AMD has confirmed that the overheating issue with the RX 7900 XTX graphics cards is specific to the Steam Chamber, but has assured us that only a small number of these flagship RDNA 3 GPUs are affected and that any necessary replacements will be shipped quickly.
AMD’s Scott Herkelman, senior vice president and general manager of the graphics division, gave us fresh details in a YouTube interview with PC world (opens in a new tab) (denoted by VideoCardz (opens in a new tab)).
Herkelman told us that the situation is exactly what overclocking expert Der8auer had previously claimed, namely that the main cause of temperature spikes in the GPU is not enough water in the vapor chamber (meaning that there is not enough water to actually effectively cools the whole system.
This brief change only affects a “small batch” of graphics cards, Herkelman explains, and a very small percentage of reference boards available. Note that this issue only affects RX 7900 XTX graphics cards built from AMD’s reference design, as third-party custom boards obviously have their own cooling systems.
As for the replacement 7900 XTX GPUs, AMD will not hesitate to ship them to affected customers, with Herkelman ensuring that “we’ll ship them to you right away.”
If you are one of those people who have problems with overheating hotspots on the RX 7900 XTX, you need to contact AMD Support or the third-party graphics card manufacturer from whom you purchased the reference product and they will arrange a replacement.
Analysis: Extinguishing the flames of gossip
As we saw this week, there have been rumors that this is a major issue for AMD in terms of the number of RX 7900 XTX GPUs affected. So it’s interesting to hear AMD explain that only a small percentage of reference cards are actually hit. (Herkelman points out in the second point of the video that “very few people experience this.”)
It would therefore seem that the estimate of the thousands of hit graphics cards – indeed, the nearly five-figure total was another theory we saw on the air – are off the mark. Although that said, depending on how many 7900 XTX cards were shipped, a very small percentage (maybe 1-2%?)
Another rumor that Herkelman counters is the theory that AMD is struggling to deal with having enough spare graphics cards to send to those who return damaged boards. Apparently the comment about shipping replacement GPUs “right away” is meant to offload this chatter on the vine.