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Nvidia's Ampere Cryptomining Monster GPU Goes on Sale for $4,300

Nvidia CMP 170HX
Nvidia CMP 170HX (Image credit: Yahoo)

As spotted by hardware sleuth Komachi_Ensaka, Nvidia's flagship CMP 170HX cryptocurrency mining GPU has gone up for purchase overseas. Vipera, a retailer in Dubai, reportedly has up 238 units in stock and is selling the CMP 170HX for a whopping $4,300.

Nvidia had launched the Cryptocurrency Mining Processor (CMP) lineup in an attempt to divert cryptocurrency miners' attention away from its Ampere-based GeForce graphics cards. We later learned that Nvidia was repurposing Turing silicon for these CMP GPUs. The CMP 170HX, on the other hand, leverages the GA100 silicon, the same brobdingnagian die that powers the expensive A100 data center GPU. Once again, it's just Nvidia's smart way of recycling defective GA100 dies into something lucrative.

The GA100 silicon inside the CMP 170HX only has 70 enabled SMs, amounting to 4,480 CUDA cores whereas the A100 has the full-fledged die at 108 SMs or 6,912 CUDA cores. The CMP 170HX delivers up to 164 MHps of Ethereum mining performance. It only requires a PCIe 4.0 x4 connection to hit its performance target. The GPU also wields 8GB of HBM2e memory across a 4,096-bit memory interface. The CMP 170HX has a 250W TDP and is more than happy to feed off a single 8-pin PCIe power connector.

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Nvidia CMP 170HX

Nvidia CMP 170HX (Image credit: Yahoo)
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Nvidia CMP 170HX

Nvidia CMP 170HX (Image credit: Yahoo)
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Nvidia CMP 170HX

Nvidia CMP 170HX (Image credit: Yahoo)
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Nvidia CMP 170HX

Nvidia CMP 170HX (Image credit: Yahoo)
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Nvidia CMP 170HX

Nvidia CMP 170HX (Image credit: Yahoo)
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Nvidia CMP 170HX

Nvidia CMP 170HX (Image credit: Yahoo)
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Nvidia CMP 170HX

Nvidia CMP 170HX (Image credit: Yahoo)
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Nvidia CMP 170HX

Nvidia CMP 170HX (Image credit: Yahoo)
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Nvidia CMP 170HX

Nvidia CMP 170HX (Image credit: Yahoo)

The CMP 170HX has previously smiled for the camera, but this is the first time that a retailer is publicly selling it. Komachi_Ensaka also unearthed a Yahoo auction over in Japan where the current bid for the CMP 170HX is at 600,000 yen ($5,285). The GPU features a standard, dual-slot design with passive cooling. The silver metallic shroud looks pretty sleek and if it wasn't for the small Nvidia and CMP 170HX logos, you wouldn't know where the GPU came from.

Being a GPU that's tailored to professional cryptocurrency mining, the CMP 170HX lacks display outputs. In fact, user feedback revealed that the GPU comes with a locked vBIOS so overclocking or undervolting are off the table. Due to the nature of cryptocurrency mining, GPUs that are designed for that purpose typically don't come with a generous warranty. For example, Gigabyte backs its CMP 30HX with a limited three-month warranty. According to Vipera, the CMP 170HX has a one-year manufacturer warranty.

  • bollwerk
    The price per hash is gonna have to get a lot more competitive compared to gaming GPUs, if they want miners to pick these cards over gaming GPUs. Folks seem to be finding code to bypass the "LHR" code in newer gaming GPUs, at least in part.
    Reply
  • ezst036
    bollwerk said:
    The price per hash is gonna have to get a lot more competitive compared to gaming GPUs, if they want miners to pick these cards over gaming GPUs.

    Agreed. However, this is the path to put an end to miners using gaming GPUs over the long term.

    Conspicuously absent from this article is the hash rate of the 170HX. Rumor has it that the hash rate of the CMP 170 is 164MH/s, which would be quite a large jump from a RTX 3090 or RX6900XT.

    Ultimately AMD and Intel will need to introduce their own lines of miner cards with a higher hash rate than the top end gaming GPU. It creates a product-line wall of separation between miner and gamer.
    Reply
  • DavidC1
    ezst036 said:
    Ultimately AMD and Intel will need to introduce their own lines of miner cards with a higher hash rate than the top end gaming GPU. It creates a product-line wall of separation between miner and gamer.

    Part of the reason consumer video cards are so successful in mining is because of their relative affordability, granted by the low prices of sharing with the gaming GPU architecture.

    So to create something different would require a different line, or use something from the server line.

    When it comes to Ethereum memory bandwidth is king. So it would need HBMx technology to make it faster. That means high price. Most will continue to ignore "mining optimized" cards and just use the consumer cards.
    Reply
  • VforV
    The GPU mining problem will never get solved, unless crypto mining dies altogether. And that has very low chances to happen... outside of world wide fatal factors like WW3/biggest economic crash ever.

    The best we can hope is to alleviate the problem a little with intel joining and more GPUs production, but that's about it. It will never be again like it was some years ago, pricing included...
    Reply
  • Blitz Hacker
    An economic crash would make crypto skyrocket in price fyi ;)
    Reply
  • lazyabum
    Glad I'm more interested in research and development of GPU apps and graphics rather than gaming. Going from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars just for gaming hardware is a waste.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    Only 8GB of HBM2e? That isn't enough spare VRAM to leverage the GPU's under-used resources by hashing another thing alongside ETC.
    Reply
  • maik80
    The problem with a card like this is that miners can't resell it as easily as gamer cards
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    maik80 said:
    The problem with a card like this is that miners can't resell it as easily as gamer cards
    The resale value may be a significant concern for the home miner who needs to squeeze every dollar out of a GPU to break even, not so much for large-scale miners who will run GPUs until they either break or aren't cost-economical anymore, at which point they have limited resale value which may not be worth the resale hassle and liabilities.
    Reply
  • keith12
    'brobdingnagian' - Now there's a word! Nice :)
    Reply