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What Has Happened To GPU Pricing?

poofyhairguy

Lifer
Nov 20, 2005
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If feels like the demand for GPUs, and therefore their price, is more varied than any time I can remember. In the past there used to be MSRP tiers you could almost live by (+$10-20 for better cooling or maybe a mail in rebate) but today we now get pricing that changes greatly over the life of card.

This is reflected on the Nvidia side through a blatant early adopter tax on the first run of cards via the Founder's Edition, and the fact that AIBs are sticking closer to the FE price than the MSRP price. It almost feels like the MSRP will be the average price for the cards over their life, as in some value that you might hit six months after release and you might do better than in a year after rebate.

But it isn't just Nvidia, AMD did a similiar thing. It put out a $200 price on its "4GB card" that might as well be the MSRP on the 1080 given the very low availability of the 4GB card. I got one, but reviews of the 480 acted like they would be as common as a GTX 960 is today when in reality most 4GB models sold will be some AIB model that is really $220 bucks. Once again the $199 price is probably something we will see again in six months around Black Friday when one of the AIB models goes for $199 after rebate but until then most people will be buying more expensive 480s. Therefore the 8GB model that sells for $250 on Newegg has a similar early adopter tax on its price that a Founder Edition 1080 has.

Point being, the competition to get a new GPU is very intense almost to the level of when new consoles are released and because of that the price of new GPUs seems to be this floating value that gradually drops over time instead of being a solid MSRP drop like in the past. I remember back in the day people got excited about GPUs but they also got excited about fast RAM or new CPUs. Nowadays it feels most of the pent up demand for gaming hardware is felt on the GPU side, and we don't get the huge leaps in value we used to get.

Instead of going from a $300 970 to a $200 480, we instead went from a $300 970 (even cheaper in a current clearance sales) to a $250 480 which is half the leap in value. The high end is a little better as the $650 980 ti basically was replaced by the $450 FE 1070, but considering the fact that the "MSRP" of the 1070 is $380 we saw a 31% decrease in relative cost instead of the full 42% that the 1070 MSRP price would have given us.

Is CPU stagnation the reason for a really intense GPU marketplace? Or are there yield problems this generation we have never seen before? Or were GPUs prices always variable like this and I never noticed?
 

swilli89

Golden Member
Mar 23, 2010
1,539
1,144
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The cost of cars, education, food, housing, medical expenses.. its all continuing to rise year after year.

Our little video card industry is no different, but its exacerbated by the fact that its a very unbalanced duopoly. If AMD was able to put out higher performing cards it would force nVidia to be honest and charge much lower. Instead nVidia is maximizing profits by charging huge margins on their products because there is no alternative at the high end.
 

ultima_trev

Member
Nov 4, 2015
148
66
66
AIB OC models have always commanded a $10-20+ over the reference models. Unfortunately there seems to be either a massive supply shortage or demand surplus that's currently driving up prices... Especially in the case of the nVidia Pascal cards.

However it seemed to have started with the HD 5870, that's the first time I can think of when supply/demand drove up the prices on retailers by a large amount. And then it's been a thing for every subsequent generation.
 

tential

Diamond Member
May 13, 2008
7,355
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The 480 220 aib is within the parameters that you set in the beginning of the thread that it doesn't apply to the situation you've outlined.

I get what you mean but just saying. A $220 rx480 aib model is fine according to your own post......
 

Erenhardt

Diamond Member
Dec 1, 2012
3,251
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Market showed they don't care for other bands. Even better and cheaper cards from competition are not a reason to change brands. If AMD can force a pricecut on nvidia products, then people will get nvidia cards cheaper. Plenty of examples in recent 5+ years.

People bought $1000 GPUs in doves. They form a long lines to pay $700 for a throttling GPU that should be $500 tops. It would be $300 a couple years back.

There is a huge demand for expensive nvidia GPUs, and performance has nothing to do with it. Demand is high - price is high - margins are high.
 

crisium

Platinum Member
Aug 19, 2001
2,632
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They have realized that price-to-performance is not an important factor for the majority of dGPU customers. Rather, answering the question "what is the fastest GeForce I can get for my budget?" is overwhelmingly what determines which GPU is sold.

