If anything illustrates just how bad today’s graphics card market is, it’s this: the best-selling GPU on both Amazon and Newegg isn’t one of the RTX 3000 or Radeon RX 6000 series. It’s not even from the RTX 2000 line. It’s the two-year-old, underwhelming GTX 1650.
We’re all familiar with the problems that come with trying to buy a graphics card today. The main culprit is the chip shortage, which many in the industry, including Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger, believe will not alleviate until 2023. The obscene prices and general lack of availability are exacerbated by scalpers looking to make a quick profit and miners taking advantage of cryptos’ high price.
The result of all this mess is that many people, especially those building PCs from scratch, simply can’t afford to add a modern GPU. Tom’s Hardware reports that the situation has led to the Turing-era GTX 1650 becoming the best-selling card on both Amazon and Newegg.
The news won’t surprise those paying attention to the Steam Hardware & Software Survey. The GTX 1650 is the second-most-popular card among participants and saw the fifth-highest (0.16%) gains last month.
That’s not to say that the GTX 1650 is selling anywhere near its original $150 MSRP. Newegg’s number one—the MSI Ventus—is $355, while Amazon’s Zotac Gaming GTX 1650 is $324. Strangely, MSI’s GDDR5 card is more expensive than Zotac’s GDDR6-sporting model.
Tom’s notes that in addition to being one of the cheapest cards available that can squeeze out around [email protected] on many modern(ish) games, the card’s four different versions made with three different dies and two different memory modules are also helping its cause, allowing Nvidia to produce it in large quantities and recycle defective TU116 and TU106 dies to be used in the GTX 1650.
We awarded the GTX 1650 a score of 60 in our 2019 review, noting that it wasn’t a bad product at its $150 MSRP—still, desperate times and all that.