My friend asked me to do a research for him on bitcoin mining, I don't know a lot so I'm asking. He's consider buying either NVIDIA gtx titan or NVIDIA gtc 980. Decent motherboard and internet speed. I stumbled upon a question on this site which says that Gpu and Cpu mining is over, it's all about ASIC now, but we can't afford ASIC.

  • All in USA, we're living in Lebanon
  • Overly expensive and we didn't count shipping costs

Now I want you to consider

  • Internet is free
  • Electricity is free
  • Other than buying the hardware, we have no expenses at all

My question now is the following:

  • In best case scenario, using NVIDIA gtx titan or NVIDIA gtc 980, how much bitcoin can we expect to mine? (unless it's really dead)
  • Is it wise to buy NVIDIA gtx titan or NVIDIA gtc 980 to mine bitcoins if you don't pay taxes? Would it pay off?

3 Answers 3


Thanks for asking this question. I see a lot of people all the time who assume GPU mining is profitable.

Try googling "bitcoin mining calculator" and see.

Presently (in 2015) the calculator will tell you that you would be able to mine one bitcoin in about 1000 to 10 000 years. But you have to consider that there are reward halvings every four years, which those calculators don't take into account. A more realistic scenario then is that it would take over a million years to mine one bitcoin.

Of course you don't have to mine a whole bitcoin. If you are lucky you could perhaps mine 0.01 BTC in 10 000 years. That's worth a little over three US dollars at the time I write this.

There are still a few people mining on GPU or even CPU. Some of them may have free electricity. But what they fail to understand is how extremely slow this is. Most ditch GPU/CPU mining when they see that you'd be lucky to earn three dollars in 10 000 years. But there are still some (in my mining pool) who refuse to give up.

TL;DR: no, GPU mining is not viable.

  • and what about ASIC? how long would that take to start making profit? assuming we pay like 200$ for a machine
    – Lynob
    Commented Oct 31, 2015 at 23:42
  • 1
    Enter the hashrate of the machine you want to buy into the mining calculator and see
    – Dr.Haribo
    Commented Nov 1, 2015 at 14:22
  • Mining GPU straight is not viable. But you can mine something else and sell that for bitcoin.
    – user4951
    Commented Mar 9, 2017 at 12:21

GPU's are horribly inefficient compared to ASIC's. Consider that the absolute best GPU's get around 1 GH/s and cost in the $400 range. An Antminer U2 costs around $20 on ebay and gets 2 GH/s. Antminer U3 costs around $60 and gets 60 GH/s.

Roughly speaking at current network hash rates and current bitcoin price, if you get electricity for free, you can make back the hardware costs of an Antminer U3 in about a year. Of course, if the hash rate goes up, it'll take longer and if the bitcoin price goes up, it'll take shorter.

Basically, go get a cheap miner from ebay or somewhere.

  • 4
    At current difficulty levels, 1 GH/s earns you about BTC 0.0002 per month, about 8 US cents. The GPU will pay for itself in merely 416 years. (Assuming difficulty levels don't go up, which they will, and the block reward stays the same, which it won't.) GPU mining is dead. Commented Oct 31, 2015 at 3:06

I'd say that with free electricity GPU mining can be worth it in some ways. Rushing out and buying cards to build a GPU miner no longer makes sense, but with free electricity using a computer you primarily have for gaming to mine when you're not gaming will generate a tiny amount of profit.

Another potential advantage is that if you live somewhere cold then the heat mining generates isn't a waste product. However, any profitability goes out the window if you overdo it and melt your new graphics card, there's no way you'll earn enough to replace it. Mining makes your GPU very hot, so if you've overclocked it you could easily destroy it. It also wears out the cooling fans, you won't even earn the price of a new fan so is it really worth it? Of course if curiosity rather than profit is your motive then why not? You'll soon get sick of the noise your computer's fans make though.

I myself decided to call time on GPU mining bitcoin when the mining difficulty went up to 12,000,000 as it was no longer worth it, today the mining difficulty is 178,678,307,672, almost 15000 times higher and each block is worth less too due to halving.

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