If you’re interested in mining cryptocurrency, you need mining equipment in the form of an ASIC miner or a mining GPU.
A GPU, or graphics processing unit, is a computer component designed to display images. They are also sometimes known as “graphics cards” or “video cards.” Gamers use GPUs in order to play video games due to the fact that CPUs typically lack the power to display most 3D games on their own.
Both CPUs and GPUs can be used for cryptocurrency mining, but GPUs are capable of mining much more quickly than CPUs for the same reason they can run video games more efficiently.
While not specifically designed for mining, GPUs are less expensive than dedicated ASIC miners and can also be used for gaming, graphic design, and other tasks.
Here’s our rundown of the best mining GPUs on the market.
The AMD Radeon VII is another pricy card that delivers when it comes to hashing power.
With a boost clock of 1,400 MHz and a 16GB HBM2 frame buffer, the Radeon VII is capable of a mind-boggling 90 MH/s hashrate. However, the Radeon VII is also one of the most power-hungry GPUs on the market, drawing 300 W per unit, which could be a deal-breaker if you live in an area with costly electricity.
At a price of $700, the Radeon VII is less expensive than its NVIDIA competitors, but it’s still quite pricy by the standards of graphics cards.
However, if you are a serious miner looking to upgrade your hashing power and you don’t have to worry about electricity costs, the Radeon VII is a strong choice.
The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti is one of the most powerful mining GPUs available and is a good option for those who aren’t concerned about cost.
This NVIDIA card features an 11 GB GDDR5X frame buffer and a 1,582 MHz boost clock, giving it an insanely high hashrate of 32 mh/s. The cost of this hashing power is its high power consumption, which is 250 W per unit.
Another problem with the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti is that it is quite expensive, usually priced around $900. Combined with its power consumption, this means that it’s not a GPU for amateur miners.
However, if you’re not constrained by a tight budget and have access to cheap electricity, the sheer power of the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti makes it a good option.
The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Ti is a good mining GPU for experienced users who want to get into the nitty-gritty of their mining operations.
As its name suggestions, the GeForce GTX 1070 Ti is based on the GeForce GTX 1070, boasting an increased number of cores, though all other stats remain the same. The GeForce GTX 1070 Ti has a hashrate of 28 mh/s, only slightly slower than the GeForce GTX 1070, and its power consumption is roughly the same, at 180 W per unit.
Where the GeForce GTX 1070 Ti excels is in its overclocking capabilities. Users can customize it to a far greater degree than other mining GPUs, making it a good choice for those who are experienced in building gaming PCs. The GeForce GTX 1070 Ti is also priced less expensively compared to the GeForce GTX 1070.
If you’re comfortable with building high-end PCs and customizing computer hardware, the GeForce GTX 1070 Ti will appeal to you.
The AMD Radeon RX Vega 56 is a high-end GPU ideal for those who aren’t concerned about cost, power consumption, or heat.
The Radeon RX Vega 56 has an 8 GB HBM2 frame buffer, a boost clock of 1,471 MHz, and a whopping 3,584 cores, allowing it to achieve a hash rate higher than even the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070. However, this hashing power comes at a cost in the form of dramatically higher power consumption, making the Radeon RX Vega 56 a poor choice if you’re worried about electricity bills.
Another downside to the Radeon RX Vega 56 is that it has extremely high heat output, so you’ll have to work harder to prevent overheating, particularly if you live in a warm part of the world. The Radeon RX Vega 56 is also priced at an enormous $800, putting it out of the reach of more budget-conscious miners.
However, if you live in a cool part of the world and/or have access to cheap electricity, the sheer hashing power of the Radeon RX Vega 56 makes it a worthwhile choice.
The AMD Radeon RX 580 is a modestly-priced graphics card that delivers far more hashing power than its price tag would suggest.
The Radeon RX 580 features an 8 GB GDDR5 frame buffer, a boost clock of 1,340 MHz, and 2,304 cores, allowing it to achieve a hash rate of 29 mh/s, which is only slightly less than the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070. Additionally, the Radeon RX 580 runs at a very low temperature, which is useful if you’re concerned about overheating.
The biggest downside to the Radeon RX 580 is its excessive power consumption. At 185 W per unit, this GPU is not a good choice for those who are concerned about the cost of electricity. As consolation, the Radeon RX 580 is only priced around $350, nearly half that of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070.
The Radeon RX 580 is an ideal choice for those looking to save money and who also have access to inexpensive electricity.
A budget alternative to the GeForce GTX 1070, the GeForce GTX 1060 is ideal for those who are concerned about the cost of electricity.
The GeForce GTX 1060 comes in two variants: a 3 GB GDDR5 frame buffer version with 1,152 cores and a 6 GB GDDR5 frame buffer version with 1,280 cores. Both have a boost clock of 1,708 MHz. Its hash rate is considerably slower than the GeForce GTX 1070, but the GeForce GTX 1060 only draws 120 W of power per unit, making it one of the most cost-effective mining GPUs when it comes to electricity usage.
In addition to this, the GeForce GTX 1060 is more modestly priced than the GeForce GTX 1070, costing around $300.
If you live in an area with expensive electricity, the GeForce GTX 1060 is the ideal mining GPU, as it doesn’t cost much either to buy or in terms of power usage.
The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 is an upper-tier GPU that provides incredible power and efficiency when it comes to mining.
Boasting 1,920 cores, an 8 GB GDDR5 frame buffer, and a boost clock of 1,683 MHz, the GeForce GTX 1070 has a hash rate of 30 mh/s. It also only consumes 150 W of power per unit, making it extremely cost-effective as well. The GeForce GTX 1070 Ti, a variant on the GTX 1070, increases the number of cores to 2,432 for greater hashing power.
The primary drawback of the GeForce GTX 1070 is that it is extremely expensive, with prices ranging from $600 to $1,000. However, its sheer amount of power means that it will not become obsolete for many years, giving it added value.
Overall, if you have the budget for it, the GeForce GTX 1070 is the absolute best mining GPU out there.
1. What is cryptocurrency mining? Mining is the process by which new cryptocurrency is created and transactions are validated. A cryptocurrency “miner” is a computer that creates new coins by solving difficult math equations. Miners are also responsible for processing transactions on a cryptocurrency blockchain. In exchange for expanding the cryptocurrency supply, miners are rewarded with a portion of new coins created. Miners also receive fees as a reward for helping process transactions, which gives miners an incentive to do so. Users can choose to pay higher fees to have their transactions processed faster.
2. What is proof-of-work? Proof-of-work is a cryptocurrency algorithm in which miners solve difficult math equations to create new coins. It is called “proof-of-work” because miners perform work—i.e. solving the aforementioned math equation—in exchange for a share of new coins. Proof-of-work is distinguished from proof-of-stake, an algorithm in which existing users stake their coins in order to ensure the blockchain’s continued operations. Proof-of-work is the most popular cryptocurrency algorithm and is used by Bitcoin, Litecoin, and a number of other top cryptocurrencies, though proof-of-stake is gaining in popularity.