AMD's recent lackluster portfolio of cards only exacerbates this, but the lack of competition is itself only part of the problem. Throughout the past several years consumers have, gladly, paid equal/more money for less/equal performance at multiple price brackets even when there was sound competition (Hawaii vs 780/970, 280X vs 770 2GB, etc).

Even when Fermi is exceptionally late, and Kepler launches after the full 7850 thru 7970 is available, these products still sell more because they answer ^that question. But with things worse than ever before in market share, brand perception, and current portfolio for AMD then expect it to be at the all-time worse.

The 480 220 aib is within the parameters that you set in the beginning of the thread that it doesn't apply to the situation you've outlined.

I get what you mean but just saying. A $220 rx480 aib model is fine according to your own post......
Agreed, it's a contradiction. I'm speaking more towards $700 x04 and $300 x06 cards MARP (Manufacturer's Actual Retail Price) because I don't see the 480 being a price-to-performance problem atm.
 
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boozzer

Golden Member
Jan 12, 2012
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if amd has better cards, you can bet your ass that it will cost 600-700$ too. it is just business.

amd or nv will charge whatever they can get away with.

480 prices are the only saving graces so far in the last 2 -3 years.
 

Bacon1

Diamond Member
Feb 14, 2016
3,430
1,015
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Yep, MSRP is now used as a talking point and not actual cost you'll be paying. The FE was the biggest "wake up call" for that, when many sites only touted it and used it for price/perf comparisons yet we've still yet to see any cards released at that price.

It goes to pushing paper launches as well, we've been told we can buy cards at these prices (both Nvidia and AMD) yet we can't because there are not stock.
 

crisium

Platinum Member
Aug 19, 2001
2,632
593
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if amd has better cards, you can bet your ass that it will cost 600-700$ too. it is just business.

amd or nv will charge whatever they can get away with.
In the current era, yes, I think so. But 5870, 7970, and 290X were the fastest cards money could buy at their launch and had lower prices then what you quoted, don't forget.
 

poofyhairguy

Lifer
Nov 20, 2005
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The 480 220 aib is within the parameters that you set in the beginning of the thread that it doesn't apply to the situation you've outlined.

I get what you mean but just saying. A $220 rx480 aib model is fine according to your own post......

Except I can't buy a $220 480 today. Someone in August will be able to buy that 480, more than a month after AMD announced to the world they have a great sub $200 GPU. If I could buy that 480 today that would be fine, but by the time I can actually get one the relative value of 480s will be lower. And that is assuming the 4GB AIB is $220 in August, it might be $240 given current trends.
 

crisium

Platinum Member
Aug 19, 2001
2,632
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That's just "paper" / inadequate supply launch woes. This is not unusual, even if it doesn't always happen. The card still launched at $200, which is what the Manufacturer suggested, and you bought one at that price. It was just a poor launch. On the other side, the 1080 launched exclusively at $700, is MSRP of of $600, and has never been available for that $600 thus far. Isn't that what you worried about? How the same segment card has gone for $500 to $550 to $700 launch?
 
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poofyhairguy

Lifer
Nov 20, 2005
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Yep, MSRP is now used as a talking point and not actual cost you'll be paying.
Exactly what I am getting at, thank you.

I think the Nvidia example is obvious because of their unapologetic FE markup but to me the "4GB $199" 480 is basically the same bait and switch.

The biggest argument for the 480 in every review is "its great for a $200 card!" even though almost every review is of the 8GB model. We now know AMD never made 4GB reference cards and probably never will, they rebranded/rebiosed a few 8GB cards to be 4GB cards so they technically had some $199 cards to offer but there was never a plan to have enough to shift the entire value equation downwards like having massive stocks of $199 480s on launch day would. Instead the 480 shifts the value of a $270 (on clearance sale) 970 down to $240 at best for a 8GB model because that is all you can buy because that is all they really made. $199 was a marketing trick, a mirage. The few people who got them got the best GPU value maybe all year but there were never enough to meet even a fraction of demand so the "real" MSRP of the 480 is $240 at best (when many reviewers were originally told the extra 4GB would only cost $30) and many are marked up to $250.

