If you’ve somehow managed to purchase the elusive NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 or 3090, you may have a dud. Multiple reports show that, mainly from partner GPUs, components may not be up to snuff. So even if you managed to snag one of the GPUs, you may not be gaming with it for long.
HotHardware notes the problem comes from cheap parts, mainly low-cost capacitors. They go into depth on the specifics, which is an interesting read if you’d like to know more about how GPUs work. The condensed version is that buyers who have cards from Zotac, MSI, and others may have affected units.
A growing and automatically-updated list courtesy of Reddit user Roseking shows what each partner is using. The type of capacitors used is irrelevant; ultimately stability of the GPU is determined by the overall design and layout. For example, Zotac’s design as highlighted by HHW has the SP-CAPs too close together. With proper cooling it may not be an issue, but higher-quality materials would also help.
EVGA publicly stated that this concern is a reason why the company’s own GPUs have been delayed. ASUS has also delayed their cards for the same reason. In other words right now we only have buyer complaints. There’s no definitive list of affected units.