3. What is hashrate? Hashrate is a system of measurement that shows how fast a computer system can mine cryptocurrency. A higher hashrate means that a computer can mine cryptocurrency more quickly. Hashrate is determined largely by the processing power of a computer, but is also determined by the speed of the computer’s Internet connection; slow Internet speeds will result in a lower hashrate and vice versa. External temperature also affects hashrate; GPUs and mining hardware give off heat when being used, and excessive heat will lower hashrate and can even damage the computer.
4. What is a GPU? A GPU, or graphics processing unit, is a piece of computer hardware responsible for displaying images. Not all computers have GPUs because CPUs are capable of displaying images to a limited degree; this is sometimes referred to as “integrated graphics.” However, GPUs are capable of processing images far faster and more efficiently than CPUs, which is why gamers typically use GPUs in their computers. GPUs are also useful for graphic design, video editing, and other processor-intensive activities.
5. Do I need a GPU to mine cryptocurrency with my computer? It is possible to mine cryptocurrency with only a CPU. However, CPU mining is far less efficient than GPU mining because a GPU can dedicate its entire processing power to mining whereas a CPU cannot. Because of this, GPU mining is far more popular than CPU mining.
6. What is an ASIC miner? ASIC, short for application-specific integrated circuit, is a term used to refer to computers that are specialized for a particular type of use. In the context of cryptocurrency mining, ASIC units are computers that are dedicated to mining. They are contrasted to GPU mining, which is done with regular computers.
7. What is the difference between ASIC mining and GPU mining? ASIC miners are generally faster than mining GPUs because they are specifically built for mining. However, ASIC miners are also more expensive than GPUs and are often more difficult to acquire because they are produced in limited quantities and go out of stock quickly. Additionally, ASIC miners cannot be used for anything other than mining, while a GPU can be used for gaming, graphic design, video editing, and a number of other things. ASIC miners are generally only designed to work with a specific type of cryptocurrency hash function, while a GPU can mine any cryptocurrency. For example, ASIC miners designed to work with the SHA-256 hash function can only mine Bitcoin and other coins that use SHA-256. GPUs are not limited in this manner, giving owners greater flexibility when choosing which coins to mine. Finally, GPU mining is generally easier to get running since it typically just requires downloading mining software, while configuring an ASIC miner can be confusing for a newbie. GPU mining is generally preferred by individuals who want to earn cryptocurrency without having to put too much work in.
8. Is it possible to mine cryptocurrency with a laptop? While laptops with GPUs can mine cryptocurrency, they are not recommended for a number of reasons. Laptop GPUs are less powerful on average than regular GPUs due to the fact that they must be shrunk down to fit inside a laptop case, so any GPU-equipped laptop you purchase will mine cryptocurrency less efficiently than a desktop computer. Additionally, most laptops are poorly ventilated compared to desktop computers, often having only one fan, which presents a problem when considering that GPU mining causes increased heat output. Mining cryptocurrency with a laptop can lead to the computer overheating and shutting off, and long-term mining could cause damage to the laptop. In general, you should not mine cryptocurrency with a laptop for these reasons.
9. Why is electricity consumption important when mining cryptocurrency? While computers typically don’t consume much power during normal operations, GPUs consume additional power when they are being used for intensive work, such as gaming or mining cryptocurrency. This means that when you are setting up a mining operation, you need to be mindful of the cost of electricity in your area; if power is too expensive, any revenue you make from mining coins could be wiped out by higher utility bills. This means that cryptocurrency mining is more lucrative in places where electricity is cheaper; countries such as Venezuela and Georgia that have low-cost electricity have become cryptocurrency mining hubs for this reason. To determine if you can make a profit from mining, you can use mining calculators online that will let you make estimates based on expected hashrate and power consumption.
10. Do I need a high-speed Internet connection in order to mine cryptocurrency? Hashrate is determined in part by your Internet speed; users with faster Internet will be able to access the blockchain more easily and mine more coins as a result. Because of this, you will need fast Internet in order to mine cryptocurrency.
11. What is overclocking? Overclocking is when a GPU or CPU is tweaked in order to run faster than its factory-default settings. When computer chips are manufactured, they are not identical; due to the nature of electronics manufacturing, each chip runs at a different speed, even if they are all part of the same production line. For ease of use, chip manufacturers will pick a speed that each chip can run at and use that as the standard speed. However, by using your computer’s BIOS, you can discover the true speed of your CPU or GPU and increase it for better performance, including a higher mining hashrate. Note, however, that with increased speed comes increased power consumption and heat output, so you will need to make sure your computer is well-ventilated and has a power supply that can handle an overclocked GPU or CPU. Gamers have been overclocking their computers for decades,
12. Why is heat output important when mining cryptocurrency? All computers produce heat when on, and the more intensive work a computer is performing, the more heat it will generate. GPU mining requires your computer to work continuously, which will result in an increase in heat. Excessive heat will degrade a computer’s performance and can also cause gradual damage to its internal components. Gamers can observe this; a poorly-ventilated computer will cause games to run more slowly. To prevent this, all computers need proper ventilation. Computers can also be affected by external temperatures, and if placed in a hot room, they may function less efficiently. To prevent external heat from affecting a computer, it should be placed in a cool, well-ventilated area that is away from windows, the sun, and other heat-producing household objects.
13. Can I upgrade my existing desktop computer to mine with a GPU? This depends on the specifications of your computer. Most GPUs require a minimum processor power to operate correctly, as well as a power supply that can withstand the increased electricity requirements of the computer. If your power supply is not powerful enough, you can damage and destroy your computer. Along the same lines, your computer will need to have enough fans to ventilate the excess heat that the GPU will generate. Additionally, you may need a more modern operating system, such as Windows 10, in order to use newer mining GPUs. Finally, you need to have sufficient room in your computer case to install the GPU. Before purchasing a mining GPU, check its minimum requirements as well as your computer’s specifications to ensure that you won’t have any problems. It may be cheaper or easier to purchase or build a new computer if your existing one is not up to snuff.
GPU mining remains popular among cryptocurrency enthusiasts because it is less expensive and more accessible than ASIC mining. If you own a gaming computer and/or have experience building them, GPU mining is easy to pick up.
However, while mining GPUs are not as expensive as ASIC miners, you’ll still need to put some thought into which GPU you purchase.
While you may be tempted to buy the most powerful GPU you can get your hands on, you need to factor in the cost of electricity. It won’t help you if all of your earnings are eaten away by the price of utilities in your area. Similarly, poor ventilation could result in permanent damage to your expensive mining hardware.
At the same time, you don’t necessarily want to be cheap, either. As blockchains become longer and computer technology becomes more advanced, mining GPUs eventually become obsolete. A cheap GPU may save you money, but you may be forced to upgrade sooner than expected in order to keep the money coming in.
This isn’t even getting into other factors, such as purchasing/building a computer that is capable of handling your chosen GPU. Internet speed is also a factor, and you may need to upgrade your bandwidth in order to mine efficiently, another cost that must be factored in.
