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Graphics card prices drop again – but don’t buy them yet

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Retail is likely to see bigger price drops. Don’t be fooled by eBay ‘bargains.

Graphics cards prices fell again, although by a smaller amount in the case of retail price tags. However, the larger drops are still being seen in the second-hand marketplace.

The current-gen GPU prices at retailers (Nvidia RX 3000 and AMD X 6000) have fallen 3% in July. While this may not seem like much, it continues a well established downward trend. This is a slow, steady erosion of price tags that were way higher than the MSRP (recommended levels) in the past.

Many graphics cards are currently below MSRP. Although more are AMD GPUs than Nvidia’s, some are RTX3090 Ti which is 17% lower than its MSRP according to Tom’s Hardware. The RTX 3080T is 10% lower, while the RTX 3090 costs 3% less. It’s the higher-end models that are being dipped in this manner.

Other Nvidia GPUs are still around 15% to so over MSRP and, in the case RTX 3050 is a staggering 31% more.

The vast majority of current-gen AMD graphic cards, however, are under MSRP. Some, such as the RX6900 XT at 15% less or the RX6600 at 17%, are also below MSRP.

AMD’s Radeon RX6800 and 6800 XT are still above MSRP. They are actually only 3% and 6% more than their respective MSRPs.

The drop in GPUs on eBay, which fell by an average of 14% compared to June 1, has been much more dramatic. The average 17% drop in second-hand cards for generations prior to the current RTX 3000 or RX 6000 cards was even more dramatic.

Tom’s notes that on average the GPU price drops since 2022 are 57%, which shows just how much the price tags have fallen in the first half.

It is important to reiterate our warnings regarding used GPUs being sold off via auction sites. Although second-hand graphics cards may seem very appealing due to the steep price drops, especially the higher-end models, it is important to remember that many of the cards flooding eBay are ex miners who have disposed of their hardware since the crypto crash.

These GPUs are likely to have been used for extended periods of time and will not be able to sustain their long-term viability. This is the equivalent to buying a used car that has had a lot of mileage (and which has been driven hard). The likelihood of something going wrong can be uncomfortably high.

Remember that miners are aware that used GPUs can be expensive so they may make claims that the card was not in use on a regular PC to win buyers. Don’t believe anything that seems too good to be true, or is too expensive.

In reality, because of that clearing, purchasing a used GPU can be quite a daunting task right now. We recommend staying away from the market, at least temporarily.

We would be best to wait and see new graphics cards at retail. With the expectation that pricing will drop further due to the increasing pressures from next-gen GPU launches, we are better off waiting.

According to rumors, Nvidia could see a drop in retail prices. Nvidia has, as we have seen, been resisting the price fall more than AMD, mainly because of the demand for RTX 3000 graphic cards. However, Team Green is rumored to have an “enormous” amount of current-gen stock. This could mean that the situation will not hold.

It is believed that Nvidia will cut production orders and delay shipments a bit. As retailers try to clear their inventory of RTX 3000 models, they may also seek to reduce prices. This could lead to larger price reductions. However, buyers who are more wary and willing to wait for RTX4000 GPUs become more cautious.

We think it’s smart to wait for Nvidia pricing to drop further, and that’s before we consider the disruptive factor for the GPU market by Intel finally launching its desktop Arc Alchemist graphic cards.

The buzz surrounding Arc GPUs is worryingly flat of late. There are still questions around performance and drivers. Intel could attack pricing – and have the potential to offer some potent competition at the lower-end market. This could provide another source of pressure to AMD and Nvidia to drop GPU prices.

 

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