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Below MSRP and Only Getting Cheaper: The GPU Deluge Begins

GPU mining rig, not looking so promising now
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

We've been watching GPU prices fall since the start of the year, but the past few weeks suggest things could get a lot worse — for the graphics card manufacturers and GPU vendors, that is — in the near future.

GPU prices dropped 15% in May, and we've seen similar 10–15% drops each month for the past several months. We saw the best graphics cards come back into stock (at retail) as GPU mining profitability has plummeted — and that was before Bitcoin and Ethereum crashed again, dropping Bitcoin from around $30,000 to the low $20,000s and Ethereum from around $1,900 to about $1,100. In the past week, Bitcoin's value dropped over 30%, while Ethereum plunged by more than 40%.

This has happened before — back in 2018, when it resulted in a massive oversupply of many GPU lines. AMD's Polaris GPUs, such as the RX 570 and RX 580, went from being wildly-popular mining GPUs to being cards you could pick up for a song. The low-end RX 560 cost almost as much as the RX 570 4GB, even though the latter offered more than twice the performance. And it's not just retail prices that will threaten sales — used GPUs will start to flood the market as people abandon cryptocurrency mining.

We're already starting to see some of these effects. Remember just a few months ago, when the RTX 3080 couldn't be found for under $1,000? It's now going for less than $650 on eBay, and we've seen listings selling groups of six RTX 3080s for as little as $2,500 — $418 each! With the current profitability of RTX 3080 mining hovering around $0.85 per day (after power costs), even hardcore miners are ready to throw in the towel and see what remaining value they can get out of their cards. Wannabe miners would still be looking at about a year and a half to break even, assuming things don't get continue getting worse.

This might sound like doom and gloom, but it's actually great news for anyone looking to upgrade to a new graphics card! Not that we're suggesting you run out and buy a used graphics card off eBay, but we expect nearly every current generation graphics card will soon be found for less-than-retail prices — maybe far less. Here's a look at the latest GPU prices compared to just two weeks ago. (We'll break things down into retail and eBay tables, to make things more understandable.)

Graphics Card Retail Prices — June 15, 2022
Graphics CardJune 15 PriceJune 1 Price15 Day ChangeOfficial MSRP
GeForce RTX 3090 Ti (opens in new tab)$1,800 $1,900 -5%$2,000
GeForce RTX 3090 (opens in new tab)$1,500 $1,550 -3%$1,500
GeForce RTX 3080 Ti (opens in new tab)$1,000 $1,000 0%$1,200
GeForce RTX 3080 12GB (opens in new tab)$870 $800 9%N/A
GeForce RTX 3080 (opens in new tab)$770 $800 -4%$700
GeForce RTX 3070 Ti (opens in new tab)$650 $700 -7%$600
GeForce RTX 3070 (opens in new tab)$560 $600 -7%$500
GeForce RTX 3060 Ti (opens in new tab)$500 $523 -4%$400
GeForce RTX 3060 (opens in new tab)$400 $400 0%$330
GeForce RTX 3050 (opens in new tab)$300 $319 -6%$250
Radeon RX  6950 XT (opens in new tab)$1,070 $1,070 0%$1,100
Radeon RX  6900 XT (opens in new tab)$850 $880 -3%$1,000
Radeon RX  6800 XT (opens in new tab)$770 $790 -3%$650
Radeon RX  6800 (opens in new tab)$700 $700 0%$580
Radeon RX  6750 XT (opens in new tab)$540 $540 0%$550
Radeon RX  6700 XT (opens in new tab)$480 $485 -1%$480
Radeon RX  6700?N/AN/A?
Radeon RX  6650 XT (opens in new tab)$380 $385 -1%$400
Radeon RX  6600 XT (opens in new tab)$360 $370 -3%$380
Radeon RX  6600 (opens in new tab)$290 $300 -3%$330
Radeon RX  6500 XT (opens in new tab)$175 $175 0%$200
Radeon RX  6400 (opens in new tab)$160 $160 0%$160

Retail prices aren't falling quite as fast as the used market on eBay (see below), but we're still tracking a 2% drop in the past two weeks, which is partially offset by the 9% increase in price on the RTX 3080 12GB. It seems others may have noticed that the $800 deal was perhaps a bit too good, at least for the current day — but don't be surprised if that card drops well below that price in the coming months.

As we've mentioned before, the most desirable Nvidia GPUs — the RTX 3080, 3070, 3060 Ti, 3060, and 3050 — are still selling for over MSRP. Cards with higher recommended prices, however, haven't been able to maintain those levels, and the RTX 3090 Ti and RTX 3080 Ti are both "deals" where you no longer have to pay MSRP.

