All About BTC, LTC, ETH mining as well as other alternative crypto currencies
Time to see what the AMD Radeon RX 460 is capable of bringing to the crypto mining world. We got a Gigabyte Windoforce OC AMD Radeon RX 460 with 2 GB of video memory to test what hashrate it will manage to provide you with for mining Ethereum (ETH) and other popular crypto algorithms. The Radeon RX 460 is currently the leas powerful model of the new RX series from AMD, it comes with just 896 stream processors, uses x8 PCI-E lines, relies of a 128-bit memory bus and comes with 2GB or 4GB video memory clocked at 7 GHz. The biggest advantage that the Radeon RX 460 has is the low power usage that the card has, below 75W TDP as it does not feature a PCI-E power connector for external power. The big question however is how much performance it manages to provide for the low power usage it has.
Do note that we are going to be using a 2GB video card here and for Ethereum mining that can cause some issues as some of you probably know already. Some video cards with 2GB video memory by default produce an error when you try to mine Ethereum with them, but the good news is that with some extra commands you can still use them. Here is How to Fix Ethminer Not-Working Issues on 2GB GPUs, this trick also does the job for the RX 460 2GB.
Let us see what the Gigabyte Windoforce OC AMD Radeon RX 460 2GB can do when mining Ethereum with the Claymore Dual Miner – about 10.9 MHS average. That hashrate is a direct result from the 128-bit memory and the 4GB versions should do the same as they are also equipped with 7 GHz video memory using the same width of the memory bus. The hashrate is pretty much half of what a Radeon RX 470 with 7 GHz video memory and 256-bit memory bus provides as you can see from our review of a 4GB 7GHz RX 470 here.
The obvious thing to do here is to try and overclock the video memory to see if we can squeeze some more extra performance by going over the default 7 GHz (1750 MHz) frequency. Well, you can go quick a bit overclocking the video memory, however pas the 7 GHz mark it apparently switches to more relaxed timings and thus you don’t actually see increase of the hashrate, but a drop. So overclocking the video memory is pointless for Ethereum mining, though for gaming it should still result in some extra performance increase.
With the stock settings for the GPU and memory when you are mining Ethereum (ETH) you should be below 60W of power used by the video card in total, though you can probably further reduce that with some tweaking while maintaining the same hashrate for mining Ethereum. The default setting for the fans manages to keep the card at 68 degrees Celsius with just the fans rotating at 33%, maxing them out to 100% makes the card a bit noisy, but the temperature goes down to just about 50 degrees.
Here is how the situation looks for other popular crypto mining algorithms, tested with the latest NiceHash Miner. It is as expected, the RX 460 is more than two times slower than the RX 470… but with the 460 having less than half of the Stream Processor of a 470 it is normal that GPU intensive algorithms will be slower. Furthermore, without Ellesmere-specific optimizations for certain algorithms the hashrates produced with the default kernels for some algorithms do seem really disappointing when compared to optimized kernels on 280X and 290X or the 300 series. So while the new Radeon RX 400 series does manage to do quite well in Ethereum mining (memory-intensive algorithm) the new GPUs from AMD are just lacking the raw power to be able to offer really good hashrate for other GPU-intensive algorithms.
With less than two weeks left before the official launch date of the highly anticipated AMD Radeon RX 480 GPUs that are supposedly coming out on 29th of June with a recommended price tag of $199 USD people are getting anxious to get their hands on the hardware. The speculations are that the RX 480 will be doing great for mining Ethereum while also being quite power efficient and at the announced price it could be the killer ETH mining choice for multi-GPU mining rigs. So what could potentially make the Radeon RX 480 not so great choice for mining after all when the cards start hitting the market at the end of this month?
When AMD announced that the RX 480 will be priced at $199 USD everybody was surprised by the good news, yes, it is not top model GPU offering the highest performance on the market, but for the expected performance the price was great. Unfortunately with the upcoming release on the market we are hearing some not so good news that will make the RX 480 less attractive choice for mining and it is entirely related to the price point. It seems that the $199 USD price tag was indeed too good to be true, we are hearing from different sources that the actual end user prices will be more like 20-30% higher than that. Furthermore initially the availability of the new GPUs will most likely not be able to match the high demand that it is expected, so in the end it seems not very likely that will be able to get your hands on an RX 480 on 29th for $199 USD.
A few days ago AMD has also announced two lower-end Polaris-based models – the RX 470 and RX 460 GPUs that should be even more affordable and still manage to provide good performance (for gaming that is). What you should be more interested in however is the AMD Radeon RX 470 that is expected to be slightly cut down version of the RX 480 GPU, retaining the same PCB and 256-bit memory bus. So the chances that the RX 470 might be able to perform very similar in terms of performance for Ethereum mining like the RX 480 are pretty good and with the right price it might be even more attractive for crypto miners. However while AMD says that the RX 470 and RX 460 should be available at the same time the RX 480 launches, we expect that they will be a bit late with about a week or two on the market.
The focus of the RX 480 was mostly put on the Ethereum GPU mining, but we are still on the speculation phase and nobody knows for sure how much MHS the new GPUs will be able to provide. What you should also wonder however is how well these new video cards based on the 14nm AMD Polaris architecture will perform in other crypto currency algorithms and not just buy them because of possibly good Ethereum performance. With the recent issue with the DAO and the drop of ETH price this has become even more important and you should not forget that Ethereum will be mineable for probably up to a year more and then will be switching to PoS…