It seems that graphics card prices are going up for some models, sadly, though there are still GPUs out there experiencing price drops.
Tom’s Hardware does a monthly scout of GPU pricing to produce some very handy stats on price movements for graphics cards at US retailers, and for July, there are some AMD Radeon products that are becoming more expensive – and some Nvidia cards too.
Tom’s compares the current retail price – well, from yesterday, August 3 – to the start of July, and we see that AMD’s RX 7900 XTX has gone up 4.4%, a fairly hefty rise (in the space of a month).
Also, the RX 7600 has ticked up slightly and is 1.2% pricier than it was, but the other RDNA 3 offering, the 7900 XT, has dropped in price – by 2.6%, in fact, which is a healthy slide.
Some last-gen AMD graphics cards are heading upwards in their cost, too, sadly, most notably the RX 6600 XT and RX 6600 which are up 10.2% and 11.1% respectively.
AMD’s RX 6750 XT has risen by 9.4% as well, so that’s a trio of RDNA 2 GPUs that are up about 10%. The 6800 XT has also risen by 4%.
There are fallers with RDNA 2, as well, though, including the RX 6800 which has dropped a beefy 8.3%, and the RX 6700 XT which is down 8.6%.
Turning to Nvidia, we see that again there’s something of a mixed picture. Current-gen Lovelace GPUs are mostly down, but only very slightly – by 1% to 2% for RTX 4060 and 4070 models (which is good news, as the RTX 4070 is currently top of our best graphics card list).
The exception here is the vanilla RTX 4060 which is down a lot more, experiencing a 6.7% drop. However, the RTX 4080 is headed in the opposite direction – this GPU has risen by 10% over the past month.
RTX 3000 graphics cards are mostly falling in price. The RTX 3090 Ti is down by 8.4%, and the RTX 3080 12GB has fallen by 6.5%, with the RTX 3070 and 3070 Ti dropping by 7.3% and 9.4% respectively.
Yet the RTX 3060 is up by 7.7% (and the 3060 Ti has risen by 4.7%), plus the RTX 3080 Ti has witnessed the biggest jump in price of all these GPUs – it’s up an eye-watering 14.2%.
Intel’s Arc GPUs are down in price considerably, with the A770 in particular leading the charge, having dropped a hefty 13.2%.
Analysis: Another ominous hint of things to come?
These findings pretty much tie in with what we’ve been hearing on the grapevine lately. Namely that during July, retail sales picked up and gathered some momentum throughout the month, as noted by YouTube leaker Moore’s Law is Dead (MLID).
Indeed, MLID observed that while there are still some price drops happening, some last-gen graphics cards for both AMD and Nvidia are starting to really shift – and therefore are rising in price. That’s pretty much reflected in Tom’s price monitoring here, as is the observation of increased sales for the RX 7900 XTX – which has risen in price. (Also, funnily enough, the RDNA 3 flagship just appeared, for the first time ever, in the Steam hardware survey rankings).
Of course, these last-gen graphics cards are likely to start running thinner on stock before too long, anyway.
Tom’s does observe that Prime Day deals may have had an effect on July's prices, but adds that given the data is drawn from the start of July, not all of the past month’s pricing will be affected by this. Of course, the best deals (and indeed most deals) weren’t around until the actual days of the Amazon sale (after the figures were compiled).
Broadly, this does seem to be a sign that the rumor mill is right on GPU demand starting to tick steadily upwards. And the worrying thing is, MLID has called it that this is likely the bottom of the market for graphics cards – and prices are only likely to go up from here. As we’re already seeing in some – a good few – cases.
When we also consider the developments elsewhere in the GPU sphere this week – with Nvidia supposedly near-halting Lovelace production, and looking to use chips to sell AI boards, rather than GeForce cards – there’s the danger that a perfect storm is brewing to push up GPU prices.
Time will tell, but what these latest stats from Tom’s effectively do is underline that the recent speculation on pricing has been proven right, by and large, and it’s another reason to perhaps suspect the worst may be coming for gamers looking to buy a graphics card.
The not-so-bad news is that at least for the near future, there are still likely to be certain GPU models that do continue to fall in price, so there’s still time to snap up a bargain in the shorter term. We hope – all of this is crystal ball gazing to some extent, of course.
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Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).