The graphics card market has been the worst hit by the semiconductor shortages. With market prices inflated to twice and even thrice the MSRPs, everyone from retailers to scalpers has been trying to get a share of the profits. According to NVIDIA execs, the demand far exceeds what foundries can produce. As such, there’s not much that can be done about the matter for the time being.
On the bright side, shortages are expected to ease up in the second half of 2022 as the GeForce RTX 40 series (and Radeon RX 7000) graphics cards hit retail. A combination of hybrid foundry support and a diverse product mix should allow the market to return to pre-pandemic levels.
Reports from Board Channels (via Videocardz) indicate that the GeForce RTX 3050 will have the largest stock out of all the Ampere GPUs at launch. The GTX x50 has traditionally been the most popular GeForce SKU among gamers.
Keeping that in mind, NVIDIA stocking up on RTX 3050 stocks ahead of the launch isn’t much surprising. At the same time, this should also be a response to the Chinese New Year. The Chinese market is the largest market for most chipmakers and as such, it stands to reason that NVIDIA would provide extra stock to satisfy the country’s massive PC gaming audience.