MSI has also changed the M.2 heat shields found on the new X299 motherboards, switching from stainless steel to aluminum (a major improvement) and to thermal pads with greater thermal conductivity. The pads will also be thicker on the X299 boards, using 3mm options to help ensure contact with all drives. Technically, a fatter thermal pad is worse – you don’t want more travel distance through a weaker thermal interface when you could just get straight into the metal. In this case, though, because SSDs are so varied, the fatter thermal pads will help ensure contact and won’t require as much mounting force.
This video shows them on the floor at Computex:
There’s not much else to talk about here – we’ll have to do testing to learn more. For now, though, the motherboard heatsinks will still have the same issue of trapping radiative heat under the SSD, but should theoretically be to a lesser degree. Without a fan embedded in the chipset (with an air channel to the SSD), it’s not easy to get air into that area of the board.
We’ll test these eventually. It is good to see attempts at improvement in all departments by MSI, though.
Host: Steve Burke
Video: Keegan Gallick