A report citing several PC hardware stores in Tokyo raises concerns about an impending shortage of Nvidia GeForce RTX 40 series graphics cards, particularly at the high end. Japan's ITmedia PC User has surveyed several electronics stores in Tokyo's famous Akihabara Electric Town district, and elsewhere, with the conclusion that "the stock of cards equipped with GeForce RTX 4090/4080 is thinning across the city."
If nothing else, the above-linked report signals that there is something of a supply / demand imbalance in play. It would be of greater concern if the supplies of higher-end RTX 40 family graphics cards were seemingly inadequate due to some strategic production decision by Nvidia and partners.
We know Nvidia is doing very nicely from the AI boom. So far we haven't observed any fallout on the consumer side of things. In other words, the AI GPU boom isn't seen to be affecting consumer GPU pricing like the crypto boom(s) did. However, business is business, and if Nvidia can rake in more cash from prioritizing AI GPU customers, then it would naturally do so.
Returning to the new report from the Japanese brick-and-mortar retailers, retail back orders are said to be longer for GPUs priced in the JP ¥ 250,000 range. That would translate to US $1,670 today. One store owner thought the problem was a "worldwide supply shortage." The same person theorized that shortages might be intentional so Nvidia and partners can offload RTX 30 stocks.
Another PC outlet in Akihabara said that it sees high demand for the flagship RTX 4090, as well as the RTX 4070 Ti. Nevertheless, this store manager is "deliberately stocking up on RTX 4080 cards," as the time will come when this GPU isn't overlooked.
What About the US?
At the time of writing, the likes of Amazon and Newegg appear to have ample stocks of GeForce RTX 4090 models. Browsing the retail sites today reveals cards ranging from the most basic reference spec models to AiO cooler equipped and premium models from various brands.
Japan's ITmedia PC User report advises those interested in picking up one of the best graphics cards for gaming to keep an eye on stocks and trends. We could say the same to US residents. If you are interested in a top-end Nvidia GPU, but are waiting to pull the trigger, always watch the market carefully for price movements and stock levels.
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Mark Tyson is a Freelance News Writer at Tom's Hardware US. He enjoys covering the full breadth of PC tech; from business and semiconductor design to products approaching the edge of reason.
I just bought the MSI liquid cooled 4090 for finally msrp $1750. I did this only 2 days ago, so if the next Amazon deal comes along during their next prime gimmick, I'm within my 30 day return window. Same is true for the make believe black Friday, that lasts all week into the next month.... Then it comes back again in January just to make sure you get the best deals, and again throughout the year until the next actual Black Friday comes again! It's black Friday every day, anymore. Depends on where you shop.Admin said:Retailers in Japan's capital have voiced concerns over tight supplies of high-end Nvidia GeForce GPUs like the RTX 4090.
Nvidia RTX 40 GPU Shortages Observed in Tokyo's Electric Town : Read more