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Memory and Hard Drive Prices: Win Some, Lose Some

16GB memory kit prices for MacBook Pro

With the floods in Thailand causing huge supply issues for hard drives, prices have spiked 70% on 3TB drives, and nearly as much on 2TB drives, in just 10 days or so.

The silver lining is that fewer hard drives might (might) lead to lower memory prices, since fewer PCs can be built!

Current thinking on prices from OWC

Today, Larry O'Conner of OWC shared his thoughts with me on supply issues for memory and hard drives:

Hard Drive prices up, SSD prices stable/still getting better, Memory down
Memory is down more and I’d not be surprised to see further dips on memory sets 2GB, 4GB, 8GB module based for Mac Pro and 2GB, 4GB for iMac/MacBook Pro.

These long available, staple density modules could easily come down more now with the hard drive situation. That situation being that fewer drives are available, fewer computers are going to be built in this quarter, that will leave more memory supply on the table that wasn’t planned for and that typically means more price pressure. Already now at the lowest prices ever for memory.

8GB SO-DIMM kits (16GB kit for Macbook Pros, up to 32GB for iMac) more stable... Will continue to edge lower, but not because of the HDD situation impact.

16GB modules for those 48GB and 96GB Mac Pro kits are down a little and should continue to drift down, but like the 8GB SO – really don’t have the supply impact like the more common lower density modules do.

So far solid state drives (SSD) are not impacted in terms of NAND supply. We’re seeing increased run on them and putting us a little behind, but so far seeing prices steady to lower – following the same general trend line more or less as had been. SSDs are still too expensive for enough of a shift from HDD to SSD to impact this trend thus far. Now if hard drive supply ends up not recovering to some stability in 4-6 weeks, could get a heck of a lot uglier for everything.

DIGLLOYD: OWC tends to pass along price changes very quickly on memory or hard drives (just in time inventory), so if memory prices continue to dip, that should show up quickly in consumer pricing at OWC. But note that higher density modules (4GB and 8GB) might simply continue their steady decline.

Hard drive deal

OWC also seems to be practically giving away their Mercury Elite Pro case (trying to protect their customers it seems), since the 3TB Mercury Elite Pro is at $329.99 and the bare 7K3000 hard drive (no case) is $319.99! At least as I write this.

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