Everyone and their dog will be wanting to how to buy a graphics card on Black Friday given the turbulent year we've seen in the best graphics cards market. With the availability of RTX 3070 stock, and RTX 3080 stock (among others) being consistently elusive, it's no surprise that folks are looking eagerly to the upcoming Black Friday graphics card deals and hoping for RTX 30 series restocks.
In all honesty, it's unlikely, but not impossible, that Founders Edition RTX 30 series GPUs will appear at their respective MSRPs over the Black Friday period if the trends we've observed over the past few months are to be believed and followed.
For example, Best Buy has held RTX 30 series restocks at either the beginning or end of the month and given Black Friday occurs at the end of this very month, it's certainly a possibility that they could show up. The UK has also seen a few healthy restocks happening on some of the most in-demand video cards, though these events are still lasting only seconds and are only worth trying to engage with if you have advanced warning.
As it has been all year, the very best ways to definitely get your hands on the latest and greatest graphics cards are the prebuilt markets - this means, the upcoming Black Friday gaming PC deals and Black Friday gaming laptop deals are likely to prove the most popular, and cost-effective, methods to entering the new generation of graphical card from either Team Green or Team Red. However, despite that, we will still try to arm you with all the knowledge you need to stand the best chance of knowing how to buy a graphics card on Black Friday. Just keep in mind that it's all far from guaranteed.
Remember retailers' members programs
Several of the more prominent online retailers have membership programs that can make getting your hands on RTX 30 series and AMD Radeon 6000 stock easier. At a time where RTX graphics cards sell out within mere moments (or even seconds) when listed for their MSRP, these storefronts offer opportunities to jump the queue for a competitive rate.
Best Buy has been the most reliable retailer when it comes to RTX 30 series restocks over the past few months. Ever since the October 1 multi-state in-store restock event, we've seen consistent RTX 30 series restocks happening at least once or twice per month, normally at the beginning or end of a month. Best Buy has a premium plan in place called Totaltech which costs $199.99 per year. As well as granting shoppers early access to Black Friday deals hours before the public, it also gives its members tech support and extended warranties on all electronic items purchased as a subscriber.
Walmart's paid membership service, Walmart Plus, gives its subscribers the ability to have a 4-hour headstart on the general public on Black Friday for only $12.95 a month (or $98 annually). While we haven't seen all too much activity from the big-box chain of stores as of late, it's a decent option given how affordable this plan is for the chance to skip the queue for an RTX GPU.
Gamestop, while being largely inconsistent with RTX restock drops since the summer, has one of the more aggressively priced premium memberships on offer. $15 per year gets you early access to any console or graphics card stock drops hours ahead of everyone else. It's a long shot, but considering the low barrier of entry, it's definitely worth considering to even the odds on Black Friday.
Strongly consider desktops and laptops on Black Friday
We know that investing in one of the best gaming PCs or best gaming laptops isn't going to be the ideal solution for those that typically custom build their machines. However, at the time of writing, investing in a prebuilt rig or gaming laptop really is the cheapest and easiest way to get your hands on the newest line of graphics cards. It particularly applies to the likes of the RTX 30 series, with RTX 3090 stock reserved for gaming towers, given just how price-gouged the GPU market is in its current state.
Below you'll find some of our favorite gaming PC brands and what discounts are currently available.
Alienware | RTX 30 series PCs and laptops at Dell
Dell's dedicated gaming-centric line of machines frequently features some of the deeper discounts you can find on RTX 30 series rigs. Currently, you can save up to $628 on desktops, as well as up to $745 on Dell G15 and Alienware laptops.
ABS | RTX 30 series gaming PCs at Newegg
Newegg's in-house gaming PC brand typically sees some of the higher-end components being used in configurations in tandem with cheaper rates than other companies. There is currently up to 10% off RTX 30 series builds at Newegg.
iBuyPower | RTX 30 series gaming PCs and laptops
Right now you can save up to $200 on custom-built gaming desktops and laptops forged to your specific specifications. We should warn that many laptop models are fast selling out, so you'll need to move quickly if you want things portable.
Track GPU stock on Black Friday
One of the better ways that we've been able to track graphics card availability and stock over the past year is through Twitter lists, as well as dedicated accounts, combined with Telegram group notifications. We've found success ourselves utilizing these tools, and we'll arm you with the same knowledge so you can be confident with buying a graphics card on Black Friday.
We've found that @GPURestock has been right on the money several times when Best Buy RTX 30 series restocks have taken place, being the account that broke the October 1 story. There are also some other reliable accounts that accurately report on stock being available for MSRP, including @PartAlert which deals in both FE and partner cards. We have had success in the past year on several occasions by utilizing the FE Part Alert Telegram group, which delivers updates to your phone or desktop when Founders Edition RTX 30 series GPUs are available for retail prices.
We've been tracking the RTX 30 series in its various forms for over a year now, so if you're after specific models in their various forms, our stock and deal pages go more in-depth.
Our price comparison software tracks millions of products every 30 minutes to bring you the best deals it can find on graphics cards this side of the Black Friday sales event.
Once you've picked your new graphics card, or gaming desktop/laptop featuring the latest GPU, upgrade your setup for less with the Black Friday gaming monitor deals and Black Friday gaming keyboard and mouse deals.