I mean I am happy as can be with AMD for selling me a rare $199 4GB 480 that I will turn into an 8GB 480, but unless you bought one in those in the few 5 minute windows they existed on Newegg on launch day you will never get that deal despite every review assuming you will. Instead you will have to tell yourself that $40 is worth not messing with a bios or $20-30 spent on the AIB version is worth the extra margin for cooling. $200 is this huge physiological limit for many GPU buyers and AMD basically tricked them into considering a $240 GPU because the fake $199 480 represents such value that its existence (even if it's fake) make an average $199 380x (which again is a clearance price) a waste of money.

I seem to remember when the 970 came out many people I know got one for around $330. When the 380x came out it was easy to get one for $230 MSRP. For so long MSRP meant something, and now it is at best an insulting marketing bullet point. How did that happen? It can't just be Nvidia's fault, there is something new going on in the GPU industry.
 

Headfoot

Diamond Member
Feb 28, 2008
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That's just "paper" / inadequate supply launch woes. This is not unusual, even if it doesn't always happen. The card still launched at $200, which is what the Manufacturer suggested, and you bought one at that price. It was just a poor launch. On the other side, the 1080 launched exclusively at $700, is MSRP of of $600, and has never been available for that $600 thus far. Isn't that what you worried about? How the same segment card has gone for $500 to $550 to $700 launch?
Looks even worse if you go back into 40, 55, 65, 90nm. The $700 launch that was formerly a $550 launch that was formerly a $500 launch, was even more formerly a $250 launch (560 Ti e.g. uncut chip of the middle die in the Fermi family), which was formerly G92 derivatives all launched at $200-250 depending on which particular model. A very poor fate for the spiritual successor chip of the legendary 8800 GT.
 

poofyhairguy

Lifer
Nov 20, 2005
14,610
316
126
That's just "paper" / inadequate supply launch woes. This is not unusual, even if it doesn't always happen.
I find it very usual that almost every 480 review goes on and on about the value of a $199 4GB reference 480 that AMD might never actually make.

The card still launched at $200, which is what the Manufacturer suggested, and you bought one at that price. It was just a poor launch.
If AMD actually makes a real reference 4GB 480 one day soon I will agree with you it was a "poor launch", but it seems pretty clear now that the 4GB model will in reality only be made by the AIBs just like there won't be a reference 470 or 460. I got a 8GB model marked down that pretended to be a 4GB model, but there will never be more of those than "real" reference 8GB 480s even though the $199 price point has to be more popular by reason alone.

It seems to me that the $199 480 was a marketing stunt, at best a limited edition product masquerading as a new value shift. To me it is the same sort of bait and switch that Nvidia did when they gave us a fake MSRP vs FE edition.

On the other side, the 1080 launched exclusively at $700, is MSRP of of $600, and has never been available for that $600 thus far. Isn't that what you worried about?
I am worried about that too.

Nvidia 1080-

$600 lowest MSRP, $700 Founders Edition real price

AMD 480-

$199 lowest MSRP, $240 8GB model real price

Same thing to me, just at a difference scale (and AMD gives us a little extra RAM for the markup).

How the same segment card has gone for $500 to $550 to $700 launch?
That is a different issue that seems logical to blame purely on AMD's lack of competitiveness with Nvidia at the high-end. This MSRP situation is something different.
 

