Glossary

Graphics Card of Gaming PC

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 nVIDIA logo At first, every PC had on their motherboards simple CPU and GPU devices (chips). In time, both devices are construction progressed and the CPU cores got math coprocessor (as shown in Figure 3.5.3), and graphics card with text mode began slowly to support elementary graphics functions. Common to them is whether they are also able to make only one PROCES, which is dependent on the capabilities of the operating system. Over time, software (especially games) has become more demanding and increasing the number of cores in the CPU and GPU to simultaneously could do more processes. The following Figure shows the composition of modern CPU and GPU. A larger number of cores in both cases has enabled by improved lithographic process of making chips.


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Figure 2.1 Core organization of CPU and GPU.  

The designs of CPU and GPU are significantly different by number of cores, which make the way of executing the instructions totally different. The CPU consist of four, eight or more cores, but the GPU has hundreds or thousands of cores. That makes the GPU able to execute hundreds or thousands of threads or processes in parallel by CUDA. CUDA is acronym of 'Computing Unified Device Architecture', it is an extension of the ' C , C++ ' programming language developed and introduced by nVIDIA in 2006. Using CUDA programming modules allows the programmer to take advantage of the massive parallel computing power of nVIDIA graphic cards, in order to use it for general purpose computation. With this programming modules the programmer will divide the program code into two parts, the first part of the code will be executed on the CPU while the second part of the code will be executed on the GPU. As programmer can use a CUDA-enabled GPU for general purpose processing - an approach termed GPGPU (General-Purpose computing on Graphics Processing Units). Basically, the CUDA platform is a software layer that gives direct access to the GPU's virtual instruction set with parallel computational elements, and their execution at multitude of kernels.

As a graphics card is installed into a PC, will see only connectors at the back side of PC. Many graphics cards have multiple outputs, so more than one display device can be used at a time. There are many kinds of graphic card outputs, interfaces, graphic processors and technologies. Let describe part of that.

Description of the graphics card was downloaded from the site 'Tom's Hardware' (https://www.tomshardware.com/, section /reviews/graphics-beginners,1288.html), by author Don Woligroski, created in 2006 on multiple pages. Here is a smaller part of the entire content, and if you are interested in more detail, I recommend visiting the mentioned site. A very interesting site is 'Gamesear' (https://www.gamesear.com/), compatible with mobile devices and protected by SSL features, that deals with description and review of games. It is worth visiting, especially in the field of news.

As in any case, it is apparent from the description that the graphics card (GPU) performs a very complex job, and it is no surprise that the number of transistor units is more than the CPU. Graphics card is one of the biggest energy consumers in the computer and is probably one of the largest devices. And the price is part of the expensive component. To conclude, today's graphics cards using these technologies give very realistic views, and it's no surprise that more and more people love to play, including me.

Why does the CPU have a lot less core than the GPU? A CPU core has to handle each single operation a computer does, calculation, memory fetching, IO, interrupts, therefore it has a huge complex instruction set, and to optimize the speed of fetching instruction branch prediction is used. Also it has a big cache and fast clock rate. To implement the instruction set you need more logic thus more transistors more cost per core compared to the GPU. The GPU cores have less cache memory, simpler instruction and less clock rate per core, however they are optimized to do more calculation as a group. The simple instructions set, the less cache memory makes them less expensive per core.

Traditional GPU designs use a single geometry engine to perform tessellation. This approach is analogous to early GPU designs which used a single pixel pipeline to perform pixel shading. Today, The Streaming Multiprocessor (SM) group is the heart of the GPU. It performs vital functions such as pixel shading, tessellation, and physics and compute calculations. SM is highly parallel processor employing superscalar execution for optimal performance. Superscalar execution is a technique that allows sequential instrutions from a program to be executed in parallel. Unlike thread level parallelism which improves throughput, superscalar execution also improves latency since the same program executes in less time.

At Figure 2.1 is shown one group of SM. In GPU can be implemented much more groups which makes GPU device more powerful. Beside that, NVIDIA provides a complete toolkit for programming the CUDA architecture that includes the compiler, debugger, profiler, libraries and other information developers need to deliver production quality products that use the CUDA architecture.

Nvidia also developed Scalable Link Interface (SLI) technology is or a multi-GPU technology for linking two or more video cards together to produce a single output. SLI is a parallel processing algorithm for computer graphics which allows for an increase in available data processing power. Therefore, it is not a problem to create a graphical server with multiple graphics cards associated with the way shown in Figure 2.3a. If multiple network cards are implemented, multiple such servers can be connected as shown in Figure 2.3b and get a rack with enormous graphical power.

