Mining Cryptocurrency in January 2018

My last post was the beginning of mining at home with Ethereum and also with my cloud mining efforts with Genesis Mining. I wanted to do an update since then, just so I could see for myself what my efforts have brought me and just to report to the world, how it is going in the world of mining. So the first thing I want to cover, is the fact that the mining at home, in it’s current state, has gotten quite expensive, if you have not already gotten into it and bought the hardware needed to mine. Typically, people want to buy a GPU with a certain number of Gigabytes for mining, and right now, the cost per GB has gone up severely. When I made my first post, about the card that I purchased, it was running $299.99. I even was able to go back, a few weeks later, when they dropped the price to $269.99 and get my $30 back on the price difference.

Well, things have changed. If you look at the XFX Radeon RX 580 8GB card that I got, it is now over $500 to purchase now. Miners have caused the cost of graphics cards to go up significantly. I actually shared a news article about this whole phenomenon from Tech Radar a few weeks ago. With this push back, it looks like makers like Nvidia have asked retailers to make sure that no one is walking out with more than 2 graphics cards at a time. If you look at the current cost of an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Founders Edition 8GB, it can vary in range from about $380 (IF YOU CAN FIND IT)all the way up into the thousands!

This has changed some people’s mind about purchasing cards right now, due to the fluctuation in the cost of entry for getting just one card. Such is the law of supply and demand, though. I highly recommend against it at this current writing of this article, but it could change in the near future, with all that Nvidia is working on for their machine learning and computer vision projects they are working on for their autonomous car driving aspirations they are trying to reach. Only time will tell though.

At Home Mining

So, let’s get back to my at home rig that I have been running for a few weeks now. Remember, I just got started in November, so there is a little bit of difference in these. Previously, with the cost of Ethereum, I was getting anywhere between $1.25 and a $1.50 a day. Since I last  wrote, Ethereum has now broken the $1,000 level and has stayed above that for the most part and now I am getting over $2 a day. Which is GREAT! So let’s start off with what I got from November. The mining pool that I started with, required that you be at a certain minimum before you were able to cash out, which was 0.05 ETH. I say was, because they tweeted out, that starting on December 1st, 2017, they would start cashing out anything above 0.02 and from then on, they would cash you out if you have not cashed out in the last days.

As you can read from my last post, I was able to start cashing out on December 2nd, 2017 and every week after that, since then. I would say it has been pretty much on schedule, every Monday since, except for when I recently changed my request to put my mining efforts into my Exodus wallet instead of my Coinbase wallet. Now it looks like I will get my efforts on Sundays instead. Either way, let’s take a look at what I have been getting. Keep mind, that the USD comparison, is for the exact worth at the point of deposit. Since Ethereum is traded daily, that worth is volatile and changes the instant it was deposited. All of that, aside, here you go:

Date ETH USD
12/2/17 (Tuesday) 0.07880366 35.8
12/11/17 (Monday) 0.03345818 16.12
12/18/17 (Monday) 0.01984642 15.31
12/25/17 (Monday) 0.02131229 15.85
1/1/18 (Monday) 0.01870194 14.02
1/8/18 (Monday) 0.01909514 22.01
1/15/18 (Monday) 0.01844023 24.24
1/22/18 (Monday) 0.01331773 12.98
1/28/18 (Sunday) 0.01436816279 16.98

This means that since I have started, I have mine’d 0.2373437528 of ETH with a cost of $173.31 (calculated, not actual current trade rate). That means that there is a difference of $96.68 in the 9+ weeks that I have had it. Meaning, I should be well on my way of having the card paid off, in less than 7 weeks from this writing, if I use a low average of $15 a week. You can see the price change over, week by week. For instance, you can see that the week of 12/11, I deposited 0.033* and only got $16.12 for it. Where as of this last Sunday, because the cost per ETH has shot up over $1,100, that same $16 is only 0.014* ETH.

