Nvidia and AMD address the great GPU shortage

Nvidia’s new RTX 3080, 3070, 3060 Ti and 3090 and the AMD RX 6800 and 6800 XT are all extremely exhausting to seek out, promoting out immediately at any time when they seem, because of an unimaginable stage of demand that makes these GPUs worth many hundreds of dollars more than MSRP. A Trump tax and surging cryptocurrency costs may be about to make them even more expensive, too. Many older graphics playing cards are offered out on-line as nicely.

This week, Nvidia and AMD lastly have some updates — and it’s bittersweet information.

On the plus aspect, AMD tells The Verge it expects to promote extra of its personal reference design RX 6800, 6800 XT and RX 6900 XT playing cards by itself web site within the first quarter of 2021 at their sticker costs, which ought to imply $579, $649 and $999 as an alternative of inflated ones. However AMD is barely committing to make them accessible “to as many players as doable,” which can not reassure consumers who felt AMD had a paper launch to begin with.

Nvidia, in the meantime, is now saying that provides of its GPUs to each shoppers and companions “will probably stay lean by way of Q1,” and we’re not even speaking concerning the first quarter of the 12 months — Nvidia’s fiscal Q1 doesn’t finish till late April. That’s an awfully lengthy wait.

Once more, it’s demand, not simply provide constraints, which might be retaining graphics playing cards out of our palms. Nvidia tells us that since launch, its $499-and-up RTX 30-series GPUs have offered nearly twice as a lot because the RTX 20-series did after the identical period of time. (The RTX 30-series is a a lot greater improve than the earlier gen was, thoughts you — there weren’t lots of video games that took benefit of Nvidia’s ray tracing on the time, and folks’s GTX 10-series playing cards have been nonetheless holding up simply wonderful.)

Nvidia does at the very least appear to assume crypto miners aren’t snapping up all of the playing cards fairly but, regardless of the sky-high costs we’ve not too long ago seen for Bitcoin and Ethereum.

“If crypto demand begins or if we see a significant quantity,” mentioned CFO Colette Kress at a recent investor conference, “we will additionally use that chance to restart the CMP product line to deal with ongoing mining demand.” CMP refers to Nvidia’s dedicated crypto mining GPUs, which strip away the video ports miners don’t want as a result of they aren’t driving graphics to a monitor, making them them extra worthwhile for Nvidia.

Neither Nvidia nor AMD are speaking about whether or not Trump’s taxes may affect the value of their companions’ graphics playing cards proper now and by how a lot. AMD would solely say that it “can even proceed supporting our companions within the growth of their customized AMD Radeon RX 6000 Collection graphics card designs,” which is an enormous step again from what it told Hardware Unboxed in November about how companions ought to have the ability to promote the RX 6800 XT at its authentic $649 MSRP inside eight weeks.

Throughout their back-to-back CES 2021 keynotes in the present day, AMD praised how its new graphics playing cards gave the corporate “management on the excessive finish” and famous that “many players are excited concerning the Radeon RX 6000 sequence,” whereas Nvidia acknowledged that “these merchandise have been exhausting to seek out, and we wish to thanks to your endurance as we proceed to work exhausting to catch up.”

It’s going to be a wait, and also you shouldn’t be stunned if Nvidia’s just-announced $329 GeForce RTX 3060 is hell to purchase, just like its predecessors. Like many have requested: why can’t we simply purchase one they usually ship it when it’s prepared?

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