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Author Topic: If you're thinking buying mining hardware, read this first  (Read 88714 times)
allinvain
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May 05, 2011, 07:52:49 AM
 #121

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I was on CL and found just piles of guts...more than I would need to get started building a number of decent rigs. Boards with 1 and 2 PCI-e 16 slots, all kinds of fans...hell, one was a lot of 8 towers for $60 with pretty much everything I needed for 3 solid rigs, minus decent power supplies and cards.

I bought none of it...but the prospect is there. Spending $200-$300 to get a rig operational isn't exactly a lucrative prospect, but it's feasible.

One of the best kept secrets is where the hell you guys are getting 5870's for prices like that. Tongue

And like I've said many times on this forum...if Bitcoin suddenly disappeared, I have plenty of uses for a bunch of computer hardware. To be honest, I'd probably go back to SETI@Home. How's that for altruism? Tongue

Edit: Instead of mining rigs, I bought one of these for the missus...and another one shortly to follow for me. I bet I could get 20kHash/sec out of this...

My next rig will cost me somewhere between $200 to $300 CAD so it is possible, but you have to find some pretty cheap hardware. Also you sometimes are forced to use somewhat out of date hardware like old Athlon X2 boards/CPUs. For me the only requirement is that it has support for two PCIe slots. The CPU ideally should have as low of a TDP as possible but it's not an absolute must cause I intend to underclock it anyways and besides the CPU will be/should be mostly idle. 

I guess for me bargain hunting is just as fun as putting the system(s) together.

As for finding cheap 5870s, well, what I do is search classified sites. Craigslist is a good place to start.

Hmm, that ibook looks nice but you sure it's worthwhile mining on it if all you can get is roughly 20 KHash/sec? Also do you mean to say 20 MHash?

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slurch
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May 05, 2011, 08:20:11 AM
 #122

Hmm, that ibook looks nice but you sure it's worthwhile mining on it if all you can get is roughly 20 KHash/sec? Also do you mean to say 20 MHash?

I was definitely kidding. I'll be lucky if it starts...

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allinvain
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May 05, 2011, 08:35:13 AM
 #123

Hmm, that ibook looks nice but you sure it's worthwhile mining on it if all you can get is roughly 20 KHash/sec? Also do you mean to say 20 MHash?

I was definitely kidding. I'll be lucky if it starts...

Oh I'm sure it will start. There are a few OSX cpu miners around. Don't know how effectively its GPU can be exploited - if at all. If you do manage to get both CPU and gpu mining after a while you'll come back and see the laptop melted in a puddle of plastic and metal parts lool


slurch
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May 05, 2011, 08:45:30 AM
 #124

Hmm, that ibook looks nice but you sure it's worthwhile mining on it if all you can get is roughly 20 KHash/sec? Also do you mean to say 20 MHash?

I was definitely kidding. I'll be lucky if it starts...

Oh I'm sure it will start. There are a few OSX cpu miners around. Don't know how effectively its GPU can be exploited - if at all. If you do manage to get both CPU and gpu mining after a while you'll come back and see the laptop melted in a puddle of plastic and metal parts lool



In the shape of Steve Jobs' face, no less...

I do know that if someone wants to break into the Bitcoin Mining market, they are welcome to have at it with my 256MB nVidia 9300GE. I was getting 1700 kHash off of it on a good day. It's in the closet now. Tongue

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allinvain
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May 05, 2011, 09:28:27 AM
 #125

Hmm, that ibook looks nice but you sure it's worthwhile mining on it if all you can get is roughly 20 KHash/sec? Also do you mean to say 20 MHash?

I was definitely kidding. I'll be lucky if it starts...

Oh I'm sure it will start. There are a few OSX cpu miners around. Don't know how effectively its GPU can be exploited - if at all. If you do manage to get both CPU and gpu mining after a while you'll come back and see the laptop melted in a puddle of plastic and metal parts lool



In the shape of Steve Jobs' face, no less...

I do know that if someone wants to break into the Bitcoin Mining market, they are welcome to have at it with my 256MB nVidia 9300GE. I was getting 1700 kHash off of it on a good day. It's in the closet now. Tongue

Nvidia cards just plain sux0rz at mining.

To generate a 50 BTC reward with that hash rate it would take 9607 days, 3 hours, 55 minutes...I am soooo there! Ship me the card ASAP I can't wait any longer!

I think the cheapest entry into this fun bitcoin mining arena is probably the Radeon 5770 - sub $100 cards Smiley

Sukrim
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May 05, 2011, 04:08:56 PM
 #126

I think the cheapest entry into this fun bitcoin mining arena is probably the Radeon 5770 - sub $100 cards Smiley
The cheapest entry is using existing cards.