AMD's GPUs still offer better overall value, if you compare performance using our GPU benchmarks hierarchy. You do give up some ray tracing performance and DLSS support, but if you're looking at apples-to-apples comparisons the RX 6900 XT matches up well against the RTX 3080 Ti and costs significantly less. The same goes for the RX 6600 XT and the RTX 3060. Nearly every AMD GPU now sells for less than MSRP, except for the RX 6800 XT and RX 6800.

Graphics Card eBay Prices — June 15, 2022
Graphics CardeBay Buy it NoweBay June 15eBay June 1eBay Change
GeForce RTX 3090 Ti (opens in new tab)$1,670 $1,672 $1,829 -9%
GeForce RTX 3090 (opens in new tab)$890 $1,265 $1,438 -12%
GeForce RTX 3080 Ti (opens in new tab)$850 $1,000 $1,134 -12%
GeForce RTX 3080 12GB (opens in new tab)$840 $936 $959 -2%
GeForce RTX 3080 (opens in new tab)$641 $743 $899 -17%
GeForce RTX 3070 Ti (opens in new tab)$505 $619 $710 -13%
GeForce RTX 3070 (opens in new tab)$499 $544 $641 -15%
GeForce RTX 3060 Ti (opens in new tab)$425 $470 $579 -19%
GeForce RTX 3060 (opens in new tab)$339 $379 $424 -11%
GeForce RTX 3050 (opens in new tab)$285 $296 $315 -6%
Radeon RX  6950 XT (opens in new tab)$1,200 $1,270 $1,600 -21%
Radeon RX  6900 XT (opens in new tab)$778 $774 $875 -12%
Radeon RX  6800 XT (opens in new tab)$570 $637 $767 -17%
Radeon RX  6800 (opens in new tab)$568 $575 $655 -12%
Radeon RX  6750 XT (opens in new tab)$545 $560 $511 10%
Radeon RX  6700 XT (opens in new tab)$400 $410 $477 -14%
Radeon RX  6700N/AN/AN/AN/A
Radeon RX  6650 XT (opens in new tab)$365 $372 $400 -7%
Radeon RX  6600 XT (opens in new tab)$270 $309 $350 -12%
Radeon RX  6600 (opens in new tab)$277 $274 $290 -5%
Radeon RX  6500 XT (opens in new tab)$175 $159 $192 -17%
Radeon RX  6400 (opens in new tab)$192 $170 $151 13%

Flipping over to the secondhand market on eBay: Average eBay sold prices have dropped 10% compared to two weeks ago. This is a big drop, and it's partially offset by higher prices on the RX 6750 XT and RX 6400 — both of which have incredibly low eBay volumes and can therefore be ignored. Actually, all of AMD's newcomer GPUs are basically unavailable on eBay — if we ignore those, eBay's sold listing prices actually dropped by 12%.

The Buy it Now column is even more interesting, as it shows the lowest price we were able to find (after we excluded non-functional hardware and fake/bad listings with a Buy it Now option). Nearly every graphics card has a Buy it Now price that's less than the average sold listing price in the past week — and Buy it Now means there's no need to deal with the hassle of bidding on an auction. You're probably still getting a warmed-over mining card that may or may not run well (unless it's a relatively new model, such as the RTX 3090 Ti), but these cards will get more and more enticing as prices continue to drop. 

GPU prices, lots of boxes in a warehouse

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

The real question — and the one we don't have an answer for — is how much inventory AMD, Nvidia, and their partners have on hand right now.

With the next generation (presumably) RTX 40-series and RX 7000-series graphics cards slated to launch later this year (probably within the next four months), selling off any remaining Ampere and RDNA 2 GPUs before the new stuff arrives will be difficult even at the current prices. We could see graphics card prices drop much lower if it turns out that companies overestimated stock needs.

These trends aren't limited to eBay and US pricing. A cursory glance at the European and Asian markets shows continued price cuts. It's also interesting that Intel has basically restricted the initial launch of its Arc GPUs — both mobile and desktop — to China. We're not sure who's buying those laptops or desktops, but launching a modestly-performing GPU right now is going to be an uphill battle, especially when drivers likely still aren't up to snuff. We can't wait to get our hands on an Intel Arc A380 to see how it performs.

We've been waiting for this to happen for nearly two years. We knew graphics cards couldn't maintain their insane prices, but profiteering by GPU makers, coupled with cryptocurrency mining, kept things going for longer than expected.

