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Author Topic: at what point is a person considered a "respectable" miner?  (Read 8025 times)
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February 12, 2012, 07:56:17 PM
 #61



I have 1200amp service.   I don't know if this is a good or a bad thing.   Grin


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March 13, 2012, 06:27:15 PM
 #62

Consider I'm living in a country where -20 is common in January.

-If you can heat your feets with your mining rig, you're just starting.
-If you can heat a room with your mining rig, you have a nice hobby.
-If you're starting to save on heating because you heat the house, you're serious dude.
-If you can heat a whole 4-story house, with people keeping the windows open because it's too hot, and having the oil company giving you refunds on your heating bill, I believe it is the point where you are "respectable".


seriously, i have only had to turn on the heat once for this winter, and it's because the internet was down!

Wish I had yall's problem. I have only been able to shut off my A/C for one day this Winter.

this is how i feel being in phoenix, power isnt badly priced... but AC will be working overtime! haha

and when its 125 outside not going to get much cooling going out there haha



Evaporative cooling FTW!  Dry AZ should be a great place for it.
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March 13, 2012, 08:55:37 PM
 #63

Well I haven't had to turn on the gas central heating for more than a year, ambient temperature inside the house is 'explain to the girlfriend' warm all through the winter (though England had a reasonably mild winter this year).

However I've only got 9-10 Ghash... there are people with over 500 Ghash and I can only conclude that these are full industrial operations, either financed independently by already-rich Bitcoin enthusiasts, or blagged as a 'business plan' and financed by some hapless bank.

I'd say the *corporation* becomes a 'respectable' miner when they start making enough to invest in custom hardware, and I mean re-investment in R&D, not just buying as many FPGAs as they're allowed.

I'd also say that the *person* miner splits into two camps - those who mine at home (hobbyists) and those who can piggyback off their business / employment.

And for these, I'd say that the corporate types become 'respectable' miners when they lose their jobs through unexplained installations of gamer-class GPUs in financial standard desktops, or triple the electricity budget / blow the power supply Cheesy

As to the hobbyist miners, well I'm one of those. I'd say that the brick-wall I've hit is simply heat management. I'm trying to sell unwanted expensive toys to buy more FPGAs - my 3-storey end-terrace Victorian home in England simply cannot handle any more GPU-based miners. Two dedicated 12-card triple-board shelf-rigs eating 2.5 kW each, three dedicated (i.e. modified to hell) PC cases and one FPGA is, along with the non-Bitcoin network infrastructure (main workstation, 7 monitors, server, couple of NAS boxes, laptops), basically right at the limit of my electricity supply. At least we get 240V in the UK, though the mini-glitches don't help Sad

I just wish I could find someone who'd exchange a GPU for an FPGA Cheesy I'd be all set then Cheesy

...so I give in to the rhythm, the click click clack
I'm too wasted to fight back...


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March 13, 2012, 09:30:42 PM
 #64

there are people with over 500 Ghash (pool owners you mean?) and I can only conclude that these are full industrial operations, either financed independently by already-rich Bitcoin enthusiasts, or blagged as a 'business plan' and financed by some hapless bank.

I'd say the *corporation* becomes a 'respectable' miner when they start making enough to invest in custom hardware, and I mean re-investment in R&D, not just buying as many FPGAs as they're allowed.

???

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March 14, 2012, 10:06:37 AM
 #65

there are people with over 500 Ghash (pool owners you mean?) and I can only conclude that these are full industrial operations, either financed independently by already-rich Bitcoin enthusiasts, or blagged as a 'business plan' and financed by some hapless bank.

I'd say the *corporation* becomes a 'respectable' miner when they start making enough to invest in custom hardware, and I mean re-investment in R&D, not just buying as many FPGAs as they're allowed.

???