GPU mining is an easy way to get into cryptocurrency, and if you’re a PC gamer, using a GPU to mine coins when you’re not playing is a no-brainer. Do your research and assess your needs and you’ll be able to find a mining GPU that is perfect for you.
Best cryptocurrency apps of 2020
If you are interested in using cryptocurrency, you’ll want to know which cryptocurrency app to use.
Cryptocurrency has come a long way from the days of Mt. Gox and computer wallets. With more and more people using Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, a wealth of apps have sprung up to serve the needs of everyone from newbies to advanced users alike.
Given the unique nature of cryptocurrency as decentralized money, using it can seem more involved than traditional financial instruments, but fortunately, there are many apps that can make getting involved with cryptocurrency easy.
Here are our picks for the best cryptocurrency apps, covering everything that you need when managing your bag.
Voyager is an all-in-one app designed for intermediate-level traders who want more functionality than basic apps can offer.
Voyager boasts a commission-free exchange system, ideal for frequent traders who want to save money buying and selling Bitcoin. It also boasts a larger selection of cryptocurrencies then other exchanges, as well as charting tools that allow you to more easily track the value of your investments.
As a bonus, Voyager also includes a news section that allows you to keep track of developments in the world of cryptocurrency.
Originally designed for iOS devices, Voyager is also available for Android. However, it is currently only available in the U.S., though the company has plans to expand internationally.
Crypto News Scoop is an app that agglomerates crypto news, allowing you to keep track of new developments in the cryptocurrency world.
Staying on top of cryptocurrency news is important given the rapidly-evolving nature of the industry. With new coins and ICOs springing up, software upgrades to existing coins, and new laws being passed in countries around the world to regulate the industry, you need to stay appraised in order to make the best decisions. But where can you find important cryptocurrency news without spending hours searching the Internet?
Crypto News Scoop is an app that aggregates news stories from countless cryptocurrency websites, allowing you to keep tabs on the market. You can customize it in numerous ways, such as filtering for news stories on particular cryptocurrencies, allowing you to cut out the noise and focus on what you’re interested in.
Crypto News Scoop is available for free for both Android and iOS devices.
CryptoConvert is a handy conversion app that allows you to convert between different cryptocurrencies on the fly.
For most of cryptocurrency’s history, users generally focused on the conversion rate between cryptocurrency and their chosen fiat currency, such as U.S. dollars or euros. However, with the rise of Ethereum, Litecoin, Monero, and other cryptocurrencies, many traders and platforms now use conversions between Bitcoin and the cryptocurrency in question.
Moreover, a number of cryptocurrency exchanges, such as Binance, do not accept fiat currency, but require you to purchase cryptocurrency with other cryptocurrency, most commonly Bitcoin. Decentralized, peer-to-peer exchanges such as ShapeShift also do not use fiat currency. This means that you need to be able to convert between different cryptocurrencies on the fly.
This is where CryptoConvert comes in. This app allows you to quickly convert between Bitcoin, Ethereum, and hundreds of other cryptocurrencies, allowing you to accurately determine the value of your holdings and make trades with a minimum of hassle. Powerful, fast, and intuitive, CryptoConvert also works without an Internet connection, allowing you to check the value of cryptocurrencies even when you’re offline.
CryptoConvert is available for Android devices and is free to use, though there is a premium version that has additional features.
Blockfolio is a portfolio management app that allows you to track the value of your cryptocurrency holdings over time.
Due to the rapid shifts in price that most cryptocurrencies experience, keeping track of the value of your bag is important. Monitoring your portfolio across multiple wallets, which may be necessary depending on which cryptocurrencies you hold, can be a real hassle, so you want a solution that allows you check your portfolio in a snap.
Blockfolio is an all-in-one portfolio app that links directly to your wallets, allowing you to see the full value of your holdings in one place. This can save you from having to check multiple wallets constantly, saving you time and also minimizing the chances of your money being stolen. Blockfolio supports over 800 different cryptocurrencies and over 300 different exchanges, allowing you to use it no matter where you keep your money.
Blockfolio is free to download for both Android and iOS devices.
Coinbase is a cryptocurrency exchange noted for its ease of use, security, and reliability.
In order to purchase cryptocurrency or sell it for fiat currency, you need to use an exchange, a website, app, or service that allows for exchanging dollars or other currencies for Bitcoin and the like. There are countless exchanges on the Internet, many of which are dodgy, so you want to use an exchange that you can trust to keep your bag and your banking information safe from hackers.
Coinbase is one of the most popular and trusted cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, allowing users to buy and sell Bitcoin, Ethereum, and many other coins using bank transfers and debit cards. It features bank-grade security and is regulated by U.S. financial law, ensuring that it can protect your assets. Note that due to these regulations, Coinbase is not available in certain jurisdictions, and even if it is, certain cryptocurrencies may not be available to purchase on Coinbase in your area.
Coinbase utilizes two-step authentication, PINs, and other standard methods to safeguard its users’ accounts. In addition to this, Coinbase features a robust mobile app that allows users to make trades and transfers using their smartphones or tablets, without having to log on to a computer.
Coinbase’s mobile app is available for both iOS and Android users and is free. It’s also intuitive and simple, allowing users to jump in immediately.
eToro is an all-in-one exchange and forum service for those who are looking to connect with other cryptocurrency users.
In addition to offering exchange services with over 30 cryptocurrencies, eToro boasts unlimited withdrawal amounts and a fast, easy deposit procedure. Uniquely, eToro also includes a virtual portfolio feature, allowing you to practice trading with $100,000 of virtual currency. It also allows for conventional stock trading, making it a one-stop shop for all your investment needs.
As an added bonus, eToro allows users to connect via its app, letting them share crypto trading strategies and more. This is helpful if you are just starting out and want some advice, or you’re an advanced trader and you want to up your game.
eToro’s app is available for both iOS and Android devices and is simple and easy to use.
CoinStats is a comprehensive app that allows you to manage your cryptocurrency portfolio in one easy-to-use program.
CoinStats allows you to connect your exchange accounts and wallets and make trades from within the app using debit cards or Apple Pay (for iOS users), saving you time. It also allows you to track the prices of over 8,000 cryptocurrencies on over 400 different exchanges. CoinStats also incorporates a large number of analysis and charting tools, letting you examine your portfolio’s value in just about any way you want.
Other notable features of CoinStats are its news section, which allows you to stay on top of the latest developments in cryptocurrency. You can add your own news sources to your CoinStats account as well as vote on the reliability of stories you read via the app. As an extra, CoinStats allows you to easily share your portfolio information with other people through a handy link system.
CoinStats is available on a wide variety of platforms, including Android, iOS, and Apple TV. It’s also available as a website, a Chrome extension, and a Mozilla Firefox add-on.
