Question Seemingly fine GPU has an odd smell

Nov 29, 2021
I have an MSI Gaming X Trio RTX 3070, and I recently took the GPU out of my computer so I could safely move it long distances. When putting the GPU back into my PC, I noticed an odd smell seemingly coming from the GPU. It wasn't a burnt smell per se, but it was not pleasant. Maybe it's the thermal paste? I was instantly concerned, as I am terrified that my card might be fried/beginning to go. It was close to the back of the graphics card, by the output ports. I could only smell it by the radiator, I couldn't really smell it on the backplate.

That area of the card seems to have the controllers for voltage control, but part of that controller is on the backplate and that was fine. It isn't strong enough for me to smell it in the case, even while the PC is on. The GPU hadn't been used for 7-8 hours by that point, and my card has been working just fine and is still working fine. I have been mining ETH with Gminer while I have not been using the PC for the past 2 months or so, but with 50% power limits and the card never goes above 52 degrees.

I have not taken apart the card, and since I got the card in June I still have a warranty at least with the MicroCenter I got it from. Should I RMA, or not worry about it unless it gets worse? Am I just overthinking this? This is my first post on a site like this, I just am quite concerned for my GPU's health as I really need to use my computer and don't have an IGPU or a spare card. If you think it could be the mining that might be damaging the card or something, I'll stop doing so as I was only planning to do it until ETH 2.0 comes out anyways. Thank you!

Relevant PC specs:
Ryzen 5 5600x
MSI RTX 3070 Gaming X Trio (8GB GDDR6, non-LHR)
32GB (2x16) 3600MHz Corsair C18 RGB memory
MSI MAG X570 Tomahawk Wifi ATX Motherboard
EVGA 850GA 80+Gold fully modular Power supply
256GB & 512GB Inland NVME SSDs
1TB Crucial Sata SSD
Corsair 4000X RGB mid-tower case


Apr 24, 2021
If you're at all worried about your GPU, don't bother mining on it. You will reduce the card's lifespan by mining on it, and with the cost of GPUs at the moment it simply is not worth it. Buy yourself $50 worth of ETH and pretend that you mined it. The effect is the same.

Likely what you are smelling is a little bit of grease on the heatsink from when you took it out, slowly evaporating away. It should eventually go away. Difficult to rule out any leaking capacitors or burned fan motors without seeing the card. Can we see some pics?