Erm. Blame heat exhaustion - I've got 4.5 of my 9.5 Ghash built into a shelf rig in the first floor spare bedroom next to an open window - that heats the entire upper floor. Sadly the ground floor is open plan, living room / dining room / kitchen and there's nowhere to put loud, hot dedicated mining rigs without either (a) getting into an almighty ruck with a red-headed emotion-bomb girlfriend (don't assume young age - we're just not married - been together 17 years), or (b) endangering my cats the frame rigs (they're Maine Coons, and were kittens when these open-frame rigs were built, the fans would have hurt them back then... now Ozzy the boy cat is big enough to pull the GPUs out of the rigs and chase them around the kitchen as if they were oversized rats).

Hence the other 5 Ghash has been relegated to my office. Which is a cellar conversion without air-con. I'd spent the usual 14 hours down there when I wrote that comment, and ambient temperature... well, using my infrared thermometer, the desk surface away from any equipment is 35.7˚C, the back of my office chair is 35.5˚C, and the bare walls that *should* be conducting heat out into the *cool* ground below are 29.0˚C. No excuses here - it's a Victorian end terrace and the wall I'm pointing at now does NOT have another house (and hence perhaps another cellar office, filled with dedicated bitcoin mining rigs Lips sealed ) on the other side of it. At this depth, the ground temperature on the other side of the wall ought to be in the single digits ˚C - it's still only very early spring in England and it's not warm outside.

The plan was always to chuck a small air-con unit on the end-terrace wall, and feed two room heat exchangers - one in the office (which I spend a lot of time in), and one in the master bedroom (which can get too warm in summer - this was *before* bitcoin... and it's 24.6˚C in there *now* without any central heating in operation). But air-con units on individual houses are rare as hell in England and getting planning permission to stick the required external fan / compressor / heat exchanger on a 200 yr old building with bizarre ownership covenants (I'm not allowed to run a pub, or a brothel, according to the deeds, amongst others) may be tricky.

Surely proper air conditioning is cheap these days - it's simply that due to our climate I know no-one other than the rich who actually install it - and as 'luxury home equipment' there's the traditional Rip-Off Britain approach to pricing. Also, I've been warned that I'd need a hefty outdoors unit if I wanted to run one interior cooler 10m away on the first floor (where the outdoor unit would have to be fitted) AND also run pipes down to ground level, in order to drill 45˚ downwards to access my cellar office. I can see why - pumping the refrigerant back *up* from the office cooler to the compressor / condenser would need decent pumps, both pipe runs are quite long.

Presumably running air-con capable of dealing with over 5 kW of BTC miner power consumption will also involve its own high electricity cost too - running the compressors and refrigerant pumps isn't going to be free. With English electricity costs (helpfully provided for us by the French, so hardly at charitable rates), adding more to the electricity bill could make mining get too close to the 'discomfort zone' of bare profitability (why do all this work for hardly any payback?).


I know nothing about domestic air-conditioning - I'd appreciate both American input (where air-con is AFAIK de rigeur in houses costing over $500k, if not substantially less) and also any English input (on pricing, planning issues, etc.).


Hence I'm normally borderline delerious towards the evening when I've been dehydrated for 8 hours Smiley Sadly I'm not earning the money I was, otherwise I'd seriously be considering chucking it all away and risking an early-adopter penalty with FPGAs - I've got one test unit and it's brilliant, but to replace my current hashpower (let's say I'd have to feel an *upgrade* so I'd have to hit 10 Ghash), with the most viable UK retail solution at the moment, I'm looking at an investment of £17,500 - which is out of my reach given my other plans... and it's a big risk, because whilst 10 Ghash is a nice number that gives a reasonable income, if any of these ASIC based rumours are real and 20 Ghash boxes can be purchased for datacentre racks at 100W consumption each... a lot of already-wealthy ISP owners will buy up and all FPGA investment will be lost.


OK.... what I meant was I've seen people *on my pool* with over 50 Ghash - they tend to hop around pools - I was out by an order of magnitude, but I'm sure I've seen a single login with over 100 Ghash, and as I support the medium sized pools, I'm sure there must be bigger players on places like Deepbit etc. Other than a very few independently wealthy geeks, I can't imagine this sort of capacity being delivered by GPU technology in any way other than commercial enterprises - you need hundreds of GPUs, and depending on setup, a quarter or half that number in supporting PC machines (even bare-bones needs logic board, memory, CPU (maybe integrated) and expensive PSU). It's the same sort of initial capital investment, but with an ongoing cost (assuming professional hosting) of electricity and cooling that is beyond feasibility for a hobbyist or even a serious enthusiast. Unless you owned the datacentre / ISP and could run it for fun, and weren't bothered about the running costs eating into standard profits...

