KitGuru has checked the stories and it looks like we're seeing the same thing about GTX460 pricing from everyone. If you were thinking about getting a GTX460 when the first reviews hit, then it was definitely worth waiting a week or three for pricing to drop down below the £150 mark. KitGuru pulls on the long gloves and prepares to investigate the inside of the channel.
The world buys cars like the Fiat Punto, Ford Focus, Vauxhall Corsa and Nissan Micra in huge numbers. When we settle down to watch Top Gear, we all hold our breath as the Bugatti Veyron sails past 250mph with James ‘Captain Slow' May at the helm.
Spending your whole life looking at super cars and then buying budget specials is not behaviour solely applied to cars.
We do exactly the same thing with graphics cards.
While your favourite technology sites post up predictions about how much faster the Radeon HD 6870 will be than the present generation leaders like the GTX480, Intel is still the largest producer of graphics chips in the world.
That could be interpreted as ‘more than half the PCs in the world are happily operating on integrated graphics'.
The sales curve is skewed heavily to the left hand side, with the majority of sales coming under the £150 ($200) barrier.
Each time you go up a price band, graphic card sales drop. Really drop.
If you think about killer cards from the past, they are almost always in the ‘affordable space'. Remember when ATI bundled the 9600 with a copy of Half Life 2 and, within a few weeks, it went to the top of the Steam charts as the most popular gamer's card in the world. The same goes for the 9600GT, which sold by the ship load into gamers across the planet [Were all the best cards called 9600s ? – Ed]
GTX460 is the best Fermi card in the market, by a mile. KitGuru says it. Almost every other review site on the planet has echoed our thoughts when they looked at the +£150 cards. So why aren't customers buying it? We have spoken with several UK resellers and they are all reporting sales in the ‘single digit volume a week' range. The real picture will not be revealed for a few months. We'd need the market to carry on buying long enough for the GTX460 to enter the Steampowered hardware survey at a statistically significant level. But, for now, sales seem sluggish.
The GTX460 card is great. Two of them is even better. They are selling, but they are not selling fast enough.
The solution to nVidia was clear. It needed to drop the price slightly and try to have GTX460 offers in the market that are UNDER the psychologically significant £150 barrier. For some reason, a GTX460 at £149 or less seems like a bargain. We've tried that offer on a few friends and they all agree. While the GTX460 was set to battle with the overweight kid with glasses (Radeon HD 5830), the real seller for AMD is the 5770 and it's slightly-lighter-weight 5750 sibling. That's the price point where real volume sales can start for Fermi.
If you were interested in GTX460 at launch, then it was worth waiting a week of two for the price drop in the channel to actually come through. There could be more on the way. They will not be massive, but could be significant. Which nVidia partner will drop lowest we wonder?
KitGuru says: While the first nVidia Fermi card to achieve £99 ($150) will certainly win a lot of hearts, minds and wallets, just getting the GTX460 under the £150 barrier is already a strong move for the team from Santa Clara. They are making a lot of arguments about 3D glasses, CUDA, PhysX and tessellation, but price is almost always foremost on a gamer's mind. Roll on more price drops!
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