NVIDIA Likely Not Recalling All 600 Series Kepler GPUs

Subject: Graphics Cards | May 21, 2012 - 06:10 PM |
Tagged: recall, nvidia, kepler, graphics cards, gpu

Editor's Note: We are getting a lot of flak for posting this story today, telling us that we are "giving the site credibility", referring to the Pnosker site that first started the recall rumor, simply by posting about it on our site.  Even though our post by Tim states to "take the leak with a grain of salt" and that "these GPUS go through rigorous testing and certification", some people think we were in the wrong to post about this. 

So let me be perfectly clear - the recall referenced in the story below is almost assuredly complete and utter BULLSHIT. 

According to Pnosker, NVIDIA is allegedly looking into recalling all Kepler based, 600-series graphics cards. Such a recall would affect users that have purchased GTX 670, GTX 680, and GTX 690 GPUs. The website has stated that their source has indicated that the graphics cards will possibly be recalled because the chips suffer from performance degradation after prolonged periods of heavy usage.

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While their source has reportedly been correct in the past, the author cautions readers to take the leak with a grain of salt. Other websites that have picked up on this have mentioned that these GPUs go through rigorous testing and certification processes before getting to the market, so this rumor does not have much ground to stand on. Another reason to take this report with a shaker-full of salt is that if there was such a defect in the Kepler GPU, it would be more likely to completely fail rather than continue working with degraded performance.

This rumor is likely just that: a rumor. Why such a rumor was started is unknown but your Kepler graphics card purchases are probably safe from performance degradation, though they may not get as high of a boost clock as other users’ cards.

UPDATE @ 7:30pm ET: To quote from NVIDIA PR - "There is no truth to this rumor."

Source: Pnosker

May 21, 2012 | 06:42 PM - Posted by Mark Harry (not verified)

So did AMD start this? That's about all they've got left at this point.

May 21, 2012 | 08:12 PM - Posted by Murray (not verified)

Echoes of the P67 chipset recall (degradation through heavy use). You can bet Intel put their chips through rigorous testing and certification processes too, but it took a partner to find the flaw.

May 21, 2012 | 09:19 PM - Posted by rgraze

Sigh..I'm never going to be able to buy a 680 at this rate.

May 22, 2012 | 12:18 AM - Posted by Tim Verry

This odd (and at least 99.9% false) rumor is the least of the GTX680s problems :p You have to be able to find one to buy first ;). We don't think it's true so you don't have to worrry, if you have the money and can find one to buy go for it (though you might look into a 670 as they are pretty darn close to the 680 for a lot less money :) )

In any case, this has to be the most bizarre 600 series rumor we've seen to date.

May 22, 2012 | 10:57 PM - Posted by Branthog

You're not alone. You still can't find a 690. Or a 680. Or a 670. Worse, a lot of the companies themselves (like EVGA) are placing a 1-per-household limit on them. That's absurd, considering how much they're touting the SLI capability. Enjoy the super power of triple-SLI . . . except we'll only sell you one . . . if we ever have them in stock . . .

May 23, 2012 | 12:13 AM - Posted by Tim Verry

Really!? 0.o That does sound crazy, but I guess you could always deliver to your house, your work, have your mom order one... ect. (Talk about a pain in the butt thou!) On one hand, I can see why they are doing it, to try to stop people buying them up and selling them on ebay or hording them but still, 1 per household is pretty strict!

May 23, 2012 | 03:52 AM - Posted by Prodeous (not verified)

I will admit, this is probably one of the few reasons why I am happy to be in Europe. I managed to get one, and I still see few available in Poland. Let alone in the rest of EU :)

May 23, 2012 | 07:55 AM - Posted by Branthog

In fact, I believe Jacob Freeman (EVGA product manager) specifically cited that as the reason for limiting 680s and 690s (I think you can get up to four 670s -- if they were actually in stock).

Unfortunately, it seems like a really shoddy solution. I don't know how else you address the scammy resellers without screwing over your most dedicated customers (the guys who want to buy two, three, or four of these as soon as possible for their own personal use). Well, I guess the obvious one is _make_more_ so there's no motivation for people to be driven to eBay to buy them at outrageous prices.

Frankly, I don't understand how this isn't going to impact the bottom line of all of these manufacturers. They're pretty much all constantly out of stock, which means it's limiting their sales. Which means its limiting their revenue. I wonder how long this availability problem can continue without being reflected on their bottom line?

June 22, 2012 | 11:31 AM - Posted by d (not verified)

they place a limit of one per household so butthole resellers cannot buy all of them and remarket them at a ridiculous price

May 22, 2012 | 02:37 PM - Posted by Patrick Nosker (not verified)

AMD didn't start this. I'm not an AMD fanboy-- just thought it was something interesting that an unnamed source told us. Oddly, something possibly related was also mentioned to me by an employee of a top tier system builder. Anyway, all the conspiracy theories about us trying to gain ad revenue (we don't have ads), stock price fluctuations (I don't own any tech stock), ruin NVIDIA's reputation (My primary PC-- an Alienware M14x-- has a GTX 555m card, not AMD card), etc. all make no sense to me. Perhaps it was a mistake to report it so soon but based upon the reliability of my contact, I have no doubts that at a minimum NVIDIA's got something serious going on with their Kepler chips. Whether it's enough to warrant a full recall is anyone's guess.

