Nvidia, the renowned chipmaker company, is set to launch a specialized graphics card for the Chinese market in response to US export controls. The newly introduced RTX 4090D differs slightly from its flagship counterpart, the RTX 4090, sold elsewhere. This article delves into the details of this customized GPU and the reasons behind its development.
The RTX 4090D, featured on the Chinese version of Nvidia’s website, boasts a modest reduction in power and performance compared to the original RTX 4090. While the former offers 14,592 CUDA cores, the latter stands at a higher count of 16,384. Additionally, the RTX 4090D has a lower power draw of 425W, unlike the RTX 4090, which requires 450W. Although the majority of other specifications remain consistent between the two versions, the gaming and creative capabilities of the RTX 4090D have been reported to be around 5% inferior, as confirmed by Nvidia spokesperson Benjamin Berraondo in an email statement to The Verge.
The US government recently implemented tighter export restrictions specifically concerning high-end chips bound for China. As a result, Nvidia faced restrictions in selling the H800 and A800 AI GPUs developed for the Chinese market. Moreover, the company was prohibited from selling the RTX 4090 in the country. In response, Nvidia developed the GeForce RTX 4090D to ensure compliance with these export controls, engaging extensively with the US government throughout the chip’s development.
Starting in January, the RTX 4090D will be readily available in China at a price of ￥12,999 (approximately $1,836 USD). This strategic launch aims to address the growing demand for high-performance graphics cards within the Chinese market. Industry reports have indicated that the ban on the RTX 4090 prompted some factories in China to dismantle and repurpose the banned GPUs for artificial intelligence purposes.
Nvidia’s introduction of the RTX 4090D serves as a tactical response to the tightening export restrictions on high-end chips destined for China. By customizing the GPU to comply with US government regulations, Nvidia aims to meet the demand for powerful graphics cards in the Chinese market while navigating the constraints imposed on the tech industry. This launch showcases Nvidia’s ability to adapt and innovate amid evolving international trade dynamics.