All About BTC, LTC, ETH mining as well as other alternative crypto currencies
When calculating what crypto coin to mine you need to take into account not only the hashrate you get, but also the power usage for the specific algorithm used by the coin. When talking about Nvidia GPUs the two most popular ones used by miners are GTX 750 Ti and GTX 970 and there is a reason behind that – they offer good price/performance ratio to be used in multi-GPU mining rigs. Sure you can always go for a GTX 980 Ti or even GTX Titan X, but these although more powerful are also significantly more expensive and do not provide so good price/performance ratio.
We have decided to do a quick check of the current situation with a Geforce GTX 970 video card from Gigabyte (WF3OC) and a GeForce GTX 980 Ti reference design GPU and see how they compare in a power and performance check. The results you see in the table above are achieved with the latest ccMiner 1.7.4 from Tpruvot and with the latest fork of ethminer wth CUDA support from Genoil. The video cards are not overclocked further than their factory settings (the Gigabyte GTX 970 is factory overclocked) and they are forced to run CUDA applications in P0 power state to maximize performance in Ethereum.
As you can see from the results aside from Ethereum the GTX 980 Ti is faster with not that much more power usage, however the price of the 980 Ti is roughly double the price of a single GTX 970 and with two 970s you are sure to beat the hashrate of a single 980 Ti. It is interesting to see that a GTX 980 Ti (reference board) can be slower than a GTX 970 GPU, but with a non-reference design you can actually get about 20-21 MHS in Ethereum due to the higher clocks. Still the GTX 980 Ti is most definetly not the right video card for mining Ethereum, if you want to stick to mining Ethereum’s Ether coins with Nvidia you should go for the GTX 970 for sure as the best choice. Even though for Ethereum and other Dagger-Hashimoto altcoins AMD GPUs are still faster in terms of hashrate.
The GPU mining is still not dead, however the part where people would go on building new mining rigs with multiple video cards like they did with Radeon R9 280X, 290 and 290X is kind of in the past, or at least for the moment. The community working on AMD mining software has not been very active lately, not like the Nvidia where we have seen a lot of improvement in the miners in terms of hashrate and functionality over the past few months. It was started with the release of the GTX 750 Ti and then the new Maxwell-based GTX 970 and GTX 980 cards, but with the new more powerful cards from Nvidia you can just upgrade and use a single card for gaming and when you are not playing games to leave your system mining some crypto coins. Sure, using a single card will not make you rich from the miner coins, but you can keep the hobby mining part and still have a great gaming video card when you want to play games on it. You can go with two cards in SLI for even better gaming performance and more mining power and the idea is that over the course of time you could at least get back the money you paid for the cards back via the mining. So it all might not be a bad deal for people that are mining as a hobby and are also gamers, unlike GTX 750, the GTX 970 and GTX 980 are much more powerful and perfect choice for the more demanding games. We would recommend to go for non-reference design cards such as Gigabyte’s G1 GTX 970 and GTX 980 cards or other models with Windforce cooler for example, the non-reference high performance coolers do well with overclocking while still remaining pretty silent while operating under load.
If you have been following our updates lately you would have seen a lot of activity from developers on various forks of ccMiner going on and a lot of performance improvements for all Maxwell-based GPUs from Nvidia. There are also useful tools like the NiceHash Control Tool and the new and improved Miner Control that can make things easier for you if you do not want to always be on the lookout for new altcoins and still be able to maximize your profit mining at the right and profitable places. Having just a single or a few GPUs and mining as a hobby does not mean that things should be hard for you, you can go the easy way and sell your hashrate for the best price you can get at services sch as NiceHash or WestHash. Now may not be the best time to be GPU mining or mining with ASICs for that matter unless you already have made a big mining farm, but if the history repeats itself and Litecoin continues to go the same way that Bitcoin already went through mining with GPUs might yet again become a profitable thing to do in the near future, but we’ll have to wait and see…
Here is a nice and useful software for everyone using Nvidia GPUs for mining crypto coins, especially for people that have built mining rigs based on the very popular for mining GeForce GTX 750 Ti video cards. The tool is called Profit Calculator and in open source, being developed by a user called KBomba. It queries different crypto exchanges such as Bittrex, Mintpal and Cryptsy for coin prices, uses services like WhatToMine, CoinTweak and CoinWarz for the current coin difficulty and block rewards and also checks Nicehash for their current prices as well as PoolPicker for the most profitable pools. The result you get is a list based on profitability that includes not only the most profitable coins to mine, but also the most profitable multipools as well with an estimate on the expected revenue.
The hashrate values that are preset in the tool by default are for a single GTX 750 Ti GPU, but you can change them for other cards if you know the hashrate values of your hardware for the different algorithms. This actually makes the tool useable not only for Nvidia, but also for AMD-based mining rigs as well, though you should first check what hashrate will your hardware be able to provide in order to be able to get more accurate results for what your earnings should be. So do give the tool a try, it can be quite useful even if the results may not always be absolutely accurate, you can still get a pretty good idea about the current market and coin profitability.