Hardware for Ethereum Mining
So, you want to get your hands on ether but the speculations that come with buying it are not really your thing? Good, you can instead get your hands dirty with mining, if you allow us to show you how to choose hardware for Ethereum mining. Yet, before you run to the nearest PC hardware store, you better make sure you actually know how to mine Ethereum (ETH) which is as important as having flashy hardware.
So, what is Ethereum mining? If you managed to grasp the concepts of blockchain and Ethereum itself, Ethereum mining should be no mystery. In essence, your PC is used as a tool for solving complex cryptographic puzzles and math equations on Ethereum network. Upon successful completion of these tasks, you can “unlock” transaction blocks and receive your reward in form of Ethereum.
In order to achieve this, the key component of the hardware for Ethereum mining is your PC’s GPU (graphics processing unit) i.e. graphics/video card. Yes, the very same thing you use to play all of those games. Why not CPU, then? The reason is simple, as even entry-level graphics cards have significantly better mining performance than more powerful processors, making powerful GPUs the one and only option for Ethereum mining.
So, once you get your digital wallet and update GPU drivers, you are good to go? No, you still need to install Ethereum mining software and a client program you’ll use to connect to the Ethereum network and communicate with it. After you install the client alongside the mining software (such as Ethminer), you can start stuffing your virtual pockets with Ethereum.
Considering the necessity to invest in top-notch hardware and the cost of electricity for running it, is ETH mining profitable after all? The answer is yes, as long as you ensure ETH mining profitability by making the value of mined Ethereum higher than your electricity bills or hardware costs.
This is best achieved if you join a mining pool. What is an Ethereum mining pool and does it involve sharing your earned Ethereum, you may ask? In short, it is a community of miners with whom you join forces in mining Ethereum. The rewards are shared, yes, but the combining your hardware resources will also make earning the rewards much easier. When choosing a pool for you, make sure you consider its size, fees, and minimum payouts.
Another option is to become a lone miner. In this case, your hardware resources will compete with those belonging to other people or companies. Bear in mind that you’ll have to acquire stellar hardware (at least more than a hundred GPUs) and be prepared to pay huge electricity bills.
Finally, there is an option to engage in some cloud mining as well. So, what is cloud ETH mining and do I need a flying craft as a necessary hardware for it? Thankfully no, as this option involves paying other people to mine ETH for you with their hardware, that is you pay them for their mining time and get whatever Ethereum they earn. In this case, you pay money in advance, which can have an impact on the final value of Ethereum you get if its price drops. Yet, you do not have to worry about the hardware, running costs and potential equipment breakdowns.