As some of you in the community know that I've been around for a little while now, GPU mining was my thing. I'm going to give you fellow miners a break down as to what my thoughts are and reasonings for not mining any longer.
For those of you whom haven't read my previous posts, I started out in 2012 with two 7950's. I mined and made some decent profits, not great due to messing up some trades but still came out ahead and had paid off all my geapower costs and a little extra.
I decided to expand and go big, I expanded to 12 cards and did pretty decent as well. broke even and then decided to expand even further to 53 cards, however for stability reasons I downsized to 46 280x's and removed any other models.
I unfortunately did not come close to breaking even on that last venture due to ASICS hitting the market at the same time I received my shipment of GPU's that was backordered for 4 months.
I've mined with the new system since April and have yet to come close to any ROI. I've been breaking even at best on power costs when averaging what i've mined to the costs of power I've spent.
Here's some reasons why I've failed and or what was going on at the times:
-asics hit the market at the same time and caused panic for GPU miners that were scrypt based.
- GPU miners that went to other algo's right away before the asics came, may have done OK. I however was still on scrypt with my 12 cards, it was still a little profitable and seemed OK to be mining still, as the alternative algo's that were GPU only were starting to not be as profitable as some of the scrypt coins were. I still found that scrypt was profitable up to around May. In May it seemed that scrypt was going to be pretty much taken over by asics and GPU algo coins were showing to be more profitable in the sense where the power costs were lower for x11/13/15. However the profits were not that much greater. For instance I paid around $37 a day in power for scrypt and $18~ a day for x11/13/15. Profits for scrypt would be around $5-15 a day and profits for x11/13/15 would be around the same. This way I was spending less on power and making the same profit roughly.
- Eventually auto mining I found wasn't working very well, I ended up with a lot of crap coins that I couldn't sell for decent prices and held them too long thinking they'd bounce from a market pop rather than dumping them instantly. (dumping instantly didnt seem to work too well, as I would mine them then go to dump and the price would have gone down %30+ making it not worth selling, leaving me with very little profit to no profit and actually costing me power money).
- Rig rentals - I started renting my rigs out which was alright but not great, generally would make only $10-15 a day profit above power costs so the same as auto mining. Very quickly within a month the rental prices shot down so much that i was basically renting the rigs out for a few bucks a day profit to zero profit and losing money on the rentals yet having to deal with all the headache of monitoring my rigs.
- I then tried focusing on the new released coins instead of using a auto mine pool, I noticed a lot of people on the forums loved trying to mine the new announced coins then holding them or dumping them instantly. That route didn't work out too well. I would say that out of the 10~ coins I tried mining on launch dates that maybe 3 of the 10 I ended up making decent profits on while the others completely turned into a scamcoin which meant I wasted my power money on them since they couldn't be sold on any exchange due to the communities realizing they were bugged or programmed to be a scam in the first place. I ended up probably breaking even between the power costs of those 10 coins and the profits from the 3. Some of the coins that werent scamcoins just ended up being dead ends that I should have dropped right away rather than hold for a rebound as none of them have rebounded to date.(MAIA coin for instance has yet to rebound to any prices anyone predicted on the forums)
- Key points to remember about mining and or trading, whether its stocks, forex, crypto: Next to no one can be trusted, their opinion/word is irrelevant, money is what talks. If people can prove that they've invested in something heavily then their word holds more weight to what you are willing to put your own money down on. I've always taken note to the forums/trollboxes/irc that what's said anywhere is to be taken with a grain of salt. Hence why I've tried so many methods to see what may work and what may not work. I realize also that some of these methods such as auto mining, coin launches etc can work quite well if you are lucky enough to sell at the right times for the right prices(not being too greedy), however there are always going to be times that you'll get burnt in any of the above methods mentioned.
As of today and for the past month I've found that it's really not worth the time and effort to mine. Between the time I've spent researching what new coins to mine, renting my rigs etc. all the time that goes into what is now this very competitive industry I've found it isnt worth it. For the people whom get free power GPU mining is still barely worth the time. With 46 cards I would be able to make around $20 a day if I had free power and honestly my time is worth a lot more to me than $20 a day, seeing as to make that $20 I have to really put the time in to ensure I'm making good trades/mining the best coins for the day.
Also the price of hardware is plummeting at accelerating rates. My rigs consisted of 280x's and the pricier models might I add, selling them used for the past two weeks I've noticed the majority of buyers are bottom feeders(People that are looking for a dirt cheap price on hardware and want to basically steal them off your hands). Less than 50% of the retail price is what they're asking for. And for myself, 50% of todays retail price is a slap in the face, seeing as my cards are less than 6 months old, have 2 year warranties and have been babied (not OC'd), when I removed them from the mining room, the majority of them didn't even have a spec of dust on them due to the air flow setup I had and as close to a dust free environment as I could get with industrial surge protection ensuring all hardware was safe.
