Less than 24 hours after the Radeon RX 480 was officially made available to the public, reports are now coming in regarding a power consumption problem with the graphics card. According to a number reputable hardware reviewers, the RX 480 alarmingly exceeds the power draw limit of a PCIe slot on a motherboard; which is supposedly only rated for 75W according to the PCI Special Interest Group.
So, what does this mean for normal consumers? Well, folks at Tom’s Hardware mentioned that the excess power draw from the Radeon RX 480 graphics card may not necessarily cause damage to the motherboard. Notable issues were only noticed on the audio components of “cheap” motherboards; where audio artefacts can be heard. However, the scale of the issue may be amplified even further should one were to vigorously overclock the RX 480 – or maybe run a pair in Crossfire.
The exact PCIe slot power draw between the RX 480 and the motherboard varies, but based on Golem.de’s findings, the graphics card was recorded drawing up to 78W to 83W of power. That said, our benchmarking runs with the Radeon RX 480 produced no noticeable damage to our test system.
Having said that, Raja Koduri, head of Radeon Technologies Group (RTG), responded to enquiries on the issue in a Reddit AMA held by AMD last night. According to Raja, RTG is currently investigating the problem and is currently trying to replicate the issue in internal testing based on feedbacks given from a number of reviewers.
Interestingly, there hasn’t been any reports of damaged motherboards cause by the Radeon RX 480 by end-users so far – granted that it has only been a day since the graphics card was released. Hopefully, Radeon will be able find a workaround to this issue because it’s causing plenty of “potential” consumers to be hesitant about purchasing a reference Radeon RX 480.