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61 votes
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In the ASIC-age, is it worth starting mining Bitcoin at home?

Generally, it's not worth your time and effort to mine at home! (Some exceptions may apply.) Age of ASIC mining CPU mining has been unprofitable since 2011, GPU mining just slightly later. Today, ...
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22 votes
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What does it mean for a cryptocurrency to be ASIC-resistant?

It means that there will be no significant speedup by implementing the algorithm in an ASIC, as compared to a CPU based implementation. This is usually achieved by requiring a lot of memory, which ...
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21 votes

How does AsicBoost work?

Introduction AsicBoost speeds up Bitcoin mining in general (for ASICs and CPUs alike) by reducing the frequency of computing one part of the SHA-256 calculation. A Bitcoin block header is 80 bytes ...
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  • 883
16 votes
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Why do leading ASICs manufacturers sell their chips?

I think the simple answer is that a company doesn't have to be a "Bitcoin believer" in order to manufacture Bitcoin mining hardware. The companies that produce ASIC chips also produce other products ...
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  • 8,734
15 votes

What does it mean for a cryptocurrency to be ASIC-resistant?

An ASIC is another way of running a program or calculation or what have you (in our case mining) using a PCB/Hardware instead of Software running on a general purpose computer. GPUs are technically ...
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  • 261
10 votes
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What portion of the mining process does an ASIC perform?

TL;DR: ASIC input/output is the bold text below. No, the ASIC does not assemble a block. The block is assembled by a mining pool server. If you are solo mining you could let bitcoind assemble the ...
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  • 8,339
9 votes
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How does Segwit prevent ASICBOOST?

There's 2 versions of ASICBOOST: Overt where miners use bits in the version number as extra nonce space Covert where miners "mine" merkle trees with 4 bytes collisions The overt version is very ...
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  • 1,264
7 votes

Is it possible to convert Bitcoin Miner to Litecoin Miner?

No, you can't. And this has nothing to do with the operating system. Your hardware has a bitcoin ASIC chip made only for doing Sha-256 calculations. Litecoin uses the Scrypt algorithm. Sha-256 and ...
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  • 8,339
6 votes
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Open source ASIC design plans in Hardware Description Language (HDL) format?

No. ASIC designs are all proprietary. This is controlled to the point where gaining information about the use for packaged chips is subject to a highly restrictive NDA. Some optimizations in use are ...
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  • 15.1k
6 votes

How is mining profitable if a $10.000 ASIC will generate like $63.23 per month?

That particular miner is way overpriced. Nobody should buy it at that price. The seller either listed an incorrect price, or is very confused about the current market for mining hardware, or is ...
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6 votes

How does AsicBoost work?

I'm reproducing figures 2 and 3 from the paper below to provide an alternative interpretation. Fig 2: Fig 3: Historically, mining is composed of an inner loop (red) and an outer loop (green). Each ...
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6 votes
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How long does it take to perform a single SHA256?

Simply head over to https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Non-specialized_hardware_comparison#CPUs.2FAPUs and look it up. For AMD, the columns nprocs and Mhash/s are important. Divide the latter by the former, ...
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  • 3,154
6 votes

How to select minimum difficulty when mining with Slush Pool

From the research I have done to understand the minimum difficulty it boils down to a balance between server/client bandwidth limitations and time to put at risk. The pool which you connect to ...
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5 votes
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What can be done with old (unprofitable) ASICs?

If your electricity costs are high, unprofitable for you may mean profitable for someone else. Some miners may still use unprofitable ASICs either to support the network (at a smaller loss than with ...
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5 votes

Why are there different mining hardware for different hashing algorithms?

The hardware you are referring to are called Application Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs), and they are named that for a reason. It's because they are not general purpose computers like desktops, ...
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4 votes
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Reusability of ASIC miners

The ASIC of a miner cannot perform arbitrary maths, they can only perform SHA-256 hash computations. You can hash other things besides the blockchain, but you cannot instruct your miner to give you ...
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4 votes

Reusability of ASIC miners

What mathematical tasks can an ASIC perform? Only the exact task they were designed to perform, Do they have to be targetted specifically, or will the host machine naturally offload mathematical ...
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4 votes

Where can I find a full list of all Bitcoin mining hardware ever used?

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Mining_hardware_comparison and https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Non-specialized_hardware_comparison are the canonical lists. I'm not sure that will be useful to you; there's ...
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  • 28.8k
4 votes
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When did the ASIC mining era begin?

Jeff Garzik received an Avalon miner on january 30th, 2013 and posted pictures at http://garzikrants.blogspot.com/2013/01/once-upon-time-in-china-package-shipped.html and http://garzikrants.blogspot....
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  • 8,339
4 votes

In the ASIC-age, is it worth starting mining Bitcoin at home?

Bitcoin, as the answers imply, is long out of the reach of home miners, however other coins can use all your hardware, e.g. Gridcoin (GRC). Gridcoin rewards work done on the BOINC platform which is a ...
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4 votes

Why do leading ASICs manufacturers sell their chips?

Some companies have done exactly that, and have come under fire for it. Butterfly Labs was famously outed by US authorities for running customer-purchased hardware to generate profit for themselves, ...
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4 votes

What is ASIC hardware good for besides mining?

ASIC stands for Application Specific Integrated Circuit. This is hardware that is specifically designed for one use case. Bitcoin mining ASICs are good at one thing: Bitcoin mining. If they were ...
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4 votes

Why is SHA3 less conducive to ASIC?

I'm not an expert but I'm a good at digging through academic literature, and this is what I found about SHA3 with relevance to FPGAs and ASICS (and in comparison with SHA2). Note that this paper ...
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  • 671
3 votes

When ASICs generate a share, is it always at difficulty 1?

It's hardware specific, and most of the information for Bitcoin mining ASIC are under an NDA so this can't be posted publicly. There's very little utility in returning difficulty one shares to the ...
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  • 15.1k
3 votes
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What is the benchmark that mining ASICs are measured with to determine the hash rates?

When a mining ASIC claims to run at 1 MH/s or 10MH/s or even 1000 GH/s, at what difficulty 10 MHash/s means that the chip can do 10 million hashes per second, regardless of what the difficulty is. ...
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  • 28.8k
3 votes
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Non-Bitcoin Uses for Old ASIC Miners?

Anything that makes ASICs suitable for applications other than the Specific Application the Integrated Circuit was designed for would probably slow it down or make it more power hungry or expensive. ...
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  • 6,218
3 votes

Using ASIC for password cracking - mad concept?

It will not help even if passwords were hashed with DSHA256. This link explains why. https://rya.nc/asic-cracking.html Basically the ASIC loads the header into its memory and increments the nonce ...
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3 votes
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How do USB ASIC Miners Work?

USB ASIC miners require some sort of control program that sends work to the miners and collects the results. You set them up in that control program. BFGMiner is one such program.
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3 votes

What if any proposed blockchain enhancements that require hard forks would require new ASIC hardware?

I don't think many hardforks would make ASICs obsolete. Developers would surely want to avoid that, and will always have a way to avoid it. Unless they have a reason to make all ASICs obsolete on ...
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  • 6,218
3 votes

why not make DIY, upgradeable, ASIC mining rigs?

So, why not just sell the parts for making ASIC rigs, and let mining enthusiasts build their own? ASICs are highly specialized hardware, advancements in ASIC technology involve new hardware ...
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