AMD Radeon R9 290X Hits $900 on Newegg. Thanks *coin

Subject: General Tech, Graphics Cards | February 14, 2014 - 03:02 PM |
Tagged: supply shortage, shortage, R9 290X, podcast, litecoin, dogecoin, bitcoin

UPDATE (Feb 14th, 11pm ET): As a commenter has pointed out below, suddenly, as if by magic, Newegg has lowered prices on the currently in stock R9 290X cards by $200.  That means you can currently find them for $699 - only $150 over the expected MSRP.  Does that change anything about what we said above or in the video?  Not really.  It only lowers the severity.

I am curious to know if this was done by Newegg voluntarily due to pressure from news stories such as these, lack of sales at $899 or with some nudging from AMD...

If you have been keeping up with our podcasts and reviews, you will know that AMD cards are great compute devices for their MSRP. This is something that cryptocurrency applies a value to. Run a sufficient amount of encryption tasks and you are rewarded with newly created tokens (or some fee from validated transactions). Some people seem to think that GPUs are more valuable for that purpose than their MSRP, so retailers raise prices and people still buy them.

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Currently, the cheapest R9 290X is being sold for $900. This is a 64% increase over AMD's intended $549 MSRP. They are not even the ones receiving this money!

This shortage also affects other products such as Corsair's 1200W power supply. Thankfully, only certain components are necessary for mining (mostly GPUs and a lot of power) so at least we are not seeing the shortage spread to RAM, CPUs, APUs, and so forth. We noted a mining kit on Newegg which was powered by a Sempron processor. This line of cheap and low-performance CPUs has not been updated since 2009.

We have kept up with GPU shortages, historically. We did semi-regular availability checks during the GeForce GTX 680 and 690 launch windows. The former was out of stock for over two months after its launch. Those also sometimes strayed from their MSRP, slightly.

Be sure to check out the clip (above) for a nice, 15-minute discussion.


February 14, 2014 | 03:23 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I like the part where Ryan says, "You have no other option but to buy Nvidia for your SLI"


February 14, 2014 | 07:38 PM - Posted by Kwaz

His point was that people will buy into the NVIDIA ecosystem. A lot of people add a card instead of upgrade and they aren't likely to sell a card and buy two more.

February 14, 2014 | 03:45 PM - Posted by me (not verified)

What I find interesting is that when the 780 Ti was introduced at $700 after the 290X released at $550, it seemed to be a bad pricing decision that would exclude even the normal high end video card buyers. Today that decision looks like it was pretty smart.

February 14, 2014 | 03:50 PM - Posted by pdjblum

Notwithstanding AMD claiming they are not at fault, which I get, they are still responsible. Let me explain why I think this is a reasonable statement. When they send you cards to review, they come along with a MSRP, which is integral to your final recommendation. If the MSRP is not a reasonable expectation, as it has not been for quite sometime for the cards in question, then your recommendation is tainted at best, though certainly not your guy's fault. Why should you guys be put in that position, one that could implicate you by association (yes, I am reaching, but you get it)? It would be awesome if you guys and other tech sites would stop reviewing AMD cards until they step up and correct the problem.

February 14, 2014 | 04:12 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

You understand AMD is not at fault but you want them to correct the problem ?

That made no sense at all.

MSRP is not enforceable. How do you think high volume sellers can provide better prices then low volume sellers.

When is the last time you complained a item was below MSRP and wanted to purchase it at MSRP ?

Hey, WalMart stop proving low prices and sell the items at MSRP!!!

Supply and demand.

February 14, 2014 | 06:09 PM - Posted by pdjblum

Yeah, I can totally see your point. Mine seemed reasonable too. Now I am so conflicted.

February 14, 2014 | 06:10 PM - Posted by Scott Michaud

MSRP is sometimes enforced. Several manufacturers set restrictions to retailers when they ship products. To my knowledge, it is not unheardof for certain (especially electronics) manufacturers to say, "If you sell over this price, we'll withhold stock. Not enough profits? Sell accessories."

You (edit 11:25pm: I should add the word "definitely", because this is obviously not the only possible illegal thing) cannot set a minimum price, however, because that's price-fixing. Apple convinced the book publishers to do that against Amazon... and Apple was sued... and lost.

February 14, 2014 | 06:29 PM - Posted by pdjblum

Thanks Scott. Now I stand by my original point of view. Maybe by Ryan putting AMD to the hot coals, they will do something. anonymous will counter that the stores will not stock it then. My response to anonymous is of course they would because they would have if they were not able to gauge in the first place.

February 14, 2014 | 07:40 PM - Posted by Kwaz

Yep it's called MAP


February 14, 2014 | 07:46 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

That argument is invalid.

Apple colluded with publishers for price fixing. Offerring them kickbacks.

AMD is not manufacturing the entire card.

It would be the equivalent of AMD asking vendors/resellers to not sell the Microsoft X-Box One for more then MSRP when supply and demand exceeds that of MSRP.

What your essentially asking for is price fixing from AMD that manufacturers one part of the card.

Brilliant argument.

February 14, 2014 | 08:10 PM - Posted by Scott Michaud

Yeah, that's not what I was saying.

Again, I am not a lawyer or anything... but, to my understanding, I do not believe it is illegal for a company to, for instance, restock resellers in order of lowest retail price to highest retail price (I could be wrong on that and, yes, I know that was not really what I said either). I'm pretty sure there are perfectly legal potential actions to discourage resellers from straying too far above MSRP.

I am also not suggesting for AMD to do anything... especially once you factor in their AIB partners.

