I think the protection is probably comperable. Just a matter of preference. What time period is your kit?
For the elbow, I like neither, although my arms have very small fans at present. I just don't think they are needed for elbows if you have a decent shaped cop, and they can get in the way if they don't fit right. But I'm funny about my knees. I want an articulated knee with a fan. I love the look of the early 14th cent kits, but I don't like simple knee cops. I don't feel like it is enough protection for me. _________________ First authorized: 1996 - 2000
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I would guess a well-shaped fan might come in a little ahead of a rondel, and I could worry a rondel would catch more stuff as it has an edge all around, but - yeah - it's 90% stylistic. If you get a fan on your elbow, you might want it to be shaped so that it curves into the joint like some of the later examples do and then it can protect more and catch less.
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