Bitcoin Mining Hardware: How To Choose the Right Setup
Mining for cryptocurrency is an increasingly popular way to gain passive income. The hardware does the nitpicky work of solving those equations and adding them to the blockchain while you go about your day. Doesn’t it sound like a dream come true?
That isn’t to say that you don’t have to do any work when mining for bitcoin. You’ve got to choose the hardware that fits your mining needs and craft a setup that works for you. How do you choose the right setup when shopping for bitcoin mining hardware, though?
Luckily, BT-Miners is here to take some of the mystery out of buying your mining rig and setting it up. Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you construct the mining setup of your dreams.
What Does a BTC Mining Setup Do?
Mining for bitcoin, commonly abbreviated as BTC, is done more effectively by a computer than by human work. Mining works by solving complex equations, providing proof of their completion (called “proof of work”), and adding the completed equation (a block) to the blockchain. When blocks are added to the blockchain, the user receives bitcoin tokens as a reward.
Even if you’re a talented mathematician, you won’t be able to complete these equations as quickly as a computer can. Plus, in order to receive that reward, you’ve got to be the first user to complete that equation—and you’ve got a life! Why not let a computer do the work while you’re away?
In the early days of crypto mining, this work could be done by regular CPUs (central processing units) like the ones in a normal home computer. However, since more people have gotten into the game, there are far more equations out there to solve.
To be lucrative in mining for bitcoin, you’ll need specialized computer equipment. The best bitcoin miners use ASICs, or application-specific integrated circuit chips. These high-powered circuits are made to search for those equations and solve them quickly.
What You’ll Need To Get Started
The best mining setups are anchored on three important tools: software, hardware, and a secure wallet. Let’s look at them in a little more depth.
Choose a software that’s compatible with your computer system. There are plenty of options on the market to compare and contrast. CGMiner, for example, is open source and compatible with a variety of different systems, while MultiMiner is known for being easy to use. Go for a software that matches not only your hardware, but also your experience level.
Some people like to build their own mining rigs using their home computer, while others prefer to buy them prebuilt. BT-Miners offers BTC mining equipment that’s designed specifically for bitcoin. Many prebuilt mining rigs, especially those equipped with ASIC chips, are extremely powerful right out of the gate. No tinkering required from you!
When your mining equipment starts generating those tokens, you’ll need a safe place to keep them. A good cryptocurrency wallet can be a physical object or a computer program. It holds the cryptographic keys to your bitcoin tokens that prove you own them—the tokens themselves live on the blockchain. A wallet holds both public and private keys. The public key lets others pay you to the address encrypted in the key, while the private key lets you spend your crypto.
Hash Rates and Your Rig
When purchasing and setting up your crypto mining hardware, you have plenty of options in front of you. Many miners do create their rigs from their home computers, amping up their power with high-quality graphics cards. Some also use multiple GPUs (graphics processing units) for their home mining rigs, but they can’t quite reach the power of an ASIC miner. To understand what “power” means in this context, let’s talk about the hash rate.
In crypto, a “hash” is a code made up of letters and numbers, meant to represent any kind of data—words, messages, you name it. When miners compete to solve equations and win tokens, they’re working with these codes. The idea is to target a particular hash and generate a new one of lesser or equal value by changing a single value in the code.
The hash rate of a network measures the health and security of the blockchain. That number reflects the network’s computational power, and it can also measure how much power a particular miner is using to complete transactions.
In simple terms, the hash rate number reflects how many calculations per second your hardware can do—and those numbers can get astronomically high! A higher hash rate means more mining power for you. Remember these notations as you shop:
- KH/s: kilo-hashes per second (thousands)
- MH/s: mega-hashes per second (millions)
- GH/s: giga-hashes per second (billions)
- TH/s: tera-hashes per second (trillions)
- PH/s: peta-hashes per second (quadrillions)
- EH/s: exa-hashes per second (quintillions)
One quintillion written out is 1,000,000,000,000,000,000. That’s 18 zeroes! It’s highly unlikely that your home computer can complete that many transactions per second, even with the best graphics cards. That’s where specialized mining hardware comes in—ASIC chips are much more powerful than homemade mining setups.
Choosing a Mining Rig
Now that you’re ready to set up your mining operation, it’s time to shop—and shop smart. Think about the power you want; many of the ASIC mining rigs offered by BT-Miners have hash rates in the TH/s (terra-hashes, or trillions of hashes, per second).
You’ll need a sturdy power supply for your mining setup, as this hardware uses a great deal of electricity as it works. How much will it heat up? Designate a space in your home or office for your mining rig where you can keep a close eye on it.
Each product offered by BT-Miners has plenty of information with it—almost like care instructions for a pet. You’ll know how big it is, how much energy it requires, and its ideal temperature before you buy. While crypto mining is an exciting venture, make sure you’re ready to face it head-on before making an investment.
As you prepare to add bitcoin mining hardware to your new rig, make sure you’re choosing the right setup. Consider how much power you want to devote to mining and how quickly you want to earn those reward tokens. If you’ve still got questions, BT-Miners offers consultation services and crypto mining guides; we’ll tailor our advice to your unique situation.