Concern for graphic card manufacturers
Something which has been increasingly bothering me over the last month+ I would guess.
Generally when u goto an online store to purchase a gfxcard, there is a whole list of cards, new and old, and also a nice range from each manufacturer with a few twists to each one.
Perhaps the "OC" or "XXX" badge, maybe a custom cooler. A new packaged game.
I give an example of 2 online stores, although understandably there are dozens to choose from, Scan & Ebuyer - it's almost like going into a shop and the shelves are bare. What they may have are some empty boxes showing OOS.
To be fair, if u want to buy a 57xx card, u 'can' get one. Possibly a 5850 if ur lucky, perhaps not a 5870. 47xxx/48xxx seem to have fair stock, just not a range of manufacture options.
To flip camps, the GT200 series of performer cards are very much OOS, u can get the newer GT210/220/250 - although still not a huge selection.
The idea used to be, u'd thrash out which card u wanted in terms of which camp and performance level u want to achieve, then pick a manufacturer u might favor over another. I can't see this option at present. U can to a degree with previous generations, not to a great extent.
Something seriously is going on. I can't see it being any sort of blameage aimed at the likes of tsmc. They're personally doing well and figures looking good. Pcb manufacturers ? Foxconn with the connectors ? Cooling cover makers ? Who is it ? Contractual disputes ?
Maybe there's a field full of freight containers somewhere that are full of gfxcards and some1 lost them ?
My concern is with the lack of availablity and options across the board and the online shelves. Be great to get some serious non-speculative answers.
One thing is for sure, some1 like XFX can-not be showing good figures for Q4 2009 - cos they simply don't have the cards on the shelves. BFG seem to have some out, Gigabyte have some too - ASUS even. (and of course sprinklings of all sorts of manufacturers) They're there, but in short quantity and choice.
eVGA's release of a "Halloween" card might just be that sort of gimmick required to drum up new sales. Kit they already had and can push out with existing gear.
Consumer will ofc suffer the supply/demand, and UK's "charge as much as u can get away with" attitude.