This is the story of how I went about getting a nice big discount on graphics cards.
Last week I decided to add some more capacity to my GPU mining setup in the form of 10 additional RX580 8GB cards. Running these cards is wonderfully profitable (or at least it was last week when I bought them) and unlike running Bitcoin ASICS, there is really very little risk in buying them. Even if bitcoin were to collapse, there will always be a second hand market for decent GPUs.
Of course this theory only works out if you don’t overpay for the graphics cards. If RRP is £250, and you pay £350 a card, then you’re behind before you even start. So I decided I was going to make an effort to get a sensible discount on the cards. All the common sites I check for hardware had cards, but the 8GB version of the RX580s were approaching £350, and even most of the 4GB cards were up at that price too. Overclockers.co.uk seems to be particularly over pricing cards, but so are Scan, Aria, Ebuyer, and Amazon.
Last time I was buying cards, I got them for £170 each in a £250 market. This time, I paid £255 per card in a £350 market. This is what I did.
- Ditch the big sites, and find some smaller sites to buy from. If you google “computer hardware” or “graphics cards” or anything obvious like that, you’re going to get all the normal sites. Instead, get creative and find some sites you’ve never heard of before. Google shopping results are also useless. Find another way to find sites. I’ve done this twice now, using odd search terms or using other methods to find sites, and both times it’s worked. Smaller sites that are hard to find are far more likley to give you a decent discount, as they need the business. I found Quzo.net via Sapphire’s official retailers page, and spoke to the very helpful proprietor who got me a meaningful discount- in the end I paid £255 per card delivered, which is the better part of £75 cheaper per card than anything I could find anywhere else.
- Call and ask. Seriously, this might sound silly, but if you don’t ask you don’t get. Don’t just do the online checkout. Instead, get on the phone, ask what stock they have, and ask what the best price they can do for you is. The major players probably won’t play ball on one or two cards, but even guys like Scan will cut you a deal on 10 or more cards, as they all have sales guys who try to get B2B business. The worst that can happen is they will say no, so just thank them anyway and try somewhere else.
- If you’re opening a mining farm, try calling distributors rather than retailers. If your quantities are big enough you don’t have to pay retail prices. Call Sapphire, call MSI, call whatever the distributors are in your country. These guys are normally 10-20% cheaper, and they do want your business if your quantities are meaningful.
That’s it. Don’t be a sucker. Get your cards at RRP, or thereabouts.