A new problem in the computer market is looming. We’re not talking about price or availability here

We’ve been complaining about the situation in the PC market for a good year and this mainly has to do with the high prices of individual components as well as low availability. This includes graphics cards, DDR5 memory, and even newer motherboards from Intel. Currently, there is an improvement in the market (apart from the potential SSD issue), but what if I tell you that your computer circus is about to start and it affects us in an indirect way?

It all started with a calm in Lake Alder. It’s still a comedy…

Let’s start with a lesser known issue in the market that started with the launch of Alder Lake processors in November. These have been on the market for nearly four months now, and if you’re one of those who’ve been able to build platforms around them without too much trouble, you might be out of luck. In fact, they gave Intel processors, or more precisely, the platform associated with them, and still cause a lot of trouble.

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Cooling on the LGA1700 is still just a joke. Many models of different types of cooling systems do not exert adequate pressure between the water block and the IHS CPU. Visually, this manifests itself in an inaccurately diffuse thermal paste (photos below), which can only solve the problem with an additional portion of the paste to bring down some of the temperatures caused by insufficient contact with the IHS cooling foot.

This problem even affects some newer cooling models, which in theory are fully compatible with the LGA1700. All because the independent loading mechanism that Intel developed for the LGA1700 socket is not well optimized for Alder Lake processors and may put excessive strain on the processor, causing the IHSa (silver top of the processor) to bend in the middle. This is an insurmountable problem, but it can be overcome by adding washers, for example, before installing the mounting frame.

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Recently, an independent project was developed for a completely new 3D-printed arc that solves this problem, but requires… a 3D printer.

However, compilation problems are one thing – the stores approach is another. We regularly receive information and stories about required coolants, which reach customers either without the appropriate mounting elements, or even in an older version not compatible with LGA1700. At such moments, you need to remember that you have the right to return and the warranty, because in fact you just have to solve the problem directly with the seller, since you still cannot simply buy separate mounting kits for LGA1700.

In other words, there is already a cold circus, but another problem is already looming.

… and the power supply will only wipe us out

Quite often we can read about the power sources of “new generation cards”, among them the first GeForce RTX 3090 Ti from NVIDIA. Usually, this applies to the new announced high-end power supplies (ASUS Thor, or more recently Gigabyte), but the first signs of a possible inclusion have already appeared at the premiere of RTX 3000 Founders Edition cards with 12-pin power connectors, which would require a 2 x 8 adapter Pins to draw up to 300 watts of power.

The above power sources reminded us of these new power connectors, and today we can distinguish two types of them. They differ from each other only by the addition of four signal pins, which, if connected to a socket without suitable pins (for example, inactive), will be limited to 600-450 watts.

  • 12-pin, up to 450W
  • 16 pin (12 + 4 signals) up to 600W (12VHPWR)

Apparently, the first connectors are compatible with the aforementioned Founders Edition versions of NVIDIA, and the second only comes with the launch of the Radeon RX 7000 and GeForce RTX 4000. The main models of these families (according to information from Gigabyte) are to be powered either directly by 12VHPWR (16 pin), or with an adapter that requires up to three conventional 8-pin connectors providing up to 150 watts.

How will it work in practice? This is probably the same as moving from 6-pin to 8-pin power connectors, but worse still, manufacturers don’t clearly indicate the difference between 12 + 0 pin (450 watts) and 12 + 4 pin (600 watts) connectors. Ultimately, the future in the field of power supplies will be distinguished by inverters and transformers again, which wait until the main power supplies with a power of more than 1000 watts. These simply will not be able to provide a way out for the new standards, forcing manufacturers to provide their customers with the correct adapters.

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These kinds of problems are like water to the mill of shortages and the non-standard PC market, which is getting more and more complex every year. Already today, the display of processors and graphics cards has become so complex that unfamiliar customers can only spread their hands, so this cooling has already come this far, and perhaps the power supplies themselves will also come. are you ready? We … yes, because although we see it in black, we know that we will be able to explain all the possible problems that will arise in practice, because soon even the power supply will be a difficult choice to make.

In particular, according to the company’s research, with the main devices, powerful power sources are becoming more and more important and more important for the stability of the system. Perhaps even more emphasized by the graph, the GeForce RTX 3090 can draw up to 940W of power at its peak and for a split second.

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