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Graphics card availability likely won't improve until late 2022 — here's why

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 (Image credit: Harish Jonnalagadda / Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Graphics cards have been in short supply for the better part of two years.
  • This is due to the ongoing worldwide semiconductor shortage that's crippling supply chains across a great many industries.
  • A new report indicates those looking to buy GPUs should expect better luck in late 2022.

Just about anyone who's had the misfortune of attempting to buy one of the best graphics cards between early 2020 and now knows the struggle: Cards are out of stock at all normal retailers, and the ones that are available are overpriced and only listed on eBay. How did things get so bad? A worldwide semiconductor crisis, for starters.

But while industry experts and consumers are getting a better idea of what caused the global chip shortage, most folks still don't know when they can expect to finally have access to GPUs again. A new report from DigiTimes sheds some light on the situation (via WinFuture).

Based on said report, we can expect a risk of continued incremental price hikes as supplies remain strained throughout 2021 and early 2022, with the GPU situation finally normalizing in late 2022. This shift past the midway point of next year would come about because of a few factors: Increased supplies as the world's manufacturers catch up with shortage demands, a potential dwindling of crypto miners clogging the GPU market, and in NVIDIA's case, a change in partners.

According to the report, NVIDIA's reliance on Samsung is slowing it down as the latter company isn't producing enough chips fast enough. However, for the next generation of GPUs, NVIDIA will be relying on TSMC for manufacturing duties, which should help with the yield predicament given TSMC's processes and advantages over Samsung.

Robert Carnevale is the News Editor for Windows Central. He's a big fan of Kinect (it lives on in his heart), Sonic the Hedgehog, and the legendary intersection of those two titans, Sonic Free Riders. He is the author of Cold War 2395. Have a useful tip? Send it to robert.carnevale@futurenet.com.

8 Comments
  • Considering the current situation, that estimated date seems about right.
  • We can hope it is.
  • Still playing games on my R7 3700X + RX 5700 XT OC @ 240 Hz. Actually, I'm not miffed about this. It's saving me a TON of money by deleting the impulse to upgrade "because I can." Without the shortage, I probably would have wasted abotu $1,000 in unnecessary upgrades!
  • "unnecessary upgrades" I don't see how that adjective could ever be used with that noun! ;-)
  • Here in Australia, I recently upgraded my PC with a Ryzen 7 5800X CPU and a Radeon RX 6700 XT video card. The video card was undoubtedly expensive but I had no problem actually getting either component at the time. I just checked the retailer that I got them from and the video card that I got for AU$1199 is now listed for AU$1499 and, of the 14 Gigabyte cards that they list, only 5 are currently in stock. Not sure how that compares to America or elsewhere but I've not seen even close to the likes of that when upgrading my machine previously, which I've been doing for many years.
  • When I was trying to decide which card to get, I was considering getting a 6800 or 6800 XT so I had some overhead for the future. Currently, the one Gigabyte 6800 card available from the same retailer is AU$1999 and the 6800 XT cards range from AU$2099 to AU$2199. They may have been a little less when I bought my card but still they were too expensive. I have a pair of 1440 monitors right now and won't be buying 4K monitors for quite some time, so I figured that the 6700 XT was at least going to be adequate for several years. I have a backlog of games to play so will be playing old games for much of the time. I only recently worked out how to get F.E.A.R. to run properly on Windows 10/11 so have been playing that and apparently I've been averaging 480 FPS. Sweet!
  • Are they just switching from relying on Samsung to TSMC?
  • Check the last sentence of the article for your answer.