Thursday, February 18th 2021

NVIDIA Announces New CMP Series Specifically Designed for Cryptocurrency Mining; Caps Mining Performance on RTX 3060

This is a big one: NVIDIA has officially announced a new family of products specifically designed to satiate the demand coming from cryptocurrency mining workloads and farms. At the same time, the company has announced that the RTX 3060 launch driver will include software limitations for cryptocurrency mining workloads specifically correlated with Ethereum mining, essentially halving the maximum theoretical hashrate that could be achieved from a purely hardware perspective. The new family of products, termed CMP (Crypto Mining Processor) series, will see its products under the HX branding, and will be available in four different tiers: 30HX, 40HX, 50HX and 90HX. These products will not have any display outputs, and therefore are not applicable for gaming scenarios.

NVIDIA's stance here is that their new product will bring some justice in the overall distribution of its GeForce graphics cards, which are marketed and meant for gaming workloads. The new cryptocurrency-geared series will be distributed by NVIDIA authorized partners in the form of ASUS, Colorful, EVGA, Gigabyte, MSI, Palit, and PC Partner (more may be added down the line). There is currently no information on what silicon actually powers these graphics cards; and of course, the success of this enterprise depends on A) the driver restrictions not being limited to the RTX 3060 graphics card - it isn't clear from NVIDIA's press release if other RTX 30-series graphics cards will see the same performance cap. Even if NVIDIA did release those drivers, however, cryptocurrency miners would just opt to, well, not update them. So it is possible that NVIDIA will release a revision of the RTX 3090, RTX 3080, RTX 3070 and RTX 3060 Ti with silicon enhancements that will only work with the latest GeForce drivers - after allowing the channels to move all of their existing, cryptocurrency-enabled stock.
The other factor is, of course, pricing: miners will always look after the best price/performance ratio, even more so than gamers; and as such, the scenario can be imagined that were NVIDIA to add a tax to these products' based on their cryptocurrency mining nature, miners would still opt for GeForce products. The 30HX and 40HX will be made available in 1Q of this year, while the more powerful 50HX and 90HX will only hit retail come 2Q. NVIDIA finally did decide to take the matter into their own hands, in a move that not only accompanies their general "we're for the gamers" stance with more than words, while simultaneously insulating themselves from lawsuits targeting any possible inclusion of mining sales under their gaming division financials. I'll allow myself some emotion now: finally!

The NVIDIA Press Release follows:
We are gamers, through and through. We obsess about new gaming features, new architectures, new games and tech. We designed GeForce GPUs for gamers, and gamers are clamoring for more.

Yet NVIDIA GPUs are programmable. And users are constantly discovering new applications for them, from weather simulation and gene sequencing to deep learning and robotics. Mining cryptocurrency is one of them.

With the launch of GeForce RTX 3060 on Feb. 25, we're taking an important step to help ensure GeForce GPUs end up in the hands of gamers.

Halving Hash Rate
RTX 3060 software drivers are designed to detect specific attributes of the Ethereum cryptocurrency mining algorithm, and limit the hash rate, or cryptocurrency mining efficiency, by around 50 percent.

That only makes sense. Our GeForce RTX GPUs introduce cutting-edge technologies — such as RTX real-time ray-tracing, DLSS AI-accelerated image upscaling technology, Reflex super-fast response rendering for the best system latency, and many more — tailored to meet the needs of gamers and those who create digital experiences.

To address the specific needs of Ethereum mining, we're announcing the NVIDIA CMP, or, Cryptocurrency Mining Processor, product line for professional mining.

CMP products — which don't do graphics — are sold through authorized partners and optimized for the best mining performance and efficiency. They don't meet the specifications required of a GeForce GPU and, thus, don't impact the availability of GeForce GPUs to gamers.

For instance, CMP lacks display outputs, enabling improved airflow while mining so they can be more densely packed. CMPs also have a lower peak core voltage and frequency, which improves mining power efficiency.

Creating tailored products for customers with specific needs delivers the best value for customers. With CMP, we can help miners build the most efficient data centers while preserving GeForce RTX GPUs for gamers.
Sources: Thanks BTA for the inputs!, NVIDIA
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118 Comments on NVIDIA Announces New CMP Series Specifically Designed for Cryptocurrency Mining; Caps Mining Performance on RTX 3060

#26
W1zzard
Checks in the driver are so easy to circumvent, won't take experienced people more than a day
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#27
xkm1948
I mean folks can still buy AMD GPU to mine and later sell that back to gamers
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#28
zo0lykas
its all depence on price tag

"AMD Radeon VII can reach 104.6 MH/s hashrate and 195 W power consumption for mining ETH (Ethash) earning around 14.87 USD per day"
Posted on Reply
#29
Legacy-ZA
fynxer
Can bet that MASSIVE EFFORT will be put in to hacking the Nvidia driver for the RTX 3060.

