Earlier this month, there was a widely reported story about a large batch of AMD Radeon RX 6000 series graphics cards (all Navi 21 models). These were some of the best graphics cards until the latest generation parts came out.german electronics repair shop KrisFix.de (opens in new tab) We received 61 broken or malfunctioning RX 6900 / 6800 family graphics cards and discovered that 48 of them had physical cracks in the GPU silicon. The mysteries about these ruined GPUs may now be solved, and may be due to the dreaded pairing of crypto-mining and high-humidity storage.
Naturally, readers of this AMD GPU silicon cracking news were worried about lovingly caring for RDNA 2 graphics cards as evidenced by this. reddit threadA lot of chatter has focused on the Radeon driver version used by the deceased GPU, pondering whether AMD made some kind of coding error that caused this silicon destruction. tom’s hardware I didn’t report on the original video because there were a lot of ambiguities and lack of clear details. I thought it was batch. It seems we were mostly right.
The original story was derived from a YouTube video on KrisFix, the eponymous channel for German board-level repairers. In today’s updated video, Krisfix comes to a firm conclusion (video embedded above) about what exactly happened to the 61 cards he received from various customers (these are all from one person). Note that it’s not clear if it’s from a customer (multiple customers, or potentially 61 different individuals).
He pretty much thinks that all of the super new looking graphics cards he’s received in his shop in recent weeks have been purchased by individual customers from batches released by the former Cryptominer. Perhaps his local eBay and his Facebook marketplace ads were selling it cheap.
According to KrisFix, these cards may have been in storage for weeks or months as GPU-based cryptomining became uneconomical. The problem is that it appears to have been stored in an environment with inappropriate temperature/humidity levels. Experienced electronics repairers say they’ve seen exactly this symptom of chips cracking and popping out of PCBs after being used due to this kind of improper storage.
Kirsfix believes that if you buy electronics that may have been stored in a poor manner, perhaps passing through widely fluctuating climates during transportation, the item should be opened, acclimated, thoroughly dried, and allowed to settle at room temperature. I’m explaining. These catastrophically damaged GPUs did well at first, but the effects of humidity deep inside the product caused the silicon to crack after being under load during the first rigorous session. is shown.
In other words, these cards were working fine soon after decommissioning from the cryptomine, but the humid storage conditions “soaked” them, and without proper dehumidification they could run into problems. There was no
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Readers should be wary of the used GPU market, but the post-Crypto world is also a source of great bargains and time bombs regarding product durability. Miners go to extraordinary lengths to clean up and sell old GPUs, but thankfully we don’t hear too many stories like this from Krisfix.