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Even older RTX 4090s aren’t safe from melting connector

A melted connector on the Nvidia RTX 4090.
u/Byogore / Reddit

It’s no news that the power connector on one of Nvidia’s best graphics cards may sometimes melt, and yet, this is still new. Typically, the 12VHPWR connector found in the RTX 4090 would either melt quickly or not at all. Bad news for those who thought they were out of the woods and safe from the problem — it appears that the RTX 4090 can still melt after a year of usage.

Will the saga of RTX 4090 melting connectors never end? It seems not. When the card was initially launched a year ago, the reports of melting cables at the GPU side started cropping up, but then, slowly died down. Now, however, Byogore on Reddit posted a photo of a melted connector on the PCMR subreddit. After working fine for a year, the user started experiencing issues and noticed that the connector had melted.

Often, these issues have been written off as user error, even though the GPUs that are under warranty normally get replaced. The GPU itself, and the connector, are both enormous, so they’re often hard to fit inside a PC case. This can result in some bending, and that leads to the cable not being properly installed. As a result, under heavy usage, the connector can melt.

Byogore seems to have been aware of the issues surrounding the RTX 4090 because they say they made sure that the cable had no bends or extra pressure applied, and also that it was fully pushed in. “I’ve never had a card die on me since the early days. Disappointing that this is a thing at all,” said the Reddit user.

Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 is shown along with a hand holding the power cable adapter.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

The 12VHWPR connector has had a rough run, and various attempts at fixing it have all been futile. Even CableMod’s adapter encounters the same (or more) problems, and to top it all off, it voids the warranty for the GPU.

User error or not, Nvidia seems to slowly be phasing out the 12VHPWR in favor of the new 16-pin 12V-2×6 connector. It comes with an increased power delivery, now reaching 660 watts, which is plenty enough for the RTX 4090. We haven’t heard any reports of that one melting just yet, but who knows how long it’ll take for anyone to be certain that it works well. One thing’s for sure: A year is not enough. Let’s hope that Nvidia ditches 12VHPWR entirely before moving on to the RTX 5090.

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Monica J. White
Monica is a UK-based freelance writer and self-proclaimed geek. A firm believer in the "PC building is just like expensive…
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