After months of shortages, local gamers can finally get hold of Nvidia and AMD’s latest graphics cards.
This year’s cryptocurrency boom led to a sharp increase in demand for high-end graphics cards, specifically Radeon RX-series and GeForce GTX 10-series units.
The graphics cards can be used to earn income by mining cryptocurrencies like Ethereum and Zcash.
Popular graphics cards among cryptocurrency miners include AMD’s Radeon RX 580 and RX 570, and Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1060 and GTX 1070.
For months it was impossible to purchase one of these graphics cards in South Africa, but Wootware and Raru said stock shortages are now abating.
Wootware’s Rory Magee said there are still shortages on certain cards, but the situation has improved in recent months.
“There is still considerable demand for both AMD and Nvidia graphics cards for mining,” said Magee.
“However, since the immediate payoffs from mining are not as lucrative as they were a few months back, there is more supply available at relatively better pricing.”
Magee said the RX 580 and RX 570 cards offer the best performance for mining.
“AMD RX 580 and RX 570 cards have offered some of the best price-per-hash and hash-per-watt figures, and as such there has been a particularly high demand for these cards.”
“Supply has been getting better, but there may still be some waiting time in between shipments landing.”
Magee said barring a surge in mining profitability, the supply issues should continue to resolve themselves.
Raru’s Colin van Zyl said that while most graphics cards are returning to normal stock levels, the RX 580 8GB still has a long backorder list.
“GTX 1060, 1070, and 1080 cards appear to be returning to normal stock levels. Back orders are not as high anymore and stock is arriving faster from manufacturers,” said van Zyl.
“RX 580 4GB cards are actually available, but RX 580 8GB cards still have a big backorder list with long waiting times.”
Van Zyl said customers are purchasing many desktop components apart from graphics cards, indicating they could be preparing their rigs and will buy graphics cards at a later date.
He said stock levels should return to normal before the end of the year, barring the successful launch and adoption of Bitcoin Gold.
Bitcoin Gold is a Bitcoin hard fork set to launch on 25 October, which focuses on decentralisation and will be mined by GPUs instead of ASIC miners.
If this Bitcoin hard fork becomes profitable to mine, this could lead to another shortage in graphics cards.