AMD, Nvidia GPUs at Risk as TSMC Halts Production Amid Chemical Contamination

I don't believe this news.not that it's being reported incorrectlybut rather this is a way for chip makers namely gpu to keep prices inflated as they are. These folks need to let go of the mining pricing, it's over they need to face that fact.
 

mspencerl87

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Feb 8, 2012
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Let it go Nvidia. Let it go.
JUST BUY IT!
 
Jan 28, 2019
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Dear Toms Hardware , I think you need to change that title of yours because it IMPLIES that amd Dgpu-s are at risk when they are not.
 
Jan 28, 2019
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Sounds kind of fishy especially Nvidia coming up short in their earnings and these wafers are "Contaminated" sounds like a good reason to recoup some lost revenue. Just MHO! No skin off my back bought a RTX 2080 and 2070 last month and have plenty of CPUs to keep me happy.
 

InvalidError

Titan
Moderator

TSMC doesn't care what GPU prices are, chip fab prices are based on how many wafers you want and how many deposition-resist-etch steps are required per wafer, doesn't matter what the wafer is for and those contract prices are usually agreed for several months to over a year beforehand. If TSMC makes 10k defective wafers due to an internal fab issue, that loss comes out of their pocket. TSMC would likely much prefer selling 10k extra wafers to Spreadtrum, MediaTek, Qualcomm and whoever else its other major clients might be or just not start them in the first place than scrap them - a blank wafer is worth over $1000, 10k partially processed wafers is well over 10M$ down the drain plus additional losses from downtime as the incident is being investigated, corrected and production gets restarted which can take a while depending on how much re-calibration will be required for restart.

If Nvidia wants to jack up prices by lowering supply, Nvidia can simply cancel any non-committed wafer starts it may have, sell a chunk of their wafer commitment to someone else who wants to have their wafers earlier and ship fewer completed chips.

Scrapping 10k wafers (plus production delays for everything else) just for the heck of it makes no sense.
 

none12345

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Apr 27, 2013
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"Glad i already got my Ryzen 5. Another shortage similar to the GPU shortage we had for 2 YEARS?"

Ryzen(zen1/zen2 based chips, first and second gen, and all the apus) are produced at global foundries. So it wont affect ryzen at all.

Polaris is also global foundries, 590s 580s 570s, etc, all of that wont be affected.

zen2/gen 3 ryzen chips will be fabed at TSMC, but they are 7nm, and they said nothing about the 7nm fab being affected. It could be, but they didnt say anything yet.

Same with 7nm vega, and navi(which i dont think is in production yet), shouldnt be affected. Unless this is a more widespread issue.

-------------------

Nvidia....16 nm TSMC is pascal. 12nm TSMC is turing. So, all of nvidia's productions are potentially affected.

However....with an oversupply of pascal, and slow sales for turing.....this could be a blessing in disguise. If they are under contract to take wafers they dont need right now....it could be a good thing that some of them got destroyed.
 

alextheblue

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Apr 3, 2001
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Wouldn't a better conspiracy theory involve a competing fab? Samsung? Intel! They didn't want to be the only ones having shortages. They've got the motive, the money, and they've got agents everywhere. I mean, you don't see them pairing up 10nm chips with defective GPUs or KBL-G with Nvidia chips, do you? It's almost like... they knew this would happen.
 

InvalidError

Titan
Moderator

All companies that have wafer contracts with TSMC and had wafer starts scheduled after the incident occurred will be affected by the however-many-days delay until normal production resumes, which may mean months of delayed shipments until TSMC catches up depending on how tight TSMC's production booking is.
 
And people say alchemy is dead. Look at these chip makers, turning silicon, one of the most abundant resources in the world, into gold... well... money at least.

So... I'd be interested in finding out how there was a chemical contaminate. These things are made in clean rooms. Did someone sneeze? Spill their coffee? Did a machine break and spew... whatever fluids they have (probably not hydraulics, because those are kinda messy for a clean room)... all over the place?

This is an interesting story in more ways than one.
 

InvalidError

Titan
Moderator

Making chips involves multiple chemical steps. Chemical contamination could mean contaminated etching solution, contaminated photo-resist solution, contaminated rinse solution, contaminated vapor deposition sources, etc. The contamination could be from mishandling the solutions or gas cylinders or mistakes from the company that makes the solutions, fills gas cylinders, makes vapor deposition sources, etc.

If it was contamination from an equipment breakdown, chances are TSMC would have noticed long before being 10k wafers in. I'm guessing they investigated when the first defective wafer came off the manufacturing line and had grossly abnormal failure rate in testing and by that time, 10k wafers were in the manufacturing pipeline and possibly affected.
 

TJ Hooker

Illustrious
Herald

AMD has no products that use 12/16 nm TSMC, other than console APUs.
 

urbanman2004

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Aug 17, 2012
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NVIDIA's year can't get any better. First, their RTX cards underwhelm, next their stock gets downgraded to "Undperforming, and now this contamination crisis. What else could possibly go wrong ;)
 

InvalidError

Titan
Moderator

Probably me for generalizing that plant screw-ups will affect everyone waiting for those wafer starts without specifying 'affected'.
 

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