Don’t bother buying a GPU right now (unless you really need to)

AMD RX 480

The market for PC components right now is a strange one. RAM pricing continues to be a little too high, but GPUs are where the really crazy listings are at. AMD cards are difficult to locate and NVIDIA GPUs are priced extortionately high. I’m talking a further £100 (or more) on top of the RRP. A GTX 1070 can set you back at least £500 right now.

It’s just not worth it, especially if you already own a GPU. Spending more money than you need to just to get a little more detail out of a game or few is throwing money down the drain.

Why the price hike?

People are buying more GPUs than ever. Not only for gaming but also cryptocurrency mining. The power and memory bandwidth of GPUs make them ideal components for mining machines. The issue with this is by purchasing a number of GPUs for a mining farm, cryptocurrency miners are causing shortages. Unfortunately for gamers and professionals, retailers and companies are pocketing quite the penny in the process.

It’s all about supply and demand. NVIDIA and AMD need to work with OEM partners to build more units and ship them out to retailers. Thing is, with each card bringing in more money, all parties involved are able to sit back and enjoy let the golden tree in the garden to bloom in the spring. That said, AMD and NVIDIA have publicly denounced using GPUs for cryptocurrency mining, stating their core audience are gamers and PC users.

This is no good for gamers who are the ones getting stung by prices. I don’t see it changing anytime soon either.

Stick it out, if you can

GPU

I purchased a GTX 1070 only a year ago for just over £400. This exact card is now worth nearly £600. That’s ridiculous and not a price I’d expect anyone to pay. I even know of a few gamers who have managed to sell spare cards at a gain, even after a few years of use. That’s how crazy and desperate the situation is.

If you can stick it out, do so. It sucks having to part with more cash than you should for anything and a GPU simply isn’t worth the added stress. It’s possible to check a deal or few on classified websites, but that alone comes with risk. It all depends on what you want to play (or do) on the PC and how desperately you require the component.