Headfoot

Diamond Member
Feb 28, 2008
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That is a different issue that seems logical to blame purely on AMD's lack of competitiveness with Nvidia at the high-end. This MSRP situation is something different.
I'm pretty surprised that Intel hasn't tossed its hat into the dGPU market with how much CPU and GPU are converging over the last 10 years, and how much they've improved their own iGPUs
 

boozzer

Golden Member
Jan 12, 2012
1,549
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In the current era, yes, I think so. But 5870, 7970, and 290X were the fastest cards money could buy at their launch and had lower prices then what you quoted, don't forget.
didn't the 7970 launched at 550$? that was really high before 780 ti. then we got an entire lineup of over price nv gpus after it. once nv realized the price gauging didn't matter, it became the norm. with pascal moron editions, people are jumping at throwing them money. I am 100% sure amd would have done the same if they could get away with it.

290 and mining really messed up amd's market share. 6+ months where gamers have nothing but nv cards to buy. then another 6+ months of used 280x n 290s hitting the market. that is why we are getting 480 at such good prices.
 

Sonikku

Lifer
Jun 23, 2005
15,701
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Poofy is correct. Founders Edition has to be one of the largest farces I've seen in the industry, the fact that consumers are lapping it up being the most damning of all. At that point Nvidia isn't so much to blame as much as they are doing effective business. But even on the AMD side I would buy a $200 480x right now but can't. Even the MSRP's are higher than what these brackets went for years ago and they can't even stick with them.
 

poofyhairguy

Lifer
Nov 20, 2005
14,610
316
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Even the MSRP's are higher than what these brackets went for years ago and they can't even stick with them.
Yeah, you are right. Its both. Midrange chips selling for high end prices, AND fake MSRPs.

I blame CPUs. I think thanks to a lack of real upgrades on the CPU side the only place to really get your "money's worth" on upgrades is on the GPU side. That has increased GPU budgets and GPU demands.
 

TidusZ

Golden Member
Nov 13, 2007
1,765
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Intel needs to come out with a competitive GFX card and price it at like 200% margin, aka way less than what nvidia is charging.
 

Ferzerp

Diamond Member
Oct 12, 1999
6,435
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Inflation.

And frankly, I'd rather see current prices than a race to the bottom like happened with LCDs. Quality monitors are still the same price they've always been, except now the options are fewer and the market is flooded with what are frankly, awful displays.
 

boozzer

Golden Member
Jan 12, 2012
1,549
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Inflation.

And frankly, I'd rather see current prices than a race to the bottom like happened with LCDs. Quality monitors are still the same price they've always been, except now the options are fewer and the market is flooded with what are frankly, awful displays.
40-60% price increase in just 1 generation is not inflation :\

and judging by the performance increases of the last 3 generations of gpus, there is no quality either. :(
 

railven

Diamond Member
Mar 25, 2010
6,604
560
126
The cost of cars, education, food, housing, medical expenses.. its all continuing to rise year after year.
Well said.

$100-150 more for a video card once a year is a drop in the hat to what my other expenses have gone up by. Hell, I wish some of my other expenses just went up solely by $150 a year.

My union might cave and we'll be forced into a deductible style insurance system instead of our covered at visit system (bye bye $10 doctor visits, hello $300-500 deductible minimum :( ).
 

kawi6rr

Senior member
Oct 17, 2013
567
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i it is just business.

amd or nv will charge whatever they can get away with QUOTE]

Yup....blame it on the consumer. What exactly is a "early adopters tax", is it the same as a moron tax?��
This here +1, Every sheep out there has to have to shiny new one and will pay what ever they priced them at. If nobody bought the FE addition and refused to buy a $700 card then cards wouldn't cost $700. And cards would still advance in technology because competition demands it.
 

railven

Diamond Member
Mar 25, 2010
6,604
560
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This here +1, Every sheep out there has to have to shiny new one and will pay what ever they priced them at. If nobody bought the FE addition and refused to buy a $700 card then cards wouldn't cost $700. And cards would still advance in technology because competition demands it.
Why do people get so hostile when a group or someone can afford something and buy it?

It's so ridiculous to constantly see things such as "sheep" and "morons" tossed around.

I remember when someone would post their rig and it had quad-whatever, it was always "nice rig man, wish I had that kind of money!" Now it be "look at that moron spending/throwing his money away!"

Woof.
 

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