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Mining cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin (BTC) is a way to earn money while you sleep. Still, you’ll first need to build a Bitcoin mining rig to get started. If you’ve been paying attention to the news over the past ten years, you’ve probably heard about cryptocurrency mining.
But in order to get into crypto mining, you must understand that it is not as simple as downloading an app on your current gaming computer. Overall, it’s still preferable to use a dedicated crypto mining computer, even if you can use a modern, powerful computer for the purpose. That’s why this beginner’s guide will teach you how to build a Bitcoin mining rig from scratch.
Why build a crypto mining rig from scratch? Because most of the pre-built mining rigs on the market today are expensive. Bitcoin mining rigs are in high demand as more people join the network to compete for the rewards, which has driven up the price of equipment significantly in recent years.
Many seasoned Bitcoin miners have resorted to building their own mining rigs to save money on startup costs and increase operational flexibility. Plus, pre-built crypto mining rigs usually only have limited features.
What follows is information on how to build a fully-functional crypto mining rig that will passively earn you money. We will focus on Bitcoin, but you can choose to mine a different cryptocurrency using your rig.
Before we jump into some of the best methods for building a Bitcoin mining rig, let’s answer some of the fundamental questions on everyone’s mind.
What is a Bitcoin Mining rig?
A mining rig is a piece of hardware that adds new coins to a particular cryptocurrency’s circulating supply. Cryptocurrencies’ peer-to-peer (P2P) network functionality is dependent on this process.
The primary benefit when it comes to cryptocurrency mining, and crypto in general, is that there is no need to have a government, third-party, or central entity in place to govern the process.
How Much Do Bitcoin Mining Rigs Make?
Currently, adding a block to the blockchain is rewarded with around 6.25 bitcoins for each successful block. At the time of this writing, bitcoin was trading at about $30,000. This made 6.25 bitcoins worth about $187,500 in June 2022.
It’s important to note that the reward is reduced by half every 4 years–or every 210,000 blocks. Which makes it even more critical to start mining Bitcoin as soon as possible.
Oh, and don’t think you’ll be making almost $200,000 every ten minutes! Every block has thousands of bitcoin miners vying for the same reward. So, you’re not guaranteed to be successful in adding the block.
The difficulty of mining rises as the number of miners in the network increases. Consequently, the processing power needed to solve each block is increasing. This will only rise, especially now that the Bitcoin hashrate has just surpassed its previous record high value.
Many bitcoin miners join a mining pool due to the inability to mine a single block on their own. Each miner contributes a proportional amount of computing power to a mining pool, and the pool divides the profits among its members.
How Long Does it Take to Mine One Bitcoin?
The speed at which you mine bitcoins is determined by the hardware you’re using. It takes about 10 minutes on the most powerful machines to generate a single Bitcoin.
However, you have to remember that this only applies if you have a lot of computing power or are part of a Bitcoin mining pool, such as Foundry USA.
Is Building a Bitcoin Mining Rig in 2022 worth it?
Back in the day, first-time miners had the opportunity to earn 50 BTC every 10 minutes by mining with ease from their bedrooms. That’s 10 times as many compared to today!
And, the value of $450,000 worth of bitcoin would be in your digital wallet if you successfully mined just one of those original Bitcoin blocks and held on to the BTC since 2010.
So, yes, it is definitely worth building a cryptocurrency rig in 2022! You don’t even have to imagine yourself in the shoes of those people who didn’t decide to mine BTC back in 2010 – as you (most likely) were one of them! The earlier you start, the more likely you are to reap the rewards later on.
The Four Ways to Set Up a Bitcoin Mining Rig
While this guide is focused on building your own crypto mining rig, this is just one of 4 main ways you can set up a computer for cryptocurrency mining.
Buy a Super Powerful Pre-Built Gaming PC
Mining Bitcoins requires a large amount of computing power, so you’ll need a powerful PC to get the job done. Often, gaming PCs are an excellent starting point for building a mining rig because of their high processing power.
In terms of price, pre-built high-end gaming PCs are more expensive than standard GPUs, but they use less power. Plus, compared to mid-range gaming PCs, high-end models deliver significantly more processing power, making them ideal for mining Bitcoin.
Some added benefits of getting a high-end pre-built gaming PC are:
- You would save yourself the stress of assembling multiple components to build a rig since it already has all the necessary features for mining cryptocurrencies.
- You can still use the powerful device to play the best games when you are not mining Bitcoin. A Bitcoin mining rig that can also serve as a gaming platform can be easily built with the right configurations.
Add New Parts to Your Current Powerful PC
If you already own a PC, you can easily convert it to a Bitcoin miner in a matter of minutes. You can even convert a simple four-core, eighth-generation Intel i5 processor with 16GB of RAM into a Bitcoin mining rig.
