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RTX 4090 16-Pin Cable Surveys Point out Some Use ‘Underneath Spec’ Wiring

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The Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 energy cable melting difficulty continues to confound. As extra info is dug up and introduced, the image isn’t at all times turning into clearer. The RTX 4090 could also be one of many finest graphics playing cards, but it surely’s in a troublesome spot proper now when it comes to provide, pricing, and whether or not or not the adapters are ‘protected’ for long-term use. We’ll want Nvidia to publish an official assertion concerning the noticed points, as there look like so many variables that even the most important tech websites and video channels have not been in a position to come to any useful conclusions.

For instance, on Saturday we reported on Igor’s Labs’ findings with regard to the underlying components inflicting the 16-pin energy connector melting points. Igor discovered that one among his cables was constructed in such a approach that essential connectors may ‘simply’ fail, and he advised cable makers crimp reasonably than solder the connector joints.

Igor’s reasoning was mainly that soldering is lower than excellent for any connector which may be topic to strain, stress, or pressure. Solder joints created with out due care will be brittle, characteristic air bubbles, or introduce corrosive compounds to the wiring. As a substitute, producers ought to use inherently versatile wiring plus crimped joins, that are mentioned to be extra amenable to flexing. Nevertheless, Igor’s damaging testing of his cable didn’t produce the socket melting difficulty.

Then on Sunday, Steve Burke of Avid gamers Nexus (GN) revealed a video (opens in new tab) on this identical subject. GN sought to do extra intensive testing and tried very onerous to copy the melting socket utilizing a collection of 5 cables from varied sources, three highly effective RTX 4090 graphics playing cards, and operating for a number of hours at inventory and overclocked (>600W) settings. GN even invested in new thermal imaging tools to unravel this drawback. Armed with a quintet of cables, a trio of GPUs, and thermal cameras and probes, the testing started.

In the midst of its investigations, GN peeled again the adhesive strain-relief tape and uncovered the world of the steel cabling / connectors contained in the GPU energy plugs. It did so fastidiously, “with out damaging them.” Burke recalled that Igor’s investigations revealed the facility and floor traces used 150V cabling, nevertheless, with all 5 adapters that GN had, they discovered all used element cables labeled as rated for 300V (14AWG, 105C).

Companions that GN spoke to indicated that the 300V cabling was on spec, which suggests Igor’s cable will need to have been under-spec. The specification requires 300V 14AWG for energy supply, although the 4 ‘sensing wires’ can use a decrease gauge. There have been different variations, for instance the place Igor mentioned that eradicating the sleeve may trigger underlying skinny plate steel to “tear instantly,” no such issues have been noticed at GN. For another essential variations in Igor’s and GN’s cables, examine the diagram beneath.

(Picture credit score: Avid gamers Nexus)

With the extra substantial solder factors, extra evenly distributed energy supply, and 300V rated wires (they’re labeled), GN was unable to breed any overheating points, regardless that they tried varied ‘worst-case’ connector destruction strategies. Under you possibly can see a chart exhibiting that even the worst harm may solely muster an 8C temperature improve across the connector space, and that was with as much as eight hours of steady stress testing.





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