TECH NEWS – The company that is known for its GPUs pulled a move that might not benefit everyone.
So Nvidia announced that those who will use its newest graphics card (we’ll call it by name: GeForce RTX 3060) will see the mining performance for the Ethereum crypto-currency drop by 50%. And on purpose, no less! (Those GPUs already sold are not affected.) The manufacturer said that it had intervened to ensure that the product ends up in the hands of the gamers, who do use the GPU for gaming instead of farming for crypto-currencies.
For a gamer PC, having a decent graphics card is essential (even if several processors nowadays tend to have some limited graphical capabilities or even some motherboards include integrated Intel solutions), and the ray tracing is also trendy nowadays (mostly due to the launch of the PlayStation 5, the Xbox Series X, and the Xbox Series S…), which is why the GeForce RTX cards are high in demand. However, due to the coronavirus global pandemic, there is a lack of stocks here, just with the consoles, but here, it’s not the scalpers that gobble up the limited number of cards. Instead, we see crypto-investors buy cards in bulk for their server farms, but it’s only beneficial for them if they can mine more crypto-currency than what the electrical costs are… and running multiple GPUs isn’t cheap.
Nvidia wrote on its blog that the software of the RTX 3060 can limit the Ethereum transactions by about 50%, making the card not so economical for miners to acquire this GPU. The company focused on Ethereum because it „has the highest global mining yield for any GPU-mineable coin at the moment and thus is likely the main demand driver for GPUs in mining.” But, they also came up with an alternative solution – they will sell crypto-currency mining processors, or CMPs for short. Nvidia says the production of the CMPs will not impact the availability of the GPUs.
Nvidia told the BBC that the CMP didn’t meet the required specifications of its GPUs, but it would also require less energy. Crypto-currencies are still criticised, though, as the bitcoins’ energy consumption is dubbed wasteful. „More efficient mining hardware won’t help – it’ll just be competing against other efficient mining hardware. This means that Bitcoin‘s energy use, and hence its CO2 production, only spirals outwards. It’s very bad that all this energy is being wasted in a lottery,” David Gerard, author of Attack of the 50 Foot Blockchain said.
What will AMD do now?