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NVIDIA CMP 170HX Mining Card Tested, Based on GA100 GPU SKU

AleksandarK

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NVIDIA's Crypto Mining (CMP) series of graphics cards are made to work only for one purpose: mining cryptocurrency coins. Hence, their functionality is somewhat limited, and they can not be used for gaming as regular GPUs can. Today, Linus Tech Tips got ahold of NVIDIA's CMP 170HX mining card, which is not listed on the company website. According to the source, the card runs on NVIDIA's GA100-105F GPU, a version based on the regular GA100 SXM design used in data-center applications. Unlike its bigger brother, the GA100-105F SKU is a cut-down design with 4480 CUDA cores and 8 GB of HBM2E memory. The complete design has 6912 cores and 40/80 GB HBM2E memory configurations.

As far as the reason for choosing 8 GB HBM2E memory goes, we know that the Ethereum DAG file is under 5 GB, so the 8 GB memory buffer is sufficient for mining any coin out there. It is powered by an 8-pin CPU power connector and draws about 250 Watts of power. It can be adjusted to 200 Watts while retaining the 165 MH/s hash rate for Ethereum. This reference design is manufactured by NVIDIA and has no active cooling, as it is meant to be cooled in high-density server racks. Only a colossal heatsink is attached, meaning that the cooling needs to come from a third party. As far as pricing is concerned, Linus managed to get this card for $5000, making it a costly mining option.

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"Tested" is a big stretch here... I've watched his vid yesterday, and while dummy Linus slowly has been growing on me, this part was really half-assedly improvised.
They simply took it apart, wowed at misunderstood things, put it back together, poked it with a stick and concluded that nothing works except mining.

So, here's my 5 cents:
1) Janky hand-soldered power connector has been a common occurrence on reference cards since 2000 series(2060/2070FE etc). At least it wasn't glued-in.
2) Milled aluminium bottom is a functional remnant of A100. Only half of the VRM is populated on that CMP card, but you can see that the back has more placement pads for more FETs/power stages, and aluminium back has grooves along those same spots. Put some thermal pads or liquid pads - and you get a big-ass surface for additional heat dissipation from VRM and PCB itself.
3) Nvidia mining cards have their NVENC and display outputs fused off, so there was no need to even test it. That's been the case since Pascal.
4) Given that this card only has 8GB of HBM2, would be logical to test the actual memory bandwidth(not the reported one). I have some suspicions.
5) Since only CUDA is working, would be cool to actually test CUDA performance. Idunno, maybe hashcat against 3090, or few GPGPU benchmarks. Anything that'll give a ballpark of "other than mining" performance.
 
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Once the cryptomarket crashes you will find this easily for 500 usd in a not distant future. Also nvidia will not put lhr on new gpus, they will have to compete x amd and intel. The competition will be fierce. Anybody buying or that have bought lhr gpus will lose big.

Linus only got this thing because he has connections.
 
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Anybody buying or that have bought lhr gpus will lose big.
That's a bit dramatic. Most people buy LHR or non-LHR cards knowingly. Either they have enough disposable income, or they plan on getting a decent mileage out of it (e.g. long-term purchase with no plans for upgrade), or they plan on mining and gaming on it (which is kinda the new norm).
PoS is still quite a bit away. Last I checked - the codebase itself will be ready around Feb, and the actual transition will be no less than 4mo away(optimistically).
My 3070Ti LHR will cover the difference by Feb-Mar along with all of my electricity bills, and if thigs go right - pay for itself by mid-summer regardless of what happens to ETH.
In my case my main PC is on 24/7 either way, so instead of wasting that idle time and energy - I'm working on it while mining, I'm mining when I'm not home, and I'm gaming whenever I feel like it.
Also chip shortage and scalpers ain't going anywhere. Until these two factors get resolved - even a used LHR card will sell over MSRP of a new card. And by the time next gen hits the market - it won't matter either way.
 
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I've watched his vid yesterday, and while dummy Linus slowly has been growing on me, this part was really half-assedly improvised.
They simply took it apart, wowed at misunderstood things, put it back together, poked it with a stick and concluded that nothing works except mining.
You expect actual testing from LTT? Come on. They're just an entertainment channel that sometimes does tech.
 
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You expect actual testing from LTT? Come on. They're just an entertainment channel that sometimes does tech.
At least more than just, "Hey, we've got a $5000 mining card and it does.... mining..." :banghead:
 
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You expect actual testing from LTT? Come on. They're just an entertainment channel that sometimes does tech.
i watched the vid and to be honest what else could they have added ? its a a mining gpu , worth a shit load
 
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