Nvidia’s recently announced RTX 30 LHR (Lite Hash Rate) series is touted as another step for getting graphics cards in the hands of actual gamers after cryptocurrency miners have continually put strain on the market thanks to the recent crypto boom. But will it actually help PC gamers get their hands on one?
On the one hand, the LHR series seems like a great idea: significantly limit the crypto mining speeds of the recent RTX 30 series GPUs in order to make them less desirable to miners. After all, the global chip shortage has resulted in limited availability for graphics cards, and on top of that crypto miners have been buying up as many as there are available, further decreasing stock and driving up GPU prices once again.
On the other hand, the crypto mining limiter only affects the Ethereum cryptocurrency, which to be fair is the most popular cryptocurrency among miners at the moment. But with Ethereum moving over to a proof-of-stake model - which will negate the need for a GPU in order to mine it - miners will switch over to any one of the other countless cryptocurrencies out there.
So there is a very real chance that the RTX 30 LHR series will indeed help to make more GPUs available to gamers who actually need them, but equally as much of a chance that it simply won’t do anything.
For example, when Ethereum moves over to a proof-of-stake model, miners will have 2 options: sell the GPU second-hand for some sort of profit (since most of them will have already paid off the GPU’s price from mining alone), or continue using them to mine another altcoin.
Chances are most miners will keep their GPU and find another crypto to mine instead, since graphics cards are seen mostly as an investment these days. So instead they’ll move onto another cryptocurrency, at which point buying more cards will be a given since Nvidia won’t be limiting the mining performance for any other cryptocurrency.
Maybe we’re just being pessimistic here, and we like to be optimistic instead. Hopefully the LHR series will help make more GPUs available for those that need them, even if only for a brief time. Afterwards, we’ll just have to wait until the global chip shortage is under wraps, which according to some big tech giants won’t begin until at least 2023.
What do you think? Will the RTX 30 LHR series actually help gamers? Will it help improve stock and reduce inflated prices? Or will it make no difference whatsoever? Let’s debate!