As the 20th century heralded radio technology and all of its resultant developments, blockchain and cryptocurrency may just be this century’s major contribution to the world. Bitcoin had come a long way from its start ten years ago. For those who don’t deal with cryptocurrencies at all, make sure you familiarise yourselves with Bitcoin transactions and mining before you jump into it. For the more with more experience with Bitcoin mining, we have created this article to help you decide between the top 5 bitcoin mining hardware you should be using.
Previously, Bitcoin was mined using regular computers just as its creator envisaged it to be. Later on, miners switched to Graphics Cards upon the realization that they delivered greater hashing power. Today, no serious miner will rely on anything other than an application specific integrated circuits or ASICs which are essentially computers designed purposely for mining Bitcoin.
ASICs have the capacity to resolve complex calculations, verify transactions and submit results at phenomenal speed compared to the regular computer. This speed and efficiency ensure that ASICs are the only tools available for mining Bitcoins profitably.
Bitcoin Mining Hardware: Performance
The mechanism of how ASICs Bitcoin mining hardware function is beyond the scope of this article. Nonetheless, a prospective miner need not have an understanding of this as a basic knowledge of Bitcoin is more than enough to set up an ASICs.
Note that the various Bitcoin mining hardware out there comes with varying performance levels. Therefore, the best ASIC miner is preferable to cope with the exponential complexity of the Bitcoin mining equations. In selecting the best mining hardware, the factors below are very critical:
This is the number of complex calculations the hardware completes per second. The higher the hashrate, the brighter the chances of solving the complex mathematical computations necessary for earning Bitcoin as a reward. Hashrate is measured in Megahashes (MH/s), Gigahashes (GH/s) or Terahashes (TH/s) per second.
The more powerful the mining hardware, the more electric power it will consume. It is therefore wise to do some cost/benefit analysis before opting for mining hardware. Particularly if you are in a location with high energy costs.
Cost of the Hardware
The best mining hardware can be pricey. However, consider that cheap and inferior hardware may leave you with undesirable results.
Leading Bitcoin Mining Hardware
In addition to all of the narratives above, below are the top five Bitcoin mining hardware as at November 2018:
Bitmain Antminer S9i
One of the best Bitcoin mining hardware available. It is also the most efficient mining hardware with the deployment of 3 circuit boards laid out with 189 chips. It is usable with the Antminer 1600 Watt power supply. The S9i has a hardened outer case which makes it safe to stack multiple miners on top of each other. Although electricity consumption is higher than the average, however, the S9i renders a tenth of a Joules per GH which is very efficient. The noise level is also high.
- Hashrate 14TH/s
- Purchase cost $2,999
- Power usage 1320W
- Consumption 0.1J/GH
- Weight 4,200g
Halong Mining DragonMint T1
After many years of Bitmain’s dominance of the mining hardware market, Halong Mining entered the market with this hardware to match the best of Bitmain’s offer. Although DragonMint requires more power than the S9i, it has higher hashrate and is more efficient.
- Hashrate 16TH/s
- Purchase cost $2,729
- Power usage 1480W
- Consumption 0.075J/GH
Bitmain Antminer T9
This is a really good bitcoin miner from Bitmain. Although the efficiency is lower than that of the S9, please note that the quality of chips in the T9 is higher than the S9. This makes the T9 more stable.
- Hashrate 11.5TH/s
- Purchase cost $1,099
- Power usage 1450W
- Consumption 0.126J/GH
Bitmain Antminer R4
This mining hardware was introduced to the market in 2017 and has remained competitive till date. It has very low noise levels and is quieter than competitors making it a great choice for home use.
- Hashrate 8.7TH/s
- Purchase cost $1,100
- Power usage 845W
- Weight 2,500g
Bitmain Antminer S7
This mining hardware has been in the market since 2015, and it remains dominant due to its lower power consumption and reasonable pricing compared to most others. It is very popular among people who mine as a hobby due to the low cost of entry and power efficiency. The unit is noisy and needs to be deployed outside the home.
- Hashrate 4.73TH/s
- Purchase cost $490
- Power usage 1,293W
- Weight 3,990g
- Consumption 0.25J/GH
At the end of the day, the decision to acquire mining hardware is personal. The above-listed products are among the best hardware out there and are highly recommended for purchase upon careful consideration of the factors listed above.
On a final note, it is an important point to remind you may trade mined Bitcoins for other cryptocurrencies. ASICs also do not secure your bitcoins. Therefore, all mined Bitcoins have to be moved to a hardware wallet.