Let's talk GPU differences Nvidia/AMD and ProgPoW. Why does AMD suffer in ProgPoW? Nvidia the King? : gpumining
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Let’s talk GPU differences Nvidia/AMD and ProgPoW. Why does AMD suffer in ProgPoW? Nvidia the King? : gpumining

(EDIT: Up to date with Consumer enter and ETHMINER Dev enter)

As a result of ProgPoW is being hotly debated. So I believe all of us must have a sit-down, some espresso(or favourite beverage) and lets have a look the variations in GPU structure between Nvidia and AMD. This can purely concentrate on GPUs. For different questions on ProgPoW and Ethereum see my write-up HERE

WARNING. To Clarify the whole lot correctly this will probably be lengthy!

What Am I masking?

Why was Polaris(RX400/500) collection so good at Eth-hash?

AMD/Nvidia Energy consumption.

  • TDP breakdown

  • Gaming energy ranges

Why the facility distinction between the 2 algorithms?


First-up GPU evaluations That I will probably be quoting all through and price a learn by means of.

RX480 Assessment

RX580 Assessment


GamersNexus RX580

GTX1060 Assessment

GTX1070 Assessment

Why did RX400/500 stomp out competitors in ETH-Hash?

First some fast information on ETH-Hash. It targeted closely on reminiscence due to DAG(directed acyclic graph) creation. The DAG file is positioned immediately in your GPU reminiscence. The Ethereum DAG is a key part for the proof of labor algorithm and is generated for every epoch at round each 30,000 blocks. Slowly rising the quantity of reminiscence required to run Eth-hash PoW.

AMD has all the time saved there mid-range with 256bit-bus and with Polaris paired it with 7-8GBPS GDDR5 reminiscence

RX 480’s VRAM…As soon as once more widespread for mainstream AMD playing cards, AMD has caught with a 256-bit GDDR5 reminiscence bus right here. Connected to this bus is both 4GB or 8GB of VRAM…Formally, 7Gbps GDDR5 is the minimal velocity for each RX 480 capacities… Nonetheless for his or her 8GB reference card, AMD has opted to ship the cardboard with sooner 8Gbps reminiscence with the intention to additional enhance efficiency.

r/gpumining - Let's talk GPU differences Nvidia/AMD and ProgPoW. Why does AMD suffer in ProgPoW? Nvidia the King?

Supply: Anandtech

This together with permitting bios modification that gave entry to tighter reminiscence timings allowed them to completely match Eth-hash. As Kristy/Ohgodagirl says

An environment friendly algorithm for {hardware} must match the entry patterns and out there house of that {hardware}. For this reason AMD GPUs with firmware edits noticed massive efficiency features on Ethereum — as a result of the entry patterns of reminiscence chips have been matched to the entry patterns of Ethash.

Nvidia’s GDDR5X, GTX1060 GDDR5 9GBPS, and GTX1060’s with Hynix reminiscence gave horrible hashrates (Till the ETH-PILL for 1080/1080ti) as a result of they didn’t match the entry patterns of Eth-hash. Anandtech states on Nvidia’s implementation for GDDR5X;

…new GDDR5X reminiscence controllers are additionally backwards suitable with conventional GDDR5, which in flip is used to drive the GTX 1070 with its 8Gbps GDDR5. The distinction in operation between GDDR5 and GDDR5X does make the ROP scenario a bit trickier general for NVIDIA’s architects – now they want to have the ability to deal with two completely different reminiscence entry patterns.

The GTX 1060, RX580’s direct value/recreation competitor, solely used a 192-bit bus GDDR5 leading to a 192GB/sec. Nvidia’s used particular compression methods so this wasn’t noticeable in video games. Nonetheless it Diminished any Eth-hash efficiency benefits. The GTX 1070 carried out on par with RX400/500 due to the same GDDR5 velocity and 256bit-bus.