The general public doesn't think to look on craigslist, or the other free to post local services where you'll be likely to post your hardware. Only generally the bottom feeders are monitoring those sites and they will have no shame in offering you prices that are next to ridiculous, even when you state 'FIRM price' in your listing.
Ebay gives you more exposure however ebay takes a cut on the sales. So you want $180 for your 280x? well now you have to put it up on ebay for $206~ due to the fee's from ebay/paypal, and now that $206 card costs the buyer an additional $15-30 in shipping. At the end of the day with ebay you're likely to be selling your hardware for a huge loss due to their fee's.
I've yet to find a good site where you can post your hardware and reach the mass public to ensure a lot of views on your ads while being able to sell your hardware at a decent price. I've found Reddit hardware page also is hard to get decent buyers, a lot of bottom feeders will approach you much like on craigslist.
As a consumer myself, I find it very odd that there's so many bottom-feeder type people out there on these local trading sites. If I was looking for a GPU or other hardware upgrades on the local trading sites, I'd be pretty fine and excited with getting a piece of hardware that is listed with at least a $100-150 savings(lets say retail is 340 after tax and there's an ad for an item at $200) but these bottom-feeders aren't, they want this stuff for far less to feel that they've gotten a 'deal'.
All in all what I recommend for GPU miners and what I see the future of GPU mining coming to(there's a few scenarios):
- If you pay for power, sell your hardware while you can, prices are getting lower and lower every week on your hardware due to people trying to get rid of their gear, however try to do yourself a favour and not give into the bottom feeders, it doesn't help anyone when we let these guys get ahold of our hardware for beyond dirt cheap prices. Consider how long your warranty coverage is for, that coverage really does hold value.(how many used products do you buy end up having a warranty? and if they do, how many hold a long warranty greater than a year left? not many! The bottom feeders will be able to warranty the product if it ever has an issue and they'll still be getting a crazy deal after paying for the return to manufacture shipping cost!)
- with your cash from your hardware, you can now buy BTC at a lower price than you were likely mining or the same. But now you'll have a lot more cash to spend on BTC rather than mining at such a slow rate. You can then take that BTC and invest it into alt coins giving you a lot more BTC to play with than you would have had with mining.(That's if you still want to invest in crypto after selling the hardware, otherwise keep your money!)
-If you don't pay for power, consider still selling your hardware, look at my setup, 46 cards making $20 a day on average. The time it would take to ROI on my hardware is close to 5+years, and that's with free power! What are the chances that I'll ROI if I kept mining? next to none. Most of you out there have 1-6 cards, you're making peanuts most likely. Get rid of the hardware, re-invest the money into BTC and buy your ALT coins that you believed in mining if you were a long term coin holder. Or just take the cash and spend it on other things in life! The price of your hardware will continue to decline and you're likely not going to make more over time with the mining.
Some arguments to consider:
"Price of BTC may rise to $10000 one day, so mining with gpu's now if you have free power is still worth it!" some people state. Well I can tell you that I've seen it happen multiple times where the price of BTC has risen and the price of ALT's has corrected itself. There have been far and few moments in crypto history where ALT coins have gone UP with BTC especially recently. Chances of your random coin climbing the fiat ladder as BTC rises is very slim. Out of the hundreds of coins out there now, what coin are you going to bet on to rise with BTC while the rest of them stay at their current day fiat prices? For example, a coin lets say you hold now is worth $0.10 cents. When BTC hits $1000, it corrects and is still worth $0.10 cents equivalent in fiat. Not many coins are going to RISE in value alongside BTC.(That's if BTC rises, no one can for sure say if it even will!) Chances of you choosing the few coins that do rise with BTC will be slim.
All in all if you have the spare money to mine, sure do it, it's fun to contribute to the community, but don't expect to make a buck unless you've gone industrial size like myself, and even then you're making such little profit if you have free power.(who's going to get free power at $18 a day running costs? not many!)
What the GPU scene needs is new GPU hardware that can mine way better than anything out today for GPU's(likely not to happen for cheap) and or we need GPU coins to hold value somehow, IE a good marketing campaign where the GPU coin(s) can clearly gain back investors.
I don't see GPU mining being profitable again really for quite some time if ever and thus I'm getting out of it for now. I've been burnt bad enough with the most recent expansion that I wont be able to get into mining again for quite some time. Time will tell.
For now I recommend people sell hardware and buy crypto with the money or instead of buying hardware if you're thinking of getting into mining, just buy crypto outright. Mining right now is a loss for the majority of miners out there. Hope this post has helped shed some light to those that are looking to get into mining or who are in mining and unsure of what's going on and what to do. (and again, take my feedback with a grain of salt, you don't know who you can trust when it comes to you and your investments :P)
Also as a side note my power costs are around .12 to .14 per KWh. Which is supposedly quite cheap compared to many places in the world.
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