1. What kinds of cryptocurrency apps do I need? At bare minimum, you need a wallet in order to hold any cryptocurrency that you have. A wallet is a digital file that can store an unlimited amount of a particular cryptocurrency. Historically, users would use the default wallet provided with a cryptocurrency, such as Bitcoin, and while this is still an option, there are now many services that allow you to maintain multiple wallets within a single app. You will also likely need access to an exchange so you can buy and sell cryptocurrency; again, many exchanges now offer mobile apps that allow you to make trades from your smartphone or tablet. If you are planning to hold multiple cryptocurrencies, you will want a portfolio app that will let you examine the value of all your coins without having to log in to different wallets and exchanges. While many exchange and wallet apps have portfolio functions built in, not all exchanges have all coins, so you will likely have to use multiple exchanges and/or wallets to hold your bag; in this case, a portfolio app is helpful because it will let you manage all of your holdings from a single place. If you are using exchanges like ShapeShift or Binance that do not use fiat currency, a cryptocurrency exchange rate calculator will allow you to easily convert between prices for easier selling and buying. Finally, if you want to keep on top of crypto news, a news app will allow you to do this without having to keep tabs on a bunch of different websites or continuously searching Google for new information.
2. Why aren’t some cryptocurrency apps available in my country/region/state? Every country has a different set of laws pertaining to finance, and many governments are now passing laws relating to cryptocurrency. This means that certain apps and services may not be available in your jurisdiction. For example, the popular exchange app Coinbase is based in the U.S. and is only licensed to operate there and in a few other countries, meaning that if you don’t live in one of the countries where Coinbase does business, you will not be able to use the app. Coinbase is further regulated in New York state due to that jurisdiction’s different cryptocurrency laws, so certain Coinbase features are not available to New York residents. Before choosing a cryptocurrency app, you should research your local laws as well as the policies of the app in question, as you don’t want to waste time signing up for an app or service that is not available in your area.
3. Some cryptocurrency apps offer multiple features, such as exchange and portfolio services. Do I need multiple apps? It depends on your particular situation. For many basic users, an exchange app such as Coinbase is really all they need. However, users who want to invest in many different types of cryptocurrencies will typically need to use multiple wallet and/or exchange apps to manage all of their investments. For example, the popular cryptocurrency Monero is currently not available on Coinbase and other popular exchanges, so if you want to hold Monero in addition to Bitcoin and other mainstream cryptocurrencies, you will likely have to use multiple apps to manage everything. In this case, a portfolio app will come in handy since it will let you track the value of all your investments in one place, and some portfolio apps even connect directly to your wallets and exchange accounts, saving you from having to manually enter information.
4. Should I pay money for a cryptocurrency app? Again, the answer to this question depends on your particular needs. Most cryptocurrency apps are available for free; those that have a premium version will have a free version supported by ads. If you only need basic functionality, you’ll likely be satisfied by using the free versions. If you need more advanced functionality from an app, you should consider purchasing the full version of the app. Exchange apps are almost always free because they make money from charging commissions on sales and purchases.
5. Is it safe to use a cryptocurrency app to store my money? There is no such thing as a 100 percent hack-proof computer system; given enough time and resources, any server, website, program, or computer can be hacked. However, strong security features can reduce the chances of a hack occurring. Mnemonic seeds, PINs, two-factor authentication, email verification, and more are examples of how cryptocurrency apps secure their users’ information and funds from intruders. A number of exchanges go further by using “cold storage,” transferring their users’ funds to offline hardware wallets, an additional measure against security breaches. Finally, many exchange apps, such as Coinbase, are officially licensed by national governments, meaning that in addition to standard security measures, they also comply with laws relating to finance and investment. These changes have made cryptocurrency apps much safer over the years and help prevent incidents such as what happened to Mt. Gox, a popular Bitcoin exchange that collapsed in 2014, causing the loss of millions of dollars’ worth of users’ funds. All that said, you should carefully research a cryptocurrency app before you entrust it with your money.
6. Most cryptocurrencies are valued in relation to the U.S. dollar and other fiat currencies. Why do I need to convert between different types of cryptocurrency? A growing number of exchange services do not allow users to purchase cryptocurrency with fiat money or sell it for fiat money. Binance, one of the world’s top exchanges, does not allow its users to use fiat currency. Similarly, decentralized exchanges such as ShapeShift or Exodus, which allow users to directly trade cryptocurrencies, do not use fiat currency. The reason for this is to improve security as well as allow a wider range of services, since services involving bank accounts and credit cards are more tightly regulated in many jurisdictions. As a result, if you are using a decentralized exchange or another non-fiat exchange such as Binance, you will be purchasing cryptocurrency with other cryptocurrency, most commonly Bitcoin. If you are in this situation, having a cryptocurrency conversion app is useful. For example, if you are planning to purchase another cryptocurrency using Bitcoin, converting between Bitcoin and that currency is more useful than converting between said cryptocurrency and fiat money such as U.S. dollars.
7. Is a crypto news app necessary for me to follow crypto news? No, but using a crypto news app will allow you to save time when looking for news. There are countless crypto news sites out there with varying degrees of reliability, and searching for and reading news stories that you are interested in can be time-consuming. A crypto news app will aggregate stories based on your particular interests, such as only focusing on cryptocurrencies that you own or are curious about using. If you are a busy person, consider using a crypto news app to save yourself time.
Cryptocurrency is a rapidly growing and maturing field, and to meet the needs of its expanding userbase, a number of solutions have been developed. The panoply of crypto apps available reflects this, and which crypto apps you need depends on your particular goals.
If you’re just planning to hold Bitcoin, use it or other cryptocurrencies for basic transactions, or otherwise aren’t expecting to get too involved, one or two apps will probably satisfy you. Most major exchanges and wallets such as Coinbase and Exodus now have app versions for added convenience.
However, if you are planning to become a serious trader, you’ll need more app functionality than basic apps can provide.
For example, if you are looking to use decentralized exchanges to make peer-to-peer cryptocurrency transactions, you’ll need a conversion app that will allow you to more easily determine the value of your trades. Since not all coins are available on all exchanges, you’ll likely have to use multiple exchanges in order to purchase the cryptocurrencies that you want.
Similarly, if you want to keep your finger on the pulse of the crypto world, a crypto news app will allow you to more easily monitor new developments. You can stay on top of news relating to your favorite cryptocurrencies and stay appraised of new potential investments.
Finally, if you have a large crypto portfolio, using a portfolio app will allow you to keep track of the value of your investments over time. If you’re using multiple wallets and exchanges, a portfolio app will let you check your holdings without having to go through a bunch of different apps and websites.
Of course, the other advantage of apps is that they allow you to easily use cryptocurrency from your mobile device, keeping you from having to log into various websites and allowing you to access your money no matter where you are.
The world of cryptocurrency is constantly evolving, and it’s impossible for a single article to list all crypto apps or predict how the market will evolve. However, keeping a few simple principles in mind will allow you to determine which types of apps will best suit your needs.
Before looking for crypto apps, determine what your goals are and how you can accomplish them. Are you looking to day trade crypto, store it for the future, or simply use it to buy and sell things? Once you’ve determine what you want to do, you’ll be able to select the apps that will make your goals that much easier.
Additionally, don’t forget to research potential apps to ensure how reliable they are and how effectively they can protect your funds and sensitive information from hackers.
While crypto can seem bewildering for novice users, if you do your research and outline your goals, you’ll be able to find crypto apps, exchanges, wallets, and more that will be able to help you.
