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Micro Center Latest To Offer Bundle Deals To Soften GPU Prices

Micro Center released a customer advisory saying that it has raised its GPU prices to be competitive with major online retailers, such as Amazon, but it will be offering bundle discounts in-store to DIY builders to mitigate the price increase.

By now, every prospective GPU buyer knows that we are currently in the grip of cryptocurrency-induced GPU shortages. Although the huge demand will benefit GPU makers in the short term, there are worries that it will compromise the long-term market by driving gamers to other platforms.

AMD, whose GPUs were more affected in the early days of the current wave, was the first to directly address this issue by releasing its RX Vega series of GPUs in bundles. This was to compensate for the inevitable difference between retail prices and MSRP, the company said. Nvidia was quiet on the issue until earlier this year, when it reportedly told ComputerBase.de that it was directing its retail partners to make arrangements to prioritize gamers over miners.

AMD and Nvidia might be doing more with retailers behind the scenes, as some retailers have begun introducing strategies to mitigate the price hikes. Micro Center is only the latest to do so. Some websites reported seeing Newegg bundle monitors and external GPU enclosures with select GPUs, but we can no longer find evidence of this. Even though Micro Center isn’t restricting its bundles to specific products, many reddit users have reported that the discounts won’t return card prices to MSRP. Canadian retailer Memory Express disabled online orders of GPUs entirely, forcing customers to go in-store. It also said that inventory would be allocated to DIY builders, but it didn’t say how it would enforce that policy.

The situation was different in mid-2017, before the full brunt of the current wave hit. The power and performance advantage of Nvidia’s high-end GPUs was only compounded by AMD’s GPU shortages. The time period correlated to a growing lead in Nvidia’s gaming market share. The meteoric rise of Ethereum changed the pricing situation for Nvidia, and the prices of its previously unaffected high-end GPUs soared, as well. Our own research revealed that medium- to high-end GPUs are currently either above MSRP or unavailable. Prospective DIY builders can currently save money in some cases by buying a pre-built system from a boutique builder compared to building their own.

Higher GPU prices may seem like a positive for retailers, but those exorbitant costs will likely keep consumers from being able to spend money on building new systems and in some cases upgrading others. Thus, retailers will see less sales of other hardware, such as CPUs and motherboards, suffer.

  • Barty1884
    *Allegedly
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7NIr-3UY_U&t=240s

    YMMV.
    Reply
  • Kennyy Evony
    I don't know about all of you but I'm not spending a cent or even attempt on gaming all together until this whole chitshow is dealt with. Most system builders in need of a new system are relatively young and have time to kill. I know i can wait a decade for things to settle down. Good luck to you all.
    Reply
  • t.s.wiacek
    Fortunately I'd be happy with RX550, so the shortage and price increase wouldn't affect me. There are good things when you're older. Most mainstream games get boring and what you play doesn't need powerful cards.
    Reply
  • Moscato
    TS, even those are a bit more expensive than they would have been otherwise
    Reply
  • Mr5oh
    Kennyy Evony has the right idea. No reason to buy anything right now. It just let's vendors know we will pay more. I'll go back to console gaming or no gaming for a while if I have to. I have a bunch of games I still haven't played to tide me over.
    Reply
  • sharkbytecomputer
    I managed to get my rx580 about a month before everything blew up in price. I'm good for a while.
    Reply
  • redgarl
    I cannot believe I bought my 1080 TI at such a low price in August. Now I am trying to sell it for the respectful price of 1500$. It is my way to be generous with miners.
    Reply
  • NachoFoot
    Marietta, GA wouldn't reduce prices...
    Reply
  • Moscato
    The people who made the most money in the gold rush was the people who sold shovels :P
    Reply
  • hannibal
    There is not big change for long time, unles crypto currency boon ends totally. It can take a couple of years untill production gets in balance... the problem is that it is very hard to predict the amounth of cards that will be sold.
    Reply