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Author Topic: If you're thinking buying mining hardware, read this first  (Read 88732 times)
LMGTFY
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April 28, 2011, 12:51:04 PM
 #21

it annoys the hell out of me to see these type of figures polluting the community with disinformation or pulling things out of their context.
Yup. Though I'm meaning something very different to what you mean. Regardless, any chance we could have the "Vladimir is the Wizard of Oz, pulling all the strings" thread in one place?

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JA37
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April 28, 2011, 02:18:59 PM
 #22

Well, concidering a single bitcoin will be worth thousands, or even hundred of thousands of dollars in the future I think you should buy all the rigs you can find and mine as much as possible.
Best case scenario you'll be rich.
Worst case, you'll be poor, but you'll help the GDP of your current country.  Grin

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Thanks to the anonymous person who doubled my BTC wealth by sending 0.02 BTC to: 1BSGbFq4G8r3uckpdeQMhP55ScCJwbvNnG
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April 28, 2011, 02:22:54 PM
 #23

Well, concidering a single bitcoin will be worth thousands, or even hundred of thousands of dollars in the future I think you should buy all the rigs you can find and mine as much as possible.
Best case scenario you'll be rich.
Worst case, you'll be poor, but you'll help the GDP of your current country.  Grin

Hundred thousand dollar per bitcoin?! Dang..I dunno I guess that is possible but I have some doubts it will get that high in my life time..I pray that I am proven wrong.

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April 28, 2011, 02:44:40 PM
 #24

Well, concidering a single bitcoin will be worth thousands, or even hundred of thousands of dollars in the future I think you should buy all the rigs you can find and mine as much as possible.
Best case scenario you'll be rich.
Worst case, you'll be poor, but you'll help the GDP of your current country.  Grin

Even if this was true, you'd still be better off trading your USD for BTC directly rather than investing in mining hardware that will just depreciate on you.
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April 28, 2011, 03:25:02 PM
 #25

Well, concidering a single bitcoin will be worth thousands, or even hundred of thousands of dollars in the future I think you should buy all the rigs you can find and mine as much as possible.
Best case scenario you'll be rich.
Worst case, you'll be poor, but you'll help the GDP of your current country.  Grin

Even if this was true, you'd still be better off trading your USD for BTC directly rather than investing in mining hardware that will just depreciate on you.

Unless you believe there's a realistic chance that BTC value could significantly drop, and you want something that will retain some value left over if BTC value does significantly drop.
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April 28, 2011, 03:27:36 PM
 #26

Even if this was true, you'd still be better off trading your USD for BTC directly rather than investing in mining hardware that will just depreciate on you.
If the goal is to up the GDP, then hardware is the way to go. Wink
And s/he'll still be rich if a coin goes up to a few hundred thousand dollars each, perhaps not as rich as he could be by buying coins instead, but rich none the less.

Quote
Hundred thousand dollar per bitcoin?! Dang..I dunno I guess that is possible but I have some doubts it will get that high in my life time..I pray that I am proven wrong.
21 million bitcoins. 7 billion people. We'll all be doing business in pico-bitcoins and one coin will be a fortune. Wink

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Thanks to the anonymous person who doubled my BTC wealth by sending 0.02 BTC to: 1BSGbFq4G8r3uckpdeQMhP55ScCJwbvNnG
ribuck
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April 28, 2011, 03:37:17 PM
 #27

21 million bitcoins. 7 billion people. We'll all be doing business in pico-bitcoins and one coin will be a fortune. Wink
I think Bitcoin will be more of a niche, like Esperanto. A hundred years ago, many people thought that Esperanto might one day be used by most of the world's people. However, it ended up being of the order of a million fluent speakers.

Suppose there are a million people using Bitcoin. That's an average of 21 coins each. They won't be using Bitcoin for all their purchases. Let's say they turn over 10% of their coins each week, and buy $100 worth of stuff using those 2.1 coins. That values each bitcoin at $47.62.

One thing is for sure though: five years from now, each bitcoin will either be worth much more than now, or will be worth nothing.
bitjet
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April 28, 2011, 03:39:21 PM
 #28

Yes mining is not profitable. Please stop using your GPUs to mine for bitcoins. Do not sell your GPUs, play games with them and just buy BTC on the market. Leave the mining to the insane.
Alex Beckenham
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April 28, 2011, 03:40:36 PM
 #29

Sipa maintains some excellent charts of the increasing difficulty over time here:
http://bitcoin.sipa.be/

1. Where is .be? (Belgium?)
2. What date does 11'10 represent in Belgium? 11th of October or 10th of November?

Nevermind, I figure it's November 2010.

rezin777
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April 28, 2011, 03:54:54 PM
 #30

Unless you believe there's a realistic chance that BTC value could significantly drop, and you want something that will retain some value left over if BTC value does significantly drop.

