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Author Topic: Difficulty didn't go down, after all: 1 564 057.45 (old 1 379 192.2882281, 1.13)  (Read 2712 times)
ampkZjWDQcqT
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July 07, 2011, 02:04:55 AM
 #21

It's a mistake to think in terms of USD profit. Did you forgot than Bitcoins are themselves valuable?. Furthermore, even if you don't care for Bitcoins, no one is obligated to sell at the current market prices, that's actually the stupidest way to go.

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July 07, 2011, 02:32:44 AM
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You also have to factor in hardware depreciation costs.. New video cards come out all the time, usually once a year but can be sooner... and also the fact that other technology could come out and disrupt your entire "large scale" operation (ASICs etc). Technology moves very fast - it's going to have to be higher than $.30 per gigahash. At that rate you'll almost certainly go negative, unless you play the markets and make sure to sell your hardware at the right time.

I think only means it will get more difficult to even enter the mining business without the capital to put into the hardware. Which is really no different from any other type of competitive business. Only the businesses which invest in efficiency survive.

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July 07, 2011, 02:37:03 AM
 #23

It's a mistake to think in terms of USD profit.

The profit is easiest measured in the currency that you pay your electric bill in. But since they are exchangable, it doesn't really matter.

Furthermore, even if you don't care for Bitcoins, no one is obligated to sell at the current market prices, that's actually the stupidest way to go.

So who is buying above current market prices?

At least for the time being, I think most people/companies who approach mining as business need to exchange the generated coins to another currency in order to pay the bills.

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July 07, 2011, 02:38:57 AM
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It's a mistake to think in terms of USD profit. Did you forgot than Bitcoins are themselves valuable?. Furthermore, even if you don't care for Bitcoins, no one is obligated to sell at the current market prices, that's actually the stupidest way to go.

Why? Chances are good (if you're in the USA) you bought your equipment in USD, and you almost certainly pay your utilities in USD. It also makes a good frame of reference, even if you do only consider the things you can buy in BTC.

If Bitcoins are worth $15USD, most people who are selling stuff are going to price an item that they value around $15 at or near 1BTC. So I don't really see how not thinking about USD helps at all, if anything it just throws off your frame of reference considering the wildly fluctuating value.

1BTC right now is not the same as it was a while ago, and it's probably not the same as it will be in a month (for better or for worse), the changes in value of things measured in USD changes much less dramatically.

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July 07, 2011, 02:40:56 AM
 #25

It's a mistake to think in terms of USD profit.

The profit is really valued in the currency that you pay your electricity bill in. But since they are exchangable, it doesn't really matter.

Furthermore, even if you don't care for Bitcoins, no one is obligated to sell at the current market prices, that's actually the stupidest way to go.

So who is buying above current market prices?

At least for the time being, I think most people/companies who approach mining as business need to exchange the generated coins to another currency in order to pay the bills.

He is talking of mining and holding, hoping for the price to go up. That is a valid strategy, but if you are counting on the price going up, you can often make more if you _buy_ and hold instead of _mine_ and hold. With rising difficulty, many cards will not ever make as many bitcoins as you could have bought with equivalent funds at the time. This is particularly true is you time your buy well, like the $11 dip yesterday.

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July 07, 2011, 02:55:22 AM
 #26

He is talking of mining and holding, hoping for the price to go up. That is a valid strategy, but if you are counting on the price going up, you can often make more if you _buy_ and hold instead of _mine_ and hold. With rising difficulty, many cards will not ever make as many bitcoins as you could have bought with equivalent funds at the time. This is particularly true is you time your buy well, like the $11 dip yesterday.

The price isn't guaranteed to go up again any time soon, IMO. Limiting supply doesn't help if there is no demand. The market would simply halt, if everyone just held their coins in hopes to get the price up.

In fact, in the medium term, I'm pretty sure there is a large amount of Bitcoins just waiting to be sold, which is likely to keep the price down for quite some time. This is actually good news to Bitcoin but bad news to those who thought it was a way to get rich quick with a bunch of Radeon cards.

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July 07, 2011, 02:59:26 AM
 #27

You also have to factor in hardware depreciation costs.. New video cards come out all the time, usually once a year but can be sooner... and also the fact that other technology could come out and disrupt your entire "large scale" operation (ASICs etc). Technology moves very fast - it's going to have to be higher than $.30 per gigahash. At that rate you'll almost certainly go negative, unless you play the markets and make sure to sell your hardware at the right time.

I think only means it will get more difficult to even enter the mining business without the capital to put into the hardware. Which is really no different from any other type of competitive business. Only the businesses which invest in efficiency survive.

More likely, if it reaches $0.30 per day per ghash, it will be more like F@H. Only enthusiasts will support the network. The rest will just buy. Of course, this means less security on the network overall.

Some of the best efficiency ratios I've seen is around 2.2Mhash/Dollar. That's still around $500 per ghash. 1 Ghash would be $108 per year. You're still negative by $392, after a year.

So you'd have to sell the hardware for more than $400 to make a profit after 1 year of use. Not likely in the tech world.
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July 07, 2011, 03:05:42 AM
 #28

More likely, if it reaches $0.30 per day per ghash, it will be more like F@H. Only enthusiasts will support the network. The rest will just buy. Of course, this means less security on the network overall.

I said profit... Meaning something like $2.70 operating costs + $0.30 profit (roughly 10 %) = $3 per gigahash per day. Obviously these numbers are just very rough guesses but shouldn't be too far from the reality.

High difficulty and low security can't coexist AFAIK....

Maybe I'm using the terms wrong, English is not my native language.