The AMD ticking-clock of doom (That was averted)

AMD GPUs endure from what often known as DAG-thrashing. This occurs when the DAG dimension begins reaching greater reminiscence limits. RX280/380 2/4GB and RX270/370’s have been the very first affected when Ethereum hit it is 2GB restrict. Genoil(Creator of Genoils’Miner) said because the DAG takes 100% of first reminiscence financial institution (2gb) as soon as it reaches past 2GB it strikes to the 2nd reminiscence financial institution. The GPU has to entry two banks as a substitute of only one resulting in important hashrate drop. It is because AMD’s GPU designs entry 2GB reminiscence banks at 256bit a time(2GB/4GB/8GB). Instance 256bit learn from 2GB reminiscence financial institution, 2.5GB of reminiscence must be learn then the controller switches to the following 2GB reminiscence financial institution. RX500/400s we’re set to endure in 2017 till AMD launched particular replace “Blockchain drivers” that fastened this situation. This repair didn’t apply to older AMD GPUs akin to 200/300 collection.

Nvidia GTX1060/1070 didn’t endure from this situation. I can’t discover a precise purpose however i summarize is has to do with the variations in how reminiscence is learn by the reminiscence controller within the two architectures.

NVIDIA has reorganized the reminiscence controllers to make sure that every reminiscence controller nonetheless operates on the identical quantity of knowledge. With GDDR5 they teamed up two GDDR5 channels to get 64B operations, whereas with GDDR5X this may be completed with a single reminiscence channel.

r/gpumining - Let's talk GPU differences Nvidia/AMD and ProgPoW. Why does AMD suffer in ProgPoW? Nvidia the King?

Supply: 1stMiningRig

r/gpumining - Let's talk GPU differences Nvidia/AMD and ProgPoW. Why does AMD suffer in ProgPoW? Nvidia the King?

Supply:Legit Critiques

We are actually past Epoch 199, presently 234, and even R9 290/390’s are affected by Dag-trashing with customers reporting about 27mh/s formally reaching round 30-32mh/s.


(I’ve personally owned and ran, GTX1060, GTX1070, AMD RX580 on Ethereum)

The RX400/500 carried out on eth-hash anyplace from 27-32Mh/s with Bios modifications. With no BIOs mod anyplace from 22-25mh/s. On common the GTX1060 carried out about 20mh/s upwards of 24mh/s with overclocking. Hynix variations carried out considerably worse at 16mh/s-18mh/s. The GTX1070 achieved speeds of 26mh/s-34mh/s and not using a Bios mod. This put AMD’s $200/$230 class of mid-range card up in opposition to Nvidia’s high-end $400 class of card.

With out bio’s modification the AMD would of critically been hampered right here. It appears Nvidia makes use of related entry patterns as Eth-hash for there reminiscence timings with out the wants for BIOs mod. In a world the place each BIOs have been locked down Nvidia really would been the Eth-hash king, not AMD.


It will get difficult right here. AMD’s energy readings from GPU-Z are not correct it is because the studying solely bear in mind components of the GPU relatively than the GPU as entire. The place as Nvidia’s is taken as an entire. How a lot energy is saved all goes off how diligent the miner needs to be with decreasing voltage on their GPUs. Moreover GPUs aren’t created equal and differ from vendor to vendor some being higher some being worse. I’ve personally skilled this with MSI vs XFX with MSI being higher as an entire and XFX being hit or miss.

So for this I am going off my private expertise of what I’ve seen. My RX580’s achieved about 80w~ (GPU-Z) Nonetheless the precise energy was extra alongside 120w. Voltage settings have been 850mv(Core)/900mv(reminiscence). RX480/470s achieved higher energy financial savings (as you will note why in a while) though i can’t attest to this since I by no means owned one. Nvidia GTX1070 achieved about 90-100w. Voltage settings for these at 713mv(Utilizing Nvinspector). For GTX 1060s achieved 65-70w at 700mv.

Apart Linux customers will see greater energy utilization in comparison with Home windows(about 10% greater).


Nvidia P104-100 was a card designed with Ethereum mining because it promoting level. it was geared up with GDDR5X that matched Eth-hash entry patterns. This allowed it to achieved 40Mh/s. nonetheless this was not bought retail in all places primarily solely out there in Asia. So I am simply going to issue this card as an outlier or a unicorn.

