Recently, NVIDIA was involved in the melting 16-pin connection scandal, but now AMD is experiencing heating issues. According to reports and user comments, the Radeon RX 7900 XTX may reach temperatures of 110 degrees Celsius. Therefore, PowerColor, one of AMD’s most prominent partners, has issued a request for user reports on Reddit so it may forward the information to AMD for further research.
The 110C hotspot issue appears to impact only MBA (Made By AMD) or reference Radeon RX 7900-series graphics cards, regardless of whether you acquired them directly from AMD or one of its partners. Since no reports of affected bespoke designs have been made, the reference cooler may have a design problem. Let’s hold off on making assumptions, though, however, whether or not a junction temperature of 110 degrees Celsius is acceptable for Radeon RX 7900-series graphics cards is the million-dollar question.
There is precedence for Radeon graphics cards to exceed 110 degrees Celsius, which is consistent with AMD’s requirements. If you recall, the usual junction temperature for Radeon RX 5700-series graphics cards, such as the Radeon RX 5700 XT, was 110 degrees Celsius. Rather than establishing a cautious, ‘worst case’ throttling temperature for the whole chip, the Radeon RX 5700 series GPUs will remain opportunistically and aggressively ramping speeds until one of the many available sensors reaches the ‘hotspot’ or ‘Junction’ temperature of 110 degrees Celsius. In a blog post from three years ago, AMD stated, “operating at up to 110C Junction Temperature during typical gaming usage is expected and within spec.”
In addition to the junction temperature, it is crucial to examine the edge temperature to identify if there is an underlying issue. Edge temperature relates to the temperature recorded at the silicon’s edge. Therefore, it is a good indicator of the situation of the rising pressure. A low number indicates a favorable mounting pressure. “110 hotspot is within spec if your card’s GPU edge temperature is 90° or above… If 110 gets reached at 70 edges, that’s not ideal,” an AMD spokesperson wrote on Reddit.
AMD has said that their GPU team is currently researching the issue. It will be vital to determine if the high temperatures are to blame for the thermal throttling, which causes the graphics card’s clock speed to drop below the rated speed. Otherwise, this is standard behavior. Don’t forget that AMD only guarantees the basic clock rates of its graphics cards. The users of Radeon RX 7900 XTX graphics cards are apparently RMAing or returning their products. Despite this, the responses have been varied. Some users on Reddit said AMD accepted their RMA, while others alleged the chipmaker had denied their RMA and refunds.
Some user reports indicate that repasting the Radeon RX 7900 XTX addresses the issue, although this is not always the case. There is a suggestion that the cooler’s cold plate is uneven. That accounts for why the thermal interface material (TIM) is thicker in the center of the die than on its edge. A Reddit user recommended a graphite heat pad as a possible solution. In earlier generations of Radeon graphics cards, AMD chose thermal pads; thus, it is unclear why the chipmaker decided to employ TIM on RDNA 3. In any case, we do not advocate removing your cooler since doing so will certainly void your warranty. Currently, the only options are to either wait for AMD’s direction or attempt to RMA the graphics card, albeit the latter would only be effective if the hardware is performing as intended.