Indeed, the hardware is a nice hedge. Especially if you are a deal seeker like me, and could make profit off reselling the hardware (today at least).

My newest rig cost me 692 USD and is currently mining at 1203 Mhash/sec, and it has a vacant pcie slot ready for another card which the PSU is quite capable of powering. At $.0886 per kWh (going down to $.0849 per kWh June 1st), it's a no-brainer.

But I only do this as a hobby anyway!
allinvain
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April 29, 2011, 02:03:11 PM
 #31

Same here. I do it cause I enjoy building systems and maintaining them. If I was a technophobe I'd just be buying BTC. Also for me electricity is fairly cheap ($0.06 CAD). 

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May 01, 2011, 02:58:40 AM
 #32

So, is there any benefit to setting up your own system compared to putting a mining client on something like AWS or Google's App Engine and letting them do the "hard" work? Presuming it wasn't mining that caused the EC2 problem last week of course  Grin
njloof
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May 01, 2011, 03:04:08 AM
 #33

On the one hand, buying a mining rig means you can keep using it as long as you like and only pay electricity. (And, well, upgrades if you try to keep up with difficulty.)

On the other, the nice thing about buying compute time with some else is that uptime is their problem. I learned that one this week -- got a nice little rig from bitcoinrigs, works like a charm -- but for its net connection I installed a little $10 USB WiFi adapter. Guess which $10 component of the rig failed? Good guess. If I expect the rig to run 24/7/365.25, I can't balance its success on a component that just wasn't made to perform like a real commercial piece of equipment. A learning lesson.
tomcollins
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May 01, 2011, 03:16:20 AM
 #34

Unless you believe there's a realistic chance that BTC value could significantly drop, and you want something that will retain some value left over if BTC value does significantly drop.

Indeed, the hardware is a nice hedge. Especially if you are a deal seeker like me, and could make profit off reselling the hardware (today at least).

My newest rig cost me 692 USD and is currently mining at 1203 Mhash/sec, and it has a vacant pcie slot ready for another card which the PSU is quite capable of powering. At $.0886 per kWh (going down to $.0849 per kWh June 1st), it's a no-brainer.

But I only do this as a hobby anyway!

I'd love to see the specs on what you are using for this.  If you can buy a rig for that cheap that is that powerful, mining is more profitable than buying by quite a bit.  I may have to rethink my mining position.  If you can spend $X and get .667X Mhash/s, you should come out ahead of buying in a year unless there is huge growth in BTC (BTC over $400 in 1 year).  Even then, you end up with $150,000 profit instead of $181,000 profit.
rezin777
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May 01, 2011, 05:23:33 AM
 #35

I'd love to see the specs on what you are using for this.  If you can buy a rig for that cheap that is that powerful, mining is more profitable than buying by quite a bit.  I may have to rethink my mining position.  If you can spend $X and get .667X Mhash/s, you should come out ahead of buying in a year unless there is huge growth in BTC (BTC over $400 in 1 year).  Even then, you end up with $150,000 profit instead of $181,000 profit.

It's not realistic. It took a couple days finding all the parts on ebay, newegg, and various computer forums. And it was also a lot of luck. And used 5870s for $165 shipped no longer seem to exist (and they were the key, the rest is just random junk).
Darth Severus
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May 01, 2011, 09:50:38 PM
 #36

I think Bitcoin will be more of a niche, like Esperanto. A hundred years ago, many people thought that Esperanto might one day be used by most of the world's people. However, it ended up being of the order of a million fluent speakers.[/quote] Hi, I´m new here. IMHO the difference between Esperanto and Bitcoins is the usefulness. You can´t buy stuff anonymously by Esperanto, or hide money, or speculate, etc. Bitcoins are usefull to some people, while Esperanto is pure idealism.

Tip for the poor: 19LRamQ46ivskKS7PB1QNDbatWPuWENeeX
tomcollins
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May 01, 2011, 10:06:17 PM
 #37

I think Bitcoin will be more of a niche, like Esperanto. A hundred years ago, many people thought that Esperanto might one day be used by most of the world's people. However, it ended up being of the order of a million fluent speakers.
Hi, I´m new here. IMHO the difference between Esperanto and Bitcoins is the usefulness. You can´t buy stuff anonymously by Esperanto, or hide money, or speculate, etc. Bitcoins are usefull to some people, while Esperanto is pure idealism.
[/quote]
They have a lot in common.

Esperanto would be super useful if everyone spoke it.  Bitcoin would be super useful if everyone spoke it.  But you are right that Bitcoin would still be useful for niche applications where Esperanto isn't.
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May 01, 2011, 11:33:35 PM
 #38

If you've used one of the generic bitcoin profitability calculators, you've probably been surprised by the projected income from Bitcoin mining. The profitability numbers can be shockingly high for just buying a video card, putting it in your PC, and running a program 24/7.

