RTX 3080 Crash to Desktop Problems Likely Connected to AIB-Designed Capacitor Choice Igor's Lab has posted an interesting investigative article where he advances a possible reason for the recent crash to desktop problems for RTX 3080 owners. For one, Igor mentions how the launch timings were much tighter than usual, with NVIDIA AIB partners having much less time than would be adequate to prepare and thoroughly test their designs. One of the reasons this apparently happened was that NVIDIA released the compatible driver stack much later than usual for AIB partners; this meant that their actual testing and QA for produced RTX 3080 graphics cards was mostly limited to power on and voltage stability testing, other than actual gaming/graphics workload testing, which might have allowed for some less-than-stellar chip samples to be employed on some of the companies' OC products (which, with higher operating frequencies and consequent broadband frequency mixtures, hit the apparent 2 GHz frequency wall that produces the crash to desktop).Another reason for this, according to Igor, is the actual "reference board" PG132 design, which is used as a reference, "Base Design" for partners to architecture their custom cards around. The thing here is that apparently NVIDIA's BOM left open choices in terms of power cleanup and regulation in the mounted capacitors. The Base Design features six mandatory capacitors for filtering high frequencies on the voltage rails (NVVDD and MSVDD). There are a number of choices for capacitors to be installed here, with varying levels of capability. POSCAPs (Conductive Polymer Tantalum Solid Capacitors) are generally worse than SP-CAPs (Conductive Polymer-Aluminium-Electrolytic-Capacitors) which are superseded in quality by MLCCs (Multilayer Ceramic Chip Capacitor, which have to be deployed in groups). Below is the circuitry arrangement employed below the BGA array where NVIDIA's GA-102 chip is seated, which corresponds to the central area on the back of the PCB. In the images below, you can see how NVIDIA and it's AIBs designed this regulator circuitry (NVIDIA Founders' Edition, MSI Gaming X, ZOTAC Trinity, and ASUS TUF Gaming OC in order, from our reviews' high resolution teardowns). NVIDIA in their Founders' Edition designs uses a hybrid capacitor deployment, with four SP-CAPs and two MLCC groups of 10 individual capacitors each in the center. MSI uses a single MLCC group in the central arrangement, with five SP-CAPs guaranteeing the rest of the cleanup duties. ZOTAC went the cheapest way (which may be one of the reasons their cards are also among the cheapest), with a six POSCAP design (which are worse than MLCCs, remember). ASUS, however, designed their TUF with six MLCC arrangements - there were no savings done in this power circuitry area. It's likely that the crash to desktop problems are related to both these issues - and this would also justify why some cards cease crashing when underclocked by 50-100 MHz, since at lower frequencies (and this will generally lead boost frequencies to stay below the 2 GHz mark) there is lesser broadband frequency mixture happening, which means POSCAP solutions can do their job - even if just barely. Source
aka_STEVE_bASUS for the win .
ty_ger07I wonder what the POS in POSCAP stands for. (joke)
kram36aka_STEVE_bASUS for the win .If EVGA doesn't get the XC3 version of the RTX 3080 in Step-Up and I have to scalp the FTW3 RTX 3080 so I can buy a card that will fit in my case with a waterblock, I'll be buying the ASUS TUF card instead of the EVGA XC3 and EVGA will lose me as a future customer. All the reviews I have seen on the ASUS RTX 3080 TUF have been outstanding anyways, maybe it's time to check out other companies and stop being loyal to EVGA as I have all these years, EVGA surely isn't earning it on the Step-Up.
advancedlambkram36aka_STEVE_bASUS for the win .If EVGA doesn't get the XC3 version of the RTX 3080 in Step-Up and I have to scalp the FTW3 RTX 3080 so I can buy a card that will fit in my case with a waterblock, I'll be buying the ASUS TUF card instead of the EVGA XC3 and EVGA will lose me as a future customer. All the reviews I have seen on the ASUS RTX 3080 TUF have been outstanding anyways, maybe it's time to check out other companies and stop being loyal to EVGA as I have all these years, EVGA surely isn't earning it on the Step-Up.scalping with an excuse is still scalping. everyone who scalps has some variously legitimate excuse, doesn't make it okay.
UnusualAttitudeWas Igor's lab the first to call out this issue?
z999z3mystorysI've seen the stock photo of the back of the FTW3, and user pictures showing something different, with two MLCC instead of none, by guess is the stock photo is out of date/inaccurate... though it'd be a good time to update it give what's come out about it.
Mandalorian1977Oh man, so at this point the only cards we know of that are free of this issue are the ASUS TUF cards?
EVGA_JacobFHi all, Recently there has been some discussion about the EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 series. During our mass production QC testing we discovered a full 6 POSCAPs solution cannot pass the real world applications testing. It took almost a week of R&D effort to find the cause and reduce the POSCAPs to 4 and add 20 MLCC caps prior to shipping production boards, this is why the EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 FTW3 series was delayed at launch. There were no 6 POSCAP production EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 FTW3 boards shipped. But, due to the time crunch, some of the reviewers were sent a pre-production version with 6 POSCAP’s, we are working with those reviewers directly to replace their boards with production versions.EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 XC3 series with 5 POSCAPs + 10 MLCC solution is matched with the XC3 spec without issues. Also note that we have updated the product pictures at EVGA.com to reflect the production components that shipped to gamers and enthusiasts since day 1 of product launch.Once you receive the card you can compare for yourself, EVGA stands behind its products! ThanksEVGA