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Author Topic: Mining - is it really worth the effort?  (Read 1728 times)
johnyj
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July 15, 2011, 05:38:23 PM
 #1

Given the time and electricity cost, only those very high end card can generate a profit

http://bitcoinx.com/profit/index.php

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July 15, 2011, 06:03:04 PM
 #2

...an also:
- difficulty keeps increasing
- new hardware will come out soon
- bitcoin price could drop substantially

...but:
- some people already have the cards
- electricity can be really cheap depending on your location
- bitcoin price could rise substantially
Niann
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July 15, 2011, 06:08:21 PM
 #3

It's not worth if you don't have a decent video card, or several, plus
you have to know when to sell your bitcoins, or trade.

Be ware of the market and you can make a very decent profit.
xunker
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July 15, 2011, 06:13:21 PM
 #4

Given the time and electricity cost, only those very high end card can generate a profit

It all depends on timeframe and investment.

As long as the kWH/BTC is less than the tradable price of BTC then it is profitable depending on how patient you are.

I started mining about 5 weeks ago, I bought a new midrange card for it.  I have now just about broken even on that card with regard to the BTC I've generated.  No, I can't quit my job, but it does effectively reduce the cost of the new card (that I can then use for games) to zero, assuming I cash in my BTC for "real money". Technically I have "profited".

"Profit" is relative.  With regard to BTC a huge pitfall people hit is that PROFITABLE has to mean I CAN LIVE OFF THE MONEY GENERATED.  That's simply not going to realistic and, frankly, trying to achieve that is reckless.  True, some people do that, but some people also win the lottery, and spending your paycheck on lottery tickets is never considered a stable form of income.

If you are mining BTC for a quick large payout, look elsewhere, this is not for you.
johnyj
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July 15, 2011, 06:24:59 PM
 #5

Given the time and electricity cost, only those very high end card can generate a profit

It all depends on timeframe and investment.

As long as the kWH/BTC is less than the tradable price of BTC then it is profitable depending on how patient you are.

I started mining about 5 weeks ago, I bought a new midrange card for it.  I have now just about broken even on that card with regard to the BTC I've generated.  No, I can't quit my job, but it does effectively reduce the cost of the new card (that I can then use for games) to zero, assuming I cash in my BTC for "real money". Technically I have "profited".

"Profit" is relative.  With regard to BTC a huge pitfall people hit is that PROFITABLE has to mean I CAN LIVE OFF THE MONEY GENERATED.  That's simply not going to realistic and, frankly, trying to achieve that is reckless.  True, some people do that, but some people also win the lottery, and spending your paycheck on lottery tickets is never considered a stable form of income.

If you are mining BTC for a quick large payout, look elsewhere, this is not for you.

Do you include the electricity cost that involved?

Xephan
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July 15, 2011, 07:05:47 PM
 #6

Given the time and electricity cost, only those very high end card can generate a profit

http://bitcoinx.com/profit/index.php

It really depends on the definition of "high end" card. The newest fastest card may not be the most profitable for mining. Not only do you have to consider breakeven time (the longer it gets, the higher the difficulty), you also have to consider the running cost in terms of BTC/watt.

For those who already have a decent btc/watt card, it would likely make sense to mine since you already have the card. More so if the power in your area is cheaper.

Like in my case, since I keep my system running all the time even before mining, so my only consideration is btc/watt which fortunately is higher than my cost/watt even if the value of btc falls significantly. So for somebody like me who already bought the card for the purpose of gaming, any potential income makes it worthwhile... especially since there's not much effort involved in starting a miner and leaving it to run Smiley

Pending review of how much btc I made over a week, I might even be able to pay off enough of a second card to enhance my gaming experience.

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Exo
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July 15, 2011, 07:07:19 PM
 #7

Unless you have a ton of money to blow on high end cards, then you'll receive a respectable payout in a short-medium time frame. It's hard, but it's sometimes worth the weight. With the difficulty rising daily, you may not get what you calculated.

Good luck, happy mining!
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July 15, 2011, 07:11:04 PM
 #8

Given the time and electricity cost, only those very high end card can generate a profit

It all depends on timeframe and investment.

As long as the kWH/BTC is less than the tradable price of BTC then it is profitable depending on how patient you are.

I started mining about 5 weeks ago, I bought a new midrange card for it.  I have now just about broken even on that card with regard to the BTC I've generated.  No, I can't quit my job, but it does effectively reduce the cost of the new card (that I can then use for games) to zero, assuming I cash in my BTC for "real money". Technically I have "profited".

"Profit" is relative.  With regard to BTC a huge pitfall people hit is that PROFITABLE has to mean I CAN LIVE OFF THE MONEY GENERATED.  That's simply not going to realistic and, frankly, trying to achieve that is reckless.  True, some people do that, but some people also win the lottery, and spending your paycheck on lottery tickets is never considered a stable form of income.
Financially, profit is a positive difference between revenue and expenses. If you only count revenue as profit, you are ripping yourself off. Maybe you will profit psychologically, but is that what we're talking about?

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johnyj
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July 16, 2011, 12:08:22 AM
 #9

Using that calculator , with the current difficulty 1560000, 300mh/s performance, 0.15$/kwh on a 300w machine, I get barely 48 USD each month, and this number will decrease with rising difficulty, did I miss something?

ssateneth
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July 16, 2011, 12:22:46 AM
 #10

That sounds about right. I thought it would take roughly 2.5-3 months to pay off any sort of investment in hardware required to mine, regardless of how much you put into it. Assuming you got the 5830 from newegg, thats between the tiemframe I predicted. Everything after that time frame, you are gaining money from mining. Before that, you're working off your investment.