But supply has improved a lot, and the long, dark night is finally coming to an end. The question now is whether the next generation of GPUs can offer a compelling enough price and performance story to convince people to think about upgrades.

Considering the repeated announcements about higher TSMC costs over the past year, AMD, Intel, and Nvidia might end up being forced to cut deeply into their GPU profit margins. Don't feel too bad for them, though — they should have some extra cash from the last two years.

Jarred Walton is a senior editor at Tom's Hardware focusing on everything GPU. He has been working as a tech journalist since 2004, writing for AnandTech, Maximum PC, and PC Gamer. From the first S3 Virge '3D decelerators' to today's GPUs, Jarred keeps up with all the latest graphics trends and is the one to ask about game performance.

  • hotaru.hino
    And a tear was not shed for the scalpers who came in late hoping to make a quick buck.
    Reply
  • LolaGT
    Not yet, getting close though.


    If I needed a card today that 6600 below $300 is sitting pretty sweet.
    I would not touch a used gpu knowing how hot they run in mining rigs.

    I certainly won't shed one tear for places like the egg or other retailers. They made serious bank on this over the last couple years.
    They can sell their stock now at a loss and still be ahead, or not. They deserve worse.
    Reply
  • dwn2brasstacks
    Imagine people saying computers will never be a practical thing back when a very basic calculation machine took up several large buildies just to do simple maths.

    Yes, crypto is down. Still up 7,000% from a few years ago but yeah we've heard this song and dance before, crypto is done for, it is crashed you people are holding monopoly money.
    This is not at all the case, however. It will come back... and much stronger than before just as it has time and again.

    Unless we continue to segregate the market between crypto miners and gamers, we will be fighting this battle over and over. Of course, one solution is ramping up production but supplies are still being manipulated, causing shortages and problems for common denominators... and of course overproduction is a huge issue on the down swing of demand which we are seeing now. You couldn't hold stock a couple months ago, now you can't get rid of it fast enough. And when the next big demand cycle comes in it may be even worse than before.
    Reply
  • JarredWaltonGPU
    dwn2brasstacks said:
    Imagine people saying computers will never be a practical thing back when a very basic calculation machine took up several large buildies just to do simple maths.

    Yes, crypto is down. Still up 7,000% from a few years ago but yeah we've heard this song and dance before, crypto is done for, it is crashed you people are holding monopoly money.
    This is not at all the case, however. It will come back... and much stronger than before just as it has time and again.

    Unless we continue to segregate the market between crypto miners and gamers, we will be fighting this battle over and over. Of course, one solution is ramping up production but supplies are still being manipulated, causing shortages and problems for common denominators... and of course overproduction is a huge issue on the down swing of demand which we are seeing now. You couldn't hold stock a couple months ago, now you can't get rid of it fast enough. And when the next big demand cycle comes in it may be even worse than before.
    You know what the great thing about patterns in stocks, crypto, etc. is? They all eventually break down.

    I don't think Bitcoin is done for, or Ethereum, but I would not keep mining at current valuations if I had a bunch of GPUs available. Maybe I'm just shortsighted, but at some point someone is going to say, "It will be back and reach new record highs!" and they'll be wrong.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    All of the people calling me and others crazy for saying GPUs will eventually get back to MSRP if people are willing to wait long enough have finally been proven wrong.

    Manufacturers cannot charge more than what the market will bear and the market for people willing to pay exorbitant premiums has finally been exhausted..

    dwn2brasstacks said:
    Unless we continue to segregate the market between crypto miners and gamers, we will be fighting this battle over and over.
    i don't think we will: with the global natural resources and energy crunch, PoW crypto will be forced into retirement before the next crypto bubble by energy costs. The number of people who got conned into believing that crypto would be more stable than fiat currencies in its first large-scale trial-by-fire in the current global downturn should also greatly diminish interest in the next crypto cycle. NFTs' spectacular failures over the last year have also driven awareness of the volatility of virtual "assets."

    By the next boom, we'll likely have a bunch of courts and governments who will have settled whether crypto is a a stock, bond, currency or something else with all of the tax and consumer protection requirements that go with them, which could massively increase the regulatory burdens people who want to get involved with it have to jump through to the point of most people giving up. Crypto is going to lose a good chunk of its appeal if governments decide that all transactions between legal entities must be done through registered and verified wallet addresses.

    Will there be another cycle? Sure. Though I doubt it'll be anywhere near as big as 2020's.

