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The Return Of GPU Cryptocurrency Mining
Quote:This has brought confirmations that "(...) Bitmain has already developed an ASIC [application-specific integrated circuit] for mining Ethereum, and is readying the supply chain for shipments in 2Q18." And it doesn't seem Bitmain is the only company eyeing the doors of yet another extremely lucrative ASIC mining market: "While Bitmain is likely to be the largest ASIC vendor (currently 70-80% of Bitcoin mining ASICs) and the first to market with this product, we have learned of at least three other companies working on Ethereum ASICs, all at various stages of development."

Rolland believes Bitmain's specialized chip offering for Ethereum will hurt demand for PC graphics cards - as well it should, since it stands as much a status quo breaker as Bitcoin mining ASIC were at the time of their introduction. Rolland further estimated that ethereum mining-related sales accounted for about 20% of AMD's sales and 10% of NVIDIA's revenue - strong numbers that if declining, would surely impact share value and company valuation. As a result, the analyst lowered his price target for AMD shares to $7.50 from $13, representing a 29% reduction from Friday's close. Forecast for NVIDIA shares was also reduced to $200 from $215, but NVIDIA didn't see a downgraded state - it remained at neutral - while AMD was downgraded from neutral to negative. The reasoning? "NVIDIA has a stronger and more durable gaming franchise which would help it work through this potential Ethereum-related unwind," he wrote.
AMD pushes back against the previously posted report:
Elric doesn't get it, and this comment explains why:
Quote:"can simply ramp up GPU production"

It is not that easy.

Neither AMD or Nvidia own their own fabs, therefore they have to contract out to other foundries (TSMC, GlobalFoundries, etc.) to produce the chips.

Most fabs run at or very near full capacity, with the capacity sold 6 months or more in advance.

For quick ramp-up (3-6 months) they'd have to pay enough of a premium over their normal contract prices for the fab to be willing to bump other already contracted production, to cover the penalties the fab would have to pay to break those existing contracts.

In paying the premium, they are putting themselves at risk if the crypto-mining craze does turn out to be a fad. They'll have a huge amount of stock that cost them extra per-unit to produce that they can't get rid of.

However, since this 'craze' has been going on for more than 6 months, I wouldn't be surprised if they were contracting - with the appropriate lead-times - to do a moderate increase in production. A testing the waters increase, one that won't bite them badly if the craze does evaporate. If the craze is still going strong in 6 months after they've had moderate increase, they'd probably look at further increases.

In response to Elric's second video, selling the cards directly won't work. Look at the Geforce Shop: None of the cards are in stock.

Intel is working on a Bitcoin mining accelerator, the patent is from 2016:
Corsair launches mining GPU buyback program:
The mining is dying. I am seeing cards appear in stock at MSRP here in Canada. They are still selling out quickly but it's a big improvement. No one in their right mind would buy a GPU for mining at this point. It's barely profitable after factoring in the electricity cost.
(04-01-2018, 08:53 AM)SickBeast Wrote: The mining is dying.  I am seeing cards appear in stock at MSRP here in Canada.  They are still selling out quickly but it's a big improvement.  No one in their right mind would buy a GPU for mining at this point.  It's barely profitable after factoring in the electricity cost.
Bitmain announces its ASIC:
Quote:Bitmain’s ASIC could mean the end of cryptocurrency mining on GPUs — but there’s at least two reasons to doubt it.

First, we’ve got to strongly caution anyone considering taking the plunge on an ASIC miner for cryptocurrency, period. Four to five years ago, when the first Bitcoin ASIC and FPGA miners launched, people rushed to order them, only to wind up losing hundreds to thousands of dollars. In many cases, it took companies 6-12 months to deliver products they promised would ship in a matter of weeks — and that assumes the company in question didn’t collapse after committing financial fraud. That alone is good reason to be cautious.
It’s not clear how much of a gain this is over GPUs. Overclockers3D didn’t think it was all that much, and it doesn’t seem to be as large as the gains when BTC moved to ASICs, but I suspect it could still be a noticeable improvement. But all of that’s secondary to a larger issue: the Ethereum community might hard fork the currency before they accept Ethereum ASIC mining. Many cryptocurrency enthusiasts are wary of the massive centralized infrastructure that Bitcoin developed and its domination by a tiny group of the largest firms.
In a recent poll, when asked if Ethereum users would support a hard fork to block ASIC mining, 57 percent of the user base said they would. That doesn’t mean such a fork will happen, but it might not be a good idea to plunk down $800 for one of those Bitmain units. By the time July rolls around, these units may not be worth much.
Quote:According to DigiTimes, Gigabyte, MSI, and TUL are expecting their shipments to plunge by 40 percent this month, courtesy of a sudden drop in demand for GPUs at every price point. Apparently cryptocurrency miners are concerned about the availability of Bitmain’s ASICs and no longer want to invest in conventional graphics cards, since faster, more efficient ASICs might be available by Q3. To give you an idea how insane the profit-taking has been, GPU manufacturers expect to see their profit margins — which have been as high as 50 percent — decline by half, to 25 percent or more. For months, we’ve explained that while AMD and Nvidia benefit from higher GPU sales in terms of total unit shipments, they don’t actually capture much profit when card prices go through the roof. These declines, if DigiTimes is right, are a further indication of who is actually capturing the value here — and it wasn’t Nvidia or AMD.
DigiTimes’ track record on these kinds of predictions is mixed, and the hard fork expected for currencies like Ethereum could kill Bitmain’s ASIC plans before they get started, so don’t count this as a given yet. But we’re hoping that in six months, the GPU market will have recovered to something approaching equilibrium, as opposed to overheating like a coked-out parrot in a sauna.
Quote:So, is it time to buy a new GPU? My honest answer is no. If you’re an Nvidia fan, the smartest thing to do is to wait and see what the company rolls out this summer. If you’re an AMD fan, these prices are still too hot to be worth the investment, especially when the Polaris architecture is closing on two years old. AMD may not be planning a desktop refresh this year (it isn’t, as far as we know), but that doesn’t mean pulling the trigger on bad deals is a good idea.