Best Bitcoin mining software of 2020
If you are interested in mining Bitcoin, you need two things: a Bitcoin mining rig and mining software.
Bitcoin mining software is used to operate your miner, connect to the blockchain, discover and mine new blocks, and ultimately reward you with fees and newly created Bitcoin.
There is a large amount of Bitcoin mining software available on the Internet, and finding the most effective one—and the one that is most appropriate for your rig—can be difficult.
Here are our picks for the best Bitcoin mining software out there.
One issue when it comes to mining multiple cryptocurrencies is that they each use different command line tools, which can make managing them needlessly time-consuming. For users who want to mine different types of cryptocurrencies simultaneously, EasyMiner makes the process a cinch.
EasyMiner is a GUI-based, open source mining program that is compatible with Bitcoin, Litecoin, and a number of other coins. It is also compatible with ASIC miners, cgminer, cudaminer, minerd, and other popular mining engines. For Litecoin miners, the program comes with a “MoneyMaker” mode, which allows you to begin mining Litecoin out of EasyMiner’s stratum pool. If this isn’t to your liking, you can also use EasyMiner’s “Solo” mode to select your own pool.
EasyMiner features custom hash algorithms that match up with coins that the users is interested in mining. The program also uses Network Hardware ID Layer (NHIL) for added wallet and pool stratum security.
EasyMiner is currently only available for Windows, which limits its usefulness somewhat. However, users who need to manage multiple different types of cryptocurrencies will get a lot out of EasyMiner.
Awesome Miner is a mining software suite designed for managing multiple rigs on the fly, as well as different types of rigs, such as ASICs and FPGAs.
Awesome Miner is one of the most feature-rich mining software programs, with support for cgminer, bfgminer, srbminer, and dozens of other popular mining engines. It is also compatible with all major mining algorithms, including SHA-256, Scrypt, and X11.
Unique among mining software programs, Awesome Miner has a centralized dashboard that allows users to manage their rigs from a single place, and it also allows users to switch and manage pools for multiple miners with a single click. It also comes with a C# script engine for creating custom triggers, and can also be used to set up privileged API access.
Awesome Miner is currently only available for Windows computers, but it offers a web interface that can be used on computers, smartphones, and tablets.
While Awesome Miner isn’t terribly useful for users who only own one mining rig, for those who are supervising large mining operations, it’s a good tool for minimizing overhead and monitoring multiple machines.
Given that mining hardware is an expensive investment, many miners choose to use cloud-based mining services when they start out, due to the fact that they are much less expensive and don’t require any hardware purchases. If you’re interested in cloud mining, Genesis Mining is by far the best option.
Genesis Mining users, upon signup, are joined to a mining pool with multiple users, and profits are divided among all members. Genesis Mining offers a number of packages, and its base price is $0.14, one of the lowest in the industry. Depending on the package you choose, you can have a hashing power of anywhere from 250 GH/s to 600,000 GH/s, though higher hashrate plans are obviously more expensive.
Genesis Mining plans last for one year and allow users to check their stats at any time by logging in. Genesis Mining also offers a rewards program; anyone who refers new users to the site is awarded additional hashing power. Genesis Mining also does not charge maintenance fees, allowing its users to get paid the maximum profit from their investments.
Genesis Mining is not ideal for serious miners, as in the long-run, its packages cost more than purchasing a mining rig. However, users who want to dip their toe in the world of mining without a large upfront purchase should consider checking it out.
BitMinter is a mining software suite distinguished by its cross-platform compatibility and its built-in mining pool.
BitMinter is designed for use with Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux computers and uses a graphical user interface (GUI), making it easy for newbies to get their heads around. Uniquely, it is based on the Java Network Launch Protocol (JNLP), meaning it doesn’t need to be installed, further reducing the learning curve for new users.
Additionally, unlike other mining software, BitMinter boasts its own mining pool, which makes getting started a snap. BitMinter’s documentation allows users to sign up to its mining pool, configure their hardware, and start mining immediately without any delays. Additionally, BitMinter’s pool pays out 99 percent of its income to users, making it one of the fairest mining pools on the Internet.
BitMinter is compatible with a large amount of mining hardware, including AntMiner U1/U2, Chili, Block Erupter USB, and more.
For those who want to start mining quickly and need a software suite with cross-platform functionality, BitMinter is the ideal choice.
MultiMiner is a software program intended for newbies and those who want to get started mining without having to worry about the finer details of mining software.
In contrast to most mining software programs, which use a command line interface, MultiMiner is a desktop application with a graphical user interface (GUI), which makes it easy to get running. MultiMiner is available for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux operating systems and can be operated with minimal mining knowledge.
MultiMiner is notable for allowing users to switch between mining different coins based on their existing hardware. The program’s engine is capable of analyzing ASICs, FPGAs, and any other hardware attached to it and allows you to select which coins you want to mine, allowing you to derive maximum profit from your hardware with a minimum of tweaking.
In addition to this, MultiMiner has a number of advanced features, such as automatic detection of network devices and remote monitoring of other MultiMiner setups. It is compatible with a number of mining devices, including HashBuster Micro and Block Erupter.
While MultiMiner may not be appealing to experienced miners, it’s an ideal choice for those who want to get started mining and don’t want to have to worry about the finer details.
BFGMiner is a mining software suite geared towards experienced Bitcoin miners who want to get into the nitty-gritty of running their rigs.
Written in C, BFGMiner is an FPGA- and ASIC-compatible program that offers remote interfacing, monitoring, and dynamic clocking. It has a built-in network and proxy server and boasts threaded code, allowing work retrieval and submission tasks to be assigned to separate threads without impacting overall performance.
Adding to this, BFGMiner supports the GetBlockTemplate mining protocol and can generate additional work preemptively without waiting for existing work to be completed. It also offers detailed statistics on your mining rig’s performance and has a watchdog thread that can restart idle threads without causing your miner to crash in the process.
BFGMiner boasts drivers for Drillbit Thumb, Ztex FGI boards, and other Bitcoin mining rigs, and it is also compatible with scrypt miners such as ZeusMiner and GAW War Machine.
While BFGMiner may be too complex for first-time miners, its breadth of options and flexibility make it a good choice for experienced users who want to get the most out of their mining operations.
CGMiner is one of the oldest mining software tools available on the Internet, and has stayed strong through its intuitiveness, flexibility, and functionality.
CGMiner is written in the programming language C and is compatible with Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux, as well as several other operating systems. It is designed to work with both ASIC and FPGA hardware and boasts a command line interface with ventilation control, remote interfacing, and full monitoring of your rig.
In addition to this, CGMiner stands out for its scalable networking scheduler. CGMiner can scale to a hash rate of any size without causing network delays, a very important feature when you are trying to mine Bitcoin quickly in a competitive environment. CGMiner also supports multiple mining pools as well as preventing stale work submission on new blocks for added efficiency.
Finally, CGMiner boasts a menu for quick setting changes and allows for self-detection of new blocks using a mini-database that can allocate your miner’s resources to areas where they are most likely to be useful. CGMiner is also compatible with many different mining rigs, including Minion, BlackArrow, Hexfury, and more.
