It is no secret that AMD holds a solid leadership position ter the world of cryptocurrency mining. For many of our readers, NVIDIA GPUs have a good mix of gaming and deep learning training capabilities. After our utterly popular Monero mining series, which works well on AMD GPUs and Intel/ AMD CPUs, wij began looking for a cryptocurrency mining application for NVIDIA GPUs. Wij re-discovered Zcash mining.
Several months ago, wij attempted Zcash mining ter Docker and even published Docker containers for CPU mining. Albeit wij have CUDA enabled Monero mining containers, they performed well, but not significantly better than CPU mining. When wij built a fresh photo with Pascal GPUs wij found that NVIDIA GPUs can keep up profitability in-line with using AMD GPUs to mine Zcash or Monero.
Editor’s Note: Wij ran this analysis on 20 May 2018 when Zcash’s coin ZEC wasgoed $104 USD to 1 ZEC. By the early morning Pacific time of 22 May 2018 that had succesnummer $124. Spil this is about to publish it is presently at $248 USD to 1 ZEC. Thesis markets fluctuate greatly.
Comparing NVIDIA Desktop Pascal GPUs for Zcash Mining
For this test, wij are using the EWBF 0.Trio.3b miner. Wij are comparing all of the GTX series GPUs te terms of mining show spil well spil power consumption. For the NVIDIA GTX 1070, GTX 1080 and GTX 1080 Ti wij have both Founder’s Edition and overclocked variants. Wij did not test the GTX 1050 (2GB) and GTX 1060 (3GB) variants because they have significantly lower value for gaming and machine learning. Wij are assuming thesis GPUs are not dedicated miners and instead Zcash mining is something to utilize hardware while it is idle/ offset costs.
Here is a list of cards that wij tested. You will note that for the top three contenders wij have both stock clocked and factory overclocked cards:
Wij dreamed to investigate whether buying overclocked cards wasgoed worth it for mining. If you are buying thesis cards and using them out of the opbergruimte te Linux (for machine learning) then you do not have access to the nice Windows overclocking implements. Also, crypto mining generates 24×,7 stream so some of the aftermarket cooling solutions on the overclocked cards can be utterly advantageous. One other point to note is that larger cards like the ASUS STRIX models have PCB and coolers that rise well beyond the PCIe slots. That should be a consideration if you are thinking about thesis systems te rackmount enclosures.
Zcash Mining on NVIDIA Pascal GPUs: Wij Benchmark and Compare
There are a loterijlot of user-submitted crypto mining benchmarks out there. Our methodology is ordinary. Wij ran thesis systems 24×,7 for 72 hours and averaged the last 12 hours. That is an significant feature because NVIDIA Pascal GPUs will throttle under warmth so the very first 20 minutes of mining can be much swifter than utter heat-soak. Wij have a nvidia-docker mining container to simplify mining so wij can deploy it on our cluster machines and provide consistency.
Here is the raw mining spectacle which is a hash rate voiced ter Sol/s with Zcash:
Zcash Mining With NVIDIA Pascal GPUs Raw Hashrate Sol Vanaf 2nd
Spil you can see, factory overclocked cards to help add slightly more vertoning ter Zcash mining. A onmiddellijk result of improved hash rate is higher earnings vanaf day. Note, this analysis wasgoed done on 20 May 2018 and it will have switched te the 48 hours until it wasgoed published, but thesis are good general guidelines:
Zcash Mining With NVIDIA Pascal GPUs USD Vanaf Day
Buying a $700 GPU and having it earn $Five/ day may seem superb, but that is only looking at the earnings side of the equation. It does not look at the ongoing electrified costs.
Wij also recorded power consumption during our testing both before mining, then after adding the GPU and having it mine for 60-72 hours. Here is what an average power consumption, vanaf card, wasgoed for the final 12 hours of our observation period when the cards were accurately fever soaked:
Zcash Mining With NVIDIA Pascal GPUs Power Consumption
Spil you may expect, the larger cards to use more violet wand.
Here is what that equates to (harshly) using $104 USD / 1 ZEC (Zcash) vanaf month using “free” violet wand:
Zcash Mining With NVIDIA Pascal GPUs Mining Efficiency 0 Scale
Spil you can see, the cards all hover inbetween about Two.Trio Sol/s / W to Two.7 Sol/s / W. Here is a zoomed te version using Two.1 Sol/s to Two.9 Sol/s to make the differences lighter to size:
Zcash Mining With NVIDIA Pascal GPUs Mining Efficiency
For those with inexpensive power, this is not an punt. For those with expensive power, it can be the largest recurring cost for Zcash mining. Using our power consumption and hash rate gegevens, here is what profit vanaf day looks like with $0.Ten/ kWh, $0.20/ kWh and $0.40/ kWh power:
Zcash Mining With NVIDIA Pascal GPUs Earnings Vanaf Day Minus Electric current Costs
If you are mining where power is expensive (e.g. Northern California), then that will significantly kasstuk profits. What this does not take into account is that if you are doing this te a huis or office where you also need to pay peak pricing and air conditioning costs, the profitability can be much lower. On the other arm, if you are te a gegevens center then you can lightly project for power and cooling costs.