Apologies, ranting again. Need to get more FPGAs, but they're expensive and have the ASIC sword of Damocles hanging over them. It's a cast-iron bitch that I'm not in the financial position I was last March... time's running out for even the cheapest FPGAs to pay for themselves before the 50 to 25 BTC block reward wipes out many miners' profitability (i.e. mine - anyone in Europe with expensive electricity and GPUs will be underwater with 25 BTC block reward)...

...so I give in to the rhythm, the click click clack
I'm too wasted to fight back...


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March 14, 2012, 10:13:06 AM
 #66

... before the 50 to 25 BTC block reward wipes out many miners' profitability (i.e. mine - anyone in Europe with expensive electricity and GPUs will be underwater with 25 BTC block reward)...

I was wondering, if the reward goes down to 25 BTC instead of 50 BTC per block, then that will drive the bitcoin price up based on
scarcity law. Please correct me if I'm wrong...


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March 14, 2012, 10:54:37 AM
 #67

... before the 50 to 25 BTC block reward wipes out many miners' profitability (i.e. mine - anyone in Europe with expensive electricity and GPUs will be underwater with 25 BTC block reward)...

I was wondering, if the reward goes down to 25 BTC instead of 50 BTC per block, then that will drive the bitcoin price up based on
scarcity law. Please correct me if I'm wrong...


Depends on the proportion of Euro-high-power-price-GPU-mining hashpower to low-power-price-GPU and FPGA/ASIC hashpower. The reward reduction will make any mining operation where profit isn't at least double the running cost less viable - if this state of affairs is roughly the same worldwide then, yes, the number of miners shutting down will drive up the price, bringing some miners back online, back to equilibrium. There'll be volatility in that case at the changeover point.

However if the high-power-cost GPU miners are already becoming a minority, with large-scale commercial low-power-cost operations and negligible-power-cost FPGA and ASIC operations dominating the total network hashpower, then the hobbyists will be wiped out without a commensurate rise in BTC price.

It's all about the proportion of total network hashpower that gets made unprofitable at today's BTC price by the reduction in reward, as far as I can work it out. Remember there are an awful lot of hoarders out there, who will be more inclined to sell the BTC onto the market when supply falls - it's not just the miners.

Anyone getting into mining now with GPUs at English electricity rates is nuts - I desperately want to maintain my hashpower but want to get out of GPUs and into FPGAs whilst the FPGAs stand a chance of paying for themselves in a justifiable timeframe - since an affordable mass-produced ASIC would be a paradigm shift and you wouldn't want to have not amortised your initial capital investments when *that* happens (it's an 'if' - but like every business, it's about managing risk here)...

What I'm pointing out is that the USA market is the lion's share, and Euro GPU miners (with typically significantly higher electricity costs) are at higher risk.

But I could be wrong - there's more to this market than mere hashpower and the difficulty equation, and all of the usual financial risk factors (plus a few specific to Bitcoin) are in play.

...so I give in to the rhythm, the click click clack
I'm too wasted to fight back...


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March 14, 2012, 01:11:32 PM
 #68

I was wondering, if the reward goes down to 25 BTC instead of 50 BTC per block, then that will drive the bitcoin price up based on scarcity law. Please correct me if I'm wrong...

That is the 1 million BTC question.

While reward going down doe cut future supply and should be bullish to prices how much and how quickly is hard to gauge.  Remember the existing 10 million coins will still be available for trade.  Revenue in BTC will definitely be falling 50%.  Prices may rise but they likely will rise less than the 100% necessary for an "even trade" and the rise is more likely to be felt in the long term.

A miner in the short term likely will see a significant drop in revenue.  If block goes from 50 * $5 = $250 (today) to 25 * $7 = $175 after the cut the fact that prices will rise in the future may be of little comfort for the marginal miner.

