Nvidia appears to be somewhat concerned at the rising prices of graphics cards; at least that seems to be the case in Germany. German retailers are said to have received notices from the hardware manufacturer asking them to sell products to actual gamers. Not those looking to mine for cryptocurrency.
Nvidia spokesman Boris Bohles told German site Computerbase, “All activities around our GeForce product line are focused on our main target group. To further ensure the GeForce gamers in the current situation, a good availability of GeForce graphics cards, we recommend our trading partners to take appropriate precautions to as usual meet the needs of gamers.”
These German retailers have more or less responded to the request. Most have implemented a limit of between two to five graphics cards per order, but still allow the same customer to place multiple orders. Which doesn’t quite solve the problem at hand.
To be fair, there really isn’t much Nvidia can do to ensure that it’s core customer base is able to stock up on graphics cards. The notice sent to retailers is only a request, and there is no legal recourse in the case that stores want to sell in bulk to mining farms.
The price of graphics cards has skyrocketed thanks to the exploding interest in cryptocurrencies. The public has latched on to the idea of investing in something that can simply be generated with little effort; with some individuals building mining rigs to rent out.
Mining puts massive strain on the GPUs, which causes them to burn out faster than they usually would while bring used for gaming. This, in turn, means that miners are replacing their cards far more frequently than the average consumer; which has helped drive sales and create a supply shortage.
Graphics card prices are going to remain high for the foreseeable future, and there’s really little that can be done about it. Although, the falling value of Bitcoin and its ilk may turn potential miners off and help the situation.