For the last several years, creating your own best custom build PC has been an excessively costly endeavor, mostly owing to greatly inflated GPU pricing. The availability of GPUs was so pathetically limited and the cost so exorbitantly high for most of last year that purchasing a graphics card seemed illogical. This, therefore, meant that if you cared about getting your money’s worth, building a PC from scratch was likewise not the ideal choice.
Pre built gaming PCs have also been overpriced over the past couple of years, but sometimes not as much overall relative to individual graphics cards themselves, making the traditionally lopsided debate between building and buying PCs a much more even contest. In a few cases, you might have even been better off buying a prebuilt gaming PC instead. However, the PC building has finally returned in 2022 and is once again the obvious option for those looking to get the most for their money. And these are the primary three explanations:
GPU Market is Marching Towards Normality (Finally)
Cryptocurrency miners, who were a major contributor to the current GPU scarcity, snatched up every available card to use in their mining rigs and farms, leaving gamers with the scraps in the form of the occasional free GPU here and there (but at ludicrously inflated prices). Now that we’ve arrived at a much more pleasant time, the GPU market is now in a decent place as of Q2 2022.
Since January of this year, GPU prices have been steadily falling, and there is now a reasonable amount of supply available for all price ranges of graphics cards, from entry-level to high-end. For the first time in a very long time, customers are now able to get graphics cards at a price point that is within their financial means.
Healthy, Hotly Contested CPU Market (= Value)
The CPU market, despite the occasional modest price hikes and availability issues caused by the continuous worldwide shortage of computer chips, remained relatively stable in terms of pricing in relation to product MSRPs throughout the previous two years while the GPU industry went through hell. Despite all the changes in consumer hardware, the healthy competition between Intel and AMD remained the same. This competition is always good for the user because it makes prices more competitive and gives them more options.
It won’t change in 2022, as AMD and Intel will continue to compete head-to-head in the desktop CPU market. After Intel’s most recent 12th generation Alder Lake series, which slammed AMD hard and reclaimed the performance crown from Ryzen 5000 across most price classes, the CPU rivalry is really hotter (and hence healthier) than ever. According to historical precedent, the CPU industry is now offering extremely excellent value for money in 2022, with top-value chips like the Intel Core i5 12600K, i5 12400 and i3 12100, for instance, providing you with a lot for your money. Additionally, AMD has reduced the cost of its Ryzen 5000 series CPUs, making products like the Ryzen 5 5600X, Ryzen 7 5800X and 5800X3D excellent overall values.
New NVidia GPUs (Likely) to Arrive This Year
Another reason why 2022 is shaping up to be a solid year for PC builders (if the upward trend of the previous two months continues) is that NVidia’s next generation RTX 4000 series is theoretically (likely, I’d say) to debut by the end of the year. Due to the recent GPU market horror, the wait for RTX 4000 (or RTX 5000, as it may be called) has been long, but once revealed and then introduced, it should ideally bring down prices of the current (yet still very powerful) GeForce RTX 3000 and Radeon RX 6000 series even further.
Then there’s AMD’s next generation of cards-the Radeon RX 7000 or whatever name they’ll be given, but they might take a long time to arrive given how fresh the RX 6000 cards are (at least relative to the RTX 3000, which have been around for a fair bit longer). Let’s just hope these forthcoming GPU releases are going to be better than the recent ones in terms of gamers actually being able to pick one up at or shortly after launch.