On the other hand, getting a high-end GPU to maximize the device’s Bitcoin mining potential will always be beneficial over less powerful computers.
But, if you’ve already got a powerful PC, installing a new compatible graphics card, such as the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090, with an incredible hash rate is also recommended by crypto mining experts. Apart from that, make sure the power supply you install matches the GPU’s specs.
The downside to this approach is that in order to maximize profitability while crypto mining, you’ll need multiple GPU setups rather than a single powerful PC.
Purchase a Pre-Built Bitcoin Mining Setup Dedicated to the Task
These rigs, which are also known as Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASIC), are made specifically for mining digital currencies.
There are several things to keep in mind when purchasing a pre-built crypto-mining rig, such as the cost of power, the initial purchase expenses, heat management, and the cryptocurrency’s inherent volatility risks, all of which come into play here.
Despite the high cost of ASICs, many miners believe they are well worth the investment. Because of their simple setups and efficiency, they have become hugely popular.
Unlike other pre-built crypto mining rigs we mentioned above, these ASIC setups don’t have graphics cards. So using the rig as an additional gaming PC isn’t possible.
Build a Mining Rig from Scratch
When you start building your own crypto mining rig, on the other hand, it can be specifically designed and tailored to run the algorithm of the cryptocurrency coin you most want to mine.
That said, you’ll need to acquire specialized parts to build the rig. For example, in order to mine Bitcoins, you must have various components and features in place, such as a motherboard, GPUs, graphics cards, PSUs, riser cards, and other components.
Because of this, the system is powerful, efficient, and capable of bringing in substantial profits for its users, if done correctly.
Continuing the Bitcoin mining rig example, for this you’ll need a motherboard with plenty of processing power in order to let the graphics cards run the algorithms more quickly. The number of graphics cards able to be installed on the motherboard will determine the number of GPUs you should purchase. The PCIe risers will be used to connect the graphics cards to the motherboard.
Keep in mind that Bitcoin mining rigs consume a significant amount of electricity and are typically left running 24 hours a day, seven days a week. As a result, if you want your system to run continuously, you’ll also need a high-quality, high-capacity, high-performance power supply unit (PSU), and potentially an uninterruptible power supply (UPSU) as backup.
How to Build a Bitcoin Mining Rig from Scratch
The sole function of a dedicated crypto mining rig is to run the algorithm for your chosen coin. Aside from being much more energy-efficient, it also provides a higher return on investment (ROI).
Remember that a crypto mining rig necessitates the purchase of specialized components – this means you’ll have to dedicate much more time to sourcing and physically building the rig.
Oh, and it’s not just the hardware you have to consider. Cryptocurrency mining requires installing the right software and locating the best mining pool. Getting things started is difficult and necessitates a lot of foresight, guidance, and perseverance.
What is the Best Bitcoin Mining-Specific Motherboard?
The first thing you need is a mining-specific motherboard. An excellent example of this is the Asus B250 Mining Expert.
This absolute beast of a motherboard can support as many as 19 graphics cards at once, allowing for significantly faster algorithm execution and blows many other rigs without this board out of the water.
It’s a great investment if you’re really serious about bitcoin mining in 2022. However, in addition, you’ll need to purchase 19 separate GPUs, which can quickly add up due to the high cost of modern video cards.
Because the Asus B250 Mining Expert motherboard itself is incapable of supporting 19 video cards installed directly, you’ll also require a PCIe riser in addition to the GPU, CPU, and motherboard already mentioned. With the riser, you can easily connect your GPUs one at a time.
How to Build a Six-GPU Bitcoin Mining Rig from Scratch
While the Asus B250 Mining Expert is an incredible piece of hardware, it is out of the reach of many first-time bitcoin miners.
The following instructions will show you how to build a six-GPU mining rig instead. People who have never built a computer on their own are encouraged to use this guide.
We’ll build an NVidia-powered mining rig that runs on the Windows 10 OS. But this tutorial can be used on any operating system and with any AMD graphics card.
Don’t forget! On the software side of things, an operating system, mining software, and a cryptocurrency wallet are all required to store the cryptocurrency you’ve mined.
What is the difference between an Nvidia and an AMD graphics card when mining bitcoin?
The main difference between Nvidia and AMD graphics cards is found in their underlying chips. There are a wide variety of cryptocurrency algorithms that can be used with each.
We’re suggesting Nvidia GPUs here to keep things as simple as possible. AMD cards often require a high level of expertise to be installed correctly.
So for the purposes of this bitcoin miner guide, we’ll be working with an Nvidia GTX 1070. If everything goes according to plan, the entire process can be completed within two to four hours.
What parts will I need to build my first bitcoin mining rig?
