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Crosshair VIII Dark Hero M.2 SSD's get really hot?

Level 7
So, I have two M.2 SSD's on my Dark Hero board. And they both get super hot during gaming.

In the upper slot above the graphics card, I have my old Samsung 960 Pro installed, and below the graphics card in the second slot, there's my Samsung 980 Pro installed.

My graphics card is an RTX 3090 MSI Gaming Trio X, my CPU is an AMD 5950X, I'm using an NZXT X63 cooler with 4x140mm Noctua fans in push/pull in the top of my Fractal Design Define 7 XL case, 3x140mm Noctua fans as intake in the front, and 1x140mm Noctua fan as outtake in the back.

Both SSD's are installed using the motherboard's built in heatsinks. However, during gaming, I'm guessing due to all the hot air from the 3090, my top 960 Pro gets up to 68 degrees C, and my bottom 980 Pro reaches 58 degrees C. So it appears to me, that the built-in SSD heatsinks aren't very good.

I've tried replacing the heatsinks with those from Sabrent. But when installed, the shape of the bottom part of the Sabrent heatsink seems to be incompatible with the M.2 standoffs ASUS supplies for the motherboard. Resulting in the SSD not being detected when turning on the PC.

So I was wondering if anyone knows if replacing the the heatsinks on this motherboard even helps, as it would appear at least the top SSD slot will receive a lot of passive heat from the graphics card during gaming in any event.

Any thoughts?

Level 13
Those temps while not the best are within tolerance. So long as you arent throttling you havent hit a thermal limit. I believe these throttle at like 90C.

most m2 drives without fan cooling will reach 60-70 Celsius under heavy load ....Installing a side chassis fan blowing over the PCI-E slots actually dropped my temps by almost 25c (at first reaching around 64c). With a fan they run at low 40c. Any small amount of airflow is pretty much all that they need. As a note there are statements from hardcore techs, that suggest, that a higher temperature is better for working/powered flash cells as it causes less wear. However for average users it doesn't matter much.

Level 9
Does the M.2 manufacturer have recommendation for better thermal pad for the M.2 drives? We only have standard thermal pads. If you want higher performance thermal pads, you might 3rd party thermal pads.

Level 7
Has anyone tried thermal grizzly minus 120 x 20 x 0.5mm and 1.0mm pads to cover the nvme chips for a samsung 980 pro. As the nvme chips step down in height their can be an air gap to the heatsink/pad as the higher chips step down to lower chips. according to a youtube video using 0.5 to 1.0mm pads over the chips levels out better with the heatsink and reduced temps by 14c at idle and 10c at load. i was thinking to try this myself search youtube for: Stop your Samsung NVMe SSD from Overheating and Thermal Throttling
:palm_tree: :flag_black:

I had the same problem. To combat the heat, I moved my M.2 drive from next to the graphics card, to the M.2 socket nearer the front SATA ports and installed this:

For airflow purposes, I ended up flipping the fan around (probably doesn't matter; just a personal choice). Fan is super quiet and I can't hear it even running at max speed. I've since settled on 70% max speed to hopefully improve longevity of the unit.

Previously my M.2 drive ran about 54 degree C. Now my drive normally runs at 37 degrees C. On this chilly morning as I type this, my drive is running at 32 degrees.