (from Rubycon) was MBZ. However, Rubycon PET sleeves are silver and black.

    It doesn't appear to me that the MCZs in the picture are actually touching the heatsink, though. I wonder how hot they were getting when the exhaust fan failed. If it was a Prescott, then they definitely overheated. Being fed by a two-phase buck converter definitely doesn't help. If it was a Celeron, I'd guess they had many, many hours on them.
    Last edited by Wester547; 04-20-2015 at 01:11 PM.

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