Bitcoin Mining Now

Bitcoin mining has traveled a long way since 2009, from the humble 1.5 MH/s Intel i3 to the mighty 500 GH/s KnCMiner Jupiter. In 2009, any decent CPU could mine a block. As the total hashrate of the network increased, though, more efficient GPUs started to take over the mining scene. Eventually, slightly more cost-effective FPGAs came along, but GPU mining was still viable. Around early 2013, though, ASICs first started to circulate. ASICs have made GPU mining obsolete and will only do one thing: mine bitcoins. They are vastly faster and consume much less power. siliconangle.com_files_2013_12_bitcoin-miner.jpg


There have been four major bitcoin mining generations. The first was the CPU mining generation, then the GPU mining generation, followed by the FPGA generation, and now, the ASIC generation. There are four-sub generations, though, included in the ASIC category.


The first generation of ASICs were 110nm, considered revolutionary at the time. Soon, though, 65nm, then 55nm and now 28nm chips hit the market, offering increased performance at a lesser price and in a smaller unit. Each generation brought a new improvement in hashpower, from 50 GH/s to 120 GH/s and now 500 GH/s! The next generation of miners, capping at over 1 TH/s (that's right, TERAhash!) will be arriving soon. At the moment, the only way to turn a profit is to wait for the current generation's miners to be sold secondhand or place preorders for the next generation. There are other ways to “mine”, though.

Cloud Mining/Hashing

Recently, some companies such as have offered cloud mining deals. In this system, you buy a fixed number of gigahashes per second and the amount that the company mines while you hold the gigahashes is put into your account balance.

www.cca-systems.com_images_core_20i3_20550_20processor.jpg www.legitreviews.com_images_reviews_2050_sapphire-7950-dvi.jpg www.ztex.de_imgs_usb-fpga-1.15x-hs-1200.jpg cdn.arstechnica.net_wp-content_uploads_2013_06_bfl2-ext-front-oblique-640x426.jpg cointerra.com_wp-content_uploads_2013_08_front_lo-iso_nocover-600x480.jpg
From left to right:
1. An Intel Core i3 CPU
2. A Sapphire Radeon 7950 GPU
3. A Spartan USB FPGA Module
4. A Butterfly Labs 4.5 GH/s ASIC Jalapeno Miner.
5. A concept of CoinTerra's 2 TH/s TerraMiner IV (Coming Soon)


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