Overall, CGMiner is the best Bitcoin mining software for both newbies and experienced miners, offering a mix of accessibility and performance.
1. What is mining software? Mining software is software that is used to manage mining rigs. Mining software allows you to monitor the status of your mining hardware, including hashrate, power consumption, and more, as well as make adjustments and diagnose problems. This makes choosing a good mining program essential to your operations.
2. Why do I need mining software? Mining rigs generally lack operating systems and software of their own because they are stripped-down computers designed solely to process cryptocurrencies. Mining software allows you to control your mining rig, identify problems in its operation, and customize it so it can meet your needs. Additionally, most mining software allows you to monitor your rigs remotely, allowing you to keep tabs on your Bitcoin mining operations even if you are not physically located near your rigs. Many mining programs offer apps that can be downloaded to your smartphone or other mobile device or web interfaces that can be accessed anywhere you can connect to the Internet.
3. What type of mining software should I use? The type of software that is best for you is one that is compatible with your mining rig and meets your specific needs. Mining software programs are generally only compatible with certain types of rigs and cryptocurrencies, meaning that you need to make sure that your chosen software can work with your hardware and the cryptocurrency you want to mine. There are many different types of algorithms used by different cryptocurrencies, and mining software that is not compatible with a certain type of algorithm cannot be used to mine cryptocurrencies that use it. For example, Bitcoin uses the SHA-256 algorithm, meaning that your mining rig and software must be compatible with SHA-256. Mining software suites will also generally list the types of hardware they are compatible with. Another factor when selecting mining software is what you plan to use it for. If you are managing multiple mining rigs, you will want to select software that allows you to control and monitor them from a central dashboard, saving you the trouble of having to configure each one individually. The same goes if you are planning to mine different types of cryptocurrencies at the same time. If you are a relative newbie when it comes to mining, you may want to select a GUI-enabled software program so you can get your mining operation started more easily. Finally, you should make sure that your chosen mining software is compatible with your existing computers or devices. While many mining programs are cross-platform, some are only designed to work on Windows or another operating system. Some mining software programs also allow tablet and smartphone use, so you may want to consider them if you would like to monitor your hardware remotely.
4. What is the difference between command-line mining software and GUI software? Command-line software is software that is controlled through a command-line interface. A command-line interface is a plain text window in which the user enters commands via the keyboard, similar to MS-DOS. Command-line interfaces are favored by experienced users because they have a minimum of processor overhead and have more advanced features, but they can be difficult for newcomers to grasp because they require a certain level of programming knowledge. Command-line programs require users to know what commands the program will accept, adding a difficulty curve for those who are not familiar with how command-line software works. GUI software is software that uses a graphical user interface, in which the user interacts with the program via a mouse or touchscreen, though most GUI programs also have keyboard shortcuts. Most operating systems and modern computer programs, such as Windows and Mac OS X, use graphical user interfaces, as do mobile operating systems on tablets and smartphones, due to the fact that they are easier to use and can display more information than a command-line program is capable of doing. GUI programs are good for inexperienced users because they do not require programming knowledge to operate, but they often have less features than a command-line program. Additionally, because GUI programs are more complex than a command-line interface, they require a greater amount of processing power. GUI mining software has become more popular in recent years as Bitcoin mining has become more advanced and users have learned how to make mining easier, but command-line programs are still widely used by miners for their greater flexibility and low processing overhead.
5. Should I pay for mining software or use free software? The answer to this question depends on what you need your mining software to be capable of. Paid mining software can be expensive, but it often offers better technical support than free software, along with guaranteed updates and patches. Open-source free software doesn’t cost money, but can often be more difficult to get running and diagnose due to a lack of documentation. However, open-source software can be customized more easily due to its code being accessible to all users. If you are an advanced user and have some knowledge of programming, a free, open-source program may meet your needs. Users who are less interested in the nitty-gritty of managing mining software may want to opt for a paid program that allows them to manage their rigs with a minimum of tweaking and technical problems.
6. What is cloud mining? Cloud mining is a form of mining that uses cloud computing instead of hardware. Many people who are curious about cryptocurrency mining are often put off by the high cost of hardware rigs, which can run into the thousands of dollars and eventually become obsolete as Bitcoin approaches its maximum supply limit. Additionally, in some parts of the world, hardware mining is more difficult to profit off of due to high electricity costs. This has led to cloud mining becoming a viable alternative for some users. With cloud mining, the user rents time on a hardware rig or rigs owned by other users, who offer hashing power in exchange for maintenance fees and/or a percentage of profit. This allows users to start mining cryptocurrency without the expense of start-up costs, and also frees the user from having to pay increased electricity bills or tinker with the rig themselves. Most cloud mining services offer a clean GUI dashboard that allows users to mine without having to use a command-line interface or learning how to program.
7. Is cloud mining better than traditional hardware mining? Over a long-enough span of time, cloud mining is less profitable than hardware mining due to the costs involved in paying other users for access to their rigs. Cloud mining’s advantages lie in its ease of use and lower startup costs. With cloud mining, you don’t need to spend thousands of dollars on a mining rig, pay increased electricity bills, or worry about hardware configurations: you can have someone else do all the hard work for you. If you are wondering whether to get involved in cryptocurrency mining, cloud mining is a way for you to dip your toe in the water without spending large amounts of money. However, if you plan on becoming more involved in mining and/or are a more advanced user, hardware mining will give you more bang for your buck.
Bitcoin mining can seem bewildering at first, with a wide variety of rigs and software programs available.
There are many factors that go into choosing a mining software program, including what type of cryptocurrency you are mining, what type of rig you own, and how many rigs you own. Another factor is your computer knowledge; an advanced and/or command-line program may be more difficult for you to get a handle on if you are not sufficiently versed in software.
Compounding this is the increasingly competitive nature of cryptocurrency mining, with new users joining every day. This makes it more difficult for newcomers to stake their claims, and as cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin become more popular and near their maximum supply limits, the difficulty level will only increase.
Despite all this, cryptocurrency mining is still a worthwhile investment if you are willing to put in the time and effort. Mining has also become easier in the years since Bitcoin’s launch, since hardware rigs are more commercially available and mining software is also simpler to grasp, with many programs now featuring graphical interfaces and extensive documentation.
Cloud mining is also an important advancement in the realm of mining software. Cloud mining allows newcomers to become acquainted with mining without having to spend large amounts of money on hardware, and it also makes it easier for those who live in areas with expensive electricity to defray the costs of mining coins.
If you’re interested in Bitcoin mining software, do your homework to find a program that will accomplish your goals. Regardless of what hardware you own, your level of computer knowledge, or how many rigs you own, you can find a software program that will make your mining operations painless and profitable.
Best Bitcoin miners of 2020
If you are interested in using Bitcoin, there are two ways to get it: buying it or mining it.
While cryptocurrency mining is possible to a limited extent with regular computers, in order to make any real gains, you’ll need to buy a mining rig.
A mining rig is a specialized piece of hardware designed to mine Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. These rigs can cost thousands of dollars and also consume a lot of electricity, meaning you’ll want to research them carefully before buying one.
