12V-2×6 cables less prone to overheating when not fully inserted
HardwareBusters recently visited Linewell, the company responsible for manufacturing power cables for renowned brands like ASUS. As many power supply manufacturers are transitioning to the new power connector design, Aris and his team decided to go straight to the source where tests of these cables are taking place.
During our visit, we observed Linewell conducting an extended-duration test (50+ minutes) on a new 12V-2×6 cable. The connector temperature did not exceed 46.5°C. Then the cable was intentionally not fully inserted and tested again with the same power setting. Despite receiving a whopping 55 Amps of power and managed to deliver over 640W of power continuously, thermal imaging showed that the cable’s temperature only reached a modest 41°C, far from the point of melting.
It’s important to note that the design of this new cable should inherently prevent such situations from occurring in the first place. The sense pins responsible for negotiating higher power usage should ideally restrict the delivery of 600+W of power when they are not securely connected. However, the purpose of this test was to demonstrate that the new power pins are not only more conductive but also less susceptible to generating excessive heat. Meaning, for this test the sense pins were shorted deliberately, which wouldn’t (always) be the case with not fully seated cable.
Furthermore, it’s noteworthy that even under conditions of excessive bending in all directions, the cable’s temperature remained consistent. However, it remains uncertain whether power supply companies will revise their recommendations regarding bending distance.
The updated 12V-2×6 cable represents an important design advancement in graphics card power delivery. It has now become the standard for all new RTX 40 cards shipped to customers, with power supplies also adapting to the new standard. While we hope to avoid any reports of these new cables melting, it’s essential to remember that every power cable and connector carries some risk of failure, and no design is entirely flawless.