Nvidia is giving the best indication yet that for now, the cryptocurrency graphics-card crisis is over. The chip manufacturer is announcing today on social media and other public relations efforts that its 10-Series GeForce GTX GPUs are in stock at many retailers. And even better, the cards are selling for their original manufacturer suggested retail price (MSRP), which ranges from $150 to $800 depending on the card.
This is a noteworthy shift in the video card market. For more than a year, cryptocurrency miners were buying every new graphics card they could get their hands on. New Bitcoin-like digital currencies like Ethereum were driving this growth because they were relatively efficient to mine (which means to use your GPUs power to process transactions made with the coin for a portion of the fee) with graphics cards. If you could find a GPU, the sky-high demand was driving prices up even at traditional retailers. This left people building or upgrading PCs feeling robbed. But crypto prices are dropping and new mining tech is making the current crop of graphics cards obsolete, and this has enabled Nvidia to meet demand.
Inspired. Innovative. In-stock.
GeForce GTX 10-Series GPUs are back on shelves at MSRP! #MadeToGame
— NVIDIA GeForce (@NVIDIAGeForce) May 9, 2018
For example, here’s an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 for $550 after rebates from BH Photo.
The availability and lower prices for Nvidia GPUs should come as a relief to a huge number of gaming fans who have put off buying components for months. But the bigger question is whether this is the last we’ve seen of cryptocurrency fanatics interfering with the GPU market at such a large scale. The answer to that is no. AMD GPUs, which aren’t as powerful as Nvidia’s but are more efficient at mining, are still sold out across the internet.
I’ve reached out to AMD for a comment on the state of its stock.
I doubt that new mining tech is a long-term answer to keeping gaming-focused GPUs out of the crypto space. New coins could come along that want to use that processing power, and we may end up right back in a situation where we can’t find GeForce GTX 11-series cards or AMD’s next-gen Vegas unless we want to pay a 50-percent markup. For now, however, some cards are available and affordable, and that is way better than just a couple of months ago.