NVIDIA 16-Pin Adapter Comes In Two Flavors, 300V & 150V

Hassan Mujtaba

Ever since we reported the first case of an NVIDIA 16-pin connector melting on the GeForce RTX 4090 graphics card, there have been various discoveries. Now several days after the issues were first reported, it looks like GamersNexus and Igor's Lab have finally got to the bottom of the issue.

[Update] NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090's Come With Two 16-Pin Cable Variants: 300V 14AWG Cable Reportedly "On-Spec", 150V Possibly Not

Update #2: The issue has been confirmed to mostly be a user error and not caused by a particular type of cable. More here.

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Update #1: Based on new reports, it looks like even the 300V cables are melting but these cables also come in two solder qualities. So it looks like we are back to square one and wait for NVIDIA's reply on the whole situation.

While NVIDIA and its AIB partners are working to resolve the 16-pin connector issues, the PC tech community is hard at work to find out the real cause of the issue. In the previous report, we got to know that it was definitely the adapter that was responsible for the melting and not the card or the plug on the card itself. The 16-pin connector got really hot when proper contact was not made or if the cable was bent too much. This led to an excessive amount of current passing through the cable which further led to higher temperatures and the resultant melting occurred.

NVIDIA 16-Pin 300V Adapter Cable (Known Good Cable):

Since both outlets ripped the connector off, it was found out that the 300V cables use high-quality soldering whereas, on the 150V, each cable line is soldered individually & with a smaller soldering surface that can lead to damage while bending. This must explain why the cable in Igor's case came out loose. The cable used by Steve (GamersNexus) and Ronaldo (TecLab) was able to resist torture through various endurance and durability tests. Both GamersNexus and TecLab also ran the cable for hours under load.

NVIDIA 16-Pin 150V Adapter Cable (Bad Soldering via Igor's Lab):

In GamersNexus's case, their NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 graphics cards were run for over 48 hours under load while TecLab had their 16-pin adapter cable running under a load tester with a 1530W sustained load.

NVIDIA 16-Pin 150V vs 300V Soldering Quality (Image Credits: GamersNexus):

There's no way of knowing which cable you get unless you pull off the sleeve a bit. In the case that you did get a 150V 16-pin cable, you can ask the manufacturer for a replacement with the proper 300V cable. The good thing is that there aren't a large number of users who received the 150V 16-pin cable. NVIDIA's GeForce RTX 4090 graphics card is now with thousands of gamers and while there are less than 20 reports of the card melting up, they are still enough to be a concern. Based on surveys conducted by HardwareLuxx and GamersNexus, it looks like the number of users who got the 150V adapter is under 7%.

GamersNexus also advises that owners of the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090's 16-pin adapter cable use the following instructions to check what cable version they got with their card:

nvidia-geforce-rtx-4090-16-pin-cable-connector-adapter-_4
nvidia-geforce-rtx-4090-16-pin-cable-connector-adapter-_5
nvidia-geforce-rtx-4090-16-pin-cable-connector-adapter-_6
nvidia-geforce-rtx-4090-16-pin-cable-connector-adapter-_8

 

So the vast majority of gamers who have the 300V adapters shouldn't worry too much but it is still advised to check your cable to see if it's definitely the good one or not. We already checked 7 of the cables that came with our samples (FE, SUPRIM X, SUPRIM Liquid, Vulcan X, TUF Gaming, AORUS Master, SG) & all of them are rated at 300V. You can also tell us in the comments below what cable you got with your NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 (FE or AIB) card if you own one.

News Source: Tomshardware

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