Serious concerns surrounding potential corrosion problems related to Asus Z690 Formula motherboards have warranted a direct response from Asus and EK. Metal incompatibility appears to be the route cause of the issue.
Asus Formula motherboards are a drop-in solution for those who love a fully decked out, custom-loop build, featuring a gigantic EK water block that keeps VRM system temps in check. It’s both overkill and over-engineered, but also magnificent.
Unfortunately, Z690 Formula reached end-of-life status a while ago, and fault reports have begun surfacing on forums across the web. Turns out the problem is caused by a mixture of metals that don’t play well together, causing a galvanic reaction that leads to corrosion. Almost every watercooling aficionado knows that mixing aluminium and copper is a recipe for disaster, either go full copper or full aluminium, never cross the streams. However, it has become apparent that underneath EK’s nickel-plated VRM heatsinks lies big chunks of copper.
One would think that matching EK specific parts would be a safe bet, but apparently this is not the case, as the company uses both nickel-plated copper and aluminium in its product stack. One such example can be seen with the incompatibility between its EK-Quantum Momentum² VRM Bridge designed specifically as a Z690 Formula solution. Big oopsie.
Fortunately, there’s hope on the horizon as EK has begun contacting customers and has acknowledged the problem, stating that together with Asus, the manufacturers are currently working on a solution. A Reddit user thankfully updated the community with an official response that reads as follows:
Hopefully, this means that despite the products being out of circulation, customers affected will get the support they sorely need. Additionally, collaborative processes have been put in place to safeguard future products, which is always a good thing.