Major new CPU launches rarely go without a hitch. Tom’s Hardware has learned that Ryzen motherboards (Socket AM4) could pose a potential problem with some of the announced CPU cooling solutions. This problem is specifically related to the backplates designed to secure the heatsink on the processors.
We’ve discovered that the backplates provided with some major motherboard brands could come with a screw that is too long. The screws reach their safety stop too soon, leaving the spring with too much headroom, and then the pressure of the sink on the CPU is inadequate.
According to our sources, AMD has provided the location of the fastening screws, but not the height of the screw holders. Sinks that use the backplate supplied with the motherboard could pose problems, especially those that have a compatibility kit.
We found that a few large cooling solutions may be impacted, as well as some popular motherboards.
The sinks (heatsink and waterblock) using their own backplates should not pose a problem, however.
In a statement an AMD representative said: “Our cooler works well and we have shared the platform design guide with NDA partners that includes the clamping force required to correctly mount coolers on the AM4 platform.”
This could also amount to some discrepancies in information between AMD and manufacturers, which might be clarified and addressed quickly. If we receive any further information or updates we'll post updates here. Meanwhile, just in case, you’d be wise to make sure that your cooling solution comes with its own backplate.