Nvidia had promised to make the new RTX 3060 ‘Mining Proof’, but a simple fix led miners to unlock the full potential to mine Ethereum, and you can too!
Given the recent shortage of GPUs due to both production shortcomings and miners hoarding the new lineups, Nvidia was set out to take some stringent actions. Everyone was expecting a locked-down card with weird bypasses and unlocks, but it turns out the unlock was way easier than expected.
1. What’s This About a Locked 3060?
Nvidia had promised to make the new RTX 3060 mining-proof by locking down the hash rate of Ethereum. They were essentially rendering the card useless for anyone looking to mine the cryptocurrency.
This would, in turn, make the miners lose interest in the new card, and it would reach other customers like gamers and those in need of the graphical power. All of this was done to curb the actual global shortage, well things did not go well, and an unlock soon surfaced.
2. Method 1: Unlock Maximum Nvidia RTX 3060 ETH Hashrate
Use the GeForce beta driver 470.05 with a video output (or dummy plugs) to unlock the full ETH hash rate of RTX 3060. This specific development driver has no ETH restrictions, and using it with the 3060 will make the card perform at its maximum mining potential.
A user on the Guru3D forum posted about the find, and soon people confirmed. A bypass would have been developed sooner or later, but nobody expected that Nvidia would themselves give the people an unlock!
Requirements before you begin:
- Nvidia RTX 3060
- Geforce 470.05 Beta Drivers
Installing the 470.05 Geforce beta Driver is like installing any usual drivers:
- Download the 470.05 beta drivers. Nvidia has pulled the drivers off their website but as they say, once on the internet always on the internet!
- Use Display Driver Utility (DDU) to remove previous drivers or just select ‘Clean Installation’ when installing the beta drivers.
- Install the beta drivers, and that’s it!
You should now be getting the full hash rate of about 48-50 MH/s compared to the locked-down ~26 MH/s. If you use your card in a mining rig with some riser cables and cards running without a video out, then you need some more stuff.
3. Method 2: Unlock Partial 3/4th ETH Hashrate on RTX 3060
The latest lolMiner v1.29 release unlocks the RTX 3060 ETH Hashrate and you get 3/4th of the hashrate right out of the box. The best thing is you do not need any extra dummy plugs and it works with all risers, find out how.
With the release of version 1.29 of lolMiner, there is a partial Nvidia 3060 “Unlocker” included. The developer was able to take advantage of the potential of the RTX 3060 and it is now able to get close to three-quarters of the full ETH hashrate just by using the latest Linux-only release.
- Nvidia Driver between 455.45.01 and 460.39
- lolMiner v1.29 (Link)
- Any Linux based mining OS
I. How to Use 3060 Nvidia Unlocker on lolMiner
- Download the latest lolMiner (v1.29 as of writing, a Linux-only release). See this for distro-specific instructions.
- lolMiner supports the unlocker right of the box, after around 5 minutes you should be able to see the hashrate stabilize as the in-built optimizations kick in.
Official v1.29 changelog:
- Added the Nvidia 3060 “Unlocker” for Linux. This new mode allows to mine at a speed of about 3/4th of the maximum speed of these cards. Differences to popular Windows solution:
- Works with Linux
- Does not fully unlock card, but partially (~3/4 of max performance, +40-45% over locked card)
- Allows using risers
- Allows multiple GPUs in one system
- Needs Nvidia Linux driver between 455.45.01 and 460.39. Other driver versions will run at locked speed.
The update opens up a lot of potential doors. Since it allows the use of risers, multiple cards, and that too without dummy plugs, you don’t have to worry about macgyver-esque solutions. There is also the possibility that this may be extended to unlock the full potential of the 3060.
4. Still Not Getting Maximum Hashrate on RTX 3060?
RTX 3060 needs to be plugged into a PCIe x16/ x8 slot with a video-out/ dummy plug to unlock the card’s mining potential with the beta drivers (Method 1).
This is for people that are running multiple cards. If you are using riser cables, then x16 to x1/ x4 riser cables will not work. Either plug the card directly or use high-quality x16/x8 risers.
5. Running Multiple RTX 3060s for Mining
It’s more good news for those lucky few who have a handful of RTX 3060s lying around as many people have reportedly gotten multiple 3060s to mine together.
You need to have specific motherboards capable of multiple PCIe x8/x16 lanes to mine with more than one Nvidia RTX 3060s.
I. Single CPU Motherboard: Mining with 7 RTX 3060s
XY Studio reported that the Asus X99-E combined with dummy plugs is able to mine with all the seven 3060s plugged in at full power. The best thing about this board is that it offers seven x16 PICe slots on a single CPU!
Do note after plugin all the seven 3060s, you need to have ‘above 4G Decoding’ enabled in the BIOS to get the system to POST.
II. Dual CPU Motherboard: Mining with 10 RTX 3060s
Ready to take things up a notch? Dizzy Mining over at Youtube spotted SuperMicro’s X10DRX motherboard with a shopping 10 PICe x8 slots! The only caveat? It requires two CPUs to run. Oh wait and it also costs $650!
Both of these methods won’t be of much use if you do not have enough x16 risers since you do not want to turn your mining rig into a furnace!
6. Save on Risers, Invest in Server Racks
Server-style cases are the way to go if you are not able to find x8/ x16 risers to run multiple RTX 3060s. The server racks have better push-pull airflow configurations to keep your GPUs plugged directly in the motherboard cool.
Given the current market trend, most of the risers, especially x8/ x16 risers are either out of stock or price gauged. It would be better to find a cheaper server-style case to run your mining rig in.
7. About RTX 3060
Nvidia’s RTX 3060 is the latest GPU from the giant in the 30 Series RTX lineup. With 12GB VRAM and 2nd Generation Ray Tracing architecture, the 3060 promises a surreal gaming experience with stunning visuals.