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When will graphics card prices drop: but don’t buy them

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Prices for graphics cards have gone down again, though not as much as before. The biggest price drops are still happening on the second-hand market.

This is based on the most recent data from Tom’s Hardware, our sister site that regularly checks prices at stores and on eBay.

The prices of current-generation GPUs (Nvidia RTX 3000 and AMD RX 6000) have dropped by 3% over the course of the month of July. This may not seem like a lot, but it continues a trend that has been going on for a while: prices that have been much higher than the recommended levels (MSRP) are slowly but steadily going down.

There are now a number of graphics cards that cost less than their MSRP. Most of these are AMD GPUs, but there are also some from Nvidia, like the RTX 3090 Ti, which costs 17% less than its MSRP. The RTX 3080 Ti is also 10% cheaper, and the RTX 3090 is 3% cheaper than the MSRP. This means that high-end cards are getting cheaper.

Other Nvidia GPUs are still about 15% more expensive than MSRP, and the RTX 3050 is a whopping 31% more expensive.

Most new AMD graphics cards, on the other hand, now cost less than their MSRP, and some by a lot, like the RX 6900 XT at 15% less or the RX 6600 at 17% less.

In fact, only AMD’s Radeon RX 6800 and 6800 XT are still more expensive than MSRP, but only by 3% and 6%, respectively.

GPUs sold on eBay have dropped by 14% on average since June 1. This is a much bigger drop than for other items. The prices of used cards from generations before the RTX 3000 and RX 6000 dropped even more, by an average of 17%.

Tom’s Hardware says that the average drop in GPU prices since the beginning of 2022 is 57%, which shows how much prices have dropped in the first half of this year.

Keep away from the GPU minefield and play the waiting game.

At this point, we should repeat our warnings about those used GPUs that are being sold on auction sites. Even though the big price drops on used graphics cards, especially high-end ones, may make them look very appealing, keep in mind that many of the people selling these cards on sites like eBay are former miners who are getting rid of their equipment after the recent crypto crash.

The problem with these GPUs is that they’ve probably been used nonstop for a long time, which doesn’t bode well for their long-term durability. It’s like buying a used car that has been driven a lot and has a lot of miles on it. The chances of something going wrong are uncomfortably high.

Don’t forget that miners know that selling their used GPUs isn’t a good idea for these reasons, so they may say that the graphics card they’re selling was used in a regular PC to convince buyers to buy it (or even outright lie and claim the GPU is actually new and not used). Be very careful with anything that seems too good to be true or is priced too low…

In fact, because that mining stock is being sold off, buying a used GPU is a bit of a minefield right now, so we recommend staying away from the market for now.

The best thing for us to do right now is to wait and keep an eye on new graphics cards in stores. We expect that as the launch of the next-generation GPU gets closer, the pressure on prices will increase.

If the rumors are true, Nvidia’s retail prices could drop by a lot. As we’ve already said, Nvidia has been resisting price drops more stubbornly than AMD (mainly due to demand for RTX 3000 graphics cards). It’s said, though, that this won’t last because Team Green has an “enormous” amount of current-gen GPUs to sell before the RTX 4000 cards come out, which is coming soon (maybe in just a couple of months).

So much so that there’s a theory that Nvidia wants to cut production orders for next-generation graphics cards and delay shipments a bit. Because of this, we can expect bigger price cuts as retailers try to clear out their stock of RTX 3000 models, while potential buyers become more cautious and willing to wait for RTX 4000 GPUs, knowing that they’re getting closer and closer.

That’s why, at least for us, the smart money is on waiting for Nvidia’s prices to drop even more. And that’s before we even think about how the GPU market will change when Intel finally releases its desktop Arc Alchemist graphics cards.

Even though there hasn’t been much talk about Arc GPUs lately and there are questions about their performance and drivers in particular, Intel could decide to attack the pricing front. This could give AMD and Nvidia another reason to drop GPU prices as a response.


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