The lingering GPU shortage is frustrating for people who play games on PC, because graphics cards are just so hard to come by—they're either always out of stock, or selling for grossly inflated prices set by marketplace sellers. In case you were wondering, however, NVIDIA is doing just fine. More than just fine, NVIDIA expects its first quarter revenue to exceed its previous guidance, with a big uptick in cryptocurrency mining GPUs contributing to the company's bottom line.
Previously, NVIDIA estimated its first quarter revenue for its CMP (Cryptocurrency Mining Processors
) would fetch $50 million from buyers. Higher than expected demand has now driven that estimate to $150 million, or three times what NVIDIA originally anticipated, driven by industrial scale cryptocurrency mining. The adjusted revenue estimate
comes on the heels of reports that a single buyer order around $30 million worth of CMP graphics cards.
NVIDIA's CMP HX lineup consists of barebones graphics cards lacking any display outputs. They only come with the necessary components to mine cryptocurrency, and to that end, they feature lower peak core voltages and frequencies.
Hash rates for the new lineup range from 26 MH/s (CMP 30HX) to 86 MH/s (CMP 90HX). There is also a rumor of NVIDIA releasing a CMP HX card based on its Ampere A100 GPU, which is a bandwidth monster thanks to the inclusion of HBM2 memory. Given that a GeForce RTX 3090 delivers a hash rate of around 120 MH/s, it is conceivable that an Ampere A100-based CMP HX
variant could deliver a hash rate in the neighborhood of 200 MH/s
Looking at things more broadly, NVIDIA said its total revenue for the first quarter is tracking above the $5.3 billion mark it provided during its fiscal year-end earnings call. Part of that comes from its efforts in the data center, where NVIDIA just upped the ante with Grace
, its first-ever data center CPU.
As for the overall shortage, well, bad news folks.
"Overall demand remains very strong and continues to exceed supply while our channel inventories remain quite lean. We expect demand to continue to exceed supply for much of this year. We believe we will have sufficient supply to support sequential growth beyond Q1," said Colette Kress, executive vice president and chief financial officer of NVIDIA.
In other words, don't expect to see current-generation graphics cards to be plentiful anytime soon. Bummer.