As long as the hashrate lock is software only and not in the actual GPU it will be fixed one way or the other.

ALSO THIS IS A BLOW TO GAMERS...

Think of all the gamers running NiceHash when not gaming making back some of that hard earned $$$ that a GPU cost.

My friend actually earned back the whole cost for his RTX 3080 since September only by mining when he was not gaming.

THIS IS A DANGEROUS DEVELOPMENT

Does nvidia really have the right to discriminate against all people that want to do some mining, lots of gamers also mine when not gaming.

Nvidia is now saying that you can do every thing else but not mine just because they say so.

WHAT IF INTEL HALVED THE SPEED OF SOME APPLICATIONS IN THEIR CPUs because they think that CPUs should not be used with these applications.

I see some law suits coming nvidias way in the near future.
I want to agree but also don't. You see, if they were at MSRP, I wouldn't have felt the "Need" to recuperate my cost. If the RTX3060 launches with MSRP, it's fine, if it doesn't, they just gave people another middle finger, as they definitely won't be able to recuperate that cost in good time.
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#30
nguyen
I just hope Nvidia remove VRAM thermal protection in the driver and let miners burn up all their precious GPU, and deny them RMA of course.
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#31
msimax
just looked up Rvii prices on ebay -hugs my Radeon vii- :laugh:
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#32
windwhirl
nguyen
I just hope Nvidia remove VRAM thermal protection in the driver and let miners burn up all their precious GPU, and deny them RMA of course.
That will just fuck up the used GPU market.
Posted on Reply
#33
nguyen
windwhirl
That will just fuck up the used GPU market.
well let just say if you stick to gaming only, the failure rate remain below 5% and for mining the failure rate is over 50% just to fuck up those miners.
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#34
Legacy-ZA
msimax
just looked up Rvii prices on ebay -hugs my Radeon vii- :laugh:
I was eyeing that very card to buy, it was at a very good price here at one point. The power usage put me off... lol I am sure I could have sold that bad boy for 3x the price today haha.
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#35
TheinsanegamerN
Legacy-ZA
If we don't see them @ the $330 MSRP, I don't give a damn nVidia, also you needed these limitations on the hardware level, driver limitations can always be removed/bypassed by someone smart enough. The damage has been done, we just moved within the 6th month of the launch of these products. Now I guess you will start throwing your next RTX4000 lineup in our faces while people paid through their asses just to get a little gaming card that won't even last till RTX5000, **** YOU!
lolcalmdown, it's a GPU, not life saving medicine or food. The worst that happens because of this would be you being unable to play your hecking videorinos.

Yes I know we are all locked in our housesforever, but still calm down. Crack open a good book or boardgame.
Posted on Reply
#36
zo0lykas
msimax
just looked up Rvii prices on ebay -hugs my Radeon vii- :laugh:
for a moment all gpu price are crazy, 5months ago i sold my vega64 with water block for £160, now if we look ebay, the average price 400 and up :))
Posted on Reply
#37
TheinsanegamerN
nguyen
I just hope Nvidia remove VRAM thermal protection in the driver and let miners burn up all their precious GPU, and deny them RMA of course.
Well A) that wont work, because most card's cooling solutions...you know....are functional. So short of developing a quantum state heatsink that ceases to exist while mining you're kinda SOL. And B) most miners put their GPUs on a slight underclock/undervolt as this grats them better perf/$ by keeping the GPUs in a more efficient part of the clock curve.

Seriously, people, it's a GPU. The world's economic supply chain is still FUBARd. Shipping things from asia right now is FUBARd. Everything is running in short supply. Hell I cant buy pepsi zero right now because they dont have enough CANS due to a shortage. Just...calm down.
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#38
ppn
The simplest thing is to enforce on-die silicon triggered drop of the bitness of the bus when memory load exceeds 50%, games usually don't go as high so no performance loss there, and can't be bypassed by drivers.

