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For embarrassing GPU cooling failures, AMD promises quick replacements

AMD has acknowledged that the vapour chamber is to blame for the RX 7900 XTX graphics cards’ overheating problem, but the company has told us that just a limited number of these RDNA 3 flagship GPUs have been impacted and that replacements would be issued as soon as possible.

In an interview with PC World posted on YouTube, AMD’s Senior VP and GM of the Graphics division, Scott Herkelman, gave us the latest information.

The issue is exactly as overclocking specialist Der8auer had previously asserted, Herkelman told us; the cause of the GPU’s soaring temperature hotspots is due to a lack of water in the vapour chamber.

Herkelman says this undercutting only affects a “small batch” of graphics cards and a tiny fraction of all reference boards. Keep in mind that this problem only affects graphics cards with the RX 7900 XTX’s base design, as modified third-party boards have their own cooling solutions.

Herkelman promised impacted clients that “we’ll ship it to you right immediately” when asked when they would receive replacement 7900 XTX GPUs from AMD.

Contact AMD support or the manufacturer of the third-party graphics card from which you acquired your reference design product if you are encountering issues with overheating hotspots on your RX 7900 XTX.

Quelling the conflagration of rumours

This week, we’ve seen speculation run rampant regarding how many AMD RX 7900 XTX GPUs are affected by the issue. In light of this, it is instructive to hear AMD say that just a fraction of the market’s reference cards are affected. (At another point in the film, Herkelman emphasises that “very few individuals experience this.”)

It would appear that the speculations of thousands of graphics cards being affected are off the mark; in fact, a nearly five-figure number was another hypothesis we heard voiced. However, depending on the total number of 7900 XTX cards distributed, even a negligible fraction (1–2%, maybe?) may amount to a thousand (but certainly not approaching 10,000).

Herkelman also disproves the claim that AMD is having trouble keeping up with the demand for replacement graphics cards for afflicted systems. The statement that replacement GPUs will be shipped “straight away” was clearly meant to quell such rumours.