Nvidia RTX 4090 ports are still melting at an alarming rate

Gamers are still getting burned.

Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 connector covered in fire.
Image credit: NorthridgeFix

Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 4090 spelled disaster for the 12VHPWR power port, after the initial release saw connectors burning up. Despite Team Green’s reassurance that the issue is a thing of the past with the updated 12V-2×6 power cable, repair companies still regularly deal with the problem in droves.

“We work on 4090s every day,” says Los Angeles-based repair company Northridge Fix. “Not a single day goes by without us working on a 4090 melted connector. Whether it’s from CableMod or customers all over the world or locals, we get Nvidia cards every single day for melted connectors.”

Holding up a box of broken 12VHPWR connectors, NorthridgeFix estimates that it handles around 200 affected cards per month. He doesn’t state whether they’re the older or newer connectors, but it doesn’t instil much faith given the sheer volume.

CableMod recently recalled its V1.0 and V1.1 angled 12VHPWR adapters due to inherent fire risks. Offering an opinion on the accessory maker, the handyman says it “created a great product.” Instead, he points the finger squarely at Nvidia, saying “CableMod built over the wrong foundation. If you build a house on a weak foundation, I do not care what materials you use to build; that house will collapse.”

It’s difficult to pin down exactly why the connector is such a liability. Since RTX 4090 is the primary culprit, it certainly has to do with power draw, but there are other factors at play. The main theory was that cables weren’t securing properly. Naturally, this prompted MSI’s colourful connectors to let you spot when something doesn’t sit right. Others believe it’s the quality of the port itself. Recent 12V-2×6 revisions shuffle everything around to lock it down better, but it might not be a silver bullet fix.

All eyes will look towards the impending RTX 5000 series to see if Nvidia gets its ducks in a row. If not, it’d be an absolute PR disaster. In the meantime, Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080 on Amazon doesn’t suffer from the same issue and is a much more reliable upgrade.