Used graphics card prices fall up to 50% as more cryptominers sell their GPUs

midian182

Posts: 8,010   +87
Staff member
In brief: As cryptocurrency prices continue to fall and Bitcoin once again drops below the $20,000 mark, cryptomining is becoming increasingly less profitable—and that's good news for gamers looking to grab a second-hand GPU. According to a recent report, prices of used graphics cards have crashed as much as 50% in recent months.

The crypto market isn't showing any signs of improving, barring a temporary uptick over the weekend that saw markets briefly pass $1 trillion. That's bad news for investors, crypto companies, and North Korea but good news for those looking to buy a used graphics card, especially as Ethereum's upcoming switch from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake, aka The Merge, is going to push prices down even further.

Bloomberg estimates that more than a third of the consumer graphics card market could vanish as cryptominers decide that their money-making hobby just isn't worth it anymore. The publication estimates that 35% of consumer graphics cards were bought by miners during the run-up to the crypto boom late last year when Bitcoin reached its height of $68,000, and we're now seeing a lot of those cards end up on second-hand sites such as eBay. Some of them are going for less than half the price that sellers asked only a few months ago.

The report reflects our own GPU availability and pricing update. The RTX 3090 Ti, which was going for an average of $2,000 on eBay in April, can now be found for $1,650, while the RTX 3080 10GB has dropped from $1,000 to $770 in the last few months.

It's not just second-hand cards that are seeing price reductions; new GPUs are also getting closer to and sometimes less than MSRP. It's led to a fall in motherboard sales as people stop buying mobos just for the bundled card, EVGA starting to shutter its virtual queue system, and Nvidia reportedly killing off the RTX 3080 12GB model.

There are often concerns when buying a second-hand graphics card that was used 24/7 for mining purposes. And while these worriers can be justified, the cards often haven't taken the kind of performance hit you might expect.

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SirDigby

Posts: 902   +770
TechSpot Elite
I have heard that you can get very good deals on refurbished secondhand mining GPUs, or if you refurbish them yourself, but its still a risk. You could get a card that only puts out 40% of its original performance, or you can get one that's more like 80-90%. I wouldn't risk it but if you're on a budget I suppose its an option.
 

yRaz

Posts: 4,514   +5,359
Nothing wrong with mining GPUs, its often more profitable to lower the clocks to save on energy costs than it is OC the thing. Also, it's not so much constant thermals that damage GPUs, it's thermal cycling and the solder joints work harden.

It's more risky to buy a used gaming GPU than a mining one. But do whatever you guys want, I'll save a pretty penny on other people's skepticism
 

Irata

Posts: 2,163   +3,741
I don't buy anything coming from that crap (a.k.a miners).

But that means supporting those who sold the cards to miners in the first place.

This would be win:win for nVidia, AIB and distributors. First they sold to miners, then to gamers.

So for the next mining boom, they‘d know that there is zero risk catering to miners.

But if otoh people bought cheap used cards causing AIB/distributors to sit on a large stock pile of unsold cards, they might think twice in the future.
 

Neatfeatguy

Posts: 876   +1,511
Nothing wrong with mining GPUs, its often more profitable to lower the clocks to save on energy costs than it is OC the thing. Also, it's not so much constant thermals that damage GPUs, it's thermal cycling and the solder joints work harden.

It's more risky to buy a used gaming GPU than a mining one. But do whatever you guys want, I'll save a pretty penny on other people's skepticism

Don't knock any used GPU from either side of the fence.

Biggest problem you probably face with a mining GPU is the BIOS - if the original isn't put back on you could run into problems with the card functioning properly. Not everyone is savvy enough to find the correct BIOS and flash it back....until that point, you don't know if the card functions correctly.

Biggest problem you probably face with a gaming GPU is it'll probably be more dirty. Most people with a gaming system are in an environment with pets or smoking or they don't do a good job cleaning the cards and just let the dust build up on them.

I've always taken good care of my GPUs and I've had them last 4, 5, 6 and even 7 years without any issues. I have a GTX 570 that's seen 7 years of gaming on it (4.5 years in a SLI setup and 2.5 years in a single card setup) and it's still fully functional to this day. I make sure that I clean them out every 8-16 months (depending on how everything else gets dirty in the case) with some canned air and a soft brush to remove dust build up on fans. Then around the 4 year mark, if I'm not planning on upgrading, I'll pull the card apart and do a deep cleaning on it and replace the TIM and thermal pads (if needed).

