GPU miners trickery: Watch out for painted memory on used graphics cards

PSA: Discolored reminiscence chips are a standard signal indicating closely used graphics playing cards, probably former mining playing cards. Latest proof suggests some resellers try to deceive prospects by portray over the reminiscence. The paint comes off comparatively simply for these inspecting the used GPUs.

Two Brazilian YouTube channels have uncovered indicators that crypto miners try to promote used graphics playing cards by passing them off as extra evenly used than they’re. A stunning new tactic is to disguise indicators of damage on the GDDR reminiscence.

When a GPU has been underneath heavy load for prolonged durations, similar to for mining cryptocurrency, the warmth can provide the reminiscence chips a yellow tint. Iskandar Souza (beneath) and TecLab not too long ago posted movies analyzing playing cards showing to have paint on these chips. Scraping off the paint revealed discoloration. Souza’s report compares a recent GPU with one that includes disguised put on and tear.

The previous couple of years have set the stage for such schemes within the graphics card market. Miners try to dump the GPUs from their rigs that misplaced profitability after the crypto winter and Ethereum Merge final yr. Though the mining drop-off has improved costs in current months, many playing cards nonetheless struggle to reach their MSRP.

On this surroundings, offers on used GPUs are seemingly nonetheless enticing to many potential prospects. These patrons seemingly wish to keep away from playing cards from crypto mines that are extra worn than most.

Heavy use and restore efforts additionally depart marks on different elements of GPUs, as Souza’s video reveals. Discoloration round and scratches on the cardboard’s central processor could point out the vendor tried to resolder it, as an illustration. Lacking screws may recommend somebody opened a graphics card to cowl up traces of mining use.

Final yr, we reported on a video showing a miner making an attempt to organize GPUs for resale by blasting a rack of them with a stress washer — a extremely unadvisable methodology. Not solely can untreated water injury graphics card parts, however so can the power of the stress washer.

All refurbished GPUs aren’t unhealthy, nevertheless. Consumers simply should be cautious when shopping for from third-party sellers on main websites like Newegg and Amazon. The most secure solution to get refurbs might be immediately from the shops of board companions like PNY and EVGA (pictured above).

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