NVIDIA Downplays RTX 20-Series Hardware Failure Concerns
Lucky users have had their hands on NVIDIA's RTX 20-Series GPUs for a little while now, with some happily crunching frames for over a month. In that time however a number of these brand-new graphics cards have failed, particularly from the RTX 2080 Ti family (many of which will have cost over $1000/£900), leading to a flurry of posts on the official GeForce Forums as well as 3rd party discussion sites such as Reddit's /r/nvidia.
That, in itself, is unremarkable; there is always a spike in hardware failure reports soon after the release of a new product because of a high volume of sales. The sheer number of reports however, often blocking out entire front pages of discussion fora, has led many to question whether Turing has a design flaw.
NVIDIA's Turing GPUs are, by many measures, a major divergence from what has come before. They're larger in die size, more complex, have significant power requirements and introduce a new cutting-edge memory standard in GDDR6. It would be understandable if failures were a little more commonplace than in prior generations.
Forum goers have also pointed to a greater prevalence of failed RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition variants among reports compared with partner cards. This might be explained by higher volumes of these cards being shipped in the first month after release.
There also appears to be a common thread to the issues being reported: artefacting, in a way that hints at memory being a problem. Power Supply inadequacies too have been flagged up, in particular where a system has been running a little close to the recommended minimums. It remains to be seen whether either is indicative of a broader flaw in the card design.
For their part NVIDIA have responded to these concerns without much fuss. As reported by TomsHardware, they stated that "it's not an increasing number of users" affected by this problem (meaning that the problem isn't getting worse), and that "it's not broad." NVIDIA are also "working with each user individually like [they] do always," indicating that their approach is one of individual RMA/return requests rather than batch recalls.
Only NVIDIA, their partners and retailers have the statistics on failures that would offer concrete insight of whether there's a genuine problem or merely run of the mill launch teething issues. From the customer side of the fence all that can be discerned is whether the RMA process is as smooth as possible, and in fairness to NVIDIA that certainly seems to be the case (apart from some US customers being charged up to $50 postage).
SOURCE: Tomshardware, /r/NVIDIA 'Unofficial RTX 2080Ti Survey', TechPowerUp