Simple way to avoid that is to not be the marginal miner.  Marginal miners get squeezed out and difficulty falls boosting revenue of those who "survived".  Don't be the marginal miner.
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March 14, 2012, 01:22:19 PM
 #69

I know nothing about domestic air-conditioning - I'd appreciate both American input (where air-con is AFAIK de rigeur in houses costing over $500k, if not substantially less) and also any English input (on pricing, planning issues, etc.).

$500K?  $50K houses in US often have central air especially in sothern states. Smiley

Your most economical option is a minisplit unit (somestimes also called ductless).  Far less cost and installation overhead than a traditional central air unit.  5KW ~= 18K BTU/hr.

It consists of three parts.


The upper part is mounts on the wall of the room you want cooled (cellar).
The square box with the fan mounts outside.  
You then just need to run insulated flexible copper lines to connect the two.  No ducts needed, and only about 1" hole in the wall to run the coolant and return lines.  The outdoor units need 220-240V and the indoor units are usually powered by the outdoor unit (electrical line runs along side the coolant line).

In the US at least a unit like this is <$1000.  Usually units this small are precharged so it is is literrally "hook up and go".  Might be a little involved for a DIYer but it is possible.  A normal "handyman" contractor should be able to handle this kind of job.  No real expert knowledge necessary (like w/ central air systems).

AC units tend to be ~300% efficient.  So removing 5KW of heat will require another 5/3 = 1.6KW of electrical load.

No idea on importing, installing, or code issues in UK though.  

One thing I would point out is that while FPGA use less electricity they still use some.  10GH/s @ 10 MH/W = ~1KW of heat.  Like running a space heater 24/7.  AC probably isn't necessary but if you ever expanded to say 30GH/s you are looking at 3KW of electrical load.
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March 14, 2012, 01:44:41 PM
 #70

I was wondering, if the reward goes down to 25 BTC instead of 50 BTC per block, then that will drive the bitcoin price up based on scarcity law. Please correct me if I'm wrong...

That is the 1 million BTC question.

While reward going down doe cut future supply and should be bullish to prices how much and how quickly is hard to gauge.  Remember the existing 10 million coins will still be available for trade.  Revenue in BTC will definitely be falling 50%.  Prices may rise but they likely will rise less than the 100% necessary for an "even trade" and the rise is more likely to be felt in the long term.

A miner in the short term likely will see a significant drop in revenue.  If block goes from 50 * $5 = $250 (today) to 25 * $7 = $175 after the cut the fact that prices will rise in the future may be of little comfort for the marginal miner.

Simple way to avoid that is to not be the marginal miner.  Marginal miners get squeezed out and difficulty falls boosting revenue of those who "survived".  Don't be the marginal miner.


However, FUD will shock the market. It is very likely that a bubble will form (like the one formed in May if I recall correctly). How high the bubble will go and
when it will burst is another question. Another interesting effect will be the velocity of price-decline after the burst. It may take months before the price comes
down to what it is Today ( if it ever stabilizes at this price, I expect that it will be higher ).

Another interesting effect is that certain people who have huge reserves in Bitcoin will see instant value increase in their assets. This will prevent them from selling,
since they'll be waiting for bubbles peak. This will decrease the number of Bitcoins available for trade, which in turn helps increasing overall market price of the
Bitcoin... Also, those who continue mining with GPU will expect revenue decrease and may stop mining ( if the bubble kicks in late ), which may reduce network difficulty
rate, unless it's componsated by miners who increase their processing power in preparation for the big-bang day.

I believe that many miners are already considering extreme processing power increase (2x minimum) to compensate for the expected revenue loss..


BF Labs Inc.  www.butterflylabs.com   -  Bitcoin Mining Hardware
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March 14, 2012, 02:04:06 PM
 #71

I was wondering, if the reward goes down to 25 BTC instead of 50 BTC per block, then that will drive the bitcoin price up based on scarcity law. Please correct me if I'm wrong...

That is the 1 million BTC question.