Unfortunately, I just ordered a $5000 iBuyPower computer featuring 2 GTX 680s and a GTX 580 so I hope they don't fail.

By the way, we've had two other leaks that ended up being true-- two NZXT cases. One from someone in Germany and one from someone in California. An odd coincidence that they both were related to the same manufacturer.

May 23, 2012 | 09:06 PM - Posted by theunnamedmanbehindthescene (not verified)

"just thought it was something interesting that an unnamed source told us."

I understand it, you have "high level and UNNAMED contacts" in TSMC. Sorry man, but... Who are you? what is your authority in this area for saying things like this bullshit without ANY proof?

Who are you? A Ph.D Candidate in a University of Medicine and Dentistry? What is it? What is your EXPERIENCE and KNOWLEDGE in this sector? Any?

Do you works or worked in ANY tech company? From where came your "unnamed contacts"?

"Anyway, all the conspiracy theories about us trying to gain ad revenue (we don't have ads), stock price fluctuations"

But you have a unknown and very little news site (no, it´s not med-size site), and with it you have to pay some bills to Godaddy/1and1.

Yes, you have expenses, and no "ads", any popularity... what a advantageous "new", ah? Any new sponsor, maybe?? xD

You say now:

"I have no doubts that at a minimum NVIDIA's got something serious going on with their Kepler chips. Whether it's enough to warrant a full recall is anyone's guess."

But you said before, in "your news site":

"NVIDIA Potentially Recalling All GTX 670, 680, 690 Kepler Video Cards"

Do you think that everybody out of your site are dumbs? from a total recall to a more "flexible" point of view (anyone´s guess).

You don´t have credibility, or a name. Or a CV behind in the sector. You "have" a reliable contact, but a unnamed and unknown one. And everyone out of your site, everyone has to trust you and in your unknowns sources and lack of proofs.

WTF!!! Get a name before ALL of this!! XD

May 22, 2012 | 02:55 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

"Other websites that have picked up on this have mentioned that these GPUs go through rigorous testing and certification processes before getting to the market, so this rumor does not have much ground to stand on."

So what?

Doesn't Intel have rigorous testing too? They have had to recall a chipset and a CPU.

May 22, 2012 | 04:21 PM - Posted by tom jerrel (not verified)

Out of all the words in the world you went with bull&%$#? Come on guys, there are young people that read this. In the forums i understand, but the front page??

May 22, 2012 | 05:03 PM - Posted by Ryan Shrout


May 22, 2012 | 06:51 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Every little kid I hear yelling nowadays in public knows more curse words than I ever learned growing up so I don't think this story containing the word bullshit is exactly new to them :(. Besides if anyone needs blamed its parents that don't give a crap and let their kids do and say whatever they want heh its up to them to teach then what is and isn't appropriate to say.

Just my opinion thou.

May 22, 2012 | 10:58 PM - Posted by Branthog

Come on, guys! There are precious amish children reading this. What's with all the technology? Stop corrupting my precious little Hezekiah!

May 23, 2012 | 03:59 AM - Posted by Prodeous (not verified)

I will admit, that seeing that on front page was strange. I don't care if younger audiance reads this or not. As mentioned, most probably already use them on daily basis. Still, if you feel it is bullshit, then don't post it.

Most likely the author got unhappy about the comments from some readers, and in sligh anger wrote that. But that statement does not show of PCPer in a good light. As it is very childish comment.

Still, this goes back into the hole, should PCPer post rumours. Maybe to maintain integrity of PCPer's high quality of work, you should skip for now?

May 22, 2012 | 05:43 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

This may be true folks. Nvidia has launhed their new video cards but everyone with a little knowledge knows how nvidia engineered this chips is due to the lack of availability. They are very hard to fabricate due to nvidias design of the chip. Who knows maybe there is a degration problem with their chips too. It wouldn't surprise me as nvidia has been a let down as of late starting with the 400 series. True the 600 series performance is fantastic and power draw actually beet out amd this round which is very good since nvidia is known for having power hungry gpus but really their availability is pies poor and hasn't improved at all since their launch debut. I think nvidia may have not tested their chips enough in order to save time and get their products out to market. It is a possibility manufactures rush out products all the time in order to catch up to their competition. Amd had a five month lead on nvidia which is pretty huge in the world of pc tech so nvidia needed to act fast. Furthermore amds 8000 series are going to be out for sale by the time nvidia finally gets an abundance of 600 series gpus and there isn't an availability problem anymore. Nvidia has a great all around product this round but it isn't helping their revenues at all and most likely hurting it with crappy yields. They are still slipping behind their competition.

May 22, 2012 | 11:00 PM - Posted by Branthog

I don't understand why anyone had given any credibility to the page's claim. It's some dude's wannabe tech blog with as much as almost one tenth of a comment per story, on average (as if we don't have enough of those).

May 24, 2012 | 12:15 AM - Posted by nabokovfan87

And thats why turbo-ing 1k cores is a bad idea nvidia... especially on 28nm parts

I know this isn't actually "true" right now, of course nvidia isn't going to confirm a bazillion dollar recall, but seriously....

A chip with performance based on temperature with a turbo of a few hundred cores, of course there are issues.

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