How To Score A GeForce RTX 4090 Card For Under $1200 If You're In The Right Area
The starting price for a GeForce RTX 4090 is $1,599.99 for a Founders Edition model and custom cards that stick with the reference blueprint. From there, prices go up to around $2,000, or even higher if you're willing to pay scalper pricing on eBay. Or you could score an amazing deal and nab one from a major retailer for less than $1,200, though obviously there's a caveat.
Technically, two caveats. The first is that you have to be okay with an open-box item. In the days of not-so-old, buying a card that wasn't new came with a major risk that it was ridden hard in a cryptocurrency mining farm (that applied more to auctioned cards as opposed to open-box items). That's not a concern here, though there's always the possibility that an open-box card ends up being defective. On the flip side, it could also be a card that wasn't even opened, but simply returned for whatever reason (like buyer's remorse).
Given how recently the GeForce RTX 4090 entered the marketplace, normal retail pricing, and supply outpacing demand, we'd be willing to take a flyer on an open-box card, but that's obviously for you to decide. There's another caveat, though—you have to live near a Best Buy location that happens to have stock of open-box GeForce RTX 4090 cards.
Best Buy via Reddit user n19htmare
They do exist, and huge kudos to Reddit user n19htmare for the heads up.
"As the return window approaches and cards go unsold by scalpers, more and more open-box 4090s are popping up on Best Buy in different ZIP codes. If you are in the market for one, this maybe a decent avenue for you if it's available," the user wrote. In addition, n19htmare later updated the post with "If you are a Best Buy Credit Card holder, 10% off coupon code may also work on top of open box price. Try code DEC23EMOB25 ."
They posted a screenshot of two Gigabyte cards that had open-box prices listed underneath. One is the GeForce RTX 4090 Windforce, which normally sells for $1,599.99 but could be had for $1,279.99 in open-box form. The other is a GeForce RTX 4090 Gaming OC card priced at $1,189.99 as an open-box product, down from its normal $1,699.99 selling price.
Those represent discounts of $320 and $510, respectively. We looked and we're still seeing the same open-box price quote for the Windforce model. We presume these are only available for local pick-up, and of course that's only if they're in stock at whatever Best Buy location you happen to live near.
Combined with the high demand for NVIDIA's top SKU, grabbing one at a heavy discount is a long shot. It's certainly worth checking into, though, just be sure to stress test your card if you're lucky enough to score one, to make sure there aren't any issues with it.