It used to be that when hearkening back to my younger years, I would look back in nostalgia and joy. Today, what is more prevalent is regret and rage. You may ask, "But Brynn - why rage? What do you regret?" Let me explain.
The year was 2012.
Bitcoin was fresh on the scene. I was almost finishing school. But one important thing happened in my life that could have changed everything. I got my first gaming PC. It was a mean machine, and I would spend weekends at mates' houses LAN'ing and enjoying the gaming scene of FarCry 2 and Counter Strike. Great memories! But after my few months in the crypto space, I'm left with just one question...
Why did you not try mining?!
Why did I neglect such an incredible opportunity? What would be different if I had decided to just mine for fun, or even just signed up for the first bitcoin faucet? Being such a tech nerd at the time, it is highly likely that I would have enjoyed the process and concept of bitcoin mining. But alas - here I am today, with only a few sats to my name. The mind-blowing part is just that though - I'm still relatively early to the game! We all are.
Regardless of that trip down memory lane, my story is based around mining in 2020. I have been trying to mine over the past 2 weeks, so I am in no way an expert nor an experienced miner. I'm very grateful that there are many sources of information online regarding setting up your rig for mining, what works best, the necessary settings to use etc., as this has made the entire process quite hassle-free.
- The Hardware
I am currently running a Radeon RX 580 on my editing rig, which is the rig I use to mine in my downtime. Thus, this is NOT a dedicated mining rig made up of 6 GPUs. It is a simple workstation PC that I use daily. That's why I am only mining for a portion of the day, not the entire day. I have researched the various settings available through the Radeon software, and adjust my rig accordingly. The hash rate went from 10mh/s with the original settings, all the way up to 27mh/s with the specified ones! I quite literally could not believe it. I could overclock the GPU to reach around 32mh/s, but for the moment I am cautious towards the prospect of damaging my workstation. It is my everything. If I end up running a small 2-3 GPU rig, I would definitely recommend going for it.
- The Software
Many of you might disagree with my use of NiceHash 3.0, but in all honesty it has not given me any problems. Sure there is a fee that is paid, and there's also a minimum withdrawal amount. But as a trade off, I get ease-of-use and security. Definitely worth it in my opinion. NiceHash has a clean interface, and the fact that I can track my rigs from a secure app makes it really appealing as well. It also automatically switches between the most profitable mining software (it seems that DaggerHashimoto was the most profitable on my RX line GPU). You could definitely set everything up (safely) yourself if you did enough research and kept a few security precautions. Other than that, it seems to be a surprisingly simple part of the mining experience so far.
- The Results
So how did it do? Well, considering the inconsistent use of the mining software as well as the rapid fluctuations in the price of BTC and ETH, I think it did quite well! My current total is just over 0.0006 BTC (worth around R100 or a little more than $6). Not bad considering it just barely affected my electricity bill, since my PC runs through most nights anyway. Of course, there was extra power consumption, but I consider it my use of electricity to "buy" the little bit of BTC I've received! Overall, I'm quite impressed. I had thought that mining (both GPU and CPU) were absolutely worthless unless you had a dedicated rig. But this little experience has proven me wrong! I'll definitely be continuing to have my GPU earn me a few extra sats over the coming months - especially if the price of BTC and ETH continue to grow.
To look at it in the more broad sense, I do believe that there is money to be made with crypto mining, even in residential areas. It just requires a little bit of sacrifice and perseverance. I'm hoping to do a follow-up article later in the year, just to check in and see how it has gone! If you are a miner and have any tips or tricks, please leave them in the comments!
Thanks so much for reading!
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