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teslaman (OP)
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June 30, 2013, 04:22:44 AM
 #1

I'm rather new to mining, having been at it for a few months now with some "slow" hardware. Tongue These days I tend to lurk plenty and post only when I have something to contribute. Right now I am hoping to figure out why my "slow" hardware is performing so much better than what's on the comparison charts and elsewhere. I'm sure others with the same, or similar hardware would like to know too. Cool

I recently started using cudaMiner for altcoin mining and the results are oddly spectacular. On my older 640MB 8800 GTS, I've gone from 15kh with CGMiner, to 43Kh+/- with cudaMiner! Almost everything I've seen, except for one 768MB 8800GTX, is still only getting about 15kh, even with cudaMiner. Then on my GTX 280, I'm getting 93kh and that's on stock speeds. That is at least twice as fast as what others have reported getting! Huh I have it up to 100kh right now with some slight shader overclocking. The card was also pretty faulty with the common solder issue, but I resurrected it with the oven bake trick, lol. Still, it was getting 93kh before and after the oven bake. The mining pools I use also report these same speeds, so at least I know it isn't some kind of odd glitch.

I am using XP Pro x64 and I have read that people are getting better speed on XP, but 2-3x the speed? Surely if that were the case, then everyone would be using XP to mine with, lol. Tongue I can't say it's the system either, because the 8800 gets the same speed in both PCs that I've put it in. One being a newer quad core, the other is a older dual core. I haven't tried putting the 280 in the older PC.

Well, I think that qualifies as a few sentences, lol. Tongue I look forward to posting more in the cudaMiner thread and hopefully it will end up helping others to get more speed out of their hardware.  Cool

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Flashman
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July 01, 2013, 03:19:03 PM
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Hi teslaman,

Welcome aboard the Bitanic Cheesy You'll find our leading lights arguing with the band conductor about which song to play while the trolls scalp tickets for the lifeboats.   Grin

Anyway, I've just started trying to coax my nvidias into mining script coins also. I have been rather disappointed with my 9600GT so far, since I got that up to about 25Mh/s on bitcoin with cgminer, but thus far have been seeing a measly 11Kh on scrypt, when it works. Anyway was just trying to get cudaminer going on it yesterday, but it's like pulling teeth, downloaded a bad revision/package I think. Will have to go get the latest official.

Also I'm very interested to hear more about your adventures with the 280, I got given one of those as "bad" and couldn't get a peep out of it. On stripping it down, I found only about half the thermal compound was contacting the core still and the board warped when it was free of all the "super structure". So I'm kind of expecting it has solder problems. I have been meaning to get around to cooking it with a heat gun. Just wondering if you have specific information on these cards with regard to solder failures and fixing them, to increase my chance of success. 100 Kilohash on scrypt seems worth deploying still, until I've got all of the household "surfing boxes" doing something useful at least.


regards,

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teslaman (OP)
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July 02, 2013, 09:05:17 AM
Last edit: July 02, 2013, 09:26:33 AM by teslaman
 #3

Hey Flash, thanks for the welcome. Smiley Hehe, golden iceberg! Yeah I know what you mean, the drama on here is quite something to behold, lol. Tongue

Yep, that is exactly what I've been seeing with other people's speed too. Something has to be making the difference here, but I don't know what it could be. I looked up a comparison between the 640MB 8800GTS vs your 9600GT and by all accounts, yours should be outperforming mine.  Huh The memory bandwidth is slightly better in the 8800, but only by 10%. So I can't see that making much difference. Without overclocking, my 8800 was getting around 29.75kh with cudaminer. Oh that sucks, yeah hopefully a new version will work better for you. Cool Since your clock speeds are faster than mine by default, you should be able to easily use my exact settings. Here's what I use to launch cudaminer from a BAT file:
Code:
cudaminer -o http://your-pool:port -O username:password -d 0 -i 0 -l 24x2 -C 0 -m 1 -D

