Gamers looking to get relief from the GPU shortage will be getting no real reprieve for some time. The trials and tribulations of getting a GPU in 2021 are well-known, as scalpers and cryptocurrency miners contribute to already high demand. The consensus is that so many people are buying up GPUs, that it’s just too hard for normal buyers to get them; at least not without paying a premium.
And it looks like we’re in for more of a bumpy ride in 2021. Nvidia said that the supply issues will continue for the next few months, at least. “Overall demand remains very strong and continues to exceed supply while our channel inventories remain quite lean,” Nvidia chief financial officer Colette Kress said in a statement. “We expect demand to continue to exceed supply for much of this year. We believe we will have sufficient supply to support sequential growth beyond Q1.”
These comments came among hope for gamers that supply would soon return. And with Nvidia commanding so much of the GPU market, these prospects look pretty grim. And if you’re expecting AMD to pick up the slack, don’t get your hopes up. Shipment data between the two graphics card makers shows 30-series cards are much more common compared to the 6000-series AMD offering.
What’s the problem, and what are Nvidia doing to fix it?
Nvidia has tried to get around the issues by announcing the new CMP 30HX line of GPUs, but those aren’t going to have the impact as hoped. A contributing factor to why miners target gaming cards over their mining-exclusive brethren is that the gamer variants have higher resale value. The GPUs without display outputs won’t have that added value.
Nvidia also tried to counter demand spikes by cutting hash rates via software and hardware restrictions. That didn’t work out too well when a leaked driver allowed the restrictions to be bypassed. The scalpers continue to roll in cash as result, often enjoying making three times the MSRP on 30-series cards.
The global electronics supply chain has been hit extremely hard by the ongoing pandemic. The GPU shortage isn’t the only impacted sector. Every industry from automotive to IoT has been affected. Various manufacturers have routinely shut down production due to a lack of supplies. The production of these semiconductors has been a major issue, with companies like TSMC struggling to put out chiplets on a variety of process nodes.