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NVIDIA hit by faulty mobile GPU disclosure

NVIDIA has discovered a problem relating to "significant quantities" of older mobile GPUs.

NVIDIA has discovered (Techmeme) a problem relating to "significant quantities" of older mobile GPUs.

NVIDIA
Details are sketchy but NVIDIA believe that the problem is down to the packaging material used on some of its chips. So far there's no word as to what product lines are affected, with NVIDIA only saying that the problem is confined to "graphics processing units and media and communications processors."

Notebook OEMs have already been given access to updated GPU drivers which are designed to alleviate te problem by making the GPU fan come on sooner, thus keeping the part cooler (the downside of this is that it has an adversely affects battery life).

This problem is going to cost NVIDIA. The company will take a charge against second-quarter earnings of between $150 million and $200 million to cover the expected cost of repairs and replacements.

In the meantime this hasn't gone down well with investors and NVIDIA stock has been hit hard, down by as much as 24% in after hours trading.

[UPDATE: Markets are open and NVIDIA is now down 29.7% to 12.68. Ouch.]

Joining the dots ...

I know, I know, you want me to take a stab at what GPUs are affected. Here's what I think (remember, this is totally unconfirmed and is just a hunch based on what I've been hearing) ...

In recent weeks I've been hearing about a lot of problems related to the Dell m1330 and m1530, which are powered by the GeForce 8400M GS. For a while now this issue has been put down to overheating of the GPU. I've heard from several people who have been hit by this problem, with some having to have multiple motherboard replacements.

There's details of a modification called the Copper Mod posted on several forums. Finally, what makes the 8400M GS a prime suspect is that the other day an update for this GPU was released by Dell.

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