Amidst China's war against cryptocurrency mining, mining outfits are moving their operations abroad. Some of the not-so-lucky ones are quickly selling off their mining hardware to cut their losses. As a result, China's second-hand market has recently seen a surplus of used AMD and Nvidia graphics cards. We could see a similar trend emerge in the U.S. as the crypto craze wanes, meaning you might soon be able to snag one of the Best GPUs.
According to Hong Kong-based media HKEPC, Nvidia's GeForce RTX 30-series (Ampere) and AMD's Radeon RX 6000 (Big Navi) graphics cards weren't the only models being offered online. The merchants were also getting rid of SKUs that go all the way back to the Pascal or Polaris days. They weren't nickel-and-dime sales, either; we're talking about minimum orders of a 100 units.
For example, 100 units of the GeForce RTX 3070 sold for $400 each, while orders for the GeForce RTX 3060 and GeForce RTX 3060 Ti started at 200 units and sold for $293 and $370 each, respectively. In times of a global semiconductor shortage, these types of prices look simply amazing. However, keep in mind that these graphics cards were used to mine cryptocurrency, probably shortening their lifespan.
In a more recent investigation, The Block discovered that the used graphics cards weren't selling like hotcakes despite the low prices. One particular GeForce RTX 3060 seller was going as low as $270 per graphics card. Another merchant offered GeForce RTX 3060-powered gaming laptops for about $1,000 each.
Surprisingly, a couple of little league mining operations have managed to go under the Chinese government's radar for now. There are some reported Sichuan-based farms that are feeding on the province's hydroelectric power plants. Owners were reportedly offering their facilities for $0.057 per kWh. One supplier even went as far as claiming that the farm is hidden inside one of the hydroelectric power plants.
Graphics cards prices in China have already dropped by up to 45%, and the latest data from Germany and Austria revealed a similar downward trend. We haven't seen the same behavior in the U.S. retail market. Although our eBay GPU pricing index has shown price drops up to 15%, graphics cards are still overpriced. We can only hope that GPU pricing gets more reasonable as time progresses.
The article I read suggested being VERY skeptical of the use and abuse aspect of these "refurbished" cards that should be sweeping the market. Buyer Be (extra) Aware.
I was looking for a used 1060 or 2060 to replace my 670 when they are in the $150 $200 range. But even then, I wont pay close to retail for price on a card with no warranty. Been trough the bump gate and the snapdragon 810 fiascos.
I mean, if you are buying GPUs off wish or see any sales that look to be an unrealistically good deal. 💩
The problem will be after all the noise dies down in a year or so. Those well used cards will blend in a lot easier.
I would advise people to buy new cards from reputable vendors to avoid them.
People who are willing to buy these cards will be miners themselves since all they care is the mining rate and how much they could earn from it.
As long as you get brand new from a reputable vendor, you are safe. So far, I have yet to see anyone trying to sell them off as brand new cards with full warranty.