Here are our picks for the best Bitcoin miners on the market.
The Dragonmint T16 is a high-end miner notable for having one of the fastest hashrates of any mining rig, as well as setting a world record in hashing speed.
At 16 TH per second, the Dragonmint T16 is one of the most competitive miners available for sale anywhere. While this hashrate comes at the cost of a power consumption of 1,600 watts, the Dragonmint T16’s overall power consumption is lower than its main competitor, the BitMain AntMiner S9.
In addition to this, the Dragonmint T16 features the ASICBOOST algorithm, which allows users to boost hashing efficiency up to 20 percent, albeit with a corresponding increase in power consumption.
The Dragonmint T16’s pricing is a bit high, but for those who want to get the most out of their mining operations, it is a good choice.
The Avalon6 is a popular budget miner due to its low cost and power consumption, though these perks come at a decided cost.
This miner features a maximum hash rate of 3.5 TH per second and only requires 1,050 watts in order to operate. It is also easier to set up than other miners due to its intuitive interface, making it a strong choice for beginning miners.
One major downside to the Avalon6 is that unlike other miners, it does not include a power supply. This helps keep the price down, but in order to operate the Avalon6, you will need to purchase a power supply on your own.
While not particularly high-powered, the Avalon6’s low price and energy consumption make it worth considering if you just want to dip your toe into the world of Bitcoin mining.
The Pangolin Miner M3X is a high-performance luxury unit intended for use by serious miners owing to its large processing capacity.
The Pangolin Miner M3X is less energy efficient than competing miners, drawing anywhere from 1.8 to 2 kilowatts. However, this is balanced by its high hash rate of 13 TH per second, allowing enterprising miners to profit quickly. This high hash rate is derived from its unique architecture, boasting embedded ASIC chips.
The high purchasing cost and expensive electricity requirements make the Pangolin Miner M3X a poor choice for budget miners, but for those who are interested in taking their hashing to the next level and can afford the power costs, it’s a good option.
The BitMain AntMiner L3+ is another budget-priced rig that is ideal for beginning miners.
The AntMain L3+’s main selling point is its hash rate of 504 MH per second, comparable to the AntMiner S5. It features four boards with a total of 288 chips for superior processing power, though its overall output is slightly lower than the AntMiner L3+. This is a problem when considering that its power supply uses 800 watts.
The AntMiner L3+ is a good entry-level mining rig, though more serious miners will want to look elsewhere.
The AvalonMiner 741 is a relatively new entry to the mining market and is produced by Canaan. It is targeted at mid-range consumers and boasts efficient power use and heat output.
The AvalonMiner 741 boasts a hash rate of 7.3 TH per second, comparable to the BitMain AntMiner S7. It also features greater efficiency than the AntMiner S7, using 0.16 joules per TH. The AvalonMiner 741 also includes one of the most efficient cooling systems of any cryptocurrency miner, enabling its 88 chips to function in unison while keeping the ambient temperature down to a reasonable level.
For those looking for a moderately-priced alternative to BitMain’s products, the AvalonMiner 741 is a good choice.
Another high-end Bitcoin mining rig from BitMain, the AntMiner T9 boasts slightly higher hash rates compared to the AntMiner S9, at the cost of lower efficiency.
For those looking for raw power, the AntMiner T9 has it, with a hash rate of 14.5 TH per second. However, in terms of power, it consumes considerably more than the AntMiner S9 relative to its improved hash rates. It is also more expensive and inherits other AntMiners’ problems with heat dissipation.
Ultimately, the AntMiner T9 is the best option for those who want the highest hash rate possible and are not concerned with heat output or power costs.
The BitMain AntMiner S9 is one of BitMain’s high-end models, targeted towards those who want to maximize their Bitcoin earnings.
The AntMiner S9 features a 1,900 watt power supply that is capable of producing 14 TH per second, one of the highest hash rates of any miner. This hash rate is courtesy of the AntMiner S9’s unique architecture, featuring three circuit boards with just shy of 200 chips.
The biggest problem with the AntMiner S9 is that it inherits many of the issues with the AntMiner S7, namely its sensitivity to external temperatures. The AntMiner S9 is also less efficient with power use than the AntMiner S9, even if the latter has more horsepower, and the AntMiner S9 is priced rather steeply as well.
The AntMiner S9 is a good choice for veteran miners who have the space and tools necessary to mitigate its high electricity use and heat output.
Originally released in 2015, the AntMiner S7 is a mining rig that offers a little more juice for miners looking to get the most out of their hardware.
The AntMiner S7 boasts a 1,600 watt APW3 power supply, a unique power supply that was designed specifically for cryptocurrency mining. Like other AntMiner rigs, it is extremely efficient when it comes to power consumption, making it a good option for those concerned about power bills.
One downside to the AntMiner S7 is that it needs a relatively low ambient temperature in order to function at peak performance. At a temperature of 77 degrees Fahrenheit (25 degrees Celsius), the AntMiner S7 will only produce 1,300 watts. As such, you will need to keep it in a cool area in order to get the most out of it.
The AntMiner S7 is a good option for those who are more experienced at mining and have a cool room in order to store it.
BitMain is one of the most popular manufacturers of cryptocurrency mining hardware, and their AntMiner S5 is easily the best ASIC miner on the market, offering a blend of performance, efficiency, and affordability.
The AntMiner S5 is not BitMain’s most advanced model, but what it lacks in raw power, it makes up in its economical nature. It comes with a 115 volt power supply capable of drawing 560 watts, meaning that it consumes little power compared to similar miners. This makes it a good option for those who live in areas with expensive electricity.
In terms of mining itself, the AntMiner S5 produces 1 GH/s per 0.51 watts, an improvement over the AntMiner S3. The AntMiner S5 is also affordably priced, making a strong choice for those who merely want to dip their toe into the mining world.
Overall, the AntMiner S5 is a good mid-ranger miner, appropriate for both mining newbies and experienced miners.
1. What is cryptocurrency mining? Mining is the process by which cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin generate new coins as well as validate existing transactions. In the context of cryptocurrencies, “miners” are computers that create new coins by solving difficult math equations as well as process transactions between individuals on the blockchain. In exchange for this process, miners are awarded a portion of new coins generated in proportion to the amount of processing power they contribute to the network. Miners are also awarded fees for processing transactions which are paid by those who are making the transactions. This incentivizes miners to validate blockchain transactions, and users can elect to pay higher fees to have their transactions processed more quickly.
2. What is proof-of-work? Proof-of-work is a type of cryptocurrency algorithm that allocates new coins and fees to those who contribute to the blockchain’s operation through mining. It is distinguished from proof-of-stake algorithms, which award coins and fees to users who stake their existing coins to help maintain the blockchain’s operations. Bitcoin uses a proof-of-work algorithm, as do most cryptocurrencies, though proof-of-stake algorithms are becoming increasingly popular.
