According to PC Gamer, crypto miners are dumping their GPUs in increasing numbers as token prices falter during the downturn.
The knock-on effect has seen a steady decrease in the cost of graphics cards as the market gets flooded with availability.
In analyzing European prices, Tom’s Hardware reported a divergence in pricing between manufacturers. AMD offerings, on average, are currently 8% below retail, whereas Nvidia products are still 2% above retail on average.
Nonetheless, gamers, who have long and hard complained about being priced out of the market, will welcome the development.
Crypto mining is fractured
The evolution of crypto mining, namely the popularization of Application Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs) mining, has fractured digital asset mining into two distinct camps.
The first is corporate mining companies with deep pockets and the freedom to relocate operations wherever conditions, such as the cost of electricity and regulatory support, are most favorable.
Some individuals approach crypto mining as a profitable hobby. Still, they tend to be frozen out of mining ASIC tokens, such as Bitcoin, due to the intense competition from the first camp.
However, falling hash rates hint that hobbyists are leaving.
Hash rates show a sharp drop off
Analysis of the Ethereum hash rate shows a sharp decline to 925 TH/s, representing an 18% drop from the May 13 all-time high of 1,127 TH/s.
The drop suggests miners are leaving the network, but it’s unclear why. In the case of Ethereum, the transition to a Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus mechanism means plans are in place to make mining increasingly tricky and therefore unprofitable, in what is known as the difficulty bomb.
As the Merge between the Proof-of-Work (PoW) and PoS chains nears, this is a factor weighing on miners’ minds. At the same time, falling token prices and rising global energy costs are also in play.
Similarly, Monero’s hash rate also shows a sharp drop-off. On February 4, Monero’s hash rate peaked at 3.22 GH/s, but since then, it has declined by 29%, falling to 2.30 GH/s.
Unlike Ethereum, Monero has no plans to transition to a PoS network, suggesting the GPU mining exodus is industry-wide and driven primarily by profitability concerns.
Until the next bull cycle, gamers no longer have cause to blame GPU miners for lack of inventory and price gouging.