If GPU prices continue to drop, however, we should see them approaching target MSRP within the next 4-6 weeks. ExtremeTech recommends waiting a little while longer if you can manage it. But if you have to buy today, at least you won’t have to sell a kidney to do it.
Quote:The company's OEM and IP segment grew 148% during the same period. This segment includes Nvidia's OEM GPU sales and Tegra, but it also includes sales of CMP SKUs, which are specialty cards for professional mining outfits in the volatile cryptocurrency segment. Nvidia says these cards accounted for $298 million of the OEM and IP segment revenue, marking the company's first public comments on its crypto-derived revenue.

Nvidia predicts those sales will decline by two-thirds during the current quarter, which is an unexpectedly sharp decline. The company also conceded that some of its gaming revenue also includes sales to casual miners, and given that professional miners plundering the commercial market spurred the graphics card shortage, it is possible that a portion of Nvidia's gaming revenue is also tied to professional miners. Not only is mining on the downturn, but new Ethereum-capable Bitmain ASICs also threaten to reduce demand for GPUs severely. That raises concerns with investors that Nvidia's $1.723 billion in gaming sales may suffer from the cryptocurrency downturn as well.
Quote:The impressive performance of the Titan V may be impressive, but our general feeling for the near future in the world of video cards is somewhat gloomy. There does not seem to be a short-term solution to the video card shortage caused by cryptomining, among other things, and if we also see Titan V's mining performance in consumer Voltas it does not bode well for its availability... In the meantime, the meager competition from AMD also gives little reason for Nvidia to introduce new, fast-paced cards. In any case, only time will tell us how the video card situation will develop, and anyone who buys a Titan V will have little trouble with it in any case.
Quote:Jon Peddie Research, the industry's market research firm for the graphics industry, has updated it's quarterly Market Watch report. Overall, the report finds the crypto-currency market is continuing to influence the PC graphics market, though its influence is waning. Market watch found that year-to-year total GPU shipments increased 3.4%, desktop graphics increased 14%, notebooks decreased -3%. GPU shipments decreased -10% from last quarter: AMD decreased -6%, Nvidia decreased -10%, and Intel decreased -11%.
Quote:However, producers of graphics cards obviously don't want to give away their record-high profits in their entirety; and they're showing some reluctance, some "pricing memory" on their graphics cards, maintaining gross margins in the 20% area, double that of pre-mining pricing. As such, graphics card makers are again abandoning the mining boom as a source of stable revenue, looking to other solutions (such as servers, datacenter acceleration and such, DigiTimes reports in the case of TUL). Another thing that would certainly help graphics card manufacturers in keeping up high demand and profits, of course, would be the impending release of a new NVIDIA architecture... At least for those that have AIB status with the company.
Quote:As the mining craze seems to have hit a steaming wall alongside the current contraction in the crypto market (which has almost all cryptocurrencies redlining), Gigabyte is revising its graphics card shipment expectations for 2Q18. This isn't a sudden move, mind you: the "cryptocurrency mining accelerator market" has been slowing its ludicrous demand for some time now. However, Gigabyte expects the slowdown to continue and maybe even become steeper: a 20% reduction in its overall shipment expectations for 2Q18, from 1.2M units down to 1M, and a 10% reduction in ASP (Average Selling Price) do speak to this decline in demand. As a result of this expected decrease, Gigabyte will once again turn its marketing efforts towards gaming products and usage scenarios for their graphics cards, diverting funds that had been allocated to mining.

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