In recent years, video card manufacturers have conquered a new audience of buyers – mining companies. Unlike gamers, miners use graphics cards not for entertainment, but as a tool to make a profit, so they are willing to pay more for high-quality hardware than average PC users. The Cryptocurrency industry has driven the development of GPUs, but Why do you need graphics cards for mining and what are their advantages?
Why do you need GPUs for mining?
The answer to that question lies in a more detailed analysis of the mining process. Confirmation of a transaction involves Cryptocurrency data about the sender, recipient and amount. Cryptocurrency is carried out according to a whole set of rules and conditions – an algorithm. The algorithm is verbose, so information can be encoded just by iterating over a large number of characters until it meets all requirements. Depending on the period of operation of the network and the type of algorithm, the number of “enumerated” ciphers can reach several million.
What does the video card have to do with it? GPUs (Graphics Processing Units), unlike CPUs (Central Processing Units), do not consist of 2 to 8 powerful cores, but several thousand small cores, which makes it easier to switch between tasks. Mining, on the other hand, is running thousands of small symbol-matching tasks, so CPUs can have a lot of processing power, but they can handle the task worse than low-power GPUs.
Pros and cons of working with video cards
At the moment, mining graphics cards compete with so-called ASICs – special devices created specifically to work with cryptocurrency. Furthermore, despite the efficiency of ASICs, GPUs are still in high demand and and so:
- Video cards are much cheaper, cheaper to repair and maintain.
- ASIC allows you to work with 1-2 cryptocurrencies, GPUs are universal.
- A set of multiple graphics cards creates less noise and heat than a single ASIC.
- The graphics card can be resold to players if unnecessary.
- The GPU is available for sale and you can wait for the requested miner for several months.
Cons of video cards:
- Pays slower than ASICs.
- To work, you will need to install and configure the equipment.
- Farms take up a lot of space and require constant maintenance.
- The efficiency of a GPU is less than that of a miner.
The best graphics cards for mining in 2018
Novice miners are mainly looking to find out which mining graphics cards can provide the most profit. But profitability is not the only parameter that must be considered when choosing; reliability and the number of failures with continuous load on the core are also important. The TOP of the mining graphics card market in 2018 includes:
- GeForce GTX TITAN XP – at the moment the most powerful graphics card in the world with 12 GB of memory, a core at 1426 MHz and a power of 250 W. The model demonstrates an excellent balance between performance, reliability and power consumption, but at a high price.
- Radeon Vega Frontier Edition – 16GB RAM, 1500MHz core and 375W power consumption provide almost the same power as the GTX TITAN Xp, but with a much higher power consumption than the owner's actual profit margins.
- GeForce GTX 1080 Ti – 11 GB of RAM, 250 W of power and a processor at 1645 MHz certainly reduce performance a bit compared to the above models. However, GTX 1080 Ti is highly sought after by miners due to its relatively low cost and reliability.
- Radeon Vega 64 – 1406 MHz processor, 8 GB memory, 295 W power consumption. For maximum performance it requires overclocking and fine tuning, but as for its 8 GB it shows a decent hash rate. Interestingly, the Vega 64 is significantly weaker than video cards in its class in the gaming industry, but at the same time it doesn't lag behind more progressive mining models.
- GeForce GTX 1070 – core power 1607 MHz, power consumption – 140 W, RAM – 8 GB. The popularity of this model is gradually dropping among miners due to the low hash index, but those who opted for the GTX 1070 do not regret it, noting its reliability and low power consumption.
- GeForce GTX 1060 – 6 Gb of RAM, processor – 1506 MHz, power – 120 watts. It is recognized as the best graphics card for mining in 2017, despite its rather modest parameters. Demonstrates excellent performance with low energy consumption and low cost – a good choice for budget farms.
Is it profitable to mine with a graphics card?
How much you can earn from mining a graphics card depends on many factors, including the cryptocurrency algorithm, electricity rates, maintenance costs, and the power of the GPU itself. To obtain specific values, you can use online calculators that calculate mining profitability, taking into account user-specified rates and equipment capacity.
Unfortunately, it is increasingly difficult for individual users to earn money mining a graphics card. Cryptocurrency networks are designed in such a way that with the increase in the number of tokens and the time of operation, the capacity requirements of miners also increase. Back in 2009, Bitcoin transactions were easily confirmed even on an unproductive PC with a weak graphics card, now this requires entire mining pools and farms with a huge hash rate. GPUs are able to bring in a decent income just by working with “young” cryptocurrencies, whose networks have just been launched, or by creating their own. farms of at least 5-7 devicesotherwise, mining will not even offset the cost of electricity.
To mine popular cryptocurrencies (Ethereum, Bitcoin, Monero), miners often gather their power. When processing transactions, the pool uses the power of all participants and, upon receiving a reward, distributes it among the members according to the prescribed algorithm.
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