Since the last Bitcoin crash there haven’t been many miners left in the game as it has become an unprofitable hobby for most people. The big players that have invested hundreds of thousands are the ones who suffer the most as well as the ones that are not able to leave the game so easy without making such a big loss.
What must be stated is that the geographical location is a huge factor that is unfair to some. There are 3 main factors that affect most people because of their geographical location:
· The prices of graphics cards based on countries economy
· The prices of electricity based in your country or region
· The currency in which you purchase the graphics card
It depends very much what countries you compare the prices too, If we take a look at countries in central Europe versus the prices in the United States you can have a huge gap depending also on the specific graphics card itself. I have taken a look at the prices and on an average the difference is around $80-$100 (USD). Of course that for someone who is mining on a large scale this factor may not be so major compared to the price of electricity.
In less developed countries or countries that do not have such a strong economy electricity can be quite cheap and therefore very convenient to mine. If we take the Solomon Islands that have the highest electricity cost of 99 US cents per kilowatt hour! To remain in context let’s look at Germany in which 1 kWh costs 35 US cents and to give you a real run for the money let’s also look at China with 8 US cents per kWh. So you tell me where you would prefer to mine by looking at those numbers.
Is this the right choice?
Another major factor to take in consideration is the consumption of the chosen graphics card. A lot of research must be done before purchasing the graphics cards as yes some of them may be price efficient but they might consumer double than average. This sort of “business” is not for a short term, you must acknowledge that it is all about the profit made in a long run and that is why the price of the graphics card is not extremely important.
Some of you may ask if the other components matter much and they do to a certain extent, the processor does not have to be very powerful but new enough to not bottleneck the graphics cards and 8 gigabytes of ram should do the trick. Having a more powerful system may improve the efficiency when mining but only by a very small margin as the graphics cards are the ones doing all the heavy lifting.
Influence of Graphics card producers
At some point we have started seeing different products that have been built specially for miners in order to improve their efficiency. In the Image that we are presented here we can see a special mother board that has a large amount of PCI-e ports in order to allow the user to connect more GPU’s (Graphics Processing unit) to one unit rather than having multiple computers. It is normal to have the producers of the products that are required for mining want to have more of an influence as there is huge financial gain for them.
When the bitcoin was booming there were also some graphics cards released that were produced especially for mining, they were much easier to overclock and had a lower electrical usage therefore they would consume a lot less power and be more efficient overall. The only problem is that the difference from other ordinary graphics cards was not very big either the price so not many people invested into those.
Are other cryptocurrencies more profitable?
The cryptocurrency that you want to mine may not be so profitable in the region that you are in or the efficiency of your system may be more profitable on a different currency. There are lots of cryptocurrencies but the one that is starting to stand out more than bitcoin is ethereum. It has been proven to be very efficient with most systems and has gained a lot of interest. Many previous bitcoin miners have moved on to ethereum after the last bitcoin crash, even if it is not as profitable as bitcoin it is better to switch than quit.
At the end of the day it all comes down to the numbers as well as the time you want to spend doing this, yes you will break-even and get back your investment but the question is how long until then? If you are with a long term investment than yes it can still be profitable.