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GPU prices reach record low since January 2021

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We’ve previously reported and given you updates on the state of the GPU market, with sky-high MSRPs, in addition to a demand issue that has seen even the most seasoned of chip developers turn their heads at the number of customers wanting to get themselves a brand-new graphics card. 3Dcenter has done some research into the pricing of these graphics cards, and have found that graphics cards are cheaper now than they ever were in 2021, meaning that we could be seeing enhanced amounts of stock come, with less of an impact on things like GPU miners getting involved, or scalpers looking to make a quick buck, by purchasing all of the stock.

How easy is it to get a GPU?

GPU Pricing
Credit: 3DCenter

Availability and price are looking great on both the Nvidia and Radeon sides of the GPU market as of March 2022. According to the report, which tracks GPU pricing from the beginning of the year, GPU prices are better than they have been for over a year, since the beginning of 2021. Although, this seemingly radical statement has to be followed up with the fact that GPUs are still trending to be at least 35% higher than MSRP on the Radeon side, and 41% on the Nvidia side.

This could be down to the manufacturer’s cost that is being applied and was adjusted due to the demand and supply issues over the course of the pandemic. There will be more meaningful change in the GPU market once manufacturers bring down the cost price that retailers use to purchase their stock, as there will be more room for them to actually come nearer to stock price. This volatile cost is associated with not only the manufacturing cost of the GPU itself but also the shipping and global freight situation. There are innumerable factors that go into pricing a product, but the general outlook on the GPU market looks pretty good.

Why has GPU availability increased?

AMD Radeon RX 6600 XT ASRock 6

Crytocurrency market crash

This could be to a number of different factors. These products are now considered to be mature in the market, and with both companies now offering full stacks of cards on the latest architecture, you can expect that many consumers who want a GPU, have already purchased one. However, this does not mean that they’re going to be freely available to purchase, availability simply means in this case the frequency of which the GPU is actually in stock, and from 3DCenter’s analysis, we can see that availability in the European markets has greatly increased after the fall of the value of Ethereum. While this correlation remains true for much of the data, you cannot understate the impact that volatile factors like cryptocurrency has on the GPU market currently.

What GPU is the best value right now?

If you’re looking to save a bit of cash on the pure dollar amount of the GPUs listed, then you are in for a treat if you are looking for a Radeon GPU in particular. The 6600XT is currently only 26% above its MSRP and still manages to deliver killer performance without breaking the bank. Its closes competitor, the RTX 3060Ti just cannot justify its inflated price tag by comparison. In general, you’ll find Radeon GPUs trending closer to their true value rather than Team Green. Nvidia cards generally have the better software suite attached, so be sure to make an informed choice about the brand of card that you’re going for it because the two brands have more points of comparison below the surface than just the framerates that you are able to achieve using the card.

You can also get yourself an RTX 3080Ti for not much more than the MSRP, but paying that much for a card like that is of slightly more dubious value than the other options available on the market currently, because of the value proposition of the card itself in comparison to a 3080 and lower just, isn’t worth it.

When will GPUs be back at MSRP?

How to easily underclock your AMD or Nvidia GPU

It’s unclear as to when GPUs might come back down to the prices that we expected in early 2020, some believe that they might never go back down because of the fact that cards still end up selling out despite the raised MSRP. To the companies, it demonstrated that consumers are still willing to purchase these categories and classes of products at this level of pricing is an indicator that there is still money to be made on the consumer level with specialist PC parts, which grows into an ever-expanding niche.

With such a density of products and devices to choose from, high-powered computers aren’t high on too many people’s lists, aside from gamers, streamers, and more. However, Cloud technology additionally continues to threaten traditional PC gaming, with services like XCloud coming to the platform which quickly reduces PC gaming to somewhat of a niche in the industry. With that said, devices like Valve’s Steam Deck also threatens the traditional PC ecosystem, with specs and a price point that a traditionally-built PC just can’t really hope to compete within a meaningful way by comparison to how hard Valve is going in on cutting the costs of the device to build an ecosystem.

Additionally, integration of dedicated APUs are getting much better in recent years, with AMD’s Rembrandt offering proving to show that integrated graphics can really pack a punch, and you can expect that the integrations will only get more powerful from here on out. We’d love to see less of a reliance on dedicated graphics cards, as it could potentially stand to make a huge difference with regards to portability, as has since been proven with the Steam Deck.

There is also an additional threat in the rise of ARM processing reaching near-desktop performance. Though Apple’s M1 chips are indeed formidable, we’re not sure that they really have the graphical grunt to power modern, AAA game workloads quite yet. But, this could all change if an M2 chip is revealed at Apple’s first press event of 2022.

If you’re after a brand-new GPU, be sure to check out our guide on where to buy the latest cards below:

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