Tested: 12VHPWR adapter on the RTX 4080 Suprim X won’t melt

Thermal test of the 12VHPWR adapter for the MSI RTX 4080 Suprim X graphics card

The topic of “undersized” 12VHPWR power connectors for GeForce RTX 4090 is very popular lately. However, it will not apply to the more low-power RTX 4080 graphics cards. Before a complete analysis of MSI’s model – Suprim X – we first focused on the temperature of its 16-pin, and it must be said that everything is alright, with a large temperature headroom. Here, in short, the state of the matter will not change.

Recently we pointed out that some 12VHPWR adapters could potentially run into trouble on RTX 4090 graphics cards, but in any case this news is an inflated bubble. Of course, the temperature can be higher than with 6+2-pins and eventually some damage can occur, but even then, it’s after incorrect installation.

In any case, the transitional resistance could be lower, which would also reduce the temperature of critical areas. We speculated that this might be the case with these connectors (12VHPWR) more than two years ago, when most of the current popularizers of burning connectors didn’t know… Anyway, I’d rather not elaborate and we can assure you that nothing will drip on the floor from the RTX 4080 Suprim X. Around 25 A (300 W) of current flows through the 12VHPWR adapter to three PCIe 8-pins during maximum load, and in a case with conventional system cooling, the surface temperature of the plastic structure didn’t exceed 50 °C.

Inside the connector, the hotspots will be a bit hotter, but they are still very far from dangerous values, even though the hollows (opposite of the pins on the graphics card) are obviously from Astron, i.e. with a smaller contact area than the “better” NTK hollows have. These contact the pins from four sides (instead of two with Astron) and are thus more suitable for graphics cards with higher power draw, as the RTX 4090s typically are.

But the Astrons are enough for the RTX 4080 Suprim X adapter, although we assume that the next generation of graphics cards after this media “massage” will use two 12VHPWR connectors instead of one, although it won’t be downright necessary. Just as two 4+4-pins (16 pins total) are not necessary for motherboards either, but in the interest of lower temperatures, manufacturers are already using them in mid-range motherboards as well. This is all a plus, of course, and we definitely advocate having two 16-pins even on graphics cards with relatively lower power draw.

The heat warped connectors of this generation of graphics cards will historically be but a cruel sticker. MSI RTX 4080 Suprim X won’t be affected though, and if someone is going to exaggerate the topic here, know that they want to gain a bit of visibility (and ride the “trend” wave) or don’t know what they’re writing/talking about. Lack of electrical engineering knowledge doesn’t excuse it though. We can imagine that with the RTX 4080, the “topic” will be that the adapter doesn’t have NTK hollows, but it doesn’t need them.

The adapter for this graphics card is suitable with regard to its requirements, and the surface temperature is safe even under maximum load, far from “problems” even in computers with weaker system cooling. After all, the temperature of the connectors is not as dependent on the airflow in the case as the temperature of cooler heatsinks, and the MSI RTX 4080 Suprim X will not be affected even by operating in an environment with a higher ambient temperature. To the contrary, this graphics is designed very well, with an effective cooler, but that’s a topic for complete tests of this graphics card. We will release those tomorrow.

English translation and edit by Jozef Dudáš

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