PPLNS Payment Method

Mining for cryptocurrency is popular way for to generate revenue using the computing power and specialist mining hardware. There are many ways to do this, and this article will focus on the PPLNS payment method that is offered by some mining pools.

PPLNS Payment Method

Although there are many solo miners that work on their own, there is growing trend to join pools, where miners combine their resources and computing power to increase the number of transactions that can be completed in a given period, resulting in more income.

As the pools gain more popularity, the amount of resources needed by solo miners to compete increases and this becomes expensive and the ability to compete for transactions more difficult. When miner’s work alone, the calculation of the split of the coins earned for a transaction completed is simple, they get 100%.

However when a pool of miners (more than one) has contributed to the calculation, the income generated needs to be split amongst all those involved.  The two most popular forms of revenue division are PPS and PPLNS.

What does PPLNS stand for?

PPLNS is an acronym for “Pay Per Last N Shares” which calculates your average contribution over a period of time. This ensures that miners loyal to specific pool will earn on average more than miners that hop from pool to pool.

There is an element of luck involved with the PPLNS payment method as the amount of contributors in a pool can fluctuate over a period of time, but in general PPLNS payments will be about 5% higher than PPS payments for the same amount of transactions completed.



PPLNS vs. RBPPS

PPS stands for “Pay-per-Share” which simply calculates the percentage due to each miner based on his or her share of contributed resources to the completed transaction. This is a simple calculation that can be easily forecasted and measured and pays for every share submitted. RBPPS stands for “Round Based Pay per Share” which is very similar to the PPS payment method, but will not pay for orphaned blocks (blocks that are valid but do not belong to the main chain).

PPLNS Mining Pools

When joining a mining pool it is important that miners know what payment method the pool is using and that it meets their execrations and matches their mining activity.

Most mining pools use the PPS method to calculate payment but Ethereum mining pools that use the PPLNS method include:

  • Ethermine, the largest PPLNS Ethereum mining pool with over seventy-four thousand active miners.

  • Ethfans, the largest Chinese speaking Ethereum mining pool, based in Asia
  • Antpool, which pays on the PPNLS, PPS and Solo method and allows miners to mines for Etheruem, Bitcon and other cryptocurrencies

  • Nanopool also mines for multiple cryptocurrencies with servers based across Europe and Asia and just over 50 000 active miners. See our recent article on Nanopool vs Ethpool.

Payout schemes are one of the main considerations when weighting up different pools like Ethpool vs. EtherMine.

For miners that wish to stay with a specific mining pool and are looking for bigger payouts over a long term period, pools that offer PPLNS are a better choice than those that pay on the PPS or RBPPS method. The risk with PPLNS is that your payments could fluctuate by more that 30% over the short period (up or down), but in the long run you will do better.

Ethereum Explained

Ethereum is a recently launched cryptocurrency platform (only two years old) that is quite literally giving Bitcoin a run for it’s money. 

If you’re looking to find ethereum explained in simple terms, you’re in the right place.

What is Ethereum ?

Built on Ethereum Blockchain Technology, it enables a decentralised network of computers to exchange cryptocoins while recording and maintaining the entire history of the transaction. This ensures a cost effective, highly reliable environment that has no single point of failure.

The founder of Ethereum ,Vitalik Buterin, developed the blockchain technology to enable functionality that Bitcoin does not offer such as crowdfunding and smart-contracts, taking the possibilities of cryptocurrency into new realms in the commercial world.

There are many online videos that can assist in understanding the fundamentals of the Ethereum such as:

 

And:

Although the core function of Ethereum is the exchange of cryptocoins, known as Ether, the bigger potential value lies in the smart-contract technology and its possible application across a variety of industries.  Smart contacts allow for the same transactions that happen in the real world to take place in an online cloud environment using a decentralised public blockchain, where the terms and conditions of the contract are measured and on execution, the smart contract pays out.

The contacts are stored, tracked and executed cryptographically. The attached infographic outlines in a simple format the potential uses of Ethereum. http://decentral.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/infographic.jpg.

The range of smart contract applications that people are investigating today is varied and exciting.

Ethereum Explained – How does it work?

The fundamental principle behind Ethereum is a system that is completely decentralised, creating what has been referred to as a World computer. Instead of a single server holding information, it resides with thousands of volunteers computers or nodes.

When the Ethereum program is used, thousand of nodes process the transaction and validate the new state of the contract. This process of validating the  transaction is known as mining. The state of the contract is then updated and the terms of the contract executed upon as written by the original developer or creator of the smart contract.

