Memory shortage: DDR5 RAM is only scarcely available one month after Intel's Alder Lake launch
The global microchip shortage is still in full swing, which is why more and more product categories seem to be affected and are consequently scarcely available and only found at prices above MSRP. Even brand-new DDR5 memory, which becomes increasingly popular after the recent release of Intel's compatible Alder Lake desktop CPUs, is now reportedly in short supply due to a shortage of one specific type of microchip.
According to a report by Tom's Hardware, the culprits are the so-called power management chips, also abbreviated as "PMICs". With the introduction of DDR5 RAM, these chips are now built directly onto the memory module, and due to their poor availability they have already turned into a significant bottleneck for the production of DDR5 memory. Due to the shortage, these PMICs are particularly expensive and apparently reach prices ten times as high as their DDR4 equivalent.
This is also caused by the fact that there are only a handful of manufacturers for these chips, and many of them allegedly have not yet started with the mass production of DDR5 RAM PMICs. The lead time for these chips supposedly exceeds 35 weeks, which means that a quick improvement of DDR5 memory availability is rather unlikely. Gamers and enthusiasts who would like to upgrade their desktop PC with a DDR5 compatible Intel Alder Lake CPU may have to settle for DDR4 memory (from US$69 on Amazon) until the microchip shortage eases and the availability of DDR5 RAM improves.
Tom's Hardware, Image: G.SKILL