I just find it stupid that people will swear up and down that a mined GPU is so much better over a gaming one or vice versa. They're both used, you're taking a chance of something not working correctly for a used card, period.
 

wiyosaya

Posts: 7,821   +6,787
Since there's a glut of used cards on the market, this must be driving the price of all used cards down whether they were used by miners or not.

I bought a 980Ti used a few years ago. Although I believe it was a gamer's card, It has worked flawlessly since then. The only complaint I have about it has nothing to do with it's performance. It's an Asus Strix card, and the circuit board sticks up so high near the back panel that it won't seat properly in my Lian Li case - the case has a "screwless" card retention mechanism which will not close because of interference from the card's PCB. :rolleyes:
 

letsgoiowa

Posts: 71   +143
I have heard that you can get very good deals on refurbished secondhand mining GPUs, or if you refurbish them yourself, but its still a risk. You could get a card that only puts out 40% of its original performance, or you can get one that's more like 80-90%. I wouldn't risk it but if you're on a budget I suppose its an option.
Simply not true. They even linked a video.

Why would it be 40% of the performance? That's ridiculous.
 

yRaz

Posts: 4,514   +5,359
Simply not true. They even linked a video.

Why would it be 40% of the performance? That's ridiculous.
I saw an article saying the got a reduction in boost clocks from a group of random mining cards and that performance reduction was about 5%. But the article also said replacing the thermal pads and paste solved the issue
 

Achaios

Posts: 389   +1,079
Yeah no, I disagree with Linus. I've seen that vid.

I will never, ever buy a used GPU after a crypto-crash event. I am sure some will, but not me, not a chance.

I have had GPU's fail in the past due to excessive use (gaming) so I am sure that many Miner cards are gonna fail pretty soon if you use them for heavy gaming.
 

hahahanoobs

Posts: 4,521   +2,493
Used cards are supposedly being found with portions of VRAM being unusable from wear. A 3080 12GB has been found to only have 10GB of usable VRAM for example.

How many cards could be affected I don't know.
 

Nobina

Posts: 3,826   +4,273
I would buy from a miner if I were assured the card was adequately handled while mining. Then It'd be pretty much the same as purchasing any used card. And some people's choice is let's say a used RTX 3070 or a new RTX 3060, big difference in performance, I'd go for used in that case.
 

3ogdy

Posts: 57   +47
Please, for the love of whatever you care about, DO NOT BUY GPUs from the ones who F'd us a while ago by automating mass grabbing of GPUs.
 

yRaz

Posts: 4,514   +5,359
Please, for the love of whatever you care about, DO NOT BUY GPUs from the ones who F'd us a while ago by automating mass grabbing of GPUs.
So you mean the OEMs selling pallets of them to miners?
 

3ogdy

Posts: 57   +47
So you mean the OEMs selling pallets of them to miners?
The reason they're lowering prices is also because of people like us who refuse to buy a GPU at inflated prices. That's why there's stock of GPUs now. Sure, miners also stopped buying...but some of us did our part as well.

When they're at MSRP, then OK, buy the GPU new. Whatever you can afford, but don't go for the used GPUs.
 

emmzo

Posts: 630   +832
Whatever the savvy arguments of pros and cons, a lot of people are going to buy cheap SH cards. I mean the flood is coming as predicted and it looks huge. If you could get a mined 3080 for 200 bucks or less, wouldn`t you try your luck? Remember that recession is around the corner and most gamers will have much less money to spend on a brand new card. This will put an enormous pressure on AMD and especially Nvidia to lower prices or else get rekt. Happy times!
 

Neatfeatguy

Posts: 876   +1,511
There's nothing wrong with mining cards. I mined with both my 5700 XT and 6800 XT for about six months. No issues to report.

I had a 980Ti I used for about 3 months when I did a little mining of Zcash years ago. The card worked just fine for gaming over the 6 years I owned it. In all honesty, that's a small window of time when compared to some one with dedicated mining rigs, as is 6 months.

I know of some people that have been mining on Pascal cards and Turing cards since they launched and had only recently (before crypto started to tank) started moving to Ampere as they found cards to replace them that would get a decent ROI. Those 10xx and 20xx series cards have been mining for years now. As to how they will function as strictly as a gaming card? Who knows for sure.....get the original BIOS on them and see how it goes.