RTX 30 series GPUs with dead memory chips are now being sold after recent crypto crash

Written by Stuart Thomas on Fri, Jun 24, 2022 7:40 PM

It’s no secret that a big reason for graphics card shortages the past 2 years has been due to crypto miners snatching them up at every chance they could get. So for a lot of us we’ve still been waiting to get our hands on a brand new RTX 30 or RX 6000 series GPU. However, beware of second-hand cards in the market right now, as some are being sold with dead memory chips.

That doesn’t mean the cards won’t work at all, mind you, it just means they won’t be performing as well as they usually would. Which is understandable anyway considering that most of them have been left on 24/7 at maximum power for months (or even years!) at a time.

The reason these GPUs are suddenly flooding the market is because a recent crypto crash has forced a lot of miners to sell off their stock in order to recoup some of their costs. The problem is that it can be hard to tell if a card has been used for mining or just daily use, the latter obviously running less of a risk for reduced performance.

One horror story involves a user who purchased an RTX 3080 online and then later found out that 2GB of their 10GB card had been completely burnt out, leaving them with an 8GB card. However, they did only pay $536 for it, which usually costs around $1000 from inflated prices. So at least there is some silver lining to the story (sort of, I guess?).

Normally, when a memory module dies inside a graphics card, that GPU now fails to post. However, this can be bypassed with a technique known as memory shielding, allowing miners to continue using a card even after those memory chips are completely burnt out. Theoretically, you could replace those memory parts, but it’ll be very hard anyway.

So beware when searching for GPU deals at the moment. The RTX 3080 isn’t even the most popular card used by miners, so considering an RTX 3080 was found with these issues, it’s more than likely that other cards on the market right now can also be found with dead memory chips.

What do you think? Have you seen any second hand GPUs flood the market recently? Are the deals worth the risk? Or do you think it would still be better to buy one brand new from a reputable seller? Let us know your thoughts!

Would it be better to get a second hand GPU below MSRP right now or just get brand new potentially above MSRP?

Would you buy an RTX 3080 right now for 536 USD if it had 2GB less VRAM and came from a miner?

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18:04 Jun-29-2022

I make more then $12,000 a month online. It’s enough to comfortably replace my old jobs income, especially considering I only work about 11 to 12 hours a week from home. I was amazed how easy it was after I tried it…


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14:11 Jun-25-2022

Yeah, those GDDR6X chips really were already pushed probably bit beyond limit, hence why mining hurt them. Plus, if memory servers, even gaming wise they were running hot. So I am not that badly surprised. As usual, I would advise caution when buying used. But, if cheap enough, I would be more than fine taking some risk and buy used card. In the end, I am not that selfish on revenge to advise everyone not buying, just to get my revenge. I also do think that quite a lot of people would benefit from cheap cards, as long as they are working fine. Locally, from what I got told, mostly people buying graphic cards from ex miners got better success rate with working cards than from gamers. But it might be worth asking for photo of mining rig and making sure that miner took good care of the card before buying and of course, only buy in marketplaces with good buyer protection, where you can get your money back.

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11:32 Jun-25-2022

i have actually seen linux based software that can diagnose which of the memory chips are defective.

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05:25 Jun-25-2022

The best tung anyone can do is not buy any used gpu online. Make these people really have to suffer. It will teach these people next time around. That goes for the scammers. Let them buy everything up and then get stuck with no one buying anything.

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08:36 Jun-25-2022

If only the world was a perfect place, everyone had brains and had no FOMO...

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01:30 Jun-25-2022

Current gen GPUs are already 2 years old. Waiting for next gen and hoping I won't be buying a room heater oven that requires a mini nuclear power plant to run it.

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20:43 Jun-27-2022

It's already basically confirmed that next gen GPUs will take over 30% more power at least to run properly, you're likely hoping in vain.


I kinda feel bad that I thought my 750W PSU is overkill for the near future.

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17:28 Jun-28-2022

They are introducing new classes of GPUs at the top, either the RX 7600XT or the RX 7700XT will likely be the replacement for the RX 6900XT, so there will also be a name shift as well. I expect massive dies from Nvidia and multiple medium ones from AMD if they finally make a multi-chip module GPU like their CPUs.

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