Bitcoin miners and miners for other types of cryptocurrency are faced with the question of which type of mining tools they should use when they are getting started in the field. There is no real cut and dry answer as to which one is the best. Those who are new first need to learn a bit about how both of these types of systems and tools works, and they must understand the pros and cons of each. Only then will they be able to answer the question of which one they should use.
What Is GPU Mining?
GPU mining utilizes the computer’s graphic processing unit, and it can be used to mind Bitcoins, along with other types of cryptocurrency. This was a very popular method of mining cryptocurrency several years ago, and there is still quite a bit of information on the web that makes this appear to be a viable option for you. However, the world of Bitcoin is moving very fast today, and if you do not have a fast machine to help with the calculations, you are going to be left in the dust. You will not make any money.
Still, there are some who may want to use GPU mining for other types of cryptocurrency. These types of tools are easily sourced, and you can find them through AMD and NVIDIA, as well as through resellers. They are easy to put together for those who have even limited computer knowledge, and they tend to be reliable, and will have a decent resale value, as long as the GPU is not too old. They tend to be easy to upgrade, and they are affordable, especially when compared with some of the high-end ASIC tools out there.
The GPU mining option has a large number of disadvantages, though. They have a higher power draw – even higher than ASIC mining tools. They are not as powerful as ASIC mining tools, and they are not as efficient. In addition, even though many find that these tools are flexible, it is important to remember that they can’t profitably mind certain types of cryptocurrency, namely Bitcoin and LiteCoin. While they can mine the coins, they are not going to be doing so at a profit.
What Is ASIC Mining?
ASIC stands for application specific integrated circuit, which is a specialized chipset that is made specifically for mining Bitcoin. ASIC mining has become the most commonplace option when it comes to Bitcoin mining, and with good reason. These tools are capable of mining at a profit for their users, which is something other tools can’t do.
When you compare the ASIC mining tools to the GPU or CPU tools, you will find that the ASIC tools are going to draw quite a bit less power. Even though these tools are known to be power hungry, you will be spending far less on energy costs with ASIC compared to GPU.
Another one of the big benefits to working with the ASIC mining tool is the fact that they tend to have very high hash rates, meaning you will have a higher chance of making a profit as you are completing more and more of the blockchains. They tend to be relatively small units, as well, but they scan still provide a very powerful performance. Many choose to keep these units at home, although due to the noise and the heat they can produce, they keep them in rooms away from the living quarters. Others send their devices to colocation facilities.
These efficient tools can provide a greater level of profit for the users, and that is always a major concern when it comes to choosing the right kind of mining too. However, you do need to consider some of the potential drawbacks, as well. One of the biggest hurdles to overcome is the cost of the equipment. The equipment tends to be priced high, although it is sometimes possible to find used mining hardware for a nice discount.
In addition, these are only capable of mining certain types of coins, so they will not have as much flexibility. In fact, because they are only used for certain types of coins, and because they tend to have replacements out every few years that are better and more powerful, you will find that the resale value of the systems tends to be quite a bit less than the resale value for GPUs.
When a new ASIC mining device comes out, it is not possible to merely upgrade it. The entire device will need to be replaced if you want to keep up with all of the other miners out there and keep making a profit. These devices tend to have a short lifespan, which is unfortunate, but it is the nature of technology.
Which One Should You Use?
While both the GPU mining and the ASIC mining tools have advantages and disadvantages, you will find that ASIC really does tend to be the best option when it comes to making an actual profit. While GPU might be feasible to use when it comes to working with other types of cryptocurrency, those who want to work with Bitcoin will find that it simply does not have the power needed to provide any real potential for a profit. In fact, depending on the power of the GPU, it can take years to earn even a partial Bitcoin.
Before you make your decision, you will want to think about your long-term goals. If you are only interested in Bitcoin, and you want to have the fastest machines that can make you a profit the ASIC mining options are certainly the best, and this is the trend for most who are getting into this field today. However, those who might be just starting out and who do not have a substantial amount of money to spend will want to consider working with a GPU and looking at mining some of the altcoins out there.