Due to Covid-19 and the release of the RTX 3000 series GPUS, there has been massive shortages on GPUs, new and used.
The RTX 3000 series GPUs were released on September 17th, 2020 and most gamers still cannot get a hold of one. This is a result of massive shortages due to Covid-19 and the massive bull run. To "help alleviate" the shortages Nvidia is releasing gimped GPUs that can only mine crypto and cannot be used as a gaming GPU. The reasoning behind this is to prevent crypto miners from buying up all the gaming cards.
Nvidia claims this move will allow more gamers to get gaming GPUs. So somehow during this pandemic when they cannot make enough gaming GPUs they are going to add a new product line that has equal or more demand and some how supply more gaming GPUs to the public. Umm, yeah.
Nvidia is calling this new product line the CMP series, or "Dedicated GPU for Professional Mining".
It is clear the 90HX is the Nvidia 3080 card based on the hashrate. Regular NVidia GPUs will include a bios / driver handshake that detects crypto mining and reduces the hashrate by 50%. This will make these cards less desirable for crypto miners as it will drastically reduce the profitability of these cards.
Nvidia has already proven they can not even remotely keep up with the demand for the RTX 3000 series cards.
The second hand GPU market is huge and is how a lot PC gamers get their GPUs. Mining GPUs are a large portion of this second hand market. With this new change, this second hand market will be limited to only gaming GPUs, drastically reducing the supply of second hand GPUs to gamers.
So where do these mining GPUs go when you are done with them?
If you guessed the landfill, you win!
"E-waste is the most rapidly growing waste problem in the world. We generate about 50 million tons of it every year. This is equivalent to throwing out 1000 laptops every single second. In some places the amount of e-waste increases with 500 % in the years to come."
That's a lot of e-waste, and soon to be a lot more with Nvidia's one-time use CMP series GPUs get released.
What this really comes down to is Nvidia seeing a new market where they can make even more money than they do now. GPU prices are already at insane levels making PC gaming a luxury. The most attractive RTX 3000 series card, the RTX 3080, was announced at $699 but are selling direct from retailers for as much as $1,100 almost twice the MSRP. Part of the increased prices are the result of the Trump administration instituting a 25% tariff on GPUs and motherboards from China. Another reason for the price hike is the result of VRAM prices skyrocketing due to shortage of GDDR5, GDDR6, and GDDR6X chips.
These price hikes will likely reach the next series MSRP and result in an even higher list price for RTX 4000 series cards coming even closer to $1,000 (or even past) for their flagship cards.