The GTX 1050 Ti has somehow gone from end-of-life to a best-selling GPU. The combination of the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing supply shortage has made it literally impossible to find GPUs at MSRP. If you want to buy a new graphics card in 2021, you’re going to have to get very lucky, or pay way too much to a scalper. That situation made a big nightmare for first-time and veteran PC builders alike. And it’s easy to see why people are depending on older hardware when there’s literally nothing on the market that you can upgrade to. According to Steams Hardware Survey, around 6.5% of users surveyed were still using this hardware.
And now it would seem that there is a stop-gap solution in the works. Viodecardz claims to have checked with various retailers, mainly in Australia, about the change in status of the GTX 1050 Ti. According to their sources, new runs of the older GPU are being supplied to AIBs. This is being done to try and alleviate sales pressure. Nvidia can produce the older 10-series cards using lower-quality components compared to the 30-series that’s now their main focus. The biggest boon for this setup is that the 4 GB GPU is beneath the minimum VRAM requirements for most cryptocurrency mining. That means that there’s a lot less demand-side pressure for these cheaper cards.
Can I even get a GTX 1050 Ti?
Prices will be massively inflated though, so you may want to just wait, unless you want to pay $200 or more for a GPU that just can’t handle modern titles. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti is an entry-level GPU featuring GP107 GPU with 768 CUDA cores, meaning it’s not capable of any RTX features like ray-tracing. Beyond that, it’s only really viable for Esports titles like CS:GO at 1080p. More demanding titles may have to drop the resolution down and lower graphical settings.
To run something like Cyberpunk 2077, you will first have to pair the GPU with a modern CPU. You can expect 20 FPS 1% lows on 1080p with low settings.
The combination of different issues has created a perfect storm of not being able to buy decent PC parts. The availability of 30-series GPUs, including the upcoming RTX 3060, is expected to be a major problem for months in 2021. Adding to that, the older GPUs are becoming a lot less common. Nvidia ended production on the last of the 20-series cards at the end of 2020. Wider availability of RTX 2060 and GTX 1660 GPUs would be the best solution, but that’s not viable right now.
On the AMD side of things, other older cards have seen new leases on life as well. Older used RX 470 and RX 570 have seen a major spike in price and demand thanks to the near-total lack of Nvidia availability. Although, AMD has not been pushing for an AIB restock on these cards, as they are contending with their own stock issues for both 5000-series CPUs and 6000-series GPUs, putting much more strain on their production partners.