Top Hardware for Cryptocurrency Mining
The words “hardware” and “mining” in one sentence is not the ubiquitous way of propounding ingenious technology. Despite that, I’m not confusing terms. There’s more to crypto coins mining that it seems on the outside. And so, I intend to acquaint you with the best piece of equipment specifically designed for mining cryptocurrencies. Customer reviews and my personal experience eloquently point out to a single brand. Still, there are some alternatives based on older tech that might be of interest to you, so I’ll not cut corners but start from the very beginning. Lastly, I want to add that crypto mining is absolutely legal. The bad press you might have caught a glimpse of, has to do with hackers who seek to capture other people’s computing resources through fraud schemes.
Prehistory of Crypto Coins Mining
Essentially, what mining boils down to, is solving/hashing data that’s then used to form blocks in the respective blockchain. In the very beginning, this was done by means of CPU (central processing unit) and some miners still rely on the very same module. Feasible as the setup is, this method is not very effective neither performance nor power consumption wise.
A far superior resolution is the GPU, albeit coming at a higher price. Not all retail PCs have Graphic cards, to begin with, especially those used in the white-collar sector. This makes going the GPU path a bit more of an extravagant decision, but the payoff will definitely worth your while. The graphic processing units fare from ten to hundred times faster than conventional processors, when it comes to hashing data.
With the advancement of computer technology and most notably microchips, an even more convenient and affordable solution came out. Or should I say an entirely new line of business cropped up fueled by the needs of the miners. The first batch of FPGA processors took the computer world by storm. Their performance was unheard of, at the same time all they need is a simple USB port to connect to a computer. The use of FPGA mining devices quickly took over, owing to the fact they are so convenient and effective.
The devices of this type range between $400 to $500 when sold as new. You can find second hand products at a much lower cost if you’re willing to take the gamble. A case in point is the bigger brother of Antminer D3 – Antminer S7. Its advertised capacity is 4.73 Th/s as opposed to merely 19.3 Gh/s on D3’s side. Even so, you’ll need the luck of the draw when choosing a retailer because oftentimes refurbished products are sold as new. If you succeed in avoiding this landmine, there’s not much else that could go wrong with Antminer’s products. The market for those has been huge lately and they held up to scrutiny. The only commonly known issue for indie miners is noise and heat emission.
Bitmain Takes a Stab at the Market for Ethereum Mining Gear
Let’s take a step back to the GPU channel, with NVDA and AMD being the two leading graphic chips supplier giants. AMD has expressed concerns that ASIC chips might be undermining GPUs’ reputation. A new company on the market named Bitmain is believed to start selling ASICs Ethereum miners next month. This will greatly depreciate the potency of graphic cards in terms of mining efficiency. The dilemma stems from Ethereum’s algorithms previously thought to be insusceptible to ASIC processing. As Ethereum starts leading the charge of cryptocurrencies, Bitmain’s claims begin to carry even more weight. They are already chipping away at graphic cards’ price, causing the owners of such to sell prematurely at a ridiculously low price. In one way or the other, the release of Bitman’s product will cause about a paradigm shift in the way we mine Ethereum.