Should you buy a graphics card before Black Friday?

Should you buy a graphics card?
(Image credit: Future)

Given the uncertainty that surrounded the Black Friday graphics card deals in the past few years, you'd be right for wondering if you'll be able to get your hands on a new GPU this year. Thankfully, the drought has come to an end, and the best graphics cards on the market are much more readily available than they were during the pandemic years. If you're still as on-edge as we are, however, you'll keep your wits about you for the next month.

The GPU market has taken a positive turn in 2022. As more and more places around the world have taken deeper steps into pandemic recovery, supply chain and chip shortage issues that plagued the graphics card market have subsided. What's more, NVIDIA's 40 series GPUs are experiencing a staggered release, giving people a chance to get even more powerful cards for their gaming PCs. The RTX 4090 released back in October, and the 4080 is set to release before Black Friday. For these reasons, we have high hopes for Black Friday GPU deals. With a new generation of products releasing, and an end to stock shortages, we're hoping that the 30 series GPUs that have been so elusive in recent years will now be readily available, and much more affordable.

Having said that, we can imagine GPUs being a big ticket item for a myriad of shoppers this November. While we can't say for certain whether stock will hold out, we'd recommend you keep your ear to the ground. While Cyber Monday will certainly throw out some great deals on gaming hardware, Black Friday is the one to watch. Deals have started to appear earlier and earlier in the past, so have your eyes peeled in the week leading up to the 25th of November.

If you're lucky, you might spot a graphics card at a discount price before Black Friday. While we'd always recommend that you wait for the best deals of the year so your money goes as far as it can stretch, if you are still traumatised from years of stock shortages, we wouldn't blame you for buying in early.

RTX 3070 Ti graphics card

(Image credit: Nvidia)

Buying graphics cards on Black Friday: price history 

If we cast our minds back to a few years ago, we see a generally consistent pattern of graphics card deals. Discounts of between $10 and $30 off are common on more recently released video cards, with the older generation GPUs seeing a slightly larger saving of up to $50 in some cases. This pattern has been consistent with retailers such as Newegg (opens in new tab), even with the GTX 700 (mostly the GTX 750 Ti) and GTX 900 (predominantly the GTX 970 and GTX 980) line as far back as even 2014. 

The 2019 Black Friday sales event followed this trend for graphics cards as well. We saw discounts of up to $50 off of the, then, flagship RTX 2070 Super at some online retailers, though it's worth noting that the vast majority of other GPUs hovered at the same price point throughout the majority of November.

In 2020 and 2021, the drought was in full swing. There were essentially no graphics card deals available anywhere online, and shoppers were merely praying for restock news, never mind a discount. With a new generation of NVIDIA GPUs hitting the shelves, we would hope that the RTX 30 series sees some cracking discounts this year. Having said that, it's hard to predict a market that's been so disrupted in recent times. 

RTX 3090

(Image credit: Nvidia)

Back in August, NVIDIA even went as far as to say that it had built "too many" GPUs, and it finally had a surplus for consumers to get their hands on. For that reason, we'd expect plenty of deals, but as always there's a twist. Earlier in the year, cryptocurrencies were seeing a massive boom as NFTs were all the rage. At the time, people were buying up entire rooms worth of graphics cards to mine with. While we don't necessarily think that will be an issue come Black Friday, it's definitely another reason for you to be as vigilant as possible.

In conclusion, we'd recommend waiting for Black Friday GPU deals. With a new series releasing from one of the biggest names in computing components, we'd expect big things. But as with all gaming hardware deals around Black Friday and Cyber Monday, things could get competitive. We'll be rounding up all of the biggest and best offers we come across on our Black Friday GPU deals page, so that's a good article to keep an eye on. 

Go for power and portability in your gaming setup for less with the Black Friday gaming laptop deals, and find more reliably available components in your build with the Black Friday RAM deals and Black Friday CPU deals as well. 

Duncan Robertson
Hardware Editor

Ever since playing Journey at the age of 15, I’ve been desperate to cover video games for a living. After graduating from Edinburgh Napier University with a degree in Journalism, I contributed to the Scottish Games Network and completed an Editorial Internship over at Expert Reviews. Besides that, I’ve been managing my own YouTube channel and Podcast for the last 7 years. It’s been a long road, but all that experience somehow landed me a dream job covering gaming hardware. I’m a self-confessing PlayStation fanboy, but my experience covering the larger business and developer side of the whole industry has given me a strong knowledge of all platforms. When I’m not testing out every peripheral I can get my hands on, I’m probably either playing tennis or dissecting game design for an upcoming video essay. Now, I better stop myself here before I get talking about my favourite games like HUNT: Showdown, Dishonored, and Towerfall Ascension.
Location: UK Remote

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