AMD confirms faulty vapour chambers causing 110°C temps on RX 7900 XTX GPUs

AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX photographed with box on a white background.
(Image credit: Future)
Audio player loading…

AMD has confirmed that it is indeed faulty vapour chambers causing the hotspot overheating issues with its new $1,000 Radeon RX 7900 XTX (opens in new tab) boards.

Speaking to PC World's Gordon Mah Ung (opens in new tab), AMD's Scott Herkelman explained that the problem exclusively impacts 7900 XTX boards and "Made by AMD" cards only, rather than any AIB-designed products, although these "Made by" cards were sold both on AMD.com and by their board partners.

Herkelman says AMD responded as soon as it first heard of some cards reportedly running at higher than expected temps.

"We immediately sprung into action," Herkelman says. "First, is there a safety concern? There's not a safety concern. Next, is there a potential performance issue? And we found that if you hit 110 degrees in certain workloads you would see a small performance delta."

AMD then set about "root causing" the issue, a process that Herkelman says took two weeks, explaining that they wanted to make sure they had identified the correct cause.

"It all comes down to a small batch of vapour chambers that don't have enough water. It's a very small percentage," he claims.

From here, AMD says its priority is making sure customers get fully functioning replacement cards as soon as possible. "You spent a lot of money if you bought this XTX board. We want to fix it for you. Just call our tech support line if you bought it from AMD.com. We have units that are identified as good that we will ship to you right away."

Jacob confirmed our review sample suffers from the issue. You can see the high hotspot temp recorded here under 'GPU temperature 2'. The lower than expected clock speed is also shown in the graphs. These results are taken from a three lap run of F1 22's benchmark at Ultra settings and 4K. (Image credit: Future)

Which is great, except as we reported a few days ago (opens in new tab), AMD seemingly dragged its feet when customers originally got in contact about hotspot issues. Granted, it must be tricky to filter out the usual internet squawking from actual, real-world issues. But our overall sense is that AMD could have been more responsive earlier. After all, we are talking about people who have just spent $1,000 on a brand new GPU.

It's not just AMD that has suffered issues with this new round of high end GPUs, of course. Nvidia's RTX 40 series has its own tale of melting power connector woe. It's a rather unedifying trend.

Image (opens in new tab)


Best CPU for gaming: Top chips from Intel and AMD
Best gaming motherboard: The right boards
Best graphics card: Your perfect pixel-pusher awaits Best SSD for gaming: Get into the game first

Jeremy Laird
Hardware writer

Jeremy has been writing about technology and PCs since the 90nm Netburst era (Google it!) and enjoys nothing more than a serious dissertation on the finer points of monitor input lag and overshoot followed by a forensic examination of advanced lithography. Or maybe he just likes machines that go “ping!” He also has a thing for tennis and cars.