One thing has changed sine I last wrote as well. Previously, I did not factor in the cost of electricity. This time, I sort of can. Since I started this in November, I was able to see the bill from October to November, jump up from $90 to $120. Luckily, I did not have to pay any of the first month’s electricity. Then I saw the month of December jump up to $180, so I offered to pay half of the bill, since I did not purchase the kW monitor for this PC. Then for January, it went up to $256, so I offered to pay $125 of the bill. So I have paid $215 out in electricity, but I just can’t give you a really good, ACTUAL per unit cost, due to the fact I am just guesstimating and volunteering to pay 1/2 of the electric bill. Remember though, I can tell you, it is still roughly $0.10-$0.11 USD for electricity here. So right now, I am still “in the hole” on the card, but it should start coming through very soon.

The other thing I have been able to see though, is a slight drop in my mining hashrate. I was typically getting about 20 MH/s on average, but that has recently dropped to 19. Which is odd and because I don’t really research it, I don’t know if it is my card getting worse, or if the traffic on the ETH network is getting more and more and thus making it more difficult to mine, I have no clue. I keep a close eye on my mining from anywhere I am though. I can always watch my efforts on the Ethermine website either at the old site or the new Beta site.

I have been using my mining efforts to do more trading on Binance and HitBTC to get other forms of cryptocurrency like Cordana, Ripple and Ark. So my actual total sum, isn’t the total sum anymore. I have moved some of it over, but for the last 2 weeks, I have kept the balance and just added it to my Exodus wallet. You can check out my balances on both of these trading platforms, as of this writing here:

HitBTC Binance
ETH 0.00063153 ADA (Cardano) 57
XRP (Ripple) 20 ARK 3.51
IOTA 0.997
Est Value 0.00489153 BTC Binance 0.03066671
$22.8075 USD XRP (Rippl) 0.0148
TRX (Tron) 0.0125
ETF 0.00792166
ETH 0.00007447
LTC (Litecoin) 0.000025
Est Value  0.00489153 BTC
$48.85 USD
Cloud Mining

I continue my cloud mining contract with Genesis Mining (Affiliate code for all Genesis Mining users:K8MO34 ) as well, but it isn’t as lucrative, since I bought in at such a low hash rate. My zCash continues to grow, but I am currently sitting at just under $13 USD since I started it. With my ETH contract, I am currently sitting at just under $10 USD with it. This is a continual thing though, like a slow leaky faucet that I put in $80 USD on, so it is nice to see the outcome each day. The only thing with Genesis is, with ETH, they “claim” there are “fee” issues where the costs are too high to cash out, so you have to actually wait until your ETH meets 0.075. I am currently sitting at 0.0086854. With an average of 0.00016* coming out each day, it will be about 1.5 years before I actually get the payout. Which is completely annoying, because I can send my above mentioned mining efforts of either 0.01 or 0.02 ETH every single week!

The biggest problem, isn’t Genesis Mining. It is me and the fact I got the cheapest mining contract they had, because I just wanted to try it out. If I were so inclined, I could have bought more power, or soon to be, buy more power. They recently announced a pre-order that I can make if I want, but the minimum purchase is just over $1,500 USD! Now, I am currently only at 1 MH/s in the contract I am in with Genesis for my ETH. It was roughly $80 USD. So, to go up to 40 MH/s and not have to pay 40x the cost, I guess is a deal, but I just don’t have that kind of money (extra) to buy in right now.

 

With zCash, I have been getting, every 3rd day or so, about 0.001 to 0.0011 every time. This is a little bit nicer, since the fees are a lot smaller, I actually get my cash out, every third day. Even though I have been mining at 25 H/s, instead of MH/s, like with ETH, I am able to get “real” payouts without having to wait. The biggest issue I have with Genesis though, is the fact that I can only purchase whatever they have available for contracts. I assume this is because of their own build outs. They physically have to be able to afford to buy more equipment before being able to sell cloud mining contracts. Either way, I just don’t see it being worth the money, unless you don’t have the knowledge or money to get into building your own mining rig.

Off until next time..

– Rusty G

Mining Ethereum December 2017

So, I recently told you of my adventures of getting into the cryptocurrency world. So now, I want to get into my 2nd adventure of mining. Before you ask, no, not like mining gold or diamonds, but cryptocurrency mining. The idea behind cryptocurrency mining is that you are solving very complicated math problems to get the next block in the chain and then possibly get some coin in the process. Basically, you are running the transactions that are being requested by users at that time, that are in the queue. This is just a very high level broad overview, but you get the idea. Just like Visa/Mastercard has to have something process the payment for businesses, so does cryptocurrency and currently that is a network of computers doing that, around the world. If you want a great rundown, then I suggest reading “Ethereum Mining 101: Your Complete Guide” by Ameer Rosic at Huffington Post.