3. What is ASIC? ASIC, short for application-specific integrated circuit, is a type of computer chip that is customized for a specific use. ASIC chips cannot be used for general purposes and are hardwired to support one function only. In the context of Bitcoin mining, an ASIC miner is a computer that is specifically designed to mine Bitcoin, as distinguished from more general hardware that can serve other functions.
4. What is hashrate? Hashrate is the measure of how quickly a computer can mine Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency. The higher the hashrate, the faster the computer will mine Bitcoin. Hashrate is largely dependent on how powerful the computer’s hardware is, but it can also be affected by the computer’s Internet connection; a slow connection will result in a slower hashrate. Cryptocurrency miners will also have a faster hashrate if they are kept in a cool environment; since they generate large amounts of heat, poor ventilation can impact their performance, in the same way that a regular computer will work less efficiently if it is too hot.
5. Is it possible to mine Bitcoin with a personal computer? Bitcoin’s algorithm is designed to be mined with computer CPUs and GPUs in addition to dedicated mining rigs. However, due to the popularity of specialized mining hardware and Bitcoin’s deflationary structure, mining Bitcoin with a personal computer is no longer economically viable. This is because the maximum number of Bitcoins that can ever exist is capped at 21 million, meaning that as the amount of Bitcoin in circulation increases, mining becomes increasingly slower and more difficult. This supply limit exists to maintain the value of Bitcoin and prevent it from becoming worthless due to an excess of coins. With Bitcoin having been in existence for over a decade, mining has become increasingly complex and processor-intensive, locking computer owners out from being able to mine coins. In addition to this, mining takes a toll on personal computers due to increased energy consumption and heat output. Not only will your computer consume much more energy if used to mine Bitcoin, excessive, continuous heat output can damage your computer, particularly if your computer has poor ventilation (such as if you’re using a laptop). Additionally, CPU mining is much less efficient than GPU mining, meaning that computers that lack dedicated GPUs will always struggle to generate new coins. No computer can match the efficiency of a dedicated Bitcoin miner, so mining Bitcoin with your laptop or desktop is a bad idea.
6. What do I need to mine Bitcoin? You need a dedicated mining rig that can process Bitcoin transactions quickly. Miners are generally sorted by their maximum hashrate and power consumption. The higher the hashrate, the faster the miner will mine Bitcoin; however, a faster hashrate will mean greater power consumption as well. Generally, mining rigs with higher hashrates will be more expensive. Bitcoin miners require a continuous source of electricity as well as a high-speed Internet connection in order to connect to the Bitcoin blockchain. Finally, Bitcoin miners require a cool environment due to the large amounts of heat they generate. This means keeping them away from windows and heat sources and ensuring that the room they are located in is kept at room temperature or close to it.
7. Why is electricity consumption important when mining Bitcoin? While most computers do not consume much electricity during normal operation, the intensive process of solving math equations and validating transactions causes Bitcoin miners to work harder and consume more electricity than a personal computer. This means that when purchasing a Bitcoin miner, you need to factor in the cost of electricity in your local area; if electricity is too costly, any gains you make from mining could be wiped out by your power bill. This means that Bitcoin mining is easier and more profitable in locations where electricity is inexpensive. Countries with cheap electricity, such as Venezuela and Georgia, have become cryptocurrency hubs for this reason. You can easily find mining calculators online that will show you the expected return on your investment by calculating the hashrate and power consumption of your chosen mining rig along with the cost of electricity in your area.
8. Do I need a high-speed Internet connection to mine Bitcoin? Bitcoin miners must be continuously connected to the Internet in order to have access to the blockchain, and miners that have faster Internet connections will be able to process more transactions and access new blocks faster. As such, you will need to invest in high-speed Internet if you plan to mine Bitcoin.
9. What is a Bitcoin mining pool? A mining pool is a collective of miners that have joined together in order to mine Bitcoin more efficiently. In a mining pool, your mining capacity is united with that of many other users, and collectively, you can process transactions and mine new blocks faster than on your own. To put it in an analogy, mining for Bitcoin on your own is like trying to pan for gold in a stream on your own, while joining a mining pool is like forming a gold mine with other workers. In exchange for joining a mining pool, you will have to pay a percentage of your earnings to the pool to ensure its continued operation. The tradeoff is that you will be able to mine Bitcoin faster. It’s ultimately up to you to determine whether you want to join a mining pool, but given the popularity of Bitcoin mining and the increased difficulty of mining solo, you may wish to maximize your gains by using a pool. You can join a pool by searching for pools online and following their instructions.
10. Why is heat output important when mining Bitcoin? All computers produce heat when they are turned on, and the more work the computer performs, the faster it will generate heat. Excess heat will make a computer perform more slowly as well as cause gradual damage to the computer’s internal parts. In extreme cases, a computer may even shut down if it gets too hot in order to avoid damage. To mitigate heat production, all computers, including Bitcoin miners, require proper ventilation to keep the internal components working. Computers can also be affected by the temperature around them; mining rigs in hot rooms will function less efficiently. To prevent this, mining rigs should be kept in cool areas at room temperature or close to it, away from windows, the sun, and household objects that produce heat.
11. Is it possible to mine other types of cryptocurrencies with a Bitcoin miner? Mining rigs are generally configured to run on only one type of cryptocurrency hash function. If the same hash function is used by multiple cryptocurrencies, then a miner configured to use that hash function can mine any one of those currencies. Bitcoin uses the SHA-256 hash function, meaning that Bitcoin miners can mine other SHA-256 cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin Cash. In comparison, Litecoin uses the scrypt hash function, meaning that you cannot use a Bitcoin miner to mine Litecoin. Additionally, cryptocurrency miners can only mine one type of cryptocurrency at a time.
12. Why are Bitcoin mining rigs so expensive? Mining rigs are generally produced in small numbers because they are created by small firms that lack many resources. Additionally, since a mining rig can only be programmed to work with a specific hash function, individual types of miners need to be manufactures for different types of cryptocurrencies. Due to the popularity of Bitcoin mining, a low supply combined with high demand means that mining rigs are generally pricier than general-use computers. However, Bitcoin mining rigs are generally easier to buy these days and can be found on Amazon, eBay, and other major platforms.
Bitcoin mining can seem intimidating due to the wide variety of mining rigs on the market and the expense involved in buying and running one.
There are numerous factors that go into Bitcoin mining, including the processing power of your chosen mining rig, your Internet connection, and the cost of electricity in your area. Expensive electricity or a slow mining rig can result in you losing money on mining, meaning it’s not a field you want to jump into without proper research.
Additionally, Bitcoin mining has become an increasingly competitive field, making it more difficult for newcomers to break in. Given Bitcoin’s increasing popularity and its maximum supply limit, mining will likely become harder as the years wear on.
Despite this, it is still possible to make a profit from mining Bitcoin provided you purchase the right miner and are able to keep track of your expenses. Bitcoin mining, if done right, is a low-effort enterprise that will allow you to make money with minimal work on your part.
If you’re interested in Bitcoin mining, do your research to find a Bitcoin mining rig that will meet your needs. Also make sure you know how much electricity costs in your area and be sure to provide a location that will allow your rig to work with maximum efficiency, without having to worry about heat output or Internet access.
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