What just happened? As we get closer to the release of AMD's Zen 4 processors, we're going to see more and more leaks about the chips. Today, an unnamed overclocker leaked the backside of the integrated heat spreader (IHS), showing a similar soldered design to current Zen 3 processors.

A couple of weeks ago, AMD delivered its Computex keynote, where it shared more details on its upcoming Zen 4 CPUs. The new generation of processors arrive this fall, yet an unnamed overclocker seems to have laid their hands on an early sample and decided to delid it.

The IHS appears to be glued to the interposer in seven spots. Its underside is gold plated, and there are solder marks above the I/O die and the two chiplets. Other than the shape of the IHS, this is similar to what you would find on current Zen 3 CPUs.

Delidding these processors without destroying them is definitely not going to be an easy task. If you're using a razor blade to cut the glue below the sides of the IHS, you have to be extremely careful not to damage the dozens of capacitors scattered all over the interposer.

Delidding processors was somewhat popular back when Intel was still using thermal paste under their IHSs as it could drop temperatures by over 20 degrees in some cases. However, the company switched to a soldered thermal interface material with its 9th Gen Core CPUs.

A soldered IHS is far more efficient in transferring heat, making the risky mod mostly not worth it. Even the i9-12900KS, which can draw upwards of 250W, sees at best only a 9-degree temperature improvement from applying liquid metal and a larger IHS.