For those of you looking at getting one of Nvidia’s new RTX ‘Super’ graphics cards, there are some worrying rumblings from the graphics grapevine concerning potential stock shortages, and indeed possible price rises that could stem from that alleged lack of inventory.
A report from Eteknix points out unspecified rumors which are apparently generally circulating that retailers are struggling to get any ‘significant’ amount of Nvidia’s new Super GPUs on shelves (whether that’s bricks-and-mortar stores, or online shops).
Obviously this is a pretty vague assertion, and as such, we’ve got to treat it with extreme caution. That said, at least looking at current inventory levels in the UK – which is the market the Eteknix report focuses on (so we’ll cite prices in pounds in this article) – taking a general overview, there aren’t all that many cards available to buy. The majority of RTX 2060 Super and RTX 2070 Super models don’t have any stock yet available, or have already sold out (the 2080 Super isn’t officially available yet, but some of the 2060 and 2070 spins are).
Take from that what you will, but initial stock issues aren’t exactly unheard of in the GPU world, and it wouldn’t be a major surprise if Nvidia was off to a slow start.
Incidentally, the current stock picture seems to be similar in the US market, although the 2060 Super appears to be a little better represented there.
At any rate, Eteknix goes further in speculating that such a scenario could lead to price rises on the ‘Super’ cards – again, this is something we’ve seen before with graphics cards, and a simple product of the basic rules of supply and demand.
The tech site digs out a specific example of a price rise it has witnessed in the UK, with the Zotac GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER Amp Extreme 8GB, which reportedly launched at a price of around £500 at a few retailers. That’s a little more than the recommended price of £479 for the RTX 2070 Super (although this is the slightly juiced-up model from Zotac, which offers three spins on the GPU, so it’s not uncommon to be priced up as a result).
Eteknix then notes that prices have now risen to £539.99 (Overclockers), £529.98 (eBuyer) and £527.99 (Scan), which is still correct at the time of writing, except Overclockers has actually notched it up to £548.99 now. CCL has bumped the price even further to £587.
Incidentally, none of those outlets have the Zotac card available right now, and you can only pre-order it (again potentially pointing to those stock wobbles).
The conclusion drawn by Eteknix is that moderate price rises are already happening, and more significant hikes could be on the horizon with the alleged impending card shortages.
Is that fair to say? Well, it’s not unthinkable as we’ve already mentioned, but looking around at other GPUs aside from that single Zotac card – a very narrow focus – there are certainly cheaper models from other vendors, and you can snag yourself a 2070 Super for around the £475 mark (at least on pre-order in the UK, anyway). Which is pretty much in line – and actually a tad less – than the recommended price of £479.
So, it’s far from panic stations yet, and on a broader level, we would hope that Nvidia is primed to go with a decent slab of stock of its Super GPUs given that the whole point here is to counterattack AMD’s new Navi graphics cards.
But that said, the stock picture does seem a little shaky currently, and we’ve witnessed our own major price increase with the Asus ROG Strix RTX 2060 Super. This GPU was on offer yesterday for only £360 at Box, but now the retailer is asking a whopping £540 (yes, ouch).
So, if the rumormongers are right, we could be in for a bumpy ride in terms of price hikes. That being the case, you might want to get your pre-order in now for safety’s sake, or be prepared to sit and wait for prices to settle in the longer run, which they always inevitably do in these sort of scenarios.