Nvidia is reportedly resupplying some stock of the long-forgotten GTX 1050 Ti graphics card (opens in new tab) to retailers. The Pascal generation graphics card first launched in 2016, and was subsequently replaced by the 16-series in 2019, but now it appears to be making a triumphant return in the face of ongoing graphics card shortages for high-end cards.
News comes from Youtube channel Tech Yes City (opens in new tab) (via Videocardz (opens in new tab)), who claims to have spoken to various retailers, namely in Australia, regarding the GTX 1050 Ti's return. He says that the model he's seeing appear at retail most of all is the Asus Phoenix, but that different vendors are offering the card in 2021.
Asus told Tech Yes City that the card was never officially discontinued, but it was de facto end of life for many major markets and often listed as such with retailers. And even so that only partially explains its sudden reappearance.
It's not just Australia that's seeing a sudden influx of GTX 1050 Ti graphics cards, either. In the UK, Overclockers is now listing the Palit GTX 1050 Ti StormX 4GB for £188.99 (opens in new tab).
A glance back in a cached version of that page and you can see that not only was that card listed as no longer available November last year (opens in new tab), it returned sometime in January 2021 for £149.99 (opens in new tab). From that point onwards it's been listed as "UK and Ireland only due to high demand." From Zero to hero, apparently.
Scan UK also tells a similar story. From officially 'end of life' status (opens in new tab) to 'hot seller' (opens in new tab) in under four months.
It's not quite clear what's happened here, but on the face of it the move to resurrect the cheap to make and less in-demand GTX 1050 Ti might be for the best. Desperate times call for desperate measures—an old graphics card is better than no graphics card in my books.
The GTX 1050 Ti is hardly a bad card either for 1080p gaming, it's just a bit long in the tooth.
That's the unfortunate situation we're all facing in 2021. There's simply not enough GPU silicon to go around today, with gamers, miners, and bots scrambling for what little stock there is. The shortages are so bad that cryptocurrency farms are reportedly switching to gaming laptops to fuel their cryptocurrency profits (opens in new tab) instead. Not that I feel particularly sorry for them.
While the RTX 30-series is famously unavailable worldwide, even the cheaper 16-series cards of past gen are hard to come by. Thus leading to an unfortunate situation for budget builders especially today.
Nvidia has refused to comment on the story, but it's clear there's something going on behind the scenes in regards to GTX 1050 Ti stock. And while it may hurt to admit it, it's probably for the best.
PC World (opens in new tab) has managed to get word from Nvidia on the return of the GTX 1050 Ti. Here's what it has to say:
“The products referenced below were never EOLed. So ‘reviving’ seems like the wrong terminology to use here,” Nvidia says to PC World “More of an ebb and flow really. We’re just meeting market demand which remains extremely high as you noted.”
So there you have it: The GTX 1050 Ti is officially returning to meet market demand, which we all know is through the roof right now. And although the card may never have been officially EOL, it sure played dead for a while there. So much so that many retailers had it buried six feet under.
UK retailer Scan has also informed me that some GTX 1050 Ti stock had been made available to it recently, but that it still expects stock to be tightly controlled and limited for even the ageing Pascal GPU.
Not the best start to 2021, I'll be the first to admit.