As you doubtless saw, at the start of this week AMD’s new Radeon RX Vega 64 GPU hit the shelves, priced at $499 or £450 (around AU$630), but apparently this – and the quoted launch price of $399 (which is around £310, AU$510) for the Vega 56, which comes out at the end of the month – are merely ‘introductory’ prices for early adopters and were never intended to be a permanent fixture.
As Wccftech.com (opens in new tab) reports, an Overclockers UK staff member (‘Gibbo’) posted (opens in new tab) on the company forums regarding the Vega 64: “Now the good and bad news, the good news is AMD are rebating early launch sales to allow us to hit £449.99 on the stand alone black card which has no games.
“This is a launch only price which AMD at present are saying will be withdrawn in the near future, when if it happens is unknown, but remember do not be shocked if the price jumps nearly £100 in a few days. This time round there is no early adopter tax, quite the opposite on the stand alone black card, so do be quick.”
Of course, we have to bear in mind that this is just word from an employee, and far from an official confirmation of the situation (and even then, it’s only what AMD is saying ‘at present’).
However, the Sapphire Radeon RX Vega 64 standalone model which Overclockers is flogging actually sold out within an hour, and is now priced at £549 (although you do get a pair of free games with the purchase – Prey and the still-unreleased Wolfenstein II for the PC, which comes out in October).
In other words, that £100 price jump Gibbo mentioned has seemingly already happened.
Of course, this could be a general stock issue, because the Vega 64 has shot up in price across all online retailers in the UK, with most outlets now pitching around the £550 mark (around $710, AU$900); and it’s in very short supply – in fact it's hardly available anywhere (save for eBay, naturally).
Right now, Scan.co.uk is one of the few retailers we can see selling a Vega 64 GPU, but it has priced the PowerColor card at a hefty £600 (around $770, AU$980). That’s an even greater premium, and scant supply combined with strong demand are clearly working their usual tricks beyond any introductory price shenanigans.
But longer-term, if Gibbo’s assertion is correct, the base price we’d expect Vega to correct to when stock becomes more plentiful is not going to be the initial recommended price everybody thought it was.
As ever, we've reached out to AMD for an official comment and will update this article as soon as we hear back. A post-launch price increase is unlikely to help AMD in its battle against Nvidia’s GPUs. And that would be a shame, because the Vega 64 certainly impressed us upon its launch, as you can see in our full review.
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