Facepalm: It comes as no surprise to learn that the value of Nvidia's pre-Lite Hash Rate graphics cards shot up following the release of its LHR variants. In Vietnam, one retailer is selling the older GPUs in pre-built mining rigs, and these aren't your run-of-the-mill RTX 3080s; they're Asus' limited edition ROG Strix Gundam cards.
Following the release of the LHR variants of the RTX 3080, RTX 3070, and RTX 3060 Ti, miners started fighting over the non-LHR cards, inflating their already high prices. Nguyenconpc via I_Leak_VN revealed that a Vietnamese retailer is selling ready-made mining setups complete with original RTX 3080s. They will presumably cost a fortune, made all the more expensive by the type of card being used.
The mining rigs are packed with Asus' limited-edition ROG Strix Gundam RTX 3080s, inspired by the famous anime. A quick check on eBay shows many for sale with buy-it-now prices of around $2,400. Considering these are Collectors Editions, it's pretty sad to see so many of them packed into mining setups where they'll be pushed to their limit 24/7.
The good news for gamers is that while the world remains in the middle of chip shortage, the cryptomining element that was exacerbating pricing and availability problems is alleviating. China, which accounts for up to 70% of the world's crypto supply, has cracked down hard on mining, leading to a slew of used cards hitting the market.
Also helping matters is Ethereum's upcoming shift from a proof-of-work model to proof-of-stake, Bitcoin's price decline since April, and Nvidia's CMP HX dedicated mining GPUs. All of which has contributed to the average selling point and availability of cards in many countries improving rapidly.