NVIDIA Sets New Price Tiers With GTX 770 at $400

Posted by Jim Tanous on May 30, 2013
GTX 770

Following last week’s launch of the GTX 780 GPU, many were confused by NVIDIA’s pricing. At $650, the card was situated in an odd price category between the “ultra-end” GTX Titan and GTX 690 at $1,000 and the “high-end” GTX 680 at $450. The 780 performed better than the 680, but not by a consistently high margin, and NVIDIA’s mindset in terms of pricing was called into question.

Today, NVIDIA hopes to address those concerns with the launch of the second card in the 700-series, the GTX 770. Featuring a 7 Gb/s memory bus, 1,046 MHz base clock, and 1,536 CUDA cores, NVIDIA claims that the new 770 outperforms last year’s GTX 680 by about 5 percent. While that seems relatively insignificant, NVIDIA also announced that the 770 will launch at $399 in a 2 GB memory configuration.

For $50 less than the old flagship single-GPU card, NVIDIA is hoping to entice buyers with slightly improved performance, new styling, reduced power consumption, and significantly reduced noise. It’s an interesting proposition, but it raises a new question: is NVIDIA attempting to establish new price tiers?

For several generations of GPUs, both NVIDIA and rival AMD have largely followed the same pricing model. Casual gaming GPUs fell in the $200 to $300 range, enthusiast-class cards went for $300 to $400, high-end cards went for $500, and both companies had “extreme” high performance options at $1,000 (these were exclusively dual-GPU cards until the introduction of the Titan).

Now, with the GTX 780 at $650 and the GTX 770 at $400, NVIDIA appears to be hoping to squeeze out an extra $150 from the high end customers. While these changes will bring some advantages to the $400 GPU market, many argue that they will only stifle innovations and price decreases, keeping last year’s advancements away from the lower end of the market.

While NVIDIA’s GPU refresh is underway, little has been heard from AMD. The company’s 8000-series cards, which will reportedly not be a significant upgrade over the 7000-series, may not launch until late this year or early 2014.

Those who can’t wait for AMD can pick up the GTX 770 in the coming days. It will be in stock at retailers such as Amazon and Newegg shortly.

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