Nvidia could have made its last GTX graphics card – so what budget options are left from Team Green?

Nvidia has canned its budget GTX 1650 and 1630 graphics cards, the last remaining GTX 16 Series models, if the rumor mill is right.

If this sounds familiar, that’s because in December 2023 we heard that Nvidia was preparing to stop the production lines for these GTX GPUs in Q1 2024.

And again, according to the same source – the oft-cited Board Channels (in China) – this move has gone ahead as planned (grab the salt-shaker, as ever, with news from the grapevine).

VideoCardz noticed a new post on the forums asserting that Nvidia’s product roadmap shows the discontinuation of these GPUs in Q1, and that going forward, no more chips for GTX 16 models will be made available or supplied to graphics card makers.

This means that the GTX brand is dying off, as no more will be made – once the GPUs still on shelves run out, that’ll be it for the 16 Series, and the GTX brand. All the graphics cards Nvidia is producing will be RTX models from now on.

How long will it take for GTX 16 stock to run dry? The source guesses that the remaining inventory will be depleted in perhaps as soon as a month, or maybe up to three months. So, in theory, if you don’t grab your GTX 16 Series GPU before June 2024 rolls around, you’ll be out of luck. (Or maybe in luck, some might jest – let’s discuss further in the next section).

Analysis: Nvidia’s budget GPUs get even more ‘meh’

Don’t panic too much – even if this is true (and it might not be), these GTX graphics cards are getting a bit long in the tooth at this point (the GTX 1650 in particular is five years old). Which is why the rumor is believable enough, of course, and it’s backed up by the situation given a brief glance at stock levels in the US. Newegg, for example, only carries two models of the GTX 1650 that are still in stock, and the GTX 1630 has all but vanished (and was never a good choice for a budget GPU anyway).

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Also, for existing owners of these GPUs, don’t worry: there’s no need to conflate the cessation of selling GTX 16 Series graphics cards with Nvidia actually dropping support for the cards. Nvidia will continue to support these cards in its driver updates going forward for some time yet.

With the exit of these GTX models, the budget choice from Nvidia is now the RTX 3050, of which there’s a new spin with 6GB of VRAM (rather than 8GB) and a cheaper price tag – presumably an introduction made with the scrapping of the GTX 16 models in mind.

The RTX 3050 6GB is not much more expensive than the GTX 1650 in the US currently, but it isn’t great value for money either – and lacks on the gaming performance front. The 8GB version of the RTX 3050 is a lot nippier for gaming and indeed so is the RTX 2060 for that matter. (The latter is the ailing GPU in our rig, incidentally – well, the RTX 2060 Super to be precise, which we really need to upgrade soon, but we’re feeling like waiting for RDNA 4 at this point, which should bring some serious mid-range goodness to the table).

If you’re in the market for a budget GPU, by which we mean something really affordable, there are better options from AMD (like the value-packed RX 6600), or even Intel’s Arc range, frankly.

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