The Argument Over Stable Cap

I was in Rookie Chat when an argument broke out between two players over the benefits (if any) of ensuring a stable cap.

Even though I joined EVE Online yesterday I like to think I learned something while doing the career agent missions, so my position on capacitor sustainment depends on whether it is more important to hang in a firefight longer or to quickly dispatch an enemy.

I admit I sitll have much to learn and would appreciate input from those who have played this game far longer than I have on this topic.

1 Like

Empty Cap can be a nuisance or even deadly, even in PvE.
All active modules stop working, which includes hybrid guns, launchers and lasers. So the more active modules you rely on, the more cap stable your setup should be.
Fitting an MWD already costs cap without activation, just as a hint.
But of course a ship can fly and fight without cap, so you need to get a feeling for what you think is ok.

1 Like

Firstly, and most importantly, Welcome to New Eden.

And that neatly sums up the debate. Missions tend to be long engagements, so you want more capacitor resilience than in a short capsuleer v capsuleer fight where the battle tends to be short and violent.

Generally, and this is my personal opinion, cap stability is over rated. For missions you need enough to keep you going long enough to reduce the incoming damage to a manageable level. You aren’t going to run an afterburner, and a repairer/booster, and a weapon system all at the same time - you’ll use what you need and turn the rest off when you don’t need it. Keeping hardeners and a few other bits in business is important, but you don’t need everything on at once.
It’s an embuggerance if your weapon system depends heavily on capacitor (energy turrets, I’m looking at you), which is why drones and missiles are popular for missions - that and you can select damage type for the target you are dealing with.

In combat with another player then you’ll more likely want Cap Boosters loaded with charges to give you an injection of capacitor when you need it - especially if you opponent is using a Neut against you. The capacitor demands, and external pressures, make a stable fit almost impossible. And, anyway, why have a capacitor that can last for an hour when you, or your opponent, will be dead in thirty seconds?
Capacitor Warfare is a thing as well: deliberately targeting the enemy’s capacitor to leave them dead in the water while you slowly grind them down.

I generally fly Amarrian ships - so Capacitor is something close to my heart that boils away very quickly.

One other thing of note - the speed the capacitor recharges isn’t uniform: it peaks at around 25-30% and falls off quite quickly below that. It is possible to just fall below that point and get to a stage of “the more you use the worse the recharge becomes” without realising it - and that is painful when running a mission. Get down to an empty capacitor and that first bit of recharge is very slow to recover from.

You’ve just opened a bag of worms on a complex subject - and one where everyone will have their own preferences and opinions. Good luck.


Cap stability is usually overrated and overkill.

Unless you are sure you need to be running all your modules 100% of the time for dozens of minutes at a time, equipping capacitor modules to get to that point are module slots and resources that could maybe have been used for other purposes like more damage or more survivability.

An exception is when you expect energy neutralizer pressure, then you may want your ship to be cap-stable or even cap stable at a high % so that you can keep your modules running even when drained of capacitor, but even then you don’t want to go overboard.

Any module towards cap stability is a module that isn’t used for other useful things. So while capacitor modules can be really useful, don’t overdo it. The best amount of capacitor you can have is ‘just enough to do everything you need’.

For rookies cap-stability is usually nice as it means they can ignore capacitor management and focus their attention on the other aspects of the game.


General rule i teach is be capacitor stable when in combat.

This means no prop-mods, tractor, salvager, ecm, basically everything not effecting you weapons is off.
All these items are normal short-run items, where weapons tend to be running 100% of the time in combat.

Anyone doing capacitor stable with everything on is just shooting themselves in the foot. As to get this they are wasting modules that could be used for tank*(speed/buffer/resistance)* or weapon efficiency.


Yeah. I try to think up something else if I have to install a power, CPU, or cap module. Except for, maybe, a power diagnostic. It’s little bump in ehp fools me.

1 Like

Cap stability if you’re too forgetful to turn off modules specially the microwarpdrive.

1 Like


To keep this kind of summary so as to not get lost in the weeds, there are several different types of fits that require different priorities.

A PVE(missioning) fit is mostly about doing an activity for a sustained period of time. Cap stability is a factor when building a mission/site boat(but not paramount, will touch on later, and other people have as well).