The following is a breakdown of the various components you’ll need to build a bitcoin mining rig:
|Component||Description and Suggested Purchase|
|GPU||It is the most important component of the mining rig setup because it generates the profits. The best option is to buy six GTX 1070 cards. If you’re not looking to invest heavily straight away, to get things started, all you’ll need is one.|
|Motherboard||There are a few things to keep in mind when purchasing a motherboard, which are the central processor’s socket type and the number of graphics processing units (GPUs) you intend to eventually use.|
|CPU||Choosing a high-end CPU is necessary if you plan on mining solely with a CPU. However, in this case, we’ll be using a GPU to mine. There’s no need to buy an expensive computer to run our bitcoin miner. To be safe, it is recommended that you purchase an Intel 1151 Socket CPU from the 8th or 9th generation.|
|RAM||Although RAM is a less critical part of our mining setup, it is still necessary.|
|PSU||Any with a Platinum rating of 1200 W will suffice.|
If you don’t have the PSU unit mentioned above, you may need a PCI-e Y-Splitter.
|PCI-e Risers||Gives improved cooling and increased airflow can be achieved by using PCI-e risers, which allow the GPU to rise above the motherboard.|
|SSD||Any SATA SSD with a capacity of at least 240 GB will suffice.|
|Internet Connection||Either a wired ethernet cable or purchase any Wi-Fi Adapter|
|Mining Rig Frame||It is possible to construct your own 6-GPU mining rig frame. You can also just buy one.|
|USB Flash Drive||With a storage capacity of at least five gigabytes.|
|Cable Ties||These will really come in handy for sorting and arranging the countless wires and components you’ll have.|
After you’ve gathered all the necessary components, you’ll need to start putting the rig together.
Step-by-Step Guide to Building a Bitcoin Mining Rig
To build a bitcoin mining rig, think about it like putting together a Lego set if you follow the instructions to the letter.
Connect the motherboard to begin
The mining rig’s motherboard with 6 GPU support should be placed outside of the frame.
Ensure the lever holding down the CPU socket protection has been released before moving on to the next step.
Install the processor
Next, you must connect your processor to the motherboard.
Place your CPU of choice in the motherboard socket. Place it carefully.
When installing your processor into the motherboard socket, you must exercise extreme caution, especially concerning CPU pins. There is a risk of the entire CPU being damaged if pins bend.
You should always keep a copy of the instruction manual on hand. Use it as a reference when mounting the CPU’s heatsink on top of it.
Before attaching the processor to the heat sink, you must first apply the thermal paste. The power cable for the heat sink should be connected to the “CPU_FAN1” pins. If you can’t find it, you should consult your motherboard’s user manual.
Insert the RAM
Installing RAM, or system memory, is the next step in the process. Inserting the RAM module into the motherboard’s RAM socket is a cinch. The RAM module must be gently pushed into the RAM socket after the side brackets on the motherboard have been opened.
Because the RAM can only lock into the socket in one direction, this step necessitates extra caution. To get the RAM into the correct slot, you may have to give it a little more of a push than usual. When the RAM is installed correctly, the side brackets will automatically lock in place.
Fix the motherbord to the frame
The motherboard must be carefully placed on the mining frame or whatever you are using in its place.
When handling the motherboard, you should take extra precautions to avoid scratching the bottom. The motherboard should only come into contact with the metal frame of a mining rig where screw holes are present. Tighten the screws to ensure that the motherboard is securely attached.
Attach the power supply unit
Place the PSU close to the motherboard for optimum performance and longevity from it. The power supply must fit in the mining rig, so make sure you have enough room for it. On most motherboards, you’ll find a 24-pin power connector. One 24-pin connector is standard.
They must be firmly attached to the motherboard, or the mining rig won’t start up. The 8-pin power connector of the CPU should be connected to the motherboard closest to the processor. PCIe 6+2 power and CPU connectors are both 8-pin, so you must be careful not to confuse them. The PCI-e cable is thinner than the CPU cable.
Add risers to the system
PCI-e x1 is a shorter version of PCI-e and is required for the x16 USB riser assembly. The motherboard must be connected to this. You’ll need an electrical connection to power the risers. A PCIe six-pin connector, a SATA cable, or a Molex connector may be required depending on your riser model.
Ensure that all of the corresponding power cables are connected to each of the USB risers before connecting them. Each power supply cable can have up to two Molex or SATA connectors.
Use the USB riser to ensure that all of the graphics cards are firmly attached to the motherboard frame. Ensure that the PCI-e 6+2 power connectors are connected to your GPU. Later, you’ll need to connect the remaining five GPUs to these connectors.
Now that you know how to build a bitcoin mining rig, all that’s left is the software, which will be discussed in a future guide. While you’re waiting, you can learn about the latest developments in the cryptocurrency world by visiting our dedicated cryptocurrency hub.