According to the latest report from DigiTimes, the prices of the copper and copper-clad laminates (CCLs) which are used to make printed circuit boards (PCBs), are sharply increasing. Sources indicate that the cost of manufacturing devices like PC motherboards and graphics cards is rising and the reason is a copper foil shortage.
According to reports, the impact of the copper foil shortages will mostly affect the lower-end devices, and the more expensive premium products on the other hand might see less of an impact.
As we know the demand for electronics is currently overwhelmingly high and the chipmakers can’t produce enough semiconductors due to this high demand, which is why chip pricing is high. From the reports, we found that the price of copper went up from $7,755 per ton in December 2020 to $9,262 per ton by (September 28, 2021).
this is an unprecedented increase in the cost of copper foil as it surged 35% since Q4 2020 due to the rising prices of copper and energy carriers. Copper clad laminates (CCLs), which are a foundational component used for making PCBs, have also increased in cost and this, in turn, increases the prices of PCBs.
This will affect costs and possibly prices of all kinds of electronics, but PCs, motherboards, and graphics cards will be experiencing more pricing pressure than other components. While the cost of copper per motherboard did not increase significantly, the cost of copper foil and CCL production increased because of copper prices and rising energy carrier prices.
We have to worry because the increase in the cost of copper foil, CCLs, and PCBs will in turn impact the pricing for graphics cards, motherboards, notebooks, and desktop PC which are already selling sky-high MSRPs.
All this is caused by a sharp increase in the demand as the world is deploying more electronics than ever, so until supply chains are ready to support this demand, the prices will keep increasing.