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DamienBlack
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July 07, 2011, 03:06:36 AM
 #29

You also have to factor in hardware depreciation costs.. New video cards come out all the time, usually once a year but can be sooner... and also the fact that other technology could come out and disrupt your entire "large scale" operation (ASICs etc). Technology moves very fast - it's going to have to be higher than $.30 per gigahash. At that rate you'll almost certainly go negative, unless you play the markets and make sure to sell your hardware at the right time.

I think only means it will get more difficult to even enter the mining business without the capital to put into the hardware. Which is really no different from any other type of competitive business. Only the businesses which invest in efficiency survive.

More likely, if it reaches $0.30 per day per ghash, it will be more like F@H. Only enthusiasts will support the network. The rest will just buy. Of course, this means less security on the network overall.

If it were at $0.30 per day per ghash, that means that either the prices is really low, or the network is HUGE. If the price is low, then the system didn't take off, security isn't a big deal. If the network is huge, then it is secure.

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July 07, 2011, 03:19:54 AM
 #30

Well, the main thing is..

Higher profit per 1Ghash = more miners. (higher security)

Lower profit per 1Ghash = less miners. (lower security)

Every miner has a certain profitability they're trying to reach, otherwise they will drop out.
Sort of seeing this already, even at the current profitability. Network growth has basically stalled.

In the future, I can sort of see ultra high efficiencies in mining, with huge companies supporting the entire network, but that's years away. Bitcoin would have had to reach some sort of ultra-stability and high trust for that to happen.
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July 07, 2011, 03:27:47 AM
 #31

Well, the main thing is..

Higher profit per 1Ghash = more miners. (higher security)

Lower profit per 1Ghash = less miners. (lower security)

Every miner has a certain profitability they're trying to reach, otherwise they will drop out.
Sort of seeing this already, even at the current profitability. Network growth has basically stalled.

In the future, I can sort of see ultra high efficiencies in mining, with huge companies supporting the entire network, but that's years away. Bitcoin would have had to reach some sort of ultra-stability and high trust for that to happen.

No, I don't see it that way.

More miners = higher difficulty = lower profit
Less miners = lower difficulty = higher profit

The network is self balancing. There will always be a number of miner sensible for the amount of money in the system.

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July 07, 2011, 03:34:43 AM
 #32

Well, the main thing is..

Higher profit per 1Ghash = more miners. (higher security)

Lower profit per 1Ghash = less miners. (lower security)

Every miner has a certain profitability they're trying to reach, otherwise they will drop out.
Sort of seeing this already, even at the current profitability. Network growth has basically stalled.

In the future, I can sort of see ultra high efficiencies in mining, with huge companies supporting the entire network, but that's years away. Bitcoin would have had to reach some sort of ultra-stability and high trust for that to happen.

No, I don't see it that way.

More miners = higher difficulty = lower profit
Less miners = lower difficulty = higher profit

The network is self balancing. There will always be a number of miner sensible for the amount of money in the system.

Anytime there's a boost in profitability more miners will show up. That's just the way it is. Some will stay others will leave after a difficulty increase, but overall the more profit there is the more miners there will be.

If there is less miners, that means the profitability crossed their threshold and they left. As soon as more profit shows up, there will be more miners again.
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July 07, 2011, 03:39:10 AM
 #33

But there are more miners now than there have even been, but profitability is quite low compared to the past.

And if miners show up when it is profitable, it will just increase the difficulty, decreasing profitability.

Anyway, we are just arguing in a loop. The system is well regulated, when there is a need for more miners, it will be incentivized.

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July 07, 2011, 03:44:06 AM
 #34

But there are more miners now than there have even been, but profitability is quite low compared to the past.

And if miners show up when it is profitable, it will just increase the difficulty, decreasing profitability.

Anyway, we are just arguing in a loop. The system is well regulated, when there is a need for more miners, it will be incentivized.

Right, like I said, every time you go through an area where there's HUGE profit (like when bitcoin was at $30) people will buy tons of hardware and go through all the setup and everything. Once they get up and running, as long as there's reasonable profit for them and doesn't cross their threshold, they're not just going to pull the plug offline right away. So the profit does shrink every time this happens, but the network grows in security.
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July 07, 2011, 03:48:40 AM
 #35

I believe that bitcoin mining difficulty lags price, because dramatically higher prices strongly motivate miners to increase capacity, which leads to higher difficulty.  Likewise, I predict that if prices decline for a while, then mining difficulty will level off or perhaps decline as some miners lose interest, or conclude that new capacity will not have a prompt pay-back.
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July 07, 2011, 03:52:47 AM
 #36

chodpaba has actually estimated a difficulty decrease two re-targets from now

http://forum.bitcoin.org/index.php?topic=13339.60

He could be right, things have been slow on the prices-crazily-moving-upward front.

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July 07, 2011, 04:13:27 AM
 #37

Higher profit per 1Ghash = more miners. (higher security)
Lower profit per 1Ghash = less miners. (lower security)
Every miner has a certain profitability they're trying to reach, otherwise they will drop out.

More miners decreases the profit per miner. It's actually about the ratio between difficulty and value of BTC, and where it will eventually settle.

I argue that mining profitability will eventually match others similar markets, which means that at the current BTC valuation, difficulty would be somewhere around 5,000,000.

Currently, you are getting back more than twice what you pay in electricity, which should still be very lucrative to many. But you need a lot of hashing power to make meaningful money.

Sort of seeing this already, even at the current profitability. Network growth has basically stalled.

I think that has more to do with the DDoSing of the pools than miners actually dropping out.

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