Chinese and South Pacific PC OEMs have started to repurpose NVIDIA's GeForce RTX 30 Mobility GPUs into mining-ready desktop graphics cards. This move has been down not only to bypass the LHR restrictions but also a recent crackdown that re-enables LHR on the standard desktop GPUs.
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30 Mobility GPUs Now Ending Up In Crypto Mining Market As Desktop-Grade Graphics Cards
Pictures and retail listings of several repurposed graphics cards were posted by I_LEAK_VN. Asian OEMs are repurposing several NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30 series mobility GPUs, primarily the NVIDIA RTX 3070M & RTX 3060M, to meet the demand of the crypto segment. Although the demand has died down quite significantly, there are still some people who are investing in the ecosystem and expanding their existing setups.
— I_Leak_VN (@I_Leak_VN) May 26, 2022
What's happening here is simply the case of taking an NVIDIA Mobility GPU (GeForce RTX 30 series) and putting it on a desktop-grade PCB with a desktop-grade cooler. The mobility GPUs feature the same die so compatibility on existing PCBs will not be that hard to achieve however they do come with vastly different core specs which are inferior to their actual desktop offerings.
Just for comparison, the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 desktop graphics card is based on the GA104 GPU with 5888 cores, 8 GB memory, a 256-bit bus, and a 220W TDP. The RTX 3070M for mobility platforms features the same GA104 GPU but comes with fewer 5120 cores and a 115W TDP. The RTX 3060M and RTX 3060 are a different story as the mobile variant comes with a higher-spec'd GA106 GPU core with 3840 cores but a lower 6 GB VRAM at 80W while the desktop variant comes with the same GA106 GPU but with fewer 3584 cores and a higher 12 GB memory capacity at 170 Watts.
As for the mining performance, the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070M graphics card offers around 65 MH/s crypto mining performance in Ethereum. This should net you around $1.20-$1.30 in earnings per day. Also, since these cards aren't based on the LHR design, the recent driver-level crackdown by NVIDIA (via Videocardz) won't affect them. The GeForce 512.95 WHQL driver actually enforces a halve-hash rate on LHR cards and although it can be reverted by rolling back to the previous drivers, it is still going to be a bit of frustration for miners.
The GeForce RTX 30 Mobility lineup not having any LHR SKU does save them from this. The new drivers also enforce LHR so that even the minings app that is offering 100% LHR unlocks cannot offer the full hash rate. Now one thing about these cards is that they will have some resale value compared to traditional headless mining cards since they come with display outputs. Users who just want to play games after they are done with mining can do so but such cards will flood the used market once their mining life is complete which means no one will know how much these cards have been abused in the crypto business.
Chinese retail outlets such as Taobao have listed a large number of these graphics cards and we would ask our readers to avoid buying these cards as there's no guarantee of how much these are used already. Plus pulling the GeForce RTX 30 Mobility supply away from laptops to crypto cards means that we are going to see dGPU-powered laptop prices shoot up. The good thing is that the whole crypto system within the DIY segment has slowed down tremendously so we are sure that these cards aren't something new that's happening now but have been going on for a while now & prices have really come down due to poor demand of such hardware.