Winners and Losers

Due to how AMD designed the RX400/500 collection, this technology dominated Eth-hash mining with wonderful value, efficiency, and low energy consumption. Nvidia, alternatively, took different strategies for GTX1060 that allowed it to compete in video games, energy consumption, however not in Eth-hash mining. The GTX1070 was too costly for many miners although it competed metrically related in Hashrate/Energy/Efficiency simply not value. The DAG-thrashing doom nearly killed RX400/500, however AMD themselves stepped in and saved them.

Claymore’s Genius, Twin-mining!

Since ETH-Hash solely required small quantities of 1600p Keccak and beneath utilized the GPU core, Claymore took benefit of this and create the primary ever twin miner. For some time it was very worthwhile to dual-mine. As we speak in no way. This was attainable on AMD and speeds have been astonishing as a result of AMD GPUs have wonderful parallel processing. For this reason they’ve all the time been the miners selection. Nvidia suffered right here. Pascal line couldn’t obtain related speeds with out dropping important hashrate. Turning appears to show that round, however it’s a moot level now. The take-away right here is that an under-utilized core enable this to be attainable at the price of further energy consumption.

The everlasting battle, energy effectivity.

(Word all quotes have been taken from Anandtech articles listed above.)

The principle crux of ProgPoW, which hits AMD playing cards extra so, is energy. ProgPoW is about to extend energy consumption on Ethereum throughout the board. However why? Why does AMD take such large hit in comparison with Nvidia? is that this favoritism? The quick reply is not any. To reply why lets discover what Polars brings by way of energy efficeny.

RX470/480 have been well-known for there energy financial savings. It is because AMD took a wonderful leap ahead to carry again higher energy consumption with efficiency. I personally applauded AMD again then. I nonetheless have nightmares of my R9 295X I used for gaming consuming 600w!

…let’s speak about energy consumption. As AMD has made clear over the past a number of months, one of many main targets of Polaris was energy effectivity, and that is the place we see among the first payoffs from that call. RX 480’s official Typical Board Energy (TBP) is 150W, over 20% decrease than the last-generation R9 380, and 45% decrease than the in any other case performance-comparable R9 390

As we moved on AMD upped the core clocks to competitively struggle in opposition to Nvidia’s choices. Doing so elevated energy consumption.

RX 580 is a 185W card, whereas RX 570 begins at 150W. It is a 30-35W enhance in TBPs over the RX 400 collection, and given the anticipated prevalence of manufacturing facility overclocked playing cards, the TBP of the typical retail SKU might be a bit greater nonetheless.

AMD Dropping energy effectivity as we advance??

In order we famous on the RX 500 launch, as a substitute of combating an effectivity battle that they will’t win, AMD has opted for uncooked efficiency and competing on worth.

With the simply launched RX590. Decreasing Energy consumption goes straight-out the window.

For all of the gaming efficiency features that the RX 590 has made, it got here with the upper clockspeeds, and to carry these greater clockspeeds got here extra energy. Already, TBPs have notably elevated from the RX 480’s 150W to the RX 580’s 185W, and now to the RX 590’s 225W. Which is already previous RX Vega 56’s 210W reference board energy spec

AMD has now certainly misplaced it is imaginative and prescient again in 2016 to cut back energy financial savings and we’re again to R9 290x insane energy consumption as soon as once more.

AMD has with the RX 590 and Vega, opted to forgo any-power financial savings to ensure that uncooked efficiency to compete with Nvidia.

Naturally, the tradeoffs between energy effectivity and uncooked efficiency is a basic drawback of silicon engineering, and it’s been considerably of a sticking level for Polaris because the starting. Though Polaris improved on effectivity over older GCN merchandise, NVIDIA’s top-to-bottom Pascal collection introduced its personal energy and clockspeed enhancements.

Nvidia Meantime has introduced wonderful power-savings to Pascal choices.

Talking on energy consumption and gaming efficiency. Lets do a fast dive into gaming and energy consumption whereas gaming. The idea right here is that, maxing the GPU cores means using the GPU structure thus the outcomes of the facility design come out.

