AMD may launch a new GPU dedicated to crypto mining, following the release of patch notes for the AMDGPU Linux kernel driver.
These patch notes referred to a new "NV12 SKU" - Navi 12. This will allegedly be a headless GPU, which will not support video output.
A GPU without video output will likely be enticing for crypto miners, as it allows for a more efficient mining process. AMD will similarly benefit, as it may ease the strain on the supply of its latest graphics cards.
Here's everything you need to know about the latest development in the battle between crypto miners and GPU manufacturers.
Why would AMD release a crypto mining GPU?
A surge in crypto mining popularity has heightened the demand for the latest graphics cards from AMD and NVIDIA. Crypto mining requires a hefty amount of processing power for its number-crunching - power that can be found in the RTX 30 Series or Radeon RX 6000 Series.
This means that fewer of these GPUs are making their way into the hands of gamers. Already competing with scalpers, crypto miners have made it even more difficult to buy the latest graphics card at its RRP.
By launching a dedicated crypto mining card, AMD would be following on from NVIDIA, who previously announced the NVIDIA CMP - set to launch later this year. The logic goes that, if crypto miners buy up the dedicated mining GPU, there will be more of AMD's RX 6000 cards for those who will use it as intended - for gaming.
AMD crypto mining GPU specs and features
AMD's Navi 12 GPU does not use the RDNA 2 architecture found in the Radeon RX 6000 cards that launched last year. Instead, they use RDNA 1 - also found in the RX 5700 GPU, suggesting that AMD's crypto mining processor could utilise RDNA 1, too.
As mentioned above, the new processor will likely not include any video output. Video output is deemed a waste of energy and processing power by crypto miners attempting to mine Ethereum.
It is worth noting, however, that AMD has yet to confirm any plans for a dedicated mining card. If it wants to compete with NVIDIA in this field, we wouldn't be surprised if the company announces a new card in the next few months to launch later this year.