    JarredWaltonGPU said:
    I don't think Bitcoin is done for, or Ethereum, but I would not keep mining at current valuations if I had a bunch of GPUs available.
    Keep crypto-mining at $0.20-0.80 per day per GPU while crossing fingers that crypto prices don't drop further, that your energy costs don't go up, that nothing happens to your mining farm, that your rent does not go up, etc. or sell those GPUs to get $250-800 per GPU right now and be done with it?

    Right now, common sense appears heavily stacked on the "GTFO while the GTFOing is good" side.
    Reply
  • dwn2brasstacks
    InvalidError said:
    All of the people calling me and others crazy for saying GPUs will eventually get back to MSRP if people are willing to wait long enough have finally been proven wrong.
    Manufacturers cannot charge more than what the market will bear and the market for people willing to pay exorbitant premiums has finally been exhausted..
    Who said you were crazy? This was inevitable with the rise and fall of markets. Supply was bound to recover, and don't forget the timing just before new tech is coming out. What I am saying is people that say 'ok, this time, for sure, crypto is done for!' Have been proven wrong over and over again. They will eventually be right though, and they will shout, 'I told you so!' never bothering to recognize the impact of something having reached the end of it's inevitable evolutionary cycle. And with technology, these cycles are faster than ever before.

    i don't think we will: with the global natural resources and energy crunch, PoW crypto will be forced into retirement before the next crypto bubble by energy costs. The number of people who got conned into believing that crypto would be more stable than fiat currencies in its first large-scale trial-by-fire in the current global downturn should also greatly diminish interest in the next crypto cycle. NFTs' spectacular failures over the last year have also driven awareness of the volatility of virtual "assets."

    By the next boom, we'll likely have a bunch of courts and governments who will have settled whether crypto is a a stock, bond, currency or something else with all of the tax and consumer protection requirements that go with them, which could massively increase the regulatory burdens people who want to get involved with it have to jump through to the point of most people giving up. Crypto is going to lose a good chunk of its appeal if governments decide that all transactions between legal entities must be done through registered and verified wallet addresses.
    Crypto will always be a thing, the usefulness of an decentralized world-wide currency has been proven. Will it exist in it's current form and be mined and distributed the same way? It will evolve. Crypto WILL change, but it's influence is irreversable. I believe we are a ways off of such a big seperation, again this will happen fast because of technology, but I feel 10 years is a good time line. Practical Quantum computers are just around the corner and will be game changers for such tasks and security... not to mention AI and bots. Cryptos biggest weakness right now is it's tie to fiat, it cannot replace currencies in it's current state. Security, upgradability, influence, resource drain are all still very big concerns and have yet to be solved.

    It's just ridiculous that with every fall, there are people shouting from the rooftops, IT HAS CRASHED !! I TOLD YOU SO! When this is what markets do, especially considering worldwide crisis and corrupt regimes such as the US is facing now. All markets are wonky right now and fiat is spiraling down in a major way. This will only bolster support for alternatives. Yes the governments see it as a threat. They will attempt to shut it down and regulate it and just might succeed, for a time. This was one of the founding ideas behind crypto...to be ungovernable.
    They are also attempting to tax the bejusus out of market gains, they just increased the tax rate. Recent stock inheritance rules also added a tax burden. Hell, they are pushing to even tax unrealized gains via the "TAX THE RICH!" movement...which would screw all asset holders.
    Reply
  • Math Geek
    all i know is there is 0% chance i will ever buy nor advise anyone else to buy a used gpu. i don't care how cheap they get, it will never be worth it to me.
    Reply
  • Johnpombrio
    Math Geek said:
    all I know is there is 0% chance I will ever buy nor advise anyone else to buy a used GPU. I don't care how cheap they get, it will never be worth it to me.
    I have never sold any of my used computer equipment. If I cannot give it away to family and friends, I recycle it.
    Reply
  • Johnpombrio
    Could any of this have to do with vendors trying to reduce inventory before a surprise 4090 launch? Food for thought.
    Reply
  • punkncat
    Math Geek said:
    all i know is there is 0% chance i will ever buy nor advise anyone else to buy a used gpu. i don't care how cheap they get, it will never be worth it to me.

    Oh, I think there is absolutely a point at which I would consider a used GPU, even if I knew that it was mined with over and above figuring that the seller is lying to say it wasn't. The giant if in that aspect is price. If the market floods the way it's set up to (probably) do, I think we are going to be sub half price and more on some very attractive performers.
    Reply