Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3080 graphics card is the first of the new crop of Ampere GPUs to emerge, going on sale in a couple of days on September 17 – but you can already buy one on eBay in the US, or at least you can purchase a pre-order, at a ridiculously steep price we might add.
What does buying a pre-order mean exactly? Well, considering you can’t actually pre-order these graphics cards at all yet, what you are in fact buying with these eBay auctions – as highlighted on Reddit – is the ability for someone else to pre-order a card for you (and even ship it internationally in some cases).
In short, you’ve got as much chance of pre-ordering yourself when release day comes, while paying the standard price for the RTX 3080 (which is $699 for the Founders Edition direct from Nvidia), as opposed to the stupidly inflated prices on eBay (as much as $1,300 in some cases).
Now, some of the eBay sellers are claiming they do already have successful pre-orders from certain GPU manufacturers – but unless they somehow have inside contacts, they are most likely simply lying (as pre-orders aren’t happening). And they probably just operate on the same basis as the other sellers who openly declare that all they are doing is attempting to buy the RTX 3080 when it’s released, and if they fail, they’ll refund your money.
In other words, as we said – you may as well just purchase one yourself.
These eBayers are doubtless trying to capitalize on the fears around potential stock shortages of the RTX 3080, and with some success it would seem – we’ve seen a few cards marked as sold. But really, with a little patience and the ability to wait for a card – and indeed see if the inventory problems do actually pan out, or persist for longer than a couple of weeks – you’ll save yourself a lot of money.
Indeed, perhaps the real joke here is that the top prices being asked for the RTX 3080 pre-orders on eBay are only actually $100 off the cost of an RTX 3090. So pay a touch more and wait a bit, and you’ll have yourself a much more powerful GPU.
Not to mention that some of the RTX 3080 eBay listings we saw have an estimated ship date ranging out to the middle of October, so in these cases, you’ll most likely be waiting a while for that graphics card anyway.
If we haven’t made it clear enough, your best bet is to steer well clear of such eBay scalping. After all, actual RTX 3080 graphics cards – you know, ones that exist and are in the seller’s hands – will be available for stupidly inflated prices on eBay very soon anyway, if that’s the route you want to go.