Ouch, yeah that 280 might be beyond hope, but it's always worth a shot. Smiley I was also given a bad one. At first it didn't work at all, so I had just let it sit on the shelf for months. I guess oxidation or something bridged the bad solder spots in that time, because it fired up when I tried it again and it let me hash away at 93kh. Grin Unfortunately, it messed up again when I shut down and pulled it out to get some better cooling in the case. I think the solder micro-fracturing happens very easily when the card goes from full-load-hot to cooled off in a short time. It did the whole slew of things from the screen going dead, to all pink, white, green, etc and also the fun multicolored screen with big box mouse cursor, lol. That's when I found out about the oven baking. I've had to do it twice now though. The second time it messed up was when I shut down to add my Kill-O-Watt to the outlet. The first bake was at 350F for 8min, 2nd was around 385F for 10min. Of course, that's assuming the oven's gauge is accurate.

Yeah, if you are good with a heat gun, it is the best way to go so you can avoid cooking the entire card. I've never used one, so I would probably end up cooking it extra crispy or something, lol. Tongue The common problem is with the memory chip solder, so I would aim specifically at the memory chips and see if that works. You can also deflect heat away from the other parts with aluminum foil. If you can do it with your specific heat gun, I would also let them cool gradually. With the oven, I just shut it off after the 8-10 minutes, opened the door and let it cool for 10 more minutes before attempting to move it. Then I let it cool completely for another 30-60min before re-assembling and powering it on. One issue to be aware of is if you have the card flipped over to do the flat side's memory chips, gpu facing down, parts can and have fallen off of the card when the solder melts, lol. I don't know though if the heat gun would heat the opposite side of the card enough to do that.

I hate that the temps shoot up and down so fast when starting and closing the miner, that has to be the worst thing to do to any video card. I've setup some batch files to load in sequence, each with different settings, in order to warm and cool the card more gradually. But, that won't help if/when the connection drops, the card drops to idle, then spikes up again when the work resumes. What would be great is if someone could program the miners to gradually step up the work load until it reaches the max setting and step down before closing/idling.

Cheers!

Edit: Oh and I got the 280 up to 110kh without overclocking the memory. Overclocking the memory only gave me 3 more kh (113kh), so it wasn't worth it. I would need better cooling for that though. Unfortunately, I don't have the stock fan anymore since I accidentally fried it, lol. It also added another 6C to the temps. Going from 93-100kh was only a 1C jump, so that extra 10kh probably isn't even worth it power-wise.

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teslaman (OP)
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August 03, 2013, 10:19:08 AM
 #4

Well Flash, I hope you have better luck with your card than I have had with mine. I'm still mining with it, but I've had to bake it 5 times now! I've tried it up to 450F here this last time, but 425F the previous time didn't seem to hold any better than the lower temps.

It can start and stop mining a few times before it messes up again, but it never fails to fail. Tongue

I'm amazed it still works, lol. The board is starting to sag in the middle though from the repeated bakes. If/when I bake it again, I think I'll put some foil supports in the middle to help prevent that.

By the way, great post on BFL, my Cluons are sufficiently elevated, lol.  Grin

KnCMiner Firmware - Mercury/Saturn/Jupiter/Neptune/Titan
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August 03, 2013, 01:18:33 PM
 #5

Hey, sorry yes, meant to say thanks for that last post, but "lost" it and then got sucked into other activities so haven't had time to fry, bake or sautee mine yet.

One thing I've heard is that applying flux seems to help clean the oxidation off and make the reflow take better. One form of this is pine resin dissolved in isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol. I just went and grabbed a blob of resin off a tree and when I get to it, I will boil it clear, skim the scum, dissolve it in alcohol and shoot it under the chips I'm cooking. It is acidic though, so I'm gonna flush with plain alcohol after the even to keep it from eating away at anything in service.

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August 03, 2013, 01:36:11 PM
 #6

Seems too hard to get into now.
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