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AMD could have a plan for its first-gen RDNA graphics cards in cryptocurrency mining

Photo of: Dennis Ramos
by Dennis Ramos

A few years ago when Ethereum and Bitcoin were at its peak, the cryptocurrency mining rush registered an all-time-high with the GPU stock showing all-time-low figures. The GPU which was display-less and emerged from its worn-out status was initiated because the markets had to be balanced. This meant that the gaming-centered GPU was left for the gamers which suggested that the prospectors had enough access to technology which was constructed and kept aside for mining digital assets. 

AMD, considered as the chip giant as per a report is rumored to release a new-old graphics card that is exclusively designed for cryptocurrency mining. The team Red working on this offering is expected to release the crypto-focused GPU by Q1 2021. 

The rumors of AMD making a grand comeback came to the surface when Linus patches containing the description blockchain were noticed sometime earlier this week. With AMD’s Big Navi hitting the markets next week, AMD also could have engagement plans for older RDNA cards so that they could play their parts in the current and much-evolved crypto markets. The team at Phoronix spotted something called the navi10 blockchain SKY among Linux drivers with a device ID 0x731E. This is the biggest proof that shows we may soon expect a new NAVI graphics card which is specifically designed for cryptocurrency tasks. 

The RDNA 1.0 based cards are an adapted version of the ordinary Navi 10 purported for different usage. It does not have a display output meaning that it will only be utilized for churning out new coins. 

By the looks of it, the new card could be based on the RDNA 1.0 architecture on the 7nm FinFET process node and comes with the exact same 40 Compute Units (CUs) and 2,560 Stream Processors (SPs) configuration as the RX 5700 XT. The only difference that seems as of now between the patches posted and the current AMDGPU Linux kernel drivers is the disablement of DCN (Display Core Next) and VCN (Video Core Next) engines. This could mean that the new NAVI 10 SKU will not have the graphics display support. 

After making huge profits from the 2017 crypto craze AMD along with its rival Nvidia, it was affected by the bear run in the market after a hugely successful 2017. The year 2018 was bearish indicating that the firm went downside. Following this, there is another report that a Taiwanese firm in the gaming industry called MSI has also registered five GPUs in the month of September for mining purposes. This could be the ushering in of a new trend again. 

But, this is what has emerged as a keen observation based on the proof we collated. You have to remember that these are still rumors unless something solid appears on the surface. There is a likelihood that it will happen during the AMD graphics stream slated to take place next week on the 28th. We will keep updating you on the same. Keep reading and watch our s[pace for more.