Bitcoin mining may not be as lucrative as it used to be. In fact, there is no guarantee you are going to turn in a profit. With declining prices, bitcoin mining is hardly a straightforward decision. Far from it. There are so many moving parts you might actually land in a ditch. However, with a little research and a well-executed strategy, bitcoin can still bring in some handsome rewards.
The kind of mining hardware you choose to use can make all the difference. Bitcoin miners have been proliferating the market ever since the meteoric rise in bitcoin prices. But few can accomplish the job as well.
The cost of electricity plays a big part in mininge profitability. You will be up against miners in China, Russia and Canada where power costs significantly less.
Bitcoin mining might not be viable outside these countries especially if you are a small scale operator.
It is no longer possible to use a bitcoin mining PC to create coins. You need an ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuits) with the necessary graphic cards to generate enough hashing.
That is because bitcoin mining is a very competitive process which rewards only the fastest to get a specific number needed to verify transactions on the network. Unless you are doing it as a hobby a bitcoin mining computer is pretty much useless. It might be more reasonable to buy bitcoin from an exchange.
Apart from electricity, bitcoin price and the network hash rate are two other major factors. The more the miners on the network, the more the hash rate needed to verify transactions.
Hash rate, cost of hardware and their efficiency are the three factors you need to consider before buying mining equipment. You can play with these figures with the many bitcoin mining calculators available.
Quite obviously, we are looking at a bitcoin miner with a high efficiency, hash rate and of course one that is friendly to your pocket.
Let’s have a brief look at the top 5 bitcoin mining hardware.
Dragonmint is the new king in the block. Manufactured by Halong Mining, it is one of the best miners yet.
The Dragonmint T16 worked surprisingly well, it was sold out within a short time. The bitcoin miner has received high profile endorsements including from the creator of TREZOR and Slush Mining Pool.
Dragonmint T16 consumes 0.075J/GH making it the most efficient out there. Its boasts 16 TH/s making it the most powerful. Its ASICBOOST further boosts efficiency by an extra 20%. There is no doubt, Dragonmint T16 ticks all the right boxes.
The second in contention is predictably the Antminer series from Bitmain, the Chinese manufacturer that currently dominates the market. The Antminer S9 is slightly less efficient than the Dragonmint at 0.098J/GH and less powerful at 13.5TH/s.
Please bear in mind that this is the rate for the latest model shipped March 2018.
This is S9’s predecessor by Bitmain. It consumes 0.25J/GH which is significantly higher than the Dragonmint T16 and the S9. Although much less efficient, the S7 comes with its own Power Supply Unit (PSU). This can be a reasonable choice if you use cheap renewable energy like solar.
AvalonMiner is another reputable bitcoin mining rig with a power efficiency of 0.109J/GH, about 10% less efficient than the Antminer S9. Its hash power is placed at 11TH/s which is pretty decent.
AvalonMiner is the predecessor to AvalonMiner 821. It has a hash power of 8.8TH/s. AvalonMiner 761 supports cluster mining and can support up to 6 devices.
WhatsMiner M3 is another decent bitcoin mining machine with a hash power of 12.5TH/s. Although its hash rate is slightly less than the Antminer S9, it is considerably cheaper. It comes with a PSU and has the same noise levels as an Antminer S9.