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Introducing PCPartPicker Price Trends

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philip April 19, 2013

PCPartPicker Price Trends are daily generated graphs showing historical price information for several categories of computer hardware. You might recognize them from the earlier analysis of rising RAM prices. Thousands of components are grouped into logical categories and combined with price data. The data is analyzed and presented as an intensity graph of price distributions with minimum, maximum, and average price trends.

Price Trend Graph

With the new price trend graphs, you can easily keep track of computer hardware price patterns. Want to check whether overall RAM prices are rising or falling, or if a CPU will drop in price with the arrival a new architecture? No problem. Purchasing parts for your next build no longer needs to be guesswork.

And as a fun side-note, if you look close at some of the graphs, you can see some interesting artifacts in the data:

  • Holiday sales are easy to spot. Makes it easy to recognize if a given component class goes on sale frequently, seasonally, or not at all.
  • Here and here look like a retailer doing some price optimization (trying to find the best margin/volume tradeoff, I presume?) - I've seen Amazon do this stair step price reduction before - might even be able to auto-detect the pattern some day.
  • Here is a retailer price error. Sometimes you'll see spikes in the opposite direction, which are often ridiculously inflated prices to reduce demand during stock shortages.

Comments Sorted by:

Zephyr 4 points 73 months ago

I think this will be a great feature. I am always wondering whether to wait for a new series to be released or whether now is the best time to buy things, so this will make it a lot easier to do so. Keep up the great work!

lenoz 2 Builds 2 points 73 months ago

You're a highly interesting man, Philip. Very cool stuff, although I am generally too impatient to be too clever about things - for the build I am about to do next week I tried to be all conscientious and set price drop alerts for every single part, then purchased them all anyway the next day without waiting for any alerts to kick in :)

Obviously we have to bear in mind that waiting a month for a $10 saving also costs you a month's worth of usage and fun, but certainly these graphs give those willing to spend time researching an advantage in making those sort of assessments.

I think overall component prices are a lot more steady than when they were about ten years ago when I did my previous builds. Back then a new graphics card would be about 50% of its starting price six months down the line, consistently.

Enlyten 1 Build 1 point 73 months ago

Good stuff man :) Keep it coming.

lochnessduck 1 point 73 months ago

Sweet! The graphs are very useful... in telling me that video card prices really aren't dropping very much :P

gogo809 3 Builds 1 point 73 months ago

Nice feature, good work Philip! Graphs are by far the easiest way to convey this type of information.

adamisepic 1 point 72 months ago

could you add wesena cases?

Javanode 1 Build 1 point 72 months ago

That's nice! I want to see what happens when the new CPUs and 700 Nvidia series come out

LisseCharles 1 point 67 months ago

Graphical representation of data is the easiest way to express figures and helps in comparison with others. line chart

Jagoop 1 point 1 month ago

It would be interesting to see the trends over a longer period. Would you be able to show data for 3, 5 or even more years?

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