GeForce RTX 30 Cards Might Become A Bit Easier To Buy With This NVIDIA Production Change
There is a seemingly simple way of ending the graphics card shortage: just make more units, enough so that supply catches up with demand. The only problem is, cranking up production is not actually all that simple. There is a global shortage of silicon, and combined with rabid demand for GPUs, there are just not enough parts to go around. NVIDIA may have a partial solution, though, which entails making less Turing cards and allocating that production to Ampere.
This will not eliminate the shortage—even previous generation GPUs are always sold out, except from marketplace and second-hand sellers who are charging a premium—but it could help NVIDIA get more of its latest generation GeForce RTX 30 series into the hands of gamers (and miners, if we are being realistic).
Nothing official has been announced, but rumor has it NVIDIA has sent out a notice to its add-in board (AIB) partners to let them know it will be cutting production of its GeForce RTX 2060 (and presumably the GeForce RTX 2060 Super) in half, beginning this month. The production capacity that would normally be allocated to that specific SKU will instead go to the Ampere parts.
The rumor comes on the heels of NVIDIA adding a couple of new cards to the Ampere family, including the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti and GeForce RTX 3070 Ti. There are now half a dozen Ampere cards for consumers, the others being the GeForce RTX 3090, GeForce RTX 3080, GeForce RTX 3070, GeForce RTX 3060 Ti, and GeForce RTX 3060.
Interestingly enough, it was previously rumored that NVIDIA increased production of its Turing lineup (GeForce RTX 20 series and GTX 16 series), to help get more cards into the hands of gamers, in light of a resurgence in cryptocurrency mining and the demand that came with it. However, NVIDIA later launched dedicated mining GPUs as part of its CMP HX series.
In theory, this latest shift means miners can pounce on CMP cards while gamers will be served by a greater supply of GeForce RTX 30 series cards. Sounds good, but in practice, the global silicon shortage is bigger than NVIDIA. That's to say, don't expect GPUs to become plentiful again overnight.