 

Mining from Home

Now, that I have given you a basic idea of what mining is, I wanted to let you know that shortly after I jumped into the bitcoin world, I also wanted to try mining out for myself. So I went out and bought a graphics card that could do so. Mining can actually be done by really any graphics card, but the more powerful you get, the more you can mine and get more $$$! So, with that being said, I did little to no research and went out and bought the XFX Radeon RX 580 8GB graphics card from my local Bestbuy. After making my purchase, I went and downloaded the appropriate software and signed up for a pool and got everything setup and began mining. Now mind you, the biggest cost to mining any cryptocurrency is the cost per kWh (aka the electricity you spend). For this particular story, I am going to remove that variable, due to the fact I am just trying to get you a baseline before adding in all the extras of cost of ownership. So, this card, currently runs $269.99 as I write this, but at the time it was $299.99, so basically , $330 after taxes for initial cost (I am headed back to get my $30 back, since it has been less than a month when I purchased the card).

Unbeknownst to me, the machine that I was putting this into, was not going to have enough power, so unfortunately, I had to spend another $70 to get the power supply a few days later, so now my up front cost is $400 to get started.

With that being said, I got my mining “rig”, as the cryptocurrency community calls it, up and running that night, on 11/6/17. I basically just left it as is and let it run and tried a few different things to tweak the settings. I setup a web remote control software, so that I can see it, or control it from anywhere, which is great, because I won’t always be at home. After getting it up setup and letting it run for a day or so, my first couple of days were slow to say. Here, you can see the app reports to me how much I was making in the first few days of operation. It started out like basically just a $1 a day. This can change as the price of Ethereum goes up, so you will see this in the screenshots below.

In the pictures above, you can see the price went from $1.10 to $1.33 a day. As of this writing, I am getting in between $1.50 and $1.70 USD a day. This can change due to the amount of trading going on with Ethereum, so a better way of looking at this is, how many megahashes I am doing. This is a term of measurement in which my graphics card is doing calculations per second. Now currently, that averages between 17 and all the way up to 24, but I can not get it much higher. I have been doing some research online, on my specific card and I can get this higher, but so far, to no avail. Now you can see, this is going to take me roughly, a little less than a year to make my money back. I am taking an average of $1.50 a day and dividing the cost of the equipment, $400 and getting ~266 days of operation. The fun part about this is, I can always see where I am at, as far as pay out that is due to me. I can go directly to my pool and they setup a page, so you can see the work going on. On that page, you can see, I just recently cashed out on 12/2, under the payouts/rounds tab at the top.

Now, with that being said, I can set the settings as to when I cash out, but the pool decided to start doing weekly cash-outs with no transactions costs to me. This is awesome! So, I started on 11/6 and then cashed out my first “earnings” on 12/2. So I was only running 26 days and what was my cash out? Let’s take a look at that see what happened.

So as the math works out, in those 26 days, I ended up with 0.07880366 ETH. When translated at the cost of ETH currently, in which, the higher the better, I ended up getting ~$35.80 for the first 26 days. Which is fun, because as the price of ETH goes up, so does this piece of ETH that I have. If my math works out, I ended up with an average of ~$1.38 USD a day. This will obviously slow down my previous projection of getting this card paid for in 266 days, but you get the idea. Now also remember, I am NOT FIGURING IN THE COST OF ELECTRICITY. So this will make the profit go down even more, but I just wanted you to get an idea of what mining might cost someone. Electricity is something that is different in different regions of the world, but currently we are running ~$0.10 per kWh where I am. I unfortunately do not have a power monitor plugged into my machine, so I cannot accurately report on that. So before you complain that I didn’t factor that in, please DO take this into account, if you are going to do a similar venture. I will continue to report back on my earnings as I find this intriguing, but now I want to move on to cloud mining!