A fast shoot over to Players Nexus and we see RX580 energy utilization throughout video games present’s important drawback in comparison with GTX 1060 not to mention the 1070. Thoughts you GTX 1060 is the direct comparability to the RX580. The GTX 1060 has a 125w TDP, the GTX 1070 has 150w TDP. That is based mostly off official TDP, not what AIB typically go overboard on.

Anandtech makes use of Crysis Three to emphasize there GPUs to realize the facility outcomes i am going to present under. It does not get fairly for AMD.

GTX 1060 holds a equally spectacular lead over AMD’s Radeon RX 480. In opposition to the 8GB card, NVIDIA’s mainstream competitor attracts 37W much less for 14% higher gaming efficiency. Since Maxwell NVIDIA has loved a major energy effectivity benefit, and whereas AMD’s current Polaris structure has helped to shut the hole, GTX 1060 proves that NVIDIA continues to execute properly right here

The GTX 1060 is ready to use much less energy than RX480, AMD’s most effective GPU and gaming smart sustain with it. RX480 makes use of GTX1070 ranges of energy however not efficiency.

r/gpumining - Let's talk GPU differences Nvidia/AMD and ProgPoW. Why does AMD suffer in ProgPoW? Nvidia the King?


RX480 begins off properly, however as we progress into the 580 we achieve one other 30w. Transferring onto the RX590(They modified take a look at suite for energy) however you may see the take-away. It is thoughts blowing.

r/gpumining - Let's talk GPU differences Nvidia/AMD and ProgPoW. Why does AMD suffer in ProgPoW? Nvidia the King?


Going from an RX480 to an RX590 ends in 60w enhance in energy! not to mention AIB accomplice fashions that additional enhance energy. As you may see in each assessments the GTX 1070 in Crysis 3/BF 1 makes use of related energy.

Structure rising energy effectivity

So what is the take-away from this with ProgPoW?

ProgPoW makes use of the GPU cores(or SM) from each AMD and Nvidia as successfully as attainable. Nonetheless the variations in structure makes up for the facility consumption used from each. RX480’s are set to make use of the least quantity of energy for AMD nonetheless ProgPoW efficiency will endure. As we step-up efficiency, we enhance energy drastically as properly. GTX1060’s look to be set to make use of the least quantity of energy with ProgPoW whereas reaching RX400/500 collection efficiency.

It will be my assumption that an RX590 may attain GTX 1070 stage of efficiency for ProgPoW. AMD playing cards and Nvidia achieved wonderful energy financial savings as a result of Eth-hash by no means totally load the SM(shader modules) on both GPUs. When the SM’s are loaded we begin reaching TDPs. I am clearly not power-savings that might be achieved with some tuning/undervolting, however a normal general look.

Take be aware that every one GPUs will obtain a efficiency hit when ProgPoW is applied. The speculation is 1/2 of Eth-hash fee.

The overall expectation is that ProgPoW ought to have round half the hashrate of Ethash because it accesses twice as a lot reminiscence per hash. This holds true for GPUs that make the most of GDDR5 reminiscence — the RX 580 and the GTX 1070.

Why did she select this, as a result of it was the “pleased” medium between Nvidia’s and AMD’s structure (Makes use of v_mul_lo_u32). In lay-mans phrases what ProgPoW does is goal the GPU core utilizing lowered Keccak(f800) and different random math whereas rising these entry patterns that Eth-used by double. As a result of the change to ProgPoW initializes extra of the GPU core than Eth-hash. Because of this see an enormous enhance in energy, just like as in case you have been gaming. RX400/500 collection energy will enhance. My RX580 achieved 120w in ETH-hash whereas testig ProgPoW elevated to 180w. My estimates about 60% enhance energy over ETH-hash. This clearly leaves numerous sad RX400/500 collection miners. As a result of enhance in energy = lowered revenue as a result of elevated energy + extra spent on electrical upgrading of there farms.

I relate ProgPoW to How claymore achieved Twin-mining. Though the processes that enable it are completely different, Claymore dual-mining saturated extra of the GPU’s core resulting in a rise in energy consumption. So in case your questioning why AMD sees a rise in energy consumption. Please check out how claymore achieved twin mining utilizing Eth-Hash.