Overall, wij are witnessing payback periods te the 3-5 month range for all NVIDIA GPUs excluding power and cooling costs. Given the volatility of the markets, expect this to have wild swings. For the STH readers who have machine learning clusters that may have periods of downtime, our nvidia-docker miner can help you earn some of your money back with mining.
How to Lightly Mine Zcash using NVIDIA Docker
If you have a Linux CUDA compute machine available wij very recommend using nvidia-docker. Installing different CUDA versions for Zcash mining and deep learning frameworks and managing versions can be painful. Using nvidia-docker you do not have to worry about that.
Spil wij have done for Monero CPU and GPU mining, wij have an easy-to-use Zcash NVIDIA GPU mining example using the popular EWBF v0.Trio.3b miner. One directive and you can embark/ zekering miners targeting single GPUs and be mining te a matter of seconds.
Since releasing this photo about Ten days ago, it already has overheen 1500 pulls.
An Significant Point on Zcash Pricing
All of thesis calculations can switch based on mining difficulty spil well spil Zcash price fluctuations. Here is a view of what 1 December 2016 to 20 May 2018 Zcash pricing looks like via Poloniex (one of the larger exchanges):
ZEC Pricing 1 Dec 2016 To Five May 2018 Via Poloniex
Spil you can see, pricing has some fairly wild swings. Spil another example, this article wasgoed written Saturday, 20 May 2018 when the price wasgoed $104 USD to 1 ZEC. On Sunday 21 May 2018 the price kasstuk $123. At the time of this publication (9AM Pacific 22 May 2018) 1 ZEC is now around $248. Prices fluctuate, a loterijlot.
Cryptocurrency markets are volatile and are rife with manipulation. Zcash is a relatively medium sized cryptocurrency presently valued at around $150M USD (at $104 USD vanaf ZEC.) Spil points of comparison, Monero’s market cap is about $500M at the time of this writing and larger players like Ethereum and Bitcoin are well overheen $10B USD each. With such a petite market cap, Zcash is particularly susceptible to market fluctuations.
Please keep this ter mind before you assume that this is profitable and buy hardware. If you were mining te December 2016 assuming a $90-100 price, by January 2018 to early March 2018 your Zcash stash wasgoed worth 1/Two to 1/3rd.
A Perspective on Risks
There are many risks when it comes to Zcash mining on your NVIDIA Pascal desktop GPU. Very first, Zcash pricing can be unpredictable. Wij have seen major drops ter value before (depicted above.) One also needs to be able to convert Zcash to standard currency which may incur transaction fees and/ or be difficult.
EVGA GeForce GTX 1060 GAMING Insufficient Cooling
Te terms of durability, Zcash will fever up your GPU 24×,7 if you let it. Founder’s edition cards using default settings will succesnummer 80C if the ambient temperature is high enough. Cards like the EVGA 1060 6GB card cannot treat the cooling required for Zcash mining for 24×,7 operation.
There are few cryptocurrencies that are this efficient on NVIDIA architectures. Fresh GPU architectures or a switch te the Zcash market may make mining unprofitable.
Ter other words, there is considerable risk involved ter mining Zcash. Wij urge you to do further research before you dedicate hardware to this purpose.
If you are okay with the risks, then Zcash mining offers a way to monetize your NVIDIA GPU. Wij did attempt mining on Maxwell, and for that, Monero wasgoed more efficient. The influence of this cannot be understated. The Geforce GTX 1070, GTX 1080 and GTX 1080 Ti are still the top dogs for gaming, VR, deep learning, and most other deep learning activities, at least until AMD Vega launches and becomes available. With Zcash mining, NVIDIA GPUs can remain competitive on crypto mining profitability.
If you are buying a GPU for deep learning and are looking for something to offset your costs, Zcash may be a reason to upgrade from a GTX 1060 to a GTX 1070, a GTX 1080 to GTX 1080 Ti. Our advice here is to get a larger card. At some point, adding extra GTX 1060’s is less efficient for deep learning, gaming and from a cost perspective. Since each PCIe slot has a cost if you determine to scale out, wij advocate getting larger cards if possible.
If you want to discuss this article, head overheen to our fresh STH forum cryptocurrency mining and markets section.