While reward going down doe cut future supply and should be bullish to prices how much and how quickly is hard to gauge.  Remember the existing 10 million coins will still be available for trade.  Revenue in BTC will definitely be falling 50%.  Prices may rise but they likely will rise less than the 100% necessary for an "even trade" and the rise is more likely to be felt in the long term.

A miner in the short term likely will see a significant drop in revenue.  If block goes from 50 * $5 = $250 (today) to 25 * $7 = $175 after the cut the fact that prices will rise in the future may be of little comfort for the marginal miner.

Simple way to avoid that is to not be the marginal miner.  Marginal miners get squeezed out and difficulty falls boosting revenue of those who "survived".  Don't be the marginal miner.


However, FUD will shock the market. It is very likely that a bubble will form (like the one formed in May if I recall correctly). How high the bubble will go and
when it will burst is another question. Another interesting effect will be the velocity of price-decline after the burst. It may take months before the price comes
down to what it is Today ( if it ever stabilizes at this price, I expect that it will be higher ).

Another interesting effect is that certain people who have huge reserves in Bitcoin will see instant value increase in their assets. This will prevent them from selling,
since they'll be waiting for bubbles peak. This will decrease the number of Bitcoins available for trade, which in turn helps increasing overall market price of the
Bitcoin... Also, those who continue mining with GPU will expect revenue decrease and may stop mining ( if the bubble kicks in late ), which may reduce network difficulty
rate, unless it's componsated by miners who increase their processing power in preparation for the big-bang day.

I believe that many miners are already considering extreme processing power increase (2x minimum) to compensate for the expected revenue loss..




Let's hope for a mild bubble.

BFL-Engineer, is BFL invested in BTC in the form of mining or just going the HW sales route?
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March 14, 2012, 02:23:46 PM
 #72

By marginal, you mean less than 4Mh/Watt? Or less than 10Gh/s capacity?

I think all of us that are mining on hardware that has not fully paid for itself will be screwed.

Capacity is irrelivent.  MH/W isn't a perfect metric more like cost per PH.  Someone with $0.10 per kWh and 3MH/W rig is more efficient than someone with 4MH/W and $0.25 per kWh.  The goal is to have the lowest operating cost possible.  Since one can't usually change their electrical rate we focus on MH/W but what really matters is electrical cost. The highest cost miners will go offline first as they can't handle the pain and when they do difficulty will drop.  

The rig being paid off isn't as important to efficiency.  That being said having unpaid rigs can be more stressful and risky.
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March 16, 2012, 10:48:22 PM
 #73

I was going to suggest any chance of using small window AC units but in a cellar that wouldn't work ;p.  Thanks for the insight into English mining though. 

@DAT yeah, the million BTC question for sure.  Of course difficulty change isn't factored into this again either.  It could spike up before the reward drop then plummet, making it easier to find blocks but agian, it's anyone's guess until it's upon us.  I think we can infer some "more-likely-to-happen" approaches and guesses but still, no one knows.

Oh Loaded, who art up in Mt. Gox, hallowed be thy name!  Thy dollars rain, thy will be done, on BTCUSD.  Give us this day our daily 10% 30%, and forgive the bears, as we have bought their bitcoins.  And lead us into quadruple digits
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March 17, 2012, 06:56:48 AM
 #74

@DAT yeah, the million BTC question for sure.  Of course difficulty change isn't factored into this again either.  It could spike up before the reward drop then plummet, making it easier to find blocks but agian, it's anyone's guess until it's upon us.  I think we can infer some "more-likely-to-happen" approaches and guesses but still, no one knows.

Difficulty does not factor into your operating costs, it factors on the revenue side. So irrelevant to somehow forcibly include into the COSTS side of things, when it's REVENUE side Smiley

But how does one factor power costs when one pays annually, basicly getting interest free loan to pay it once per year AND doesn't need any kind of A/C AND first 7-8kW usage for 10months a year is "kinda free" in the sense that it replaces (more expensive, heating oil costs more for heating purposes than plain electricity here, thanks to taxes) heating Tongue
Does the first 8kW have negative cost then? *whistles*


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March 19, 2012, 06:00:56 PM
 #75

I'm a disrespectful miner, bitches.
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