Newegg's GPU Trade-In Program Is Live But Is It Any Good?
Newegg has rolled out a GPU trade-in program that gives buyers varying amounts of credit on their old graphics cards when purchasing new ones. Ostensibly, this is a move to reduce to e-waste, though we'd like to see the actual buyers who are going around tossing GeForce RTX 3080 and Radeon RX 6800 cards into the garbage bin. Newegg's pat-on-the-back notwithstanding, this could be a viable alternative to selling old hardware the way our ancestors have done it since the dawn of time—on eBay, Craigslist, and Facebook Marketplace.
"The benefit of our trade-in program is the ease to send a used graphics card and buy a new one all within the same platform and avoiding the hassle of selling through a secondary market," said Amir Asadibagheri, Product Manager, Customer Experience, for Newegg.
That's the more sensible sales pitch, as opposed to chest-thumping how this "program helps limit electronic waste." The way it works is, you shop for a new GPU on Newegg and when you find one, click and fill out the trade-in submission form on the product page. If your existing GPU is eligible, Newegg will provide a prepaid UPS shipping label to send it in on the company's dime.
There are some caveats, of course. For one, you still have to pay the full price on a new GPU upfront. That's to say, the trade-in value is not deducted at checkout, and instead is paid in the form of a refund once Newegg receives, inspects/verifies, and determines the final value of your old GPU.
The much bigger caveat is the list of maximum trade-in values. Newegg's highest offer is $561 for a GeForce RTX 3090 Ti. While not peanuts, a peek at recently sold listings on eBay shows that GeForce RTX 3090 Ti owners are getting around $750 to a little over $1,000. At the time of this writing, the average selling price (including shipping fees) of the last five GeForce RTX 3090 Ti cards sold on eBay is $857 and change.
It's a chunky disparity, though not quite as egregious as first glance suggests. After taking into account eBay's 13.5% final value fee (plus $0.30), Paypal's potential fee, and shipping (up to around $30), it's closer to around a $130-$150 difference, give or take. There's also some value in avoiding the general headaches that come from selling on your own (classifieds are especially fraught with scammers).
Here's a look at the full list of trade-in values...
On the AMD side, pricing starts at $30 for a Radeon RX 5500 XT (4GB or 8GB) and goes up from there, culminating in $375 for a Radeon RX 6950 XT. And for NVIDIA, pricing starts at $90, for a GeForce RTX 2060.
You can do better on your own in most instances, it's just a matter of how much better. One possible exception is the Radeon RX 6500 XT—Newegg's trade-in value is $77, which is right around the same price as several recently sold listings on eBay.
You'll have to decide for yourself if Newegg's GPU trade-in program is right for you, versus selling your old card on your own (or even donating it, if you're so inclined). From our vantage point, it's a worthwhile option to at least consider, depending on your GPU and how you feel about navigating the auction and/or classified landscape.