Sam Lionheart / iFixit
If you're looking to build your own PC this year, you may have to budget more than expected for your custom rig. The lack of multiple components drives up the price of PC parts, which translates into a more expensive structure.
The lack of graphics cards, as well as tariffs introduced in the final days of the Trump administration, have already resulted in higher prices. And we are now learning that there is also a lack of DRAM modules that could increase the price of memory by more than 15%.
According to a TrendForce analysis, DRAM prices will rise 13% to 18% in the second quarter after rising slightly by 3% to 8% earlier this year, Wccftech reported. Consumers purchasing memory modules also face larger computer manufacturers such as Dell, HP, and Lenovo, which have DRAM in stock, according to a DigTimes report. With four to five weeks of DRAM inventory available, PC makers may be less affected by immediate price increases for the component. This means that pre-built systems like HP's Omen 30L and Dell's XPS Desktop may be less affected by component price fluctuations.
Soaring memory prices could mean PC buyers have to pay more to upgrade to systems with Intel Alder Lake processors. Alder Lake is expected to be available on laptops and desktops later this year, and the chipset will be among the first to support the DDR5 memory standard. Given that memory modules are already in short supply, the new DDR5 memory is likely to receive a hefty premium.
Consumers aren't the only ones affected by DRAM bottlenecks. Storage prices for servers are also expected to increase by approximately 20% in the second quarter of this year. Industry observers assume that the increased use of artificial intelligence will be an important factor in the increasing demand for semiconductors in the future.
The lack of memory is just the latest problem plaguing gamers following the global shortage of processors and graphics cards. However, unlike previous bottlenecks that appear to be due to production issues leading to supply bottlenecks, the lack of storage appears to be due to overwhelming demand.