Image: NVIDIA

Frustrated about the lack of GeForce RTX 30 Series stock? Miners might deserve some of the blame. According to a report from Barron’s (via Bitcoin.com and Moore’s Law Is Dead), NVIDIA sold a substantial amount of its Ampere graphics cards to ether enthusiasts instead of gamers.

“For the quarter in review, Nvidia sold at least $175 million worth of new generation GPUs to ethereum miners, helping the outperformance,” Bitcoin.com reported based on a note from RBC Capital Markets analyst Mitch Steves. “The analyst had guided sales to miners to come in at $150 million for the quarter.”

“Steves noted that the upcoming network upgrade of the Ethereum blockchain, also known as Ethereum 2.0, which is scheduled to take place sometime in December, demands that miners switch over to more efficient mining hardware. Nvidia’s new Ampere GPU chips are thought to meet that need.”

Moore’s points out in his latest video that NVIDIA’s business with miners might explain the discrepancies between shipment and delivery numbers. Remember how he previously alleged that green team would be flooding the market with Ampere GPUs in response to AMD’s Radeon RX 6000 Series? One theory is that those cards actually went to non-gamers instead.

On the other hand, Radeon fans may have a little less to worry about in terms of miners buying up their product. While Radeon RX 6000 models have also been impossible to find, AMD reportedly “nerfed” the mining performance of its RDNA 2 architecture so its cards only make sense for gamers. This seems plausible, as red team could use a major marketshare/mindshare boost in the gaming segment.

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25 Comments

  1. This doesnt hold much water. All sources are highly speculative and the Barrons link is even a wrong link.

    Sorry, but garbage, rounded off with even more garbage from Moore’s Law.

  2. Gotta remember that in China there are custom card makers that build mining specific cards. Nvidia and AMD have been selling GPU die packages directly to them for years.
  3. Gotta remember that in China there are custom card makers that build mining specific cards. Nvidia and AMD have been selling GPU die packages directly to them for years.

    Means nothing unless we could see sales numbers and current impact on the Gaming card market.

  4. Means nothing unless we could see sales numbers and current impact on the Gaming card market.

    I doubt any of us will be privy to that information. How many were sold? Yeah, sure, to appease share holders. Who they were sold to and for what reason? Not a chance.

  5. I doubt any of us will be privy to that information. How many were sold? Yeah, sure, to appease share holders. Who they were sold to and for what reason? Not a chance.

    We see net revenue, but that doesn’t directly translate to cards sold, since their GeForce revenue largely comes from selling chips to AIBs, and even that cost may vary per AIB. So hard to extrapolate revenue to # of cards, it’s even more obfuscated than you allude to.

    That said, Q3 financials did post – nVidia saw 25% YoY increase in Gaming revenue. But Q3’19 didn’t have any new product releases and was a huge downturn for nVidia (that was the quarter the mining boom busted for them), so that isn’t nearly as big a jump as you would like from this huge Ampere release. It points to significant logistics issues.

  6. Moore’s Law is Dead is a big AMD fanboy and his news is very biased. He was very wrong about supply of AMD cards and wouldn’t admit it.
  7. That sounds like nvidia sold the cards directly to miners which I don’t think is possible.

    It absolutely is. However, they generally don’t sell cards to them. They sell bare GPU’s to miners. This actually happened during the previous mining craze. I had a pretty reliable source on that, so I have no doubt it happened then. I have little doubt its happening now based on that previous behavior.

  8. IT really sucks that a part I want for leisure is being consumed by people that use the same part to make money. Is it my fault that 1000’s of GPU’s are consumed by 10’s of customers for GPU’s while as a consumer I might want 1.

    Problem is my experience with that 1 will color my purchasing decisions going forward for the dozens I would need for my Vmware hosts at 5k+ a pop. But hey… you keep feeding those miners.

  9. It absolutely is. However, they generally don’t sell cards to them. They sell bare GPU’s to miners. This actually happened during the previous mining craze. I had a pretty reliable source on that, so I have no doubt it happened then. I have little doubt its happening now based on that previous behavior.

    How do you use bare GPU’s in this scenario? By bare, do you mean just the GPU chip? Or a bare board with chip?

  10. How do you use bare GPU’s in this scenario? By bare, do you mean just the GPU chip? Or a bare board with chip?

    Just the GPU die. There are custom board manufacturers in China that produce mining only cards. No outputs. Same way AIB’s receive their GPU dies. They create custom boards to make the non-reference cards we buy.

  11. It absolutely is. However, they generally don’t sell cards to them. They sell bare GPU’s to miners. This actually happened during the previous mining craze. I had a pretty reliable source on that, so I have no doubt it happened then. I have little doubt its happening now based on that previous behavior.

    I recall the rumors for both AMD and nvidia, but there was no hard evidence.

    Thing is that nvidia contracts with oems for GPU sales weeks if not months in advance and if nvidia doesn’t fulfill the requests it could incur in penalties, specially with big oems like Asus, and also builders like hp, dell, etc.

    Also, its not like you can just go to nvidia HQ and buy 1,000 gpus by yourself, there are distribution channels to do that.
    Sorry but I just don’t buy it (no pun intended…).

  12. Just the GPU die. There are custom board manufacturers in China that produce mining only cards. No outputs. Same way AIB’s receive their GPU dies. They create custom boards to make the non-reference cards we buy.

    Are these cards then sold to anyone or is it made for order?
    And where can you buy them?

  13. And where can you buy them?

    China. They’re mostly non-branded or strangely labeled cards. A bunch of 1060’s are that way. You can sometimes find them on ebay. Zotac and MSI made some as well.

    Most don’t leave China since they’re built and sold domestically there.

  14. … If your money is not dirty and it spends… Don’t blame Nvidia on this, they should sell their chips. Same AMD.
  15. An example of a name brand "mining only" card.

    https://www.gigabyte.com/us/Graphics-Card/NVIDIA-P106-100

    Lots of these are on eBay. ZOTAC is another who made some. Most of the Chinese ones are no name brand and unlikely to find here in the States.

    Thanks for the link. I Seem to recall some AMD 470/80 etc used like that before?

    So basically the rumor now is that 175Millions worth of Ampere chips are being slapped on miner grade pcb’s in China and that’s why we can’t have anything nice.

    I spose it’s possible. And neither underhanded or illegal.
    But it’s still a rumor. Sales numbers would be nice.

  16. … If your money is not dirty and it spends… Don’t blame Nvidia on this, they should sell their chips. Same AMD.

    Well I don’t think anyone blames them for anything but misleading ppl about upcoming inventory.
    AMD basically guaranteed inventory ahead of the launch. Not so much…

  17. I recall the rumors for both AMD and nvidia, but there was no hard evidence.

    You better believe it, and it’s not just Nvidia/AMD I actually have a seasonic PSU that was sold directly to miners, but somehow found it’s way back into retail through backchannels. I contacted seasonic about it to see whether it is a knock-off or a legit seasonic PSU, and they confirmed it was real, and wasn’t supposed to be resold. They themselves said it was a mining psu, with the built in fan controller disabled. I got it for about 1/3 of the normal retail price of said PSU. So you can imagine how cheap they were giving them to miners in volume orders.

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