Let me be clear, when mined, nothing is earned. This is a makret where stealing is considered a fair game. so the participants are betting their money and what is one's earnings is somebody else's losses. zero sum. If you like stealing if this is your thing then ok. But don't cry you can't mine on a gaming card, lol. I have "earned" 750 euro on 1060 for about a 1 month during the last bubble, so if this currency was accepted anywhere i would gladly take the 7nm shrink of 3090. free upgrade. yess
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#39
P4-630
windwhirl
That will just fuck up the used GPU market.
I don't buy used anyway.
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#40
Upgrayedd
Don't care how much you hate miners, the driver limitation on standard RTX series is bad news for everyone.
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#41
kapone32
msimax
just looked up Rvii prices on ebay -hugs my Radeon vii- :laugh:
I knew I should have got one of those
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#42
bug
W1zzard
Checks in the driver are so easy to circumvent, won't take experienced people more than a day
Windows uses driver signing to prevent tampering. But of course, miners aren't forced to use Windows...
Posted on Reply
#43
TheinsanegamerN
zo0lykas
for a moment all gpu price are crazy, 5months ago i sold my vega64 with water block for £160, now if we look ebay, the average price 400 and up :))
I have two and a RX480. I put my Vegas on ebay because quite frankly I can double my money right now, and the profit from them will be enough to grab a 6800xt once prices normalize.
Posted on Reply
#44
Legacy-ZA
TheinsanegamerN
lolcalmdown, it's a GPU, not life saving medicine or food. The worst that happens because of this would be you being unable to play your hecking videorinos.

Yes I know we are all locked in our housesforever, but still calm down. Crack open a good book or boardgame.
I doubt you have been stuck with a 660Ti with a broken memory module as I have, I don't buy second hand, my current predicament you see and now I can't even buy a new card, your damn right, I AM PISSED!
Posted on Reply
#45
TheinsanegamerN
bug
Windows uses driver signing to prevent tampering. But of course, miners aren't forced to use Windows...
True, but that enforcement can also be disabled.
Legacy-ZA
I doubt you have been stuck with a 660Ti with a broken memory module as I have,
Yes, that does suck, but
I don't buy second hand, my current predicament you see and now I can't even buy a new card, your damn right, I AM PISSED!
This is a self imposed problem. I've bought every GPU I have ever owned, and most of my CPUs and motherboards, second hand, dating all the way back to 2006. I've had a grand total of 0 cards die while in my posession. And what of integrated graphics? Thereare tons of fun older games that need a toaster to run, and I remember putting hundreds of hours into games like civilization, tropico, and sins of a solar empire on my laptop back in the day, and that ran on a intel HD 4600.

If you insist on buying new, yes you are going to have a bad time. But honestly, if you have held onto a 660ti this long, you could likely buy a used 900 series card and get a massive performance boost, and there are likely some even here on TPU who would sell you one. You clearly are not a graphcis snob who demands ultra on everything, there are still plenty of good cheapish options out there that could tide you over.
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#46
yotano211
So many gamers waiting to get their "fix".
Posted on Reply
#47
bug
TheinsanegamerN
True, but that enforcement can also be disabled.
Can it? I didn't check, but I was under the impression MS has decided to enforce that permanently at some point.
Posted on Reply
#48
TheinsanegamerN
bug
Can it? I didn't check, but I was under the impression MS has decided to enforce that permanently at some point.
I havent tried it, but apparently as of may 2020 it was still possible:

windowsreport.com/driver-signature-enforcement-windows-10/

It seems to require you to activate it at every boot, which isnt really an issue for miners since they dont reboot often and it only has to be done once to install the driver, and it can be automated for obscure drivers that cost $$$$$ to replace, and miners can take advantage of that too.
Posted on Reply
#49
Night
I don't see this move from Nvidia working out for gamers in mind. There are 2 possibilities:
1. Cards getting bought by a hoard of scalpers
2. Drivers getting modded on day one, making the GPU perform the same as the mining version
There's no way Nvidia will have enough GPUs to feed all the miners. Also the 3060 will do less work than a 3070, 3080 or 3090.
If they really want to help gamers, they'll try to make the new lineup less effective at mining on the hardware level, and I believe this is possible, but unlikely due to bigger costs of design and production.
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#50
Vayra86
Mhm Ill believe it when I see an actual dent in mining perf that cannot be circumvented, but really theyre already too late.

Ampere is screwed and nobody will like artifically neutered hardware.
W1zzard
Checks in the driver are so easy to circumvent, won't take experienced people more than a day
This
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