I did the maths, and at current exchange rates even my GTX260 is bringing in (a little bit of) money, when it is used for mining instead of idling in Windows.
90W more compared to idling (at the plug, measured with a wallplug device), 47 MH/s (with fans locked at 35% and 77°C core temp, that's kinda ok and still silent!), 16 €cents per kWh means at current (24h weighted) BTC - EUR exchange rates (1 BTC = 2.7148 EUR):

1.8 Bitcents/hour (or 43 Bitcents/day)
4.9 Eurocents/hour (or 1.17 EUR/day)

after deducting the electricity costs per day/hour my gain is:

1.3 Bitcent/hour (or 30 Bitcents/day)
3.4 Eurocents/hour (or 83 Eurocents/day)
plus 90W of free heating.

However, as soon as you add buying hardware to the equation, you'll have to write that off over some time - and currently the system grows at ~2% EACH DAY! If you factor that in, you get some really crazy numbers!

If you expect for example to pay off a 150USD card that uses 150Watts @ 15 USDcents/kWh, runs 24/7 and difficulty increases linearly at 2%/day in 90 days, it needs to do do ~417.5MHashes/s on the last of these 90 days. After that it is paid off and you only pay for electricity. Also on the first day, you just need ~70.2 MHashes/s to pay electricity + writeoff, so your milage may vary.

This assumes a static USD - BTC price (I took the current 24h weighted one: 3.4252USD per BTC)

Maybe I'll publish these calculations as a webservice too, so you can do them easily as well - the only problem is that I don't factor in transaction fee gain (maybe do an average over the last 100 blocks?). Currently this is negligible though.

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JJG
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May 05, 2011, 04:48:19 PM
 #127

...
However, as soon as you add buying hardware to the equation, you'll have to write that off over some time - and currently the system grows at ~2% EACH DAY! If you factor that in, you get some really crazy numbers!
...

Great analysis, Sukrim. Thanks for sharing your numbers with us.

A lot of people aren't taking the 2%/day growth into account. 2% seems to be an optimistically low number lately.

At 2%/day growth, the mining capacity of the network will double in only 35 days, triple in 56, and quadruple in 70.



The next difficulty increase is already projected to be an incredible 37% now!
For prospective miners: Whatever your projected income is right now, multiply that by 0.73 and that's what you'll be making in 4.5 days. If you ordered a card at this very moment, I doubt it will show up before this difficulty increase reduces your profits to less than 3/4 of what you'd make with the same card today.
Sukrim
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May 05, 2011, 05:30:17 PM
 #128

If you want to do calculations yourself, here are some formulas (Things you need to insert/look up are marked with [these brackets]):

Income per day in your currency (for income in BTC just set the conversion rate to 1 or skip the last bit):
[Bitcoins generated per block] / ( ( [Current difficulty] *2^32) / ( [your hashrate in hashes/s - for MH/s multiply this number by 1000000]*24*60*60 ) )* [conversion rate to your currency --> 1 BTC = this much in your currency]

Income at day X in your currency if the network grows at a steady Y% and your hashrate stays the same:
[Bitcoins generated per block] / ( ( ([Current difficulty] * (1 + [growth percentage]/100)^[number of days in the future] *2^32) / ( [your hashrate in hashes/s - for MH/s multiply this number by 1000000]*24*60*60 ) )* [conversion rate to your currency --> 1 BTC = this much in your currency]

I hope it might be easier now to throw up LibreOffice Calc or Excel and do some calculations yourself with this as a start.

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slurch
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May 05, 2011, 07:43:50 PM
 #129

It's amusing to me...in reading this thread, you would think that there is absolutely no use for a high-end graphics card other than Bitcoin mining. This doesn't seem like 100% solid logic.

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JJG
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May 05, 2011, 07:51:17 PM
 #130

It's amusing to me...in reading this thread, you would think that there is absolutely no use for a high-end graphics card other than Bitcoin mining. This doesn't seem like 100% solid logic.

If you're a gamer looking for a new card, then by all means go for it! Bitcoin mining would effectively be a discount on money you would have spent anyway. No one will argue this.

This thread isn't for these people. This thread is for the non-gamers snatching up GPUs and considering building second computers (motherboard, CPU, RAM, PSU, etc.) for them.

100% logic here.
slurch
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May 05, 2011, 08:02:11 PM
 #131

It's amusing to me...in reading this thread, you would think that there is absolutely no use for a high-end graphics card other than Bitcoin mining. This doesn't seem like 100% solid logic.

If you're a gamer looking for a new card, then by all means go for it! Bitcoin mining would effectively be a discount on money you would have spent anyway. No one will argue this.

This thread isn't for these people. This thread is for the non-gamers snatching up GPUs and considering building second computers (motherboard, CPU, RAM, PSU, etc.) for them.

100% logic here.

Well, then how do I tell the forum to stop updating me on it? It's damn depressing. You all sound like my 7th grade science teacher. Tongue

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slurch
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May 05, 2011, 08:07:26 PM
 #132

The next difficulty increase is already projected to be an incredible 37% now!
For prospective miners: Whatever your projected income is right now, multiply that by 0.73 and that's what you'll be making in 4.5 days. If you ordered a card at this very moment, I doubt it will show up before this difficulty increase reduces your profits to less than 3/4 of what you'd make with the same card today.

