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HomeNewsNew test shows loose RTX 4090 power connectors cause overheating and melting

New test shows loose RTX 4090 power connectors cause overheating and melting

Nvidia's RTX 4090.
Enlarge / Nvidia’s RTX 4090.

Sam Machkovech

A couple of weeks in the past, some early adopters of Nvidia’s new flagship RTX 4090 GPU started reporting that the playing cards’ power connectors have been overheating and melting their plastic casing, typically inflicting injury to the outrageously quick and costly GPUs.

For Nvidia’s half, the corporate continues to be wanting into the failures. “We proceed to research the reviews, nonetheless we do not have additional particulars to share but,” based on an Nvidia rep speaking to KitGuru earlier this week. However the YouTubers on the Avid gamers Nexus channel have been conducting their very own in-depth analysis, and briefly, they consider that the issues are largely being attributable to improperly seated power connectors. “International-object particles” contained in the connector can even cause issues, however Avid gamers Nexus believes this type of injury is far rarer.

The failure that Avid gamers Nexus was capable of re-create in its labs concerned connecting the 12VHPWR power connector to an RTX 4090 with out inserting it absolutely and then bending the cable to 1 facet, making the connection even worse. After just some minutes of testing, the loose connection’s excessive power resistance generated warmth above 250° Celsius, inflicting smoke and seen effervescent because the connector melted in its socket.

A still from Gamers Nexus' testing video. A visibly loose connection combined with a cable bent at a harsh angle caused rapidly increasing temperatures and, eventually, smoking and melting.
Enlarge / A nonetheless from Avid gamers Nexus’ testing video. A visibly loose connection mixed with a cable bent at a harsh angle brought about quickly rising temperatures and, ultimately, smoking and melting.

Avid gamers Nexus describes the issue as “a mixture of consumer error and design oversight.” That’s, the cables are melting as a result of they have not been inserted all the best way. However the lack of a tactile “click on” sound or a extra sturdy retention mechanism makes this type of error extra seemingly with the 12VHPWR connector than with the older 6- and 8-pin PCIe power connectors. The scale of the 4090 and 4080 playing cards can also be exacerbating issues. The playing cards may be tight matches even in comparatively roomy ATX PC instances—it’s possible you’ll have to bend the cable a technique or one other to get your case to shut again up, and this type of bending can cause the loose connection that contributed to overheating and melting in Avid gamers Nexus’ testing.

Notably, the failures can have an effect on any cable or adapter utilizing the 12VHPWR connector—this goes for each sorts of adapters that Nvidia and its companions have been utilizing for 4090s up to now, in addition to “native” 12VHPWR cables that run on to a power provide with no adapter in between. Earlier evaluation steered that adapters from a selected producer could possibly be extra failure-prone than others, however Avid gamers Nexus did not discover that it made a distinction. This additionally means, presumably, that 12VHPWR adapters transport with the RTX 4080 playing cards may have the identical points, too.

For now, the very best factor you are able to do is make completely certain that your power connector is firmly seated—whether it is, it is best to be capable of yank on it fairly firmly with out really pulling it out (we have been capable of test this firsthand). You must also watch out to keep away from any type of harsh bending of the power cable in any path. We’ll preserve a watch out for an official assertion from Nvidia, to see if it has additional suggestions or plans for any type of recall or alternative for affected playing cards.

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