Nvidia Calls for Melted 4090 Cards to Be Returned for Analysis

The RTX 4090 card from Nvidia
(Image credit: Nvidia)

Nvidia is calling for all partner-manufactured GeForce RTX 4090 (opens in new tab) boards affected by the melting power plug problem (opens in new tab) we’re definitely not calling ‘connectorgate’ to be gathered up and returned to HQ. According to a post on Igor’s Lab (opens in new tab), a briefing was sent to all AIB partners this morning (27th) that the cards should be shipped back home for analysis, though it’s not clear if they’re being sent to Nvidia or the AIB manufacturer’s nerve center.

Melted GPU power connectors

(Image credit: reggie_gakil on Reddit)

Recent days have seen a procession of unlucky owners of the best graphics card (opens in new tab) currently available discovering their 16-pin 12VHPWR power connector, which bridges the gap between the card and four eight-pin power feeds from an ATX 3.0 power supply, and delivers up to 600W of juice, had partially melted. One Gigabyte card owner who posted on Reddit (opens in new tab) has received a replacement card, with his thermally compromised GPU being sent back to Nvidia for inspection.

The cause of the heat-based unpleasantness is yet to be discovered, and hypotheses include bending the connector at too tight an angle, the wires inside being too close together, or simple bad soldering (not a user serviceable task, even with the best soldering irons). Igor’s Lab certainly believes the problem lies in the adapters’ internal soldering. Still, whatever the reason, it does not appear to have spread past the Nvidia-branded adapter supplied with the cards, which is manufactured by a third-party specialist company.

Nvidia has yet to make an official statement on the matter beyond that it is investigating the reports. While there's not yet a recall of the power connectors, or indeed the cards themselves, such an issue with the trailblazing premium launch card for a whole new generation (opens in new tab) of GPUs must be embarrassing for Nvidia, so it’s good to see the beginnings of a robust response here, if the report is accurate.

Ian Evenden
Freelance News Writer

Ian Evenden is a UK-based news writer for Tom’s Hardware US. He’ll write about anything, but stories about Raspberry Pi and DIY robots seem to find their way to him.

  • TechieTwo
    What a cluster for consumers. You'd think extra attention would have been paid to the design and production of the adapters knowing the power load they would be handling.
    Reply
  • jkflipflop98
    Sure thing. . . but I'm going to need two new ones in return.
    Reply
  • peachpuff
    jkflipflop98 said:
    Sure thing. . . but I'm going to need two new ones in return.
    And a signed leather jacket from jensen himself!
    Reply
  • YouFilthyHippo
    Just wait until NVidia has to buy customers a new house because of this
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    If you are going to send 50A down a bunch of #16 wires and tiny pins, you'd better have some form of active per-pin current balancing (ex.: 3-4 Vcore phases hard-wired to each individual socket pin) to make sure all pins and wires are contributing roughly equal current under all circumstances and that any excess droop on any pin which would indicate a bad wire or connection gets reported to the user so it can be fixed.

    YouFilthyHippo said:
    Just wait until NVidia has to buy customers a new house because of this
    As long as Nvidia can demonstrate that its own GPUs and adapters are made of materials that meet the 94V-0 standard (self-extinguishing materials) then Nvidia's own liability may not extend much beyond components directly damaged by the GPU and cable before they could put themselves out.
    Reply
  • Exploding PSU
    peachpuff said:
    And a signed leather jacket from jensen himself!

    Where do I sign up!?

    ON a more serious note, after watching and reading some stuff that claims the reason why this happen is in part due to the connector being bent, I just realized how bent the cables that connect to my GPU are. Man, those cables are rock solid, it's a miracle I haven't lit my PC on fire all these years.
    Reply
  • Sleepy_Hollowed
    Ooof.

    people sold on this might want to buy cases for the card, which adds to the cost.
    Reply
  • YouFilthyHippo
    InvalidError said:
    If you are going to send 50A down a bunch of #16 wires and tiny pins, you'd better have some form of active per-pin current balancing (ex.: 3-4 Vcore phases hard-wired to each individual socket pin) to make sure all pins and wires are contributing roughly equal current under all circumstances and that any excess droop on any pin which would indicate a bad wire or connection gets reported to the user so it can be fixed.


    As long as Nvidia can demonstrate that its own GPUs and adapters are made of materials that meet the 94V-0 standard (self-extinguishing materials) then Nvidia's own liability may not extend much beyond components directly damaged by the GPU and cable before they could put themselves out.

    At the very least there will be a class action lawsuit, unless the recall happens soon. The recall is coming. Its only a matter of when. I give it a couple of months, max. AMD is going to have a field day with this dumpster fire at their keynote. "Don't worry gamers, you will never have to worry about your GPU catching fire". Shots fired!!!!
    Reply
  • daworstplaya
    This really does open the door for AMD to swoop in with their no fire hazard GPUs.
    Reply
  • helper800
    YouFilthyHippo said:
    At the very least there will be a class action lawsuit, unless the recall happens soon. The recall is coming. Its only a matter of when. I give it a couple of months, max. AMD is going to have a field day with this dumpster fire at their keynote. "Don't worry gamers, you will never have to worry about your GPU catching fire". Shots fired!!!!
    I wouldn't go as far as you did with the language used, however, no matter the merit people of my ilk (Citizens of the USA) are famously litigious. You see people sue companies for significantly less. I would not doubt a lawsuit in the future if enough people are impacted by this issue.
    Reply