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AMD slashes high end graphics prices

With some rocky sales results predicted for Q2 2012 and no Chief Sales Office in place, AMD has been looking to add stimulus for the (traditionally) quietest quarter of the year. KitGuru has its channel price movement ear to the ground and this is what we’ve heard from the herd.

How is it possible for a product to be highly successful and yet still need price cuts?

When it comes to high-end parts, the answer is simple. As a new high end product launches – for almost any manufacturer – there is big interest from those with plenty of cash and a need for stimulation.

Over time, the ‘initial uptake’ audience has been satisfied and you need to choose whether to :-

  1. Stop producing that product at all
    Good example here is the luxury car market, where only a limited number of a new Lamborghini or Ferrari might be crafted
  2. Launch a new product and drop the price of the old one
    For example, with the launch of the new iPad 3, pricing on the ipad 2 dropped significantly
  3. Make a solid price move on the high end, to make it available to a larger audience

With the Radeon HD models 7970, 7950 and 7870, AMD has opted for option ‘3’.

So what will the new pricing look like?

  • Radeon HD 7970 (Taihiti XT) will now be $429 or £345 inc vat
  • The Tahiti PRO (Radeon HD 7950) is now just $349 or £279 inc vat
  • Meanwhile the Radeon HD 7870 (Pitcairn XT) is now $299 or £239 inc vat

Whenever these major price moves are announced, the market scrambled to get to the new price. The board partners (AIBs) need to make sure they are protected, the same goes for major/official distributors and resellers. KitGuru has seen price changes that took months to implement, while others have been greeted with greater enthusiasm.

Here’s what we found with the major vendors this morning:-

Overclockers has the 3GB VTX3D ‘X-Edition’ of the Radeon HD 7970 at just £329 – which is already £16 UNDER the new target price. Well played to OcUK and VTX3D.

Meanwhile, over at Aria, the overclocked 3GB MSI Radeon HD 7950 is in stock at just £275 – which is £4 UNDER the new target price form AMD. This special edition comes with 3 great games as well, which seems to make it a real bargain.

Finally, Sapphire is bang on the money with the overclocked, Dual-X, GHz version of the Radeon HD 7870. This also includes a spread of cool games and it available now at £239.

Just before we clicked ‘Go’ on the story, we thought we’d have a scan around for Gigabyte pricing on the same 3 cards and this is what we managed:-

The Triple-Fan WindForce version of the Radeon HD 7870 O/C is only £219, the 7950 version is £287 and the top of the range Radeon HD 7970 WindForce is £349 – all with game bundles.

Unlike government cuts, enthusiasts will welcome what AMD is doing with prices. Will nVidia follow?

KitGuru says: If you’re an nVidia fan, then you were never likely to switch across to AMD’s 7000 series, so this news won’t affect you at all, but – for the other half of the planet – knowing that there is overclocking + bundles + cash off might be enough to tempt those that haven’t yet felt the need for this kind of speed.

Comment below or in the KitGuru forums.

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