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Are laptop chip PCIe cards (i.e 3070M) allowed in the same category as real laptop GPUs?

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Basically there are PCIe GPUs available from China that use chips originally destined for laptops, which were originally made for miners due to their excellent efficiency but can now be picked up quite cheap due to their drawbacks for home use. Many types are available (3060 6/12G, 3070, 3070Ti, 3080 and even some older 20 series). I happened to get a 3070M dirt cheap from an ex miner recently. This is a somewhat similar case as this post about chinese bga-lga laptop CPUs though a bit different given that this is identical to retail silicon.

The cooling is obviously far superior to that of a laptop but there are other limitations.

  • There is no support for ReBar in the stock vbios and one that supports it will almost definitely never be made.
  • All 30 series "frankenstein" variants share the same 115W power limit when some laptops allow significantly higher (in the case of the 3070M up to 150W) and thus easily win in benchmarks. Bios crossflashing to get around that didn't seem to work with the couple dozen I tried. 
  • Official Nvidia drivers require .inf file alterations to detect the card because the device ID is not listed there by default (with absolutely no modification of the driver binaries needed). Pre-modded versions are available online but this should also be doable with nvcleaninstall. 

Though they have compatibility with desktop systems, as far as benchmarking is concerned this doesn't seem like a big advantage over laptops from the likes of Clevo which have full desktop sockets.

Taking all that into consideration - can these cards compete against their laptop embedded brethren? 


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