Of course, that’s good news, and some retailer prices have actually dropped below MSRPs in Europe for some of these current-gen GPUs, although the catch is that others remain stubbornly above their recommend prices. Meanwhile in the US, eBay and retailer prices for these Lovelace and RX 7000 GPUs are also dropping.
On the Nvidia side of the equation, the RTX 4080 dipped in price by 2.6% in February compared to January (these are all going by average selling prices for the respective months across popular retailers), and it’s actually now 3.5% under the MSRP.
With the RTX 4090, this fell further, in fact by 6.2% in February, but the flagship GPU still costs on average just a touch more than its MSRP (0.4% over).
The RTX 4070 Ti, on the other hand, proved more stubborn, only shedding 1.6% of its price in February, and remaining over 2.6% more expensive than its MSRP.
Turning to AMD with the Hardware.info figures, both the Radeon RX 7900 XTX and 7900 XT fell heavily in February, dropping by 14.4% and 8% respectively compared to their retail prices in January. The 7900 XT is now 6.9% under its MSRP, but the flagship XTX model remains 6% over its recommended price.
In the US, we have recent figures from Tom’s Hardware which show eBay pricing for the current-gen AMD and Nvidia graphics cards dropped considerably at the end of January.
Month-on-month in the second-hand market, the RTX 4090 was down 6.1% for the average price on the auction site, and with the RTX 4080, the drop was even steeper at 8.8%.
As for the RX 7900 XTX, the price of the flagship saw a big slide of 13.4% at the end of January compared to December, whereas the 7900 XT positively plummeted by 25.8%. That’s a massive fall in one month.
Tom’s also noted that: “We’re looking at eBay specifically [in its latest stats], where we can readily pull information for sold auctions over the past month, but retail prices are also trending down now.”
Analysis: Price drops are kicking in – but from frustratingly inflated levels
Broadly speaking, then, this is a welcome development. We all want cheaper cutting-edge GPUs, the problem is that while at least they are now coming down in various markets, they’re only doing so slowly. And they’re falling from inflated launch prices which means that in some cases, with new graphics cards at retail, they’re still above the MSRP.
That said, they aren’t much above that recommended price, but they are still higher than that level which is far from ideal (certainly in the case of the 7900 XTX which is 6% over its MSRP in the Netherlands). And indeed with the RTX 4090, we don’t know if we might see that creep up in price going forward – rumor has it that Nvidia might cut production of this card, making the flagship GPU more scarce and pushing up pricing (as a tactic to drive RTX 4080 sales, or that’s the theory floated).
We are seeing bigger falls in eBay pricing in the US, much bigger in fact, particularly for AMD graphics cards, so that’s a positive development too – for those willing to run the risks of buying second-hand, naturally.
Overall, AMD’s RDNA 3 graphics cards are dropping in price at a considerably faster rate than Nvidia’s Lovelace GPUs.
The current-gen pricing picture will be an interesting one to watch, because thus far, the GPU market doesn’t appear to have taken much of a hit from the cost-of-living crisis. But of course, the only graphics cards available so far are very expensive models, and it’s the more affordable end of the GPU spectrum – which may not be all that affordable, relatively speaking, this time around – where we could see more impact from the tightening of belts.
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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).