February 16, 2014 | 08:09 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Clearly, what AMD should do is RAISE prices and cash in! If Newegg can sell 290Xs at $900, I'm sure AMD can sell it at $700.

February 14, 2014 | 04:00 PM - Posted by Andi_dude (not verified)

Hmm here in europe we don't have this problem at all, the 290s are easy to get, a 290x costs 20euro more than a GTX 780.

280x is 30€ cheaper than a GTX770. AMD has always price/value on their side.

I think the biggest problem is you don't have that many stores you can buy from. i can buy any 290x in 20-30 different online shops anytime, all with stock and within 50€ of each other.

February 14, 2014 | 04:07 PM - Posted by pdjblum

That is awesome, seriously. You guys lucked out on this one.

February 15, 2014 | 12:46 AM - Posted by Yuhong Bao (not verified)

I think it might be because of higher electricity prices.

February 19, 2014 | 12:32 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Or it could be because European retailers aren't scumbags like Newegg.

February 14, 2014 | 05:13 PM - Posted by capawesome9870

how much is shipping from Europe to America?

February 14, 2014 | 04:54 PM - Posted by Ruszip (not verified)

The whole problem with buying an AMD card used from EBAY is it is almost a total guarantee that it was used for mining and it probably on its last legs because it was run at 100% and was run at its thermal limit for it's entire life.

February 15, 2014 | 08:08 AM - Posted by mAxius

Keep the pressure up on amd. They have to put a stop to this as it is destroying their reputation with gamers. The funny thing is this is only happening in North America. From what i have seen, retailers overseas are not effected by this hyper price inflation. AMD needs a strong response to this price gouging of their customers and the need it now.


edit More ribbing from other tech sites

February 14, 2014 | 06:08 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

AMD needs to open up a retail channel of its own for the *coin market, or raise its prices, it is out millions in profits, with those retailers getting so much over MSRP, because of the miners. AMD's product is being priced out of the gaming market, but AMD is not earning any of the spoils, and AMD needs the money. Any retailer taking advantage of this, should have its supplies reduced, with those not following a reasonable markup MSRP being forced to sign a MSRP agreement, before they can purchase more product. AMD should bid out the process of making a *coin SKU to one/all of the aftermarket OEMs, who make cards based around AMD's products, and in this contract AMD gets a share of the spot market price of the GPUs, no agreement, and the supply of GPU chips dries up. Nvidia apperas to be taking AMD's *coin popularity in stride, because it means more gaming sales for Nvidia. The easiest thing for AMD to do is just increase their prices until the market for *coins mining GPUs is saturated, as even if AMD could get their retailers in line, the black market would buy up all the GPUs from individuals, and the only way to deal with rising demand and short supplies is to increase prices.

February 14, 2014 | 06:45 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Jesus, checking newegg now and you can see this card is at 699.99 USD.

It took me one second to check that. But of course, clowns prefer to make big titles with wrong informations ... You gotta love those internet *news*...

February 14, 2014 | 07:43 PM - Posted by Kwaz

You obviously didn't see the screen capture.

February 14, 2014 | 07:03 PM - Posted by Winterseed (not verified)

$629 for a Sapphire here in Aus. Also, I thought getting into mining stopped being a good investment months ago?

February 18, 2014 | 02:10 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Only for Bitcoin due to the hashrate VS electricity cost. That and there are ASICs made for Bitcoin. Most miners have moved to Litecoin, but it's also quickly becoming economically unviable, and I'm sure an ASIC is on the way. The sad thing is, there's over 50 cryptocurrencies, so we might be screwed for a while. I'm glad I got my R9 280X at MSRP, I kid you not, a few days before the prices started creeping up due to the miners. Now, in Canada, you won't see them for less than $400. Sometimes they exceed $500!

February 14, 2014 | 08:53 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Pathetic. If only all these "crypto" currencies would crash and this bubble ended before these turds made up the cost for buying all the hardware. Then my life would be complete. For the year.

February 14, 2014 | 09:49 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

It's disgusting how some of these same reviewers that are lamenting AMD for high prices (on a couple etailers sights, others are at or near MSRP) yet applauded envidia for their ability to set there $MSRP$ in the stratosphere with hardly a whimper, let alone dedicated articles. JH's dick must taste good?

Let's talk about frame pacing now. Where's the articles relentlessly bashing intel for their abysmal frame latency and lag? They hold a big part of the gaming market even with their dark age style graphics, yet continue to be given a free pass by clowns like Ryan Snout that made such a big deal out of it over the past months. Maybe these guys are too stupid to figure out anything on their own and need envidia's spoon fed propaganda?

February 15, 2014 | 09:09 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Pull the red dildo out of your ass. You obviously don't grasp the situation at all and instead fall back on typical fanboyism. If they criticize, ATTACK!

Get a clue loser.

February 14, 2014 | 11:00 PM - Posted by tabuburn (not verified)

Don't have this type of pricing here in the Philippines. Converting the price of the AMD cards here to USD, it's right smack at the MSRP, give or take a couple of bucks.

February 15, 2014 | 12:44 AM - Posted by Yuhong Bao (not verified)

"I am curious to know if this was done by Newegg voluntarily due to pressure from news stories such as these, lack of sales at $899 or with some nudging from AMD..."
There is this tweet:

February 15, 2014 | 02:32 AM - Posted by capawesome9870

this is after the update, but it would of been an interesting story to see the R9 290x and the nvidia Titan, both with Double Precision compute enabled, being jacked up in price.

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