IN BRIEF:

  • the shortages of new RTX cards should not be caused by the demand for cryptocurrencies, however, poor availability may persist through the first quarter of 2021 – this is what Nvidia claims and does not rule out the inclusion of special devices for miners in the offer.

The new Ampere generation graphics cards are still unavailable in many stores. The situation is similar with the new Radeon RX 6000, although AMD previously assured that the situation should improve with the advent of non-reference models. Is the rapid disappearance of graphics cards from stores a result of the high popularity of cryptocurrencies?? Some speculate like this when looking at such monstrous constructions of “miners”.

Will the new RTX 3060 chips solve the problem of poor availability of graphics cards on the market?

If a cryptocurrency excavator consisting of 78 RTX 3080 copies were not a single case, and such a construction momentum would find a larger group of amateurs, it could actually affect the availability of cards in stores. However, during the conference, the Nvidia representative stated that there is no data on the volume of demand for new graphics chips among cryptocurrency miners. Moreover, he does not see significant value in this market segment, although he finds the mere fact of using RTX devices in this way “interesting”.

So the cryptocurrency is interesting. As you know, GPUs have been programmable for many years, which allows new applications to constantly discover the possibilities of using graphics cards, and this drives our overall growth in the market. Cryptocurrency mining is one such application. (…) We have no insight into how much of the final demand for the RTX 3000 series devices comes from the “mining” market. Therefore, we consider that it is not a big part of our business today. Demand in the gaming sector is very high and we believe it is higher than the current supply.

A moment later, however, a rather interesting statement is made:

In conclusion, if the demand for cryptocurrencies starts or if we see a significant increase in it, we can also take this opportunity to restart the CMP product lineto meet the current mining demand.

CMP products in this case mean a special line of graphics cards designed for cryptocurrency enthusiasts. They are devoid of video outputs that miners do not need, making the devices more profitable for them. This would mean that players who prefer “green products” can rest assured that in the event of further increase in interest in new equipment by miners, Nvidia should launch the production of chips intended for them. Nevertheless, poor availability of Ampere cards may persist through the first quarter of 2021.

AMD CEO Lisa Su also commented (source) on Radeon availability issues:

We are committed to keeping GPU prices as close as possible to our suggested retail prices (MSRP) as this is the only way to be fair to users. Usually, when we launch a new product, reference models are initially available but then disappear for our partners to pick up. This time we are not recalling our RX 6000 series, allowing us to sell direct to customers at the lowest possible level . We encourage partners to do the same.

Next, the AMD CEO explains the difficult situation related to the Covid-19 pandemic and increases in transport prices:

Not only the tariffs, but also the pandemic situation has increased the cost of transport, which is difficult to avoid. Once we enter a more normal environment, it should improve. This is also relevant to our planned graphics card upgrades in the first half of the year as many of our products hit the market.

It is about tariffs in the first sentence. This applies to the actions of former US President Donald Trump related to the inclusion of electronics imported from China in the list of products subject to additional tax. Theoretically, this should not apply to our market. The remaining costs and difficulties related to the pandemic are possible. There are also significant updates to the graphics card offer planned for this year and implicitly – the delays associated with it as a result of work on them. However, it is not difficult to notice that Lisu Su’s statement lacks specificity – we still do not know when the problems with the availability of higher Radeon models will end.

The new generation of AMD cards is much more efficient, but poorly available for sale.

The current situation may seem difficult for players completing sets. Stocks of previous-generation graphics cards are running out and new models are quickly disappearing from stores. Fortunately, the offer of both manufacturers will soon be supplemented with new, cheaper models – RTX 3060 for Nvidia and the new Radeon RX 6700. Thanks to this, players will have more choice, and if the “greens” keep their word, perhaps the miners will also find something for themselves.

  • AMD official website
  • Nvidia official website