A solo or small gang PVP fit is usually about getting as much performance as you can out of your ship for a short period of time, usually a few minutes. Usually these fits absolutely depend on consuming cap boosters almost as fast as they can.

A ‘fleet’ PVP fit tends to strike a balance between the two. Large PVP engagements can go on for very long periods of time, but usually within those your ship is only ever required to use max capacitor for short periods of time, with a sustainable level of cap usage occupying the rest of the engagement.

And then there are some other fits in there that don’t exactly fit in any of those general categories, such as hacking or mining vessels which may go LONG periods of time without having to use a ton of their capacitor, or have long periods of low usage, and then have very short periods where they have to use A LOT of capacitor to survive, before returning back to low usage.

I don’t see any kills or losses for you on zkill, so I’m going to assume this was in regards to PVE, and probably more towards mission/sites, as that tends to be where this conversation usually goes. So, generally, when I’ve been working with newbros in the past - and from my own newbro days - learning how to make functional, cap stable fits, to start is what I’d recommend. This ensures that most missions won’t be able to cap you out(excepting neut pressure from mission rats as mentioned above), and allows you to pay more attention to learning the mission and seeing if your reps are holding rather than trying to learn the mission/site, managing your reps, and then suddenly your cap isn’t recovering because you’re well below peak recharge. Once you’ve got that down and are comfortable with the missions/sites you’re running, cap stability is far less important. You may know that there’s one section of a site that pressures your ship, but the rest is fairly easy. Learning that, you may also know then that you can afford to trade a little bit of stability for a bit more damage to get through the mission/site faster, and then just have to manage your ship for that one section.

I used to, way, way back when, run a non-stable HAM-Tengu for L4’s in HS. It was the old dual small shield booster fit that several of the peeps around here will remember being a thing. For most of those missions, I only ever had to run one of the small boosters and the AB because the Tengu sig tanked a lot of the damage. For those few sections where I had to run the other rep, I could either run it long enough to get through the burst of damage, or else run it long enough to AB back out of the pressure and chew down a few more ships of damage. After the marauder rebalance, my vargur was very cap unstable. The reason for that being that with the resist and repair of the vargur, I only had to pulse my shield booster once every 30 seconds or so. I was absolutely NOT running my ship anywhere near as aggressively as the fitting tool assumes, so had no problem keeping capacitor. Not spending nearly so much of my fits on either of these ships toward cap stability allows for more damage or application modules, which helps chew through missions faster, which means more LP, and the cycle continues.

But I’d never suggest to START with a badly cap imbalanced ship for PVE, until you have an idea of what ships can handle/not handle. Running cap stable might make you warp out a couple times to recover, but it at least usually lets you save the ship.

Now, ALL that goes out the window if you jump into a PVP fit where the priority is on performance/capability and not stability. Nom cap boosters for most of those, with some exceptions like logistics.


I mean easy mode is dual rep cap stable domi for 4s.

But most you need is usually 10 mins or so.

PvP, cap stability isn’t a thing, you’ll want cap boosters tho,

1 Like

To those who replied (and to those who will reply), I want to thank you for your responses. They were extremely detailed yet easy for a newplayer like me to follow.

I now have a better understanding of not only when capacitor stability is crucial, but also how to control capacitor draw to meet the need of any situation when it happens. :+1:


As someone who once came home from a week-long work trip to see that I had left the burner on the stove on the entire time, this is the main advantage of cap stability to me.

1 Like

So it would be useful to have sensors under burners to turn off the burner if there is no weight sensed after 30 seconds.


Cap reliance has an impact on your engagement profile.

Depends on what you are flying and why are you flying it. For PVP cap booster is almost always better than cap battery. Both likely unnecessary for frigates and destroyers since they shouldn’t expect to survive long enough to run out of cap.


I hope that was not a hit on the utility bill during that week.

Don’t forget my 357 projectiles! No cap needed.

1 Like

Absolutely right and I was amiss to forget them. Sorry.

Well. To be fair, I was just being a smart#ss since I’ve been using a rattlesnake for ages.

This topic was automatically closed 90 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.