I already had a 5870 mining peak 450mhash, and 350 when gaming. I invested in 5x 5830s and hardware to hold them all, about $1050. My average compute rate is 2 Ghash. I should be able to pay off that investment in about the same timeframe: 2.5-3 months. If mining bitcoins still appears to be profitable enough to put more hardware into it, I will after I've paid off the initial investment

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July 16, 2011, 03:34:02 AM
 #11

Here's a couple pros:
If you happen to own a midrange to high end radeon card already, you can get some money out of it instead of just letting it sit there and be worth less every day.

If you wanted to buy one for gaming but didn't want to pay that price it costs, run it mining on and off for a month or two and tada, it's like a 30-100% off sale Tongue

If depreciation on a video card you were buying anyway and paid too much for drives you insane, you can easily make up the difference by mining with it some of the time.

If non-miners pick up bitcoins for payments more than miners because of the many positive features about the currency or people start buying them up en masse speculatively, you're rich cuz the exchange rate will go through the roof.

In the winter, I personally have two outside facing walls and a window in my room and it gets REALLY cold because my room loses heat faster than other rooms so I purposely leave my computer idling to make up a little of the difference.  So I'll just let it mine bitcoins since about 99.999% of the power going into a processor gets turned into heat, pretty efficiently in fact, so it'll heat my room and I'll get paid for it Cheesy And a mid level radeon card runs at around 200-250W so there you go Tongue heat your house with it!
Baruch
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July 16, 2011, 06:54:28 AM
 #12

As johnyj wrote above, a mid-range gear will mine about $50/month, if electricity cost is taken into account. That is not insignificant, but it can hardly be considered as making a living. Nice toy, though.
It is quite obvious that "small" miners (like CPU miners) will soon be squeezed out to leave the playground for super-duper, liquid nitrogen cooling system, large computers. This can be expected, if the demand for bitcoins grows. It is simpy a matter of the economy of scale - like in conventional mining for, say, copper.
That isn't quite compatible with the decentralization concept of the bitcoin itself.
Xephan
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July 16, 2011, 07:03:37 AM
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As johnyj wrote above, a mid-range gear will mine about $50/month, if electricity cost is taken into account. That is not insignificant, but it can hardly be considered as making a living. Nice toy, though.
It is quite obvious that "small" miners (like CPU miners) will soon be squeezed out to leave the playground for super-duper, liquid nitrogen cooling system, large computers. This can be expected, if the demand for bitcoins grows. It is simpy a matter of the economy of scale - like in conventional mining for, say, copper.
That isn't quite compatible with the decentralization concept of the bitcoin itself.


Demand would then drive supply so manufacturers will produce faster/more hashing hardware (be it in terms of GPU or specialised add on cards), economies of scale would mean these become more affordable. Since it's a lot easier for 10,000 individuals to run 1~3 units each than a single entity trying to house 30,000 units, the general distribution of hashing power should still remain relatively decentralized... unless everybody goes join the same mining pool or something Cheesy

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Baruch
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July 16, 2011, 07:50:18 AM
 #14

100 digging shovels will not compete with a single big digging machine. Big copper mines squeeze the small ones. A matter of efficiency which comes out of large scale and superior tecnology.
In the context of bitcoins, we already see the trend towards hotter and hotter gear. Well, cooling systems can be made more efficient with bigger, dedicated systems.
dual6990s
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July 16, 2011, 07:58:41 AM
 #15

bitcoins in a way treat high end computation like a rare earth comodity... hence.. yes

2 investment options
1. buy cards (retain physical equity with depreciation)
2. buy coins (gamble unless perhaps you, unlike most, like playing forex type high risk investments)

Worth the effort? sure
Worth the effort now? probably less so for now, until 6990s or better become available in higher numbers
johnyj
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July 16, 2011, 12:10:32 PM
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Given the deflation nature of bitcoin, the payout will be less and less after each month, this seems like a racing between GPU makers and bitcoin internal deflation speed


BMFX
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July 16, 2011, 12:16:26 PM
 #17

I truly believe bitcoins are profitable and i came on board really late. In Just a week and a half, I've made half my investment back and have since reinvested. I personally prefer to do the bitcoin mining, because *IF* it does all come crashing down i still have the physical hardware that will still hold some value.

Plus i have a believe in the best bang for the buck when it comes to mining, which means i only use 5770's. Why? For the retail price (warranties) it offers the highest m/hash per dollar, also they require less energy then higher end cards, and when difficulties rise you want that.

At the end of the day, there's a small niche for the guys who are smart about it but the long run the bigger companies will try and squash the small competition, especially when difficulty rises. Just be prepared and if you see a good deal on cards grab them.

PS. i think the deflation is natural, look at the media coverage bitcoin received during the high spike. What happens when an a merge is announced that is good for both parties? Well generally the stock rises, and then slowly comes back down. Well our drop wasn't exactly slowly, and i think a bunch of people are still waiting to sell until it spikes again, just like in real life. Which is crazy you spend your way out of a recession not save.
johnyj
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July 16, 2011, 05:08:32 PM
 #18

At the place that I live in, 0.3$/kwh (so called green energy) el price makes any solution less than 300MH/S a loss

Currently I'm testing with my old GTX295 (90MH/s). After one day, I cashed in 0.03 BTC, which is only 1/3 of the electricity cost.

I think at least 2 AMD 300MH/S cards are required to be profitable

johnyj
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July 17, 2011, 01:48:57 AM
 #19

Actually I will check up amd's stock and buy it when I collect second hand cards at mean time

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July 18, 2011, 06:59:39 PM
 #20

As long as the kWH/BTC is less than the tradable price of BTC then it is profitable depending on how patient you are.
Do you include the electricity cost that involved?

There's your answer.
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