Every now and then, you’ll hear a fancy term announced by NVIDIA as the latest product or graphic card feature. We’ve heard about DLSS, GeForce Now, and Tensor Cores. And there’s the NVIDIA LHR or Lite Hash Rate, a feature that gamers will surely appreciate. Here’s what you need to know.
What is NVIDIA Lite Hash Rate?
By now, every geek out there already knows the crypto craze that’s gobbling not only electricity but also gaming consoles and graphic cards. Virtual currency, while great for risky investors looking for extreme profits, has caused massive GPU shortages and forced gamers to stick to their old cards.
NVIDIA released the Lite Hash Rate technology in 2021 to give gamers better chances of getting a new GPU. LHR works by deliberately lowering the performance of graphic cards by as much as 50 percent, when they detect the cards are being used for crypto mining tasks.
This means LHR-enabled cards are less efficient for crypto as they consume the same amount of power as their non-LHR counterparts, thereby deterring potential miners from buying these cards.
Does LHR have an impact on gaming performance?
It doesn’t. LHR only lowers the performance for the Dagger Hashimoto algorithm for Ethereum. It wouldn’t make sense for LHR to degrade the card’s gaming performance, as that would make the card undesirable even to gamers.
What about other crypto mining algorithms?
Mining for cryptocurrencies that aren’t based on Ethereum may not have lowered performance when done in cards with LHR. NVIDIA has so far only mentioned Ethereum in its efforts against crypto mining.
Does LHR really deter crypto miners from buying LHR-enabled cards?
Sort of. Not long after NVIDIA introduced Lite Hash Rate for the first time, the company accidentally released a driver update that could disable LHR and render it useless. NVIDIA tried again, with better software-hardware integration, but miners and hackers have already found ways to bypass LHR.
Which NVIDIA graphic cards have LHR?
LHR first came in a revised GeForce RTX 3060 model. This was followed by more powerful cards in the RTX 3000 series: the 3060 Ti, 3070 and 3070 Ti, and 3080 and 3080 Ti. Note that the Founders Edition of these cards does not have LHR and won’t be refreshed to have LHR.
How do I know if the NVIDIA card I’m about to buy has LHR?
There should be a sticker or other identifiers in the product box and description to let you know that the card comes with Lite Hash Rate.
Does AMD have an equivalent feature to Lite Hash Rate?
Radeon GPUs from competitor AMD currently does not have a feature similar to Lite Hash Rate. In March, AMD even stated that it had no intentions to block mining operations that are done via graphic cards.
Will GPU prices go down with the help of Lite Hash Rate? It’s possible, but unlikely or not by much in 2021. What with the global chip shortage lasting for years and the current high demand for graphics cards, don’t expect GPU prices to go down anytime soon.