Chinese media outlet PConline had a sit-down with MSI executives this week and discussed with them the repercussions of the U.S.-China trade war and its impact on graphics cards, more specifically, the GeForce RTX 20-series shortage and MSI's upcoming RTX 2080 Ti Lightning graphics card.
MSI recently held its MSI Gaming New Appreciation Conference in Shanghai. During the event, PConline asked if the the ongoingU.S.-China trade war will raise the manufacturing costs for graphics cards and processors. Liao Wei, Deputy General Manager of MSI Global Multimedia Business Unit, noted he believes that the prices for the GeForce RTX 20-series should remain stable and free of hikes since the main components are not produced in China. Nvidia's Turing GPUs are manufactured by TSMC, which is located in Taiwan, while their memory chips come from Samsung and Hynix fabs, which are stationed in South Korea and the U.S., respectively. Liao also stated that AMD's processors are produced in the Middle East, so are also in a safe zone for now.
In terms of the GeForce RTX 20-series shortage, Liao confirmed that RTX 2080 Ti shipments are indeed very tight at the moment. Due to the insanely huge size of the Turing die, TSMC is currently facing low production yields. The RTX 2080 Ti's die measures 754mm², which is 60 percent larger than the 471mm² die employed in the previous Geforce GTX 1080 Ti. Therefore, Nvidia is focusing on the RTX 2080 instead and doesn't supply many RTX 2080 Ti chips to its AIC (add-in-card) partners, according to the report.
Also, it doesn't help that the RTX 20-series graphics cards are more complicated to produce. To put things into perspective, a GTX 1080 Ti is comprised of 1,600 components. On the other hand, the RTX 2080 Ti is made up of 2,600 components, the RTX 2080 has 2,400 components, while the RTX 2070 uses 2,200 components.
Lastly, when asked about the RTX 2070, MSI said that production has commenced, and the company expects to launch its RTX 2070 graphics cards on October 17. MSI also mentioned that the RTX 2080 Ti will receive the luxurious Lightning treatment. Apart from pursuing the best overclocking performance humanly possible, the RTX 2080 Ti Lightning will also come with revamped aesthetics and customizable RGB lighting. MSI didn't disclose the RTX 2080 Ti Lightning's price tag, but the company did confirm that it will be available very soon.