 CUDA Server - Block diagram  
Figure* 2.3 CUDA server. ( + / - )  

Therefore, if one computer, tablet, cell phone, and the like, has a relatively weak graphics power, it can rely on the capabilities of the graphics server. A mode of operation that is a typical client-server architecture (Figure 3.6.3). How you use the graphics power of another computer is also illustrated by Figure 5.1.10 on a Linux OS-based network. A graphics card is one of the more expensive parts of a computer, if the computer is intended to be used for gaming or 'mining'. And for 'mining', some computer equipment manufacturers offer specialized 'hardware' as in the following Figure.

 Mining An increasing number of people are aware of the existence of the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, but we can still say with certainty that we are only talking about a part of the market. Even among those who regularly trade the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, few understand the underlying technologies.

Cryptocurrencies are digital records of certain values stored in digital databases. It is basically digital money, created in digital form as a means of digital exchange. It exists only on the Internet and is not issued or supervised by any central bank or state. Precisely because it is not controlled by the central bank, it is not formally money. Just as money is used in a bank account, so is the cryptocurrency in its 'digital wallet' on one of the Internet sites that provides that service. Each transaction that is made is a highly edited digital record, ie a file consisting of the amount of transferred cryptocurrency units and certain public and secret keys of the addresses of the 'digital wallets' of the sender and recipient. Something like GPG. The general or public 'book' in which all transactions and value changes of cryptocurrency units are recorded is called the 'blockchain'. Everyone who owns a unit of a cryptocurrency also has their own copy of this 'book' which is synchronized among all computers on the Internet. Thus, the system consists of computers connected to a network that confirm and verify transactions.

Miners are persons (sometimes a set of people or business entities) who voluntarily provide their computers and computer processing of their 'digital wallet' data in order to confirm a set of transactions carried out in a payment book, or 'blockchain'. They receive a certain amount of cryptocurrency units as a reward. Without miners, the 'blockchain' system would not work easily. 'Mining' is the process of confirming and adding new transactions to the 'blockchain'. Investing in cryptocurrencies is most often associated with Bitcoin, whose price is a general indicator of market movements, so it is sometimes called 'digital gold'. But today there are hundreds of other cryptocurrencies and new ones appear almost every day. Some survive and grow, some die out, but the growth of the crypto market is steady. Cryptocurrency mining can only become profitable if you invest in hardware, more specifically in a graphics card.

Graphics cards mine cryptocurrency faster than processors for the simple reason that they have a multitude of standalone computing units. This means strictly dedicated software that will 'push' the graphics card to work at 100% load, which is not good for its 'health'. A few years ago, a normal computer could successfully mine, but the complexity of the hardware led to the emergence of the 'mining rig' (Figure left at the beginning of this description), special individualized computers whose sole purpose is mining cryptocurrencies, and such computers often consist only of basic components needed. for work and a multitude of graphics cards. The picture on the left shows one such 'rig' that accepts up to 19 graphics cards and costs around $300 without a single GPU. Which graphics cards to use? You get what you pay for! The result is an increase in the prices of graphics cards - some prices have doubled, which players do not like. Even greater functionality is achieved by 'mining farms', something similar to data-centers, but oriented towards the use of graphics cards and mining.


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SUMMARY:

 Graphic card So, the graphics card is not only used for quality display of games, but also for mining, which makes them a particularly sought-after commodity. Therefore, it is not surprising that they are expensive and for the one shown in the picture on the left, a nice $3000 should be set aside. Of course, it is not designed for 'mining' because its cooling system is not designed for 100% permanent load. When playing her load varies and she is rarely constantly under full load.

Features of the displayed card are: MSI GeForce RTX 3090 VENTUS 3X 24G OC, PCI Express 'Gen 4' interface, 10496 cores, operating clock of 1725 MHz, 24 GB GDDR6X memory, 384-bit width bus, 936 GBps bandwidth, Three DisplayPort v1.4a port and one HDMI v2.1, DirectX 12 API, power consumption up to 350 W, The highest supported display resolution is 7680px X 4320px. A little math: 19 X 350 W = 6650 W = 6.65 kW. Consumption as for two thermal storage furnaces. With mining with 19 such cards, no special heating is required in the house. I will not comment on the price of this type of pleasure.


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  Citing of this page:
Radic, Drago. " IT - Informatics Alphabet " Split-Croatia.
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