I'm betting on some reduction in difficulty after the OC.net people get bored. Since a lot of them are gamers, I don't imagine that will take all that long (I saw that thread you mentioned...it was very sad).

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tomcollins
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May 05, 2011, 08:26:41 PM
 #133

The next difficulty increase is already projected to be an incredible 37% now!
For prospective miners: Whatever your projected income is right now, multiply that by 0.73 and that's what you'll be making in 4.5 days. If you ordered a card at this very moment, I doubt it will show up before this difficulty increase reduces your profits to less than 3/4 of what you'd make with the same card today.

I'm betting on some reduction in difficulty after the OC.net people get bored. Since a lot of them are gamers, I don't imagine that will take all that long (I saw that thread you mentioned...it was very sad).

I'd love to bet against this if you want.
slurch
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May 05, 2011, 08:30:35 PM
 #134

I'm not a betting individual...I get queasy buying scratch tickets. I sincerely hope you are wrong, though. Sad They did not have the same ethos that a lot of the people here do.

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tomcollins
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May 05, 2011, 08:53:42 PM
 #135

I'm not a betting individual...I get queasy buying scratch tickets. I sincerely hope you are wrong, though. Sad They did not have the same ethos that a lot of the people here do.

It's not exactly hard work to mine, though.  As long as there is free money, someone will be after it.  If selling becomes too much of a pain, they might stop.  Or if the price crashes.
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May 05, 2011, 09:06:48 PM
 #136

It's amusing to me...in reading this thread, you would think that there is absolutely no use for a high-end graphics card other than Bitcoin mining. This doesn't seem like 100% solid logic.
Well, at least while surfing the web or doing some office work you can use nearly any current card to get enough bitcoins to cover your electricity bill for the time you let your computer run (and if you game for a few hours instead of mining, that is covered too, at least at the moment and if you use your computer for something else as well).
You won't get rich probably if you mine (especial with newly bought hardware) - however if you want to get rich, it has been already said that if you believe that prices go up, you're better off buying BTC instead.

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May 05, 2011, 09:38:43 PM
 #137

I'm betting on some reduction in difficulty after the OC.net people get bored. Since a lot of them are gamers, I don't imagine that will take all that long (I saw that thread you mentioned...it was very sad).

Difficulty reduction won't happen any time soon. I think you're overestimating the number of OC.net people who make up the entire network hash rate, and underestimating how desperate some of these guys will be to pay back the hardware they purchased.

OC.net is just one forum and I doubt it's the last one that will have a 'bitcoin revelation'. Expect more jumps in difficulty as more forums catch wind of this.
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May 05, 2011, 09:42:05 PM
 #138

I'm betting on some reduction in difficulty after the OC.net people get bored. Since a lot of them are gamers, I don't imagine that will take all that long (I saw that thread you mentioned...it was very sad).

Difficulty reduction won't happen any time soon. I think you're overestimating the number of OC.net people who make up the entire network hash rate, and underestimating how desperate some of these guys will be to pay back the hardware they purchased.

OC.net is just one forum and I doubt it's the last one that will have a 'bitcoin revelation'. Expect more jumps in difficulty as more forums catch wind of this.

Again, you are probably right. Still, there were 160 pages of comments in just two days before the mods over there shut it down...seems like a fair amount of interest in a short timeframe.

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May 05, 2011, 09:51:39 PM
 #139

I'm betting on some reduction in difficulty after the OC.net people get bored. Since a lot of them are gamers, I don't imagine that will take all that long (I saw that thread you mentioned...it was very sad).

Difficulty reduction won't happen any time soon. I think you're overestimating the number of OC.net people who make up the entire network hash rate, and underestimating how desperate some of these guys will be to pay back the hardware they purchased.

OC.net is just one forum and I doubt it's the last one that will have a 'bitcoin revelation'. Expect more jumps in difficulty as more forums catch wind of this.

I've got a hunch that after this next difficulty increase the percentage increase to the difficulty after that won't be quite as big because the big leap coming up in a few days will scare some people off.  But, who knows.
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May 05, 2011, 09:57:58 PM
 #140

I'm betting on some reduction in difficulty after the OC.net people get bored. Since a lot of them are gamers, I don't imagine that will take all that long (I saw that thread you mentioned...it was very sad).

Difficulty reduction won't happen any time soon. I think you're overestimating the number of OC.net people who make up the entire network hash rate, and underestimating how desperate some of these guys will be to pay back the hardware they purchased.

OC.net is just one forum and I doubt it's the last one that will have a 'bitcoin revelation'. Expect more jumps in difficulty as more forums catch wind of this.

I've got a hunch that after this next difficulty increase the percentage increase to the difficulty after that won't be quite as big because the big leap coming up in a few days will scare some people off.  But, who knows.

I'm not ascared. I just know that the 2.5-3 BTC I get a day will probably get cut in half or worse in the next six weeks. I can live with that. Undecided

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