The Chip Shortage And Us (photography people)

I am QUITE sure you know more than I do in this topic. ;) ;)
I am just happy to have made a few $$ off of the stock and try to keep up with the ups/downs!!

And I'm sure you know tons more than me about the stock market.
Upgrading Processing Computers:

It is strange to me that throughout this period when I have heard people complain about boredom I have not had the time for such an experience. In this case, the irony is that clearly I was aware of the fact that computer chips and their related products were subject to shortages, and I have been planning to upgrade my processing computer for a couple of years now. So one might think that I would be aware of the current prices. Unfortunately, being busy kept me from tracking all the various pieces I needed, and now, having started looking around, what I am finding is this:

Apparently, prices are over double "list", or more, particularly for the graphics cards (as mentioned above).

The reason is that, more than just "normal" shortages, speculators are buying up parts and then charging double for them.

Well, that's not nice. . . .

So what can I do about it? Actually, literally "nothing". Which is what I am going to do about it. It looks like the pandemic is starting to abate, which means lockdowns will probably be ending, and people will eventually be getting back to work. When? Right now, it's looking like the transition might start before June. So, if I wait that long, the "demand" for the parts will start to end that way.

Also, production is probably picking up by now. Adjustments to production have been on-going, particularly since around January. So as far as I know, there is going to be *more* product available -- not less. The "Texas problem"? Those are generally not the chips I need, though I would like to know how much of their annual yield was lost (assuming they have re-started by now).

But that's the situation for my own current problems. For now, I am going to wait it out, and do my upgrading, most likely over the summer. Annoying, but I do not expect to have a problem with pricing by then. Wonderful. But as far as I can see, a good chunk of the "speculators" will end up losing money on their greed. "Like I should care?"
This post is mainly ignorable for us, but I am posting it as a matter of "completeness". Apparently, yesterday there was a fire at the Renasas plant in Japan. That would be their fab. Renasas is the main supplier of automotive chips for the Japanese auto industry, so their production has been hit similarly to the North American industry. They are projecting a "squeeze" for about 1 month, around April. But that will be mainly their local market vehicles, though there are announcements of cutbacks in production here in North America as well.

If you know someone in the "used car" business, if they have a big supply of old vehicles, expect them to jack the prices high this summer and think about retiring. I'd do it. . . .

[2021-04-14 19:27
I re-evaluated this after I posted it, but I did not post a correction because it was only "my best guess" in the first place, and I never claimed any special knowledge. However, just to be a bit more complete, about the Renasas factory fire, all the news media talks about is how it will affect the Japanese auto industry, but Renasas was a large fab and made chips for the "consumer electronics" industry. That could well include the camera industry, and so I do think that it might affect us. In particular, I think it might affect the lenses and peripherals. I think that the main camera circuits are probably farmed out to the more advanced tech fabs in Taiwan, but as I have written before, lenses and peripherals do not really need the highest performance level, so I believe that such chips might have been made by Renasas. This is still nothing more than speculation though.]
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This is a small update with only a couple of new points:

1. About the fire in the Japanese Fab: Ford claimed that it would cause about 1/3 or their supply shortage. That sounds high to me because that Fab was supposedly supplying "local" production for the Japanese cars. But Ford is probably buying those parts from Mazda. Apparently they did not mention the Texas shutdowns, which I would have expected to be significant.

2. People tracking the cost of Playstation 5 scalpers have noted a fairly consistent drop in prices since January. They have predicted that the scalping problem may disappear as soon as the next couple of weeks. There should be at least some overlap with the "home computer" buyers, so that might indicate a similar drop in home computer components. I have not been keeping track of those prices.

3. Vaccinations have reached the point where the US CDC recommendations for masks are "easing". If that is true, then I think people planning on upgrading home computers will be "re-evaluating" sooner than I expected. So again, the demand for "home computers" and their parts should hit a "pause" as people ask themselves if they are going to need the upgrades. What will demand be like after it is all over? I don't know. Companies and workers now have experiences working at home that they did not have before. Some may feel it was better at home. Others will not. I believe that after a fairly lengthy pause, there will be some increase in "home computer" sales, but I don't know how big an increase.
As far as computer components the demand has been approximatley 30% more than they can supply according to a few channels I watch. Estimates are that the shortages could last well into 2022.

I've been hearing that the big fabrication plants are building new facilities to cope with demand, but that's still some way off. If I've picked it up right there's 3 big manufacturers of chips, TSMC, Samsung and Intel, and there's concerns over the drought it Taiwan having an impact too.

The CPU shortage has eased, but there's no indication yet that the GFX card shortage is ending soon with waiting lists in the thousands in some cases. I'm still seeing them disappear off websites in minutes.

There's a new cryptocurency on the market called Chia, and speculation is suggesting the supply of high capacity hard drives and SSDs are next on the list.

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