But all of the online calculators I've seen omit the biggest hurdle: Difficulty increases.

The bitcoin network is designed to produce approximately 2016 blocks every two weeks. With high performance hardware becoming cheaper and more widespread and more users jumping on the mining bandwagon, the only way to keep the block production rate constant is to make it harder. Thus, every two weeks the difficulty adjusts to slow down or speed up production to match this 2016 blocks / 2 weeks target rate. This almost always goes up.

In fact, it goes up at an alarming rate. Sipa maintains some excellent charts of the increasing difficulty over time here:
http://bitcoin.sipa.be/
Notice how difficulty is increasing rapidly. (The link is very flaky, so check back often if it doesn't load right away).

If you're going to make any long-term projections about the profitability of mining hardware, you must take periodic difficulty increases into account. Right now, the next difficulty increase is predicted to be about a 15% jump at the next increase. This means a rig that pulls in 29 BTC per week right now (typical for an OCed 5870 running phoenix) will only be making 25.5 BTC per week. Add another 15% difficulty and that drops to 22.2 BTC per week. Six months from now (at 15%) that drops to 6.3 BTC per week.

On the other hand, the exchange rate has been increasing lately. If you believe this will continue, then the numbers above don't look as bleak. However, it also means that you'd be better off purchasing BTC rather than mining hardware. If the exchange rate really does increase, your BTC will increase in value. Meanwhile, your hardware will only depreciate and produce less BTC over time.

There are some other costs and hurdles that miners tend not to consider when calculating profitability:

1. Downtime - This isn't just the 100% downtime when you're rebooting your computer or updating your miner application. Using your desktop will slow the miner down somewhat. Perhaps a lot if you're gaming or watching a video. Even dedicated mining rigs will have to contend with periodic pool outages or network hangups bringing production down from 100%.

2. Frictional mining costs - Unless you're solo mining (in which case you'll be dealing with variance) you're going to give up some small amount to whatever pool you join. Fees, stale shares, etc. Figure 3% or so of your output.

3. Frictional conversion costs - Unless you're going to be buying things strictly in BTC (not likely for a miner) you're going to have to pull the money out into your native currency. Conversion costs on small amounts will be painful. Conversion costs on larger amounts won't be as bad, but you'll still lose at least 1% and probably more.

4. Cooling costs - Summer is fast approaching in the northern hemisphere. Cooling a house or apartment is difficult in many regions, and even more so with computers pumping heat into your room. If your computer consumes 1000W, then it is ultimately dumping 1000W of extra heat into your room. If you don't think this is significant, go run a 1kW hairdryer in a small space for a few minutes and see how much warmer it gets.

5. PSU Inefficiencies - Any power supply won't be 100% efficient. The only semi-accurate way to gauge power consumption is to use a Kill-a-watt or equivalent at the plug and measure the power directly. If your video cards + mobo + CPU draw 1000 watts from your power supply, it's probably drawing 1200 watts from the wall. Your electricity costs are 20% higher than you expected.

Bitcoin mining is a race to the bottom, and if you don't already own a capable computer then you've probably missed the boat. You will always be up against people with lower (or no) electricity costs, and people who are buying hardware cheaper than yours. If you're counting on the increasing exchange rate to buoy your mining rig profitability, then you really should be investing directly in BTC, not buying mining hardware. Increasing exchange rates will only drive more people out of the woodwork who are willing to mine for meager profits. Even worse, there are plenty of people who don't grasp the concept that electricity and heating aren't free, and will mine for negative profits.

So before you drop cash on a new mining rig, think long and hard about whether or not you'll find it useful for anything other than heating your house in the winter.

Concerns noted. Beginning hunt for additional mining hardware.

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Prze_koles
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May 01, 2011, 11:40:58 PM
 #39

I wonder why JJG cares so much about others money. I've seen over 15 posts by JJG saying that mining will be not profitable. Of course in a long term there will be only miners who have electricity for free. But for now, difficulty adjusts to current price so mining is almost always profitable.

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May 02, 2011, 12:12:19 AM
 #40

...
Yes it soon becomes problematic when 24x7 mining, as our homes suddenly start to feel and sound like data centers, my closet is sounding liking a small replica of a data centre minus the dedicated AC.

I wonder adversely will the difficulty also decrease as the summer temp increases leaving just those of us who will endure to no end to keep mining leaving the casual miners to switch off.

Don't forget that the southern hemisphere is entering winter as the northern hemisphere is entering summer. That could balance things slightly.

I'd actually be more concerned about the kids in their parents' basements, for whom electricity and cooling are 'free'. Same goes for those running mining operations in their offices.

I doubt those kids will be running their rigs for too long once daddy discovers that his electricity bill has increased by ~$100 a month or more.

I had a friend when I was younger who's father demanded he pay him $1 for every night he forgot to turn off the computer.
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