In another quick shift in the hyper-competitive performance video card market, AMD sends word this afternoon that they are enacting some price cuts that will be taking effect later this week. This latest round of price cuts comes hot on the heels of last week’s launch of the GeForce GTX 660 Ti, which saw NVIDIA introduce their first 28nm performance video card at $299.

The bulk of the cuts here will be for the 7800 series, where the 7870 in particular is finding itself somewhat displaced after the launch of the GTX 660 Ti. The $299 660 Ti isn’t necessarily in direct competition with the already-cheaper 7870 – which had a street price of around $279 last week – and since AMD had already quietly shuffled prices around ahead of the GTX 660 Ti launch, we weren’t expecting any further changes here. But it would appear that the gap between the 7870 and GTX 660 Ti is closer than AMD would like.

As a result the 7870 will be getting a slight price cut to push prices towards $249. This would make the card a full $50 cheaper than the GTX 660 Ti, which is apparently the kind of leverage AMD wants right now.

Meanwhile because the 7870 is getting a price cut, so is the 7850. AMD is expecting the street prices on the 2GB 7850 to fall to around $209 after the price cuts take effect, putting it $40 below the newly repriced 7870. The 2GB 7850 has been averaging $239 in the past week, so this would represent a price cut of around $30. Meanwhile the extremely rare 1GB version of the card would end up below $200, though given how few of those cards exist it’s hard to say if it will hit AMD’s $189 price target.

Alongside those price cuts the 7800 series will be receiving a new game bundle promotion in a few weeks. The AMD Gaming Evolved title Sleeping Dogs will be AMD’s latest bundle, replacing the outgoing DiRT Showdown bundle. This will sit opposite NVIDIA's existing Borderlands 2 promotion, which went live last week. As with past bundles this is being done at a retailer level, so it’s primarily geared towards online retailers (e.g. Newegg) that can quickly bundle vouchers with new cards.

Second Summer 2012 Radeon HD 7000 Series Price Cuts
Card Launch Price Spring MSRP Summer MSRP Second Summer MSRP
Radeon HD 7970GE $499 N/A N/A $499
Radeon HD 7970 $549 $479 $429 $429
Radeon HD 7950 $449 $399 $349 $319
Radeon HD 7870 $349 $349 $299 $249
Radeon HD 7850 $249 $249 $239 $209
Radeon HD 7770 $159 $139 ~$119 ~$119
Radeon HD 7750 $109 $109 ~$99 ~$99

Meanwhile, along with the 7800 series the 7950 is also technically getting a price cut. We say “technically” because AMD seems to be rubber stamping price cuts that have already happened. The 7950 has been readily available below its $349 MSRP for quite some time now, and AMD’s new MSRP of $319 reflects the price of cards that are already available.

Finally, it should be noted that despite AMD’s official announcement we wouldn’t be all that surprised if only a few cards ended up reaching these new MSRPs. AMD lists their MSRPs as “starting at”, which means that AMD is listing the price of the cheapest card. This is largely how the previous round of price cuts played out, so pickings right at these new MSRPs may be slim.

Post-Cut Summer 2012 GPU Pricing Comparison
Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition $469/$499 GeForce GTX 680
Radeon HD 7970 $429/$399 GeForce GTX 670
Radeon HD 7950 $319/$299 GeForce GTX 660 Ti
  $279 GeForce GTX 570
Radeon HD 7870 $249  
Radeon HD 7850 $209  


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  • Hardin4188 - Monday, August 20, 2012 - link

    This is a good move on amd's part. I've been planning on getting a new card and sleeping dogs.
  • wicketr - Monday, August 20, 2012 - link

    About time nVidia joined the game to put some pressure on the prices. Now if only they could put their 650 and 640 lines out there to compete on the low end. They've been destroyed this cycle with AMD seemingly the only game in town for so long.
  • StevoLincolnite - Tuesday, August 21, 2012 - link

    It is a nice move, but the price/performance ratio in my opinion still doesn't match the previous 6000 series, I picked up 2x Radeon 6950 2gb cards which unlocked into 6970's (Then I overclocked them) and they each came with a copy of Dirt 3 for about $200Au a year ago.
    Sold 2x copies of Dirt 3 each for $60 so in the end each card was about $180.
    The 6970's are competitive to the 7870 in allot of games that aren't compute heavy.

    The higher prices this generation are probable caused by a combination of 28nm being new and expensive and limited yields, so it's not entirely unexpected, just hope next generation which I intend to jump on is priced lower. :)
  • RussianSensation - Tuesday, August 21, 2012 - link

    6950 2GB were amazing cards. The problem is AMD couldn't afford to sell $200-250 6950s that unlocked to 6970 of all things. They were losing a lot of profitability with that strategy. It was only a matter of time before the new CEO had to cut that cord short. It just means we are back to historical situation such as 9800XT or X1800XTX or X1950XTX when AMD cards were $500+. Just means you have to wait longer to catch better value / upgrade. On the positive side, current games aren't getting demanding that fast since next generation consoles are still 1-2 years away and the graphics progress is very slow. Those 6950s in CF will probably last you until 2014 easily.
  • piroroadkill - Tuesday, August 21, 2012 - link

    They were, and are. The fact they existed led to me being very confused at the success of the Geforce 560Ti, a card with far less potential (and VRAM).

    6950 2GB unlocking was underestimated, I believe, and they were the sweet spot for the entire time they were on the market.
  • HisDivineOrder - Tuesday, August 21, 2012 - link

    That's a reflection of just how bad AMD's drivers were last year and, arguably, this year up until the last few months.
  • RussianSensation - Saturday, August 25, 2012 - link, The low prices were a reflection of the old CEO and management team. HD4850/4870 ($199/299), HD4890 ($269), HD5850/5870 ($269/379), HD6950/6970 ($299/369). Those prices had nothing to do with the state of AMD's drivers. All of those cards had rock solid drivers in single-GPU states. It was simply a matter of strategy -- trying to gain market share through price competitiveness. If anything, AMD's drivers were better for all of those series than the first 6 months of HD7970 series. So you cannot use drivers as an explanation why AMD was selling their cards for so cheap.
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    amd drivers still aren't right

    Welcome to the continuing GSOD
    Welcome to black screens
    Welcome to black and white lines oc'ing
    Welcome to load line calibration issues
  • Pantsu - Tuesday, August 21, 2012 - link

    The performance difference was maybe 10%, mostly due to different clocks. Clock to clock the difference between 6970 and 6950 was 0-5%.

    In any case, the 200$ market hasn't moved since in terms of performance. I bought two of them and sold them for maybe 50€ less a year later. CrossFire was a big disappointment for me. No driver support whatsoever back then.

    I'd say those who bought the early cheap 5870's got the best deal in hindsight, as long as we're talking 1080p gaming.
  • CeriseCogburn - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    They were the $300 to $400 dollar market, not the $200 market.
    How the HECK do you people do that ?
    How is it possible to make that large of errors ?

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