NVIDIA, AMD, And Motherboard OEMs Reportedly Readying Components Optimized For Ethereum And Other CryptoCurrency Miners

asrock mining mobo

With the popularity of upstart Cryptocurrencies like Ethereum on the rise and the value of well-established currencies like Bitcoin steadily increasing, there is new-found interest in Cryptocurrency mining. If you remember, a few years back, Cryptocurrency miners caused a shortage of AMD GPUs, which resulted in such high demand that what were supposed to be relatively affordable graphics cards ultimately sold at price points significantly above their MSRP. Over time, GPUs were supplanted by more power-efficient FPGAs and ASICs specifically designed for Bitcoin Cryptocurrency mining, but changes in the market have once again made GPUs a viable solution.
amd radeon rx 580 rx 570 10
MSI Radeon RX 580

As such, there is another run on AMD Polaris-based graphics cards like the Radeon RX 580, and some mid-range NVIDIA GPUs as well, which is driving up their value. In an effort to prevent the same kind of shortages that happened in the past, DigiTimes is reporting that AMD and NVIDIA are both readying stripped-down graphics cards, specifically targeting Cryptocurrency miners.

The cards will reportedly lack any display outputs and potentially have lower-clocks as well. And because most miners punish their GPUs with heavy 24/7 workloads that could shorten the lifespan of the cards, their warranties will be reduced to 90 days. When interest in GPU mining waned a few years ago, many heavily used GPUs were re-sold while still in warranty, and they sometimes failed, which caused some support nightmares and increased costs for AMD and NVIDIA.
asrock h110 pro btc motherboard
The ASRock H110 Pro BTC+ Has 13 PCI Express Slots

At Computex, ASRock also announced a new motherboard targeted at Cryptocurrency miners -- the ASRock H110 Pro BTC+. The ASRock H110 Pro BTC+ is packing 13 PCI Express slots – twelve x1 slots and one x16 slot -- and Intel’s H110 chipset. Because CPU resources are less important in a GPU-mining rig, an affordable, mainstream chipset paired to a low-cost CPU is suitable. And because GPU mining doesn’t require massive amounts of data to be shuffled across the PCI Express interface, x1 slots are also fine.
pci e riser
PCI Express x1 to x16 Riser

Miners will typically tap the x1 slots on motherboard with x16 risers that allow for standard graphics cards to be installed. The whole assembly is then mounted in an open-air rack to make it easier to cool and maintain. Although the ASRock H110 Pro BTC+ appears to be a standard ATX motherboard, there are no chassis that can accommodate the motherboard's unique slot configuration, hence the need for alternative solution.

mining rack
GPU Mining Rigs Are Available On Amazon

ASRock didn’t specify pricing or when the H110 Pro BTC+ will be available. It's reported that the AMD and NVIDIA graphics card for mining will be made available at the end of the June, but there is no official word on that news at this point.