Cutting an NVIDIA RTX 4090 in Half with a Water Jet: The Science of Cooling

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We met with NVIDIA’s thermal engineering team to cut an RTX 4090 Founders Edition cooler (not GPU or PCB) in half with a water jet. This was for science, as it allows us to see inside the vapor chamber, the heatpipes, and the cooling structure to understand how coolers are internally formed. We’ll have a review of the RTX 4090 Founders Edition soon, but for now, we’re starting with a cross-section and engineering-heavy video to learn about cooler design.

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Watch TiN (formerly EVGA) demonstrate how GPUs die from over temperature:
Der8auer explains thermal paste pump out:


00:00 – Cutting an RTX 4090 Cooler in Half
04:50 – Explaining the Cut-in-Half RTX 4090
06:13 – Microscope Shots of the Vapor Chamber
08:10 – The Design Process & The PCB Revealed
09:30 – Heatpipe vs. Vapor Chamber Use
13:23 – Avoiding Dryout, Memory Thermals
15:25 – “The TIM Isn’t Good!”
18:01 – Failed Vapor Chambers
19:46 – Fan Design, Bearings, & Airflow
25:20 – Concluding & CFD

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Host, Video Editing: Steve Burke
Video Editing, Camera Work: Andrew Coleman
Guest: Malcolm Gutenburg (NVIDIA Thermal Engineer)

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