Crypto mining is not exactly a glamorous task, but the world has more crypto investors than miners and we need more miners. As Bitcoin, Ethererum, Ravencoin, and Binance coin become household names, mining technology will need to improve at a rapid pace.
Before 2009, no one heard of crypto, let alone Bitcoin – it didn’t even exist until then. Several mining methods have popped since then, including mining rigs that involve a graphics processing unit (GPU), the most popular mining method to date.
There are several reasons for GPU mining has more or less become the norm for the crypto mining business. Here, I give you an overview of how crypto mining works and why GPU rigs have overtake other methods.
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How Does Crypto Mining Work?
In order to understand why crypto miners use GPU, it is helpful to get the gist of crypto mining. We will break down the process into a few basic parts. The technical requirements are a crucial part of the mining process – perhaps this goes without saying.
The basic technological components of crypto mining are:
I do not want to leave out electricity, of course. You will need and use lots of it in the crypto mining business. The disadvantages of various mining methods can be pegged to inefficient use of electricity and energy – among other things.
GPU mining overcomes some of the these disadvantages that are associated with other mining methods.
What Technology is Involved in Crypto Mining?
There are different ways to mine crypto. In its earliest days, using a CPU for mining was the most common option. The process is fairly straightforward; you use a computer’s power to solve complex mathematical problems in order to release new coins for circulation, by adding them to the blockchain ledger.
Crypto mining using a CPU is neither the only or dominant method for a few reasons. The algorithmic puzzles have become more and more challenging requiring more computer power to solve them.
As you can imagine, running your computer on such a high-power setting will run your electricity pretty high. The more coins that are committed to a blockchain ledger, the more complex and difficult the puzzles become.
According to Be In Crypto, You can still buy the best processor that money can buy if you prefer the CPU method. However, other methods, such as the GPU, are more effective for mining most of the top cryptocurrencies – notably Bitcoin.
Others, such as Monero, are specifically designed to work best with a CPU mining process.
What is the Best Method for Mining Crypto?
So far, I have only mentioned using a CPU in mining crypto. Another method is through the use of the Application-Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC).
ASIC devices are specifically used for mining crypto – and nothing else – different ASIC devices are designed to mine specific cryptocurrency, meaning that a Bitcoin ASIC will only mine Bitcoins, etc.
ASICs have several advantages. They are energy efficient, compared to a CPU. They have a higher hashrate, and are easier to use. The downsides of the ASICs are:
- They are limited to specific coins
- They are loud and can generate a lot of heat
- They are expensive upfront and may not give you return on investment that you want
There are tradeoffs with every method you choose, but GPU has become the most popular method for mining crypto. GPUs have several advantages over the other two mining methods that I have discussed.
They have been around for several years but, as with any useful technology, they have improved over time.
Is GPU The Best Way to Mine Crypto?
Before I answer that question, I will discuss why GPU came to dominate mining activity in the first place. For one, GPU mining is relatively cheap and efficient – two desirable advantages if you want to get ahead of the crypto mining business without letting your wallet take a hit.
In contrast, CPUs are expensive and inefficient, so the mining business is not really a good climate for them anymore.
With all of the right parts – graphics card, RAM, motherboard, power supply, and an ethos SSD – you can build a good GPU rig for less than $2,000. Expect to dish out more money if you want several GPUs to run in one rig.
GPUs are more efficient and faster when it comes to crypto mining, because of their high processing speeds. A related function is the ability to perform many calculations, thanks to the Arithmetic Logic Unit – the GPU has many of them.
This is a handy feature of you are looking for greater output.
Is GPU Mining Here to Stay?
According to one bold prediction by Nice Hash, GPU rigs will be all the rage in 2023. Besides the GPU’s technological prowess, the company argues that any upcoming rules and regulations drafted by a main crypto oversight agency – whatever that will be – will be favorable to GPUs, partly because of their widespread adoption.
Of course, others beg to differ, arguing that GPU mining will become obsolete – as many technologies do. There are a couple of reasons for this prediction.
One, Ethereum, the currency most commonly associated with this method, is being switched to a different proof mechanism. So, GPU mining will die and fall with Ethereum.
Another reason is that, despite their efficiency and relatively low cost, GPUs consume too much power. So, will the GPU die out or stick around and remain the most popular mining method for some time?
I cannot offer a definite answer on this one. But GPU mining will remain dominant for the foreseeable future.
Because of their cheapness, efficiency, and speed, GPUs have come to dominate crypto mining, exceeding its competitors because of what it delivers. GPU mining will not go away anytime soon.
Even if it is eventually replaced by a more efficient, cheaper, and more reliable crypto mining method, it will likely set the standard for future crypto technologies.