Chinese companies are turning banned RTX 4090 cards into AI products

midian182

Posts: 9,567   +120
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WTF?! If you've been saving up for an RTX 4090 but found that the flagship card is out of stock and priced well above MSRP right now, here's why: Chinese companies bought thousands of them ahead of the US government's export ban to the country. Rather than being a move to satisfy the demand of gamers, the 4090s are being transformed into "AI" solutions with blower-style coolers.

The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) announced tightened restrictions on tech exports to China in October, adding the H800, A800, and RTX 4090 to the list of banned products.

Before the ban went into effect a few days ago, RTX 4090 prices started creeping upward and availability worsened as China bought thousands of the cards and Nvidia reportedly told AIB partners to prioritize sending a large number to the country.

According to reports, an insider from Baidu Forums has revealed the existence of factories within China that had been receiving the RTX 4090s ahead of the ban, dismantling the components, and reusing them in different boards with blower-style coolers so they can be sold to AI firms.

The images show pallets full of RTX 4090 cards worth tens of thousands of dollars from various manufacturers, including Palit, Asus, Gigabyte, and Gainward.

The RTX 4090 usually has a 3- or 4-slot design, which isn't ideal for an AI server rack that packs multiple cards into a tight space. Putting their core components into blower-style coolers makes them more effective in AI-farm clusters.

The newly assembled cards are tested on a suite of software programs, including AI apps, to ensure they are up to the job, before being sold to Chinese AI customers. With Nvidia bringing TensorRT and TensorRT-LLM to Windows 11 PCs, large language models perform even faster on RTX GPUs.

Even the leftover parts from the original cards, including the coolers and stripped boards, are sold.

Now that the ban is in effect, the factories will no longer be able to import the RTX 4090 cards en masse, so we'll hopefully see prices and availability return to normal levels. That's welcome news for gamers, who still have memories of card prices skyrocketing and availability disappearing the last time they were in demand for something other than playing games.

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Selling banned, or soon to be banned products to aide the enemy could well be regarded as treason.
Nothing is stopping someone from a BRICS nation from buying them and then reselling then to China.
 
Got to admit, it was damn cleaver of them to forsee the future and adjust for it. The Govt. has it within it's power to make the ban stick, but these bans are mostly for political show without any real teeth in them .....
 
So the guys are serious not only changhing the cooler, but removing the GPU from the board and soldering to new board. So they can charge +50K for an 4090. What a world we live in...
 

Might want to look up lab found in Reedly,California own by China Prestige labs. Make sure when researching, you're not eating at the same time. Look at what they were testing, I can't say it here because I will get my comment removed. 900 mice with the "you know what" and 300 found dead and other diseases that were tested in the abandoned building.
 
Nothing is stopping someone from a BRICS nation from buying them and then reselling then to China.
Oh, yes, something is. If a BRICS nation tolerates this, the United States will just ban shipping the product to that nation as well as to China. They wouldn't want that to happen to them.
 
Might want to look up lab found in Reedly,California own by China Prestige labs. Make sure when researching, you're not eating at the same time. Look at what they were testing, I can't say it here because I will get my comment removed. 900 mice with the "you know what" and 300 found dead and other diseases that were tested in the abandoned building.
Good thing we don't eat mice, huh?
 
Oh, yes, something is. If a BRICS nation tolerates this, the United States will just ban shipping the product to that nation as well as to China. They wouldn't want that to happen to them.
it also doesn't have to be between nations or wholesalers. A private citizen is perfectly capable of buying a bunch of cards and importing them into China. The US also doesn't run through world economy, we can't just tell India to not trade with China. We can tell US companies to not directly do business with China. Customs agencies in other countries also aren't as tight as they are in the US so even if one of these other countries felt like playing ball with us doesn't mean that it would do any good.

Too many people living in the first world seem to forget how big the second and third world is.

"OMG, YOU CANT DO THAT, THATS ILLEGAL"
"yeah, maybe if they had the resources and motivation to enforce it"
 
Selling banned, or soon to be banned products to aide the enemy could well be regarded as treason.

Lol, that isn't how laws work.

Laws don't apply retroactively, and they don't apply before they are actually signed and implemented.

That's like saying you will be arrested now for eating a hamburger today if the government makes eating hamburgers illegal a month from now.
 
Nothing is stopping someone from a BRICS nation from buying them and then reselling then to China.
The problem is, we are not at war. We have trade and unlike in war time, everything is a gray area.
Even with Russia, it is operantly so easy that it is dumb how they still get electronics they put in their rockets to kill people that they have a need to make a part of their rotting pseudo empire.
 
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