 

Cloud Mining

Moving on to cloud mining, if you don’t have the money to purchase a graphics card or you don’t have a desktop machine to put a graphics card, your best bet is cloud mining. This is the idea that someone else does the mining for you and they are paying for all the infrastructure and you are basically bank rolling their efforts and you get your profit from whatever contract you sign with them. The best and most known one in cloud mining is Genesis Mining. They have videos all over the web of their facilities, so you can see what they are doing and what they are doing it with. This is a lot less to invest, but will require at least a 2 year contract with them. Now, you can see my profits above in the first 26 days of having my own mining rig, so now I want to show you what I have since I started with Genesis. I did not start with Genesis until 11/17, so the time is a little different, but you will see what I have so far, since I started.

With Genesis, you are buying hash power. Your power is allotted over different altcoins. I specifically did 1 megahash of Ethereum and 25 hashes with zCash. You can see a quick description of megahash here, but basically it is the amount of mathematical power I am buying into that a graphics card can do and they will give me that amount of Ethereum or zCash that was processed out of that card. I put in roughly $80 USD to get started and now I have both Ethereum(ETH) and zCash! So let’s take a look and see what I have in Ethereum first. (The only bad thing I don’t like, is that Genesis doesn’t really have a great way of seeing it all in one place, just each individual transaction, ugggghhh!)

Mining day Currency Net payout
01.12.2017   ETH   0.0001619
30.11.2017   ETH   0.00016418
29.11.2017   ETH   0.00016627
28.11.2017   ETH   0.00017231
27.11.2017   ETH   0.00017091
26.11.2017   ETH   0.00016956
25.11.2017   ETH   0.00016983
24.11.2017   ETH   0.00017143
23.11.2017   ETH   0.00016905
22.11.2017   ETH   0.00017218
21.11.2017   ETH   0.00017805
20.11.2017   ETH   0.0001776
Total: 0.00204327

If I look at this table, I didn’t start getting paid by Genesis until 11/20, which was 3 days after I started. So be aware of that for ETH, specifically. Each altcoin mining is different. So since the 20th, I have been mining for 11 days and have received (well put in an account until I reach the minimum) a total of 0.00204327 ETH. As of this current writing, ETH is worth $458.77 USD[click the link for most up-to-date cost], so I have $0.9373909779 USD. As you can tell, this is much slower. I have to point out though, I only put in 1 megahash of ETH hashing power. That isn’t really a lot. Remember, my at home rig is doing anywhere between 17 and 24 times that, but I only had to do a fraction of the cost to get this up and going and didn’t have to have any technical know how. If I divide out the 11 days, I am getting roughly $0.09 USD a day, with current trading costs of ETH. I could absolutely buy more power and get more per day, but right now, that is all i wanted to try out. You do not have to buy a card, or own a computer or pay for the electricity either! You are basically renting someone else’s power to get money out of their efforts. I reckon it to buying or renting a house or a car. 

Let’s look at my zCash efforts with Genesis and we will see where we are in the 11 days since I got started. Now, the current cost of zCash is about $325.36[click the link for most up-to-date cost], so this is the base price I will be using for my calculations.

 

Mining day Currency Net payout
01.12.2017   ZEC   0.000443
30.11.2017   ZEC   0.00041513
29.11.2017   ZEC   0.00042225
28.11.2017   ZEC   0.00044425
27.11.2017   ZEC   0.0004215
25.11.2017   ZEC   0.0003675
24.11.2017   ZEC   0.00038425
23.11.2017   ZEC   0.00043675
22.11.2017   ZEC   0.0004495
21.11.2017   ZEC   0.00042853
20.11.2017   ZEC   0.0004621
19.11.2017   ZEC   0.0004275
18.11.2017   ZEC   0.000392
17.11.2017   ZEC   0.00038375

Total:

0.00587801

If I take the current cost of zCash and multiply that out to USD, I have $1.9124693336 for the last 11 days. So for my zCash efforts, I have been getting, roughly $0.17 USD a day! Again, you have to remember, I only put in about $80 USD to get these 2 contracts started and I didn’t have to have any technical know how or have to build any machines to do it. So, this is just a quick and dirty overview of cloud mining. I could go more into detail, but I am still learning this as I write this article! I plan on learning more and more as the days go on. If you have any questions, feel free to ask or leave comments below!

 

-Rusty G