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Assessments present the brand new 12V GPU energy cables are secure when not totally linked Categorical Instances

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Why it issues: The 16-pin 12VHPWR energy cables for Nvidia’s latest graphics playing cards have been controversial since customers started reporting melting adapter plugs late final yr. The corporate quietly upgraded to a brand new specification this summer season, and up to date assessments recommend the newest commonplace is considerably safer.

HardwareBusters and energy cable producer Linwell just lately posted constructive security check outcomes for the brand new 12V-2×6 headers that are actually commonplace in Nvidia RTX 4000 graphics playing cards. Customers fearful about burning or melting cables must be notably happy to be taught that the up to date connectors are secure even when improperly connected.

The Peripheral Element Interconnect Particular Curiosity Group (PCI-SIG) launched the brand new specification in July after dozens of RTX 4090 homeowners complained that the GPU’s 16-pin 12VHPWR energy connectors melted or burned after a couple of months. Nvidia’s investigation blamed the issue on customers who did not securely join their cables, however others suspected poorly manufactured adapters. In any case, the graphics card firm switched to the 12V-2×6 revision quickly after its introduction.

HardwareBusters confirmed Linwell – which provides energy cables for Asus {hardware} – testing the brand new commonplace underneath 55 Amps for round quarter-hour. Thermal scanners constantly measured the connector’s temperatures under 46 levels Celsius all through the trial.

Linwell then ran a second check after intentionally bending the cables and improperly connecting them to copy the situations Nvidia suspects broken many RTX 4090s. Nonetheless, the temperature remained under 41 levels, nowhere close to scorching sufficient to burn or soften. HardwareBusters credit the brand new, extra conductive pins with minimizing resistance, even underneath excessive energy masses.

To this point, customers have not reported broken 12V-2×6 plugs, so they seem safer than the unique RTX 4000 collection connectors. Prospects searching for Ada Lovelace GPUs ought to affirm that they’ve the H++ marker on the highest of the ability connector moderately than the outdated H+ identifier.

Customers with legacy fashions who cannot afford to alternate their playing cards ought to change to ATX 3.0 energy provides as an alternative of utilizing adapters to attach 16-pin 12VHPWR plugs into ATX 2.0 PSUs. The newer PSUs could also be costlier, however they’re inexpensive than doubtlessly changing a broken GPU.

In the meantime, AMD’s newest RDNA 3 graphics playing cards do not use 12VHPWR – a distinction the corporate has used to poke enjoyable at Crew Inexperienced. Nonetheless, Asus may get the final chortle because it considers abandoning graphics card energy cables altogether after demonstrating a GPU design that includes a PCIe energy connector that may ship at the least 600W. Cableless RTX 4070 revisions, which require new motherboards, ought to start delivery both late this yr or in early 2024.

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