AMD Exec Burns Nvidia Over Melting Connectors

AMD's dual 8-pin connectors.
(Image credit: AMD)

If you're spending any time on what's left of Twitter these days, you know there's still nothing as entertaining as a good subtweet. On the social media platform, Sasa Marinkovic, AMD's senior director of gaming marketing, lobbed an intensely subtle insult at Nvidia over melting 16-pin connectors on the RTX 4090.

"Stay safe this holiday season," Marinkovic wrote, tagging the Radeon account and showing a photo of the dual 8-pin connectors on AMD's upcoming RX Radeon 7900 XTX and 7900 XT graphics cards.

Tweet that reads "Stay safe this holiday season. @amdradeon" and shows AMD's dual 8-pin connectors.

(Image credit: AMD / Sasa Marinkovic / Twitter)

This highlights that AMD has chosen to stick with the widely-used 8-pin standard, which it also made a big deal about while announcing the cards. On stage, Scott Herkelman, Radeon vice president and general manager, also teased Nvidia about the connectors and the fact that the RTX 4090 won't fit in most standard PC cases.

"There's no need to rebuild your PC, no need to upgrade your case and there's no need for a new power adapter," Herkelman said. (You can see it at the 22:06 mark in the embedded video below).

As of this writing, we've seen fewer than 30 samples of Nvidia's new adapter and connector melting, but it's caused serious concern in the enthusiast community. After all, people who buy $1,599 flagship graphics cards want them to be safe.

AMD has been taking a bit of an early victory lap; the RX 7900 XT and RX 7900 XTX don't release until December 13. The more powerful XTX card will start at $999, while the XT will launch at $899. Many in the enthusiast community have celebrated that the cards are far cheaper than Nvidia's top-end cards (the RTX 4090's MSRP is $1,499, while the newly released RTX 4080 starts at $1,199), though it's not like AMD isn't also significantly raising prices generation-over-generation.

We've tested the RTX 4090 and RTX 4080, but with the new Radeons releasing in December, we haven't seen how they run. But AMD is talking a big game, and seems to be relishing it.

Andrew E. Freedman is a senior editor at Tom's Hardware focusing on laptops, desktops and gaming. He also keeps up with the latest news. A lover of all things gaming and tech, his previous work has shown up in Tom's Guide, Laptop Mag, Kotaku, PCMag and Complex, among others. Follow him on Twitter: @FreedmanAE

  • Jake Hall
    Ha! That's great
    Reply
  • PlaneInTheSky
    It's not even a joking matter. Where are regulators on this. You have cables melting on a electric appliance consuming 300 watt. How is there no forced recall yet.
    Reply
  • gggplaya
    PlaneInTheSky said:
    It's not even a joking matter. Where are regulators on this. You have cables melting on a electric appliance consuming 300 watt. How is there no forced recall yet.

    It's funny until someone gets hurt, relax.

    Yes, there should be a stop use notice sent out and a recall effort to replace the problem connector with a new solution.
    Reply
  • thently
    This has been solved as user error not directly an issue with plug.. I do understand that this issue has not happened in the past so there is something to be said about that but give this a look.
    ig2px7ofKhQView: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ig2px7ofKhQ
    I myself would not be worried about the plug at all but would be very careful about making sure it is plugged in all the way.
    Reply
  • eklipz330
    it's releasing a week before christmas, there will be no inventory of the new amd cards for months.
    Reply
  • dwn2brasstacks
    "If you're spending any time on what's left of Twitter these days..."
    Nice backhanded slap... Twitter was literally a heavy handed one-sided echo chamber for the blue that now actually stands for free speech. I would think a journalist would appreciate the improvement. Color me surprised. Twitter is actually being made to be profitable when it was a ridiculous luxury sweet for people abusing the system and causing it to be unprofitable. Good riddance.

    As for the dodgy power connector...yeah, they should have stuck with the 8-pins. EVGA was right to backlash and GTFO. Having said that, NVIDIA has had amaizing products, everyone screws up. As long as they take ownership and correct it, no hard feelings. It does indeed seem to be a very limited number of cases where people bent the cable out of spec, but the 8 pins are very superior in every way except they take up a bit more space. Oof.
    Reply
  • PEnns
    "There's no need to rebuild your PC, no need to upgrade your case and there's no need for a new power adapter "

    And you don't need to have the Fire Dept on speed dial!!
    Meanwhile, nGreedia and its shills are still blaming the users instead of their shoddy workmanship!!
    Reply
  • thently
    The Plug was created by PCI-SIG not NVidia they are for sure having the early adopter tax here but it is getting a little old seeing people blame Nvidia for this issue alone. If you were a company and are told by the governing body this is the new PCI-E 5 plug and then said company uses it who is to blame here.. I can concede maybe Nvidia could have tested more stringently but from their stand point they are most likely thinking if these people plugged in their cables right we could just move on...
    Reply
  • -Fran-
    Now we just need nVidia to tweet "this is fine".

    Regards xD
    Reply
  • JarredWaltonGPU
    thently said:
    This has been solved as user error not directly an issue with plug.. I do understand that this issue has not happened in the past so there is something to be said about that but give this a look.
    ig2px7ofKhQView: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ig2px7ofKhQ
    I myself would not be worried about the plug at all but would be very careful about making sure it is plugged in all the way.
    Look! Steve caused an adapter to melt... by not plugging it in correctly! That must be the only possible explanation as to what's going on, right? Seriously, for all his "fact" talk, the reality is that we still don't have a clear answer on what is causing problems — and more importantly, we don't have a guaranteed solution. His rant on responsible reporting rings a bit hollow, considering he himself has been a major part of the theorycrafting that's taken place. Also, even though he mentioned FOD (foreign object debris) as a factor, like Igor, he has no actual proof that FOD caused any of the failures — he hasn't replicated that; he just showed that FOD is present and then jumped to a conclusion. Anyway, GN spent a LOT of money to make these videos, but it's not like he can actually solve the problem — that's up to Nvidia and its partners. The videos were done to increase his street cred and to get lots of views, while officially providing no answer whatsoever.
    thently said:
    The Plug was created by PCI-SIG not NVidia they are for sure having the early adopter tax here but it is getting a little old seeing people blame Nvidia for this issue alone. If you were a company and are told by the governing body this is the new PCI-E 5 plug and then said company uses it who is to blame here.. I can concede maybe Nvidia could have tested more stringently but from their stand point they are most likely thinking if these dumbasses plugged in their cables right we could just move on...
    Not quite! The connector was created by PCI-SIG at the behest of Nvidia. That's important to remember. On its own, PCI-SIG almost certainly wouldn't have made this connector. Nvidia even pre-empted PCI-SIG's version with the 12-pin connector two years ago. It's exactly the same, but without the sense pins — and funny enough might actually be safer, as there's reason to suppose the extra four sense pins are part of what's potentially causing people to incorrectly install the connector. If the true root cause is user error — not proved yet, but possible — then it indicates a faulty design. People haven't been experiencing melting 8-pin and 12-pin connectors, so what changed that's causing problems now?

    I'm also still quite concerned with connector longevity, as someone who swaps GPUs in my test beds often multiple times per day. For that reason, I have to use the adapters! Because if I didn't, I'd need a native 16-pin connector (I have one), and then I'd be plugging that in and unplugging it likely more than 500 times in a year. The 12-pin and 16-pin connectors just won't last under that sort of use, while history shows the 8-pin connectors, being larger and more robust, can manage just fine.
    Reply