Experts explained why video cards are better for beginners with a limited budget, and ASIC miners are suitable for mining cryptocurrencies on an industrial scale
In mid-March, bitcoin miners managed to increase their daily income to a record figure of $ 52.3 million.In February, the 2017 record was broken in weekly earnings, when the miners earned $ 354.4 million from mining cryptocurrency in seven days.
The profit of miners is increasing against the background of the growth of cryptocurrency quotes. The value of the main digital coin on March 13 renewed its all-time high, exceeding the $ 60 thousand mark.Since the beginning of the year, bitcoin has risen in price by 93% and on March 17, according to TradingView , is trading at $ 55.2 thousand. Over the past three months, altcoins have also increased in price, for example , Ethereum. Its cost in 2021 increased by 141% (from $ 0.73 thousand to $ 1.76 thousand per coin).
According to the Avito ad service, in February the demand for video cards in the country increased by an average of 2.6 times, and they became interested in ready-made mining farms 3.8 times more often than a year earlier. Despite the sharp increase in interest in video cards, the offer to sell them increased by only 18%.
New wave of popularity
ASIC miners have higher processing power than video cards and are capable of mining Bitcoin (SHA-256), Litecoin and Dogecoin (Scrypt), Monero (Cryptonight), Dash (X11), and other digital coins. Graphics cards are usually used for mining Ethereum (Ethash algorithm).
The high interest in cryptocurrency mining has led to a shortage of mining equipment. Manufacturers have already sold out all the latest miner models on pre-orders almost until the end of the year. The prices of some miners have almost doubled due to the fact that the demand significantly exceeds the available supply.
The situation is similar with video cards. The shortage of graphic processors occurred due to the fact that the demand for them is formed not only by miners, but also by gamers. NVIDIA and AMD even announced dedicated processors for Ethereum mining to stop the confrontation between gamers and miners.
In addition to high demand, the shortage of equipment is also warming up the coronavirus pandemic, which provoked a shortage of semiconductors, says Jahon Khabilov, CEO of Sigmapool. According to him, now it is very difficult to enter the digital currency mining market, regardless of what cryptocurrencies to mine and with the help of what equipment. Philip Modnov, CEO of LAZM, shares the same opinion. According to his estimates, depending on the equipment and risks, the estimated period for reaching profit is from 8 to 24 months.
Video cards for beginners
It is always easier to maintain one ASIC miner than a "body kit" of several video cards, says Khabilov. But, in his opinion, the entry threshold for mining on ASICs is much higher than when mining cryptocurrencies on GPUs. This makes video cards the optimal solution for beginners on a budget. GPUs have lower operating temperatures due to their lower energy density, which makes it easier to organize cooling, added Philip Modnov. He also noted that video cards are more liquid in the secondary market and they do not become outdated as quickly as ASIC miners.
“If we imagine for a minute that everything around the matrix and the crypto market with mining is a bubble that burst for a moment, then the GPU can be used further, for example, for playing games on a PC,” said CEO of Sigmapool.
When ASIC is better
Habilov and Modnov recommend buying ASIC miners only if you organize your own mining farm, since in the long term this will be the most correct and profitable decision. With investments of up to $ 5 million, LAZM CEO advises investing in existing farms. According to him, already operating mining farms have a ready-made infrastructure, which will save you from additional costs. If the investment exceeds $ 5 million, then Modnov recommends creating your own data center. In this case, it should be borne in mind that part of the capital will be spent on the arrangement of the site, solving legal issues, land management, personnel training and other organizational issues.