I need to particularly level out right here that the fault of such an influence enhance is as a result of AMD’s designs have pushed energy limits, greater, and better. Nvidia meantime has drawn energy down whereas rising efficiency, Maxwell, Pascal and at last Turing confirmed us which have elevated efficiency with out rising energy consumption drastically. The design of ProgPoW doesn’t aggressively goal AMD and power greater energy. It is merely AMD’s design.

The king will probably be dethroned.

This leaves the RX500/400 homeowners in a sticky spot. Many of the Ethereum community was constructed on AMD due to it is wonderful Watt/hash/value. The change to a extra GPU intensive algorithm leaves them with much less highly effective playing cards than they initially had with ethereum. Moreover ProgPoW takes away any BIOs modification benefit they’d in Eth-hash leaving them with inventory speeds.

GTX 1060s and RX480/580s obtain related speeds in ProgPoW, round 9-10Mh/s. They’re the direct rivals. The wattage favors the GTX1060 as I’ve proven, it is as a result of the GTX1060 is a 125w TDP card whereas the RX480 is 150w and the 580 185w. Keep in mind, an RX480 @ $230 MSRP was reaching what Nvidia’s GTX1070 @ $400 MSRP was. That is a hell of a feat. I do know why is was so liked by all miners.

Nvidia has not too long ago has been dominating GPU Intensive algorithms. If it wasn’t for the DAG savior, they in all probability would of went on and dominated Ethereum as properly. One solely wants to take a look at X16R/Zhash/X22i/Equihash 150/5, they may perceive that efficiency/watt Nvidia’s superior structure wins the day. Not that AMD’s can’t sustain. The issue lies in AMD’s design and energy utilization.

Edit: HammerEditior has some good data I would like so as to add.

I was proud of 28-29 Mh/s on my Polaris playing cards prior to now. 90% of my Ellesmere playing cards may deal with 900 mV core for 1100 MHz. In my actual farm they used 125-130w from the grid every (AC 240v, 80+ gold). This was the typical over 150 playing cards. I may’ve have tuned them right down to 120w however selected to not.

I do personal an RX480. A MSI Gaming X RX480 8GB. It does 10.5 Mh/150w/1050 mV on PROG and 30.zero Mh on ETH. Any decrease voltage will trigger the system to crash. I would say the effectivity’s barely higher than the RX 580.

I believe ProgPoW’s tuned energy utilization is 30% greater in comparison with ETH on AMD playing cards. In case your RX400/500 manages 120w on Ethash, it would get 156w on PROG. In case your card does 140 on Ethash, it will get 182w.


ProgPoW does what it was designed to do, use the total capability of the GPU. If the rumors of Navi are true then we could get our RX480 a-like for ProgPoW with wonderful energy consumption. With Vega VII we could get wonderful hashrates however on the expense of energy. We can’t know for positive until February when it is launched. If ProgPoW brings again decentralized GPU mining on the expense of some energy, I am nonetheless for it. Will probably be as much as AMD miners to search out methods to realize a superb watt/hash ratio.

The 2 principal GPU producers wouldn’t be so favoured by ProgPoW…will protect precise {hardware} funding by GPU miners slowing down the frenzy to top-class pseudo specialised units. This doesn’t imply you’ll be capable to re-enter the mining enterprise with 3GB GPUs (this will probably be inconceivable as a result of DAG remaining the identical as ethash and rising at similar tempo). As an alternative ProgPoW balances the reminiscence bandwidth necessities (to entry the DAG) with extra computation duties which contain the cores effectivity. This implies the basic underclock of cores is not any simpler.

Andrea Lanfrachi (DEV)

TL;DR: Variations in GPU Structure means variations in hashrate/energy. ProgPoW ranges the taking part in discipline for each Nvidia/AMD

Sources used



AMD Radeon RX 400 / RX 500 Will Be no Longer Profitable for Ethereum Mining?

AMD’s New Mining Block Chain Optimized Driver Tested

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