More information on how Ethereum works can be found on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lVcgl8t9LIQ and https://www.genesis-mining.com/what-is-ethereum.

Ethereum mining explained

So we know the process of validating the transaction is know as mining, but how does mining work and why would it be viable for people to volunteer?

In order for the transaction to be validated, computer resources are required that will calculate the transaction.  Miners offer or volunteer their resources to create a block of valid transactions. Miners across the world compete to calculate and validate blocks first and submit their proof that the block is valid, known as proof of work.  When a miner is first to validate a new block he earns Ether which holds value as a cryptocurrency.  The more resources a miner has, the better chance he has of validating and creating a block and earning the coins. This has led to the creation of ethereum mining pools where miners combine their resources to validate blocks faster.

Two of the leading pools are Ethpool and Ethermine, through there are several others that are considered among the best ethereum mining pools.

Mining requires dedicated hardware, or rigs, which can be very expensive to purchase and run.

An online calculator for miners can be accessed at https://www.cryptocompare.com/mining/calculator/eth?HashingPower=20&HashingUnit=MH%2Fs&PowerConsumption=140&CostPerkWh=0.12.

The potential application  for Ethereum smart contracts going forward is almost limitless with significant possibilities in particular in the banking and properly markets when management of contracts is labour intensive, slow and vulnerable to human error.

Ethpool Payout Scheme

Many people have been asking for more information about the payout schemes for various Ethereum mining pools.

For example, what are the pros and cons of pps+ vs PPLNS.

In this article we’ll look specifically at the Ethpool Payout Scheme and point you in the direction of other resources where you can get more info.

EthPool Payout Scheme

EthpoolEthPool.org is slightly different to other mining pools in that it is more like solo mining and therefore doesn’t use the PPS / PPLNS / PROP methodology that some others do.

The Terms of Payment for the site states that:

“http://ethpool.org is a predictable Ethereum solo mining pool and implements a solo mining payout scheme. Each submitted share will increase the credits of the Miner who submitted the share by the fixed share difficulty of the pool. The Miner who accumulated the most credits will receive the reward of the next block that has been mined by the pool and his credits will be reset to his current credits minus the credits of the runner up Miner. “Uncles” are distributed in a similar way only that the credits of the Miner receiving the uncle reward will not be reset.”

This also clearly sets out the pool fees, which for EthPool is 1%.

EthPool also offers a support portal that covers many other specific questions relating to payment methods, frequency of payments etc.

This page explains further that the pool operates with a solo mining payment scheme.

“This means the miner who contributed the most work to the pool will receive the full reward of the next found block (or uncle) and his work account (credits) will be reset to his current credits minus the credits of the runner up miner.”

The site has a couple of useful features that will allow you to work out when you’ll be paid, including “time to next block”, on the balance page.

Top Ethereum mining pools

We’ve looked previously at ethermine vs ethpool.

And there is some debate around which pools offers the greater payout. Many suspect that Ethermine is better for smaller miners, while ethpool benefits much larger mining operations.

Large outfits are making it more difficult for smaller miners to compete on the pool, increasing the time it takes to get paid. As a result, several miners have switched to other pools like Nanopool.

See our other article on top ethereum pools in 2017 here.

Final thought

Here is a useful run through of the payment methods for most of the top pools, including the ethpool payout scheme.

Finding the right pool is really important, and it is definitely worth taking some time to investigate your options. Have a play around with the mining calculators as well.

The differences in picking the right pool can be substantial, beyond just the processing fees. You also have to consider things like opportunity cost, if you’re tied into a pool that is taking a long time, but you can’t leave as you are awaiting payment, that is time lost that could have been much better spent in another pool.

The Big Opportunity: Smart Contracts Banking

Smart Contracts Banking

Smart Contracts are the transaction tools of the future. Through creating safe, trackable contracts of law that are automatically enforced, smart contracts will change the way many industries interact with their clients and manage their agreements and by using Ethereum blockchain technology, smart contracts are self executing contracts when all the criteria are met.

Smart contracts benefits include better security for the safety and confidentiality of the contract, transaction costs are reduced and the redundancy is increased as multiple copies are held across the Internet.

Smart contracts are most effective in area’s where the terms of the contract are absolute and measurable, for example in the shipping and freight industry and in the financial industry, where the terms are not subjective but can be calculated and tracked.

As a result of this, one of the greatest opportunities for smart contact applications is in the banking industry, where commercial contracts are an inherent part of the nature of the business and the terms of the contract are not subjective. In addition, because Ethereum is decentralized and open source, any developer can use it to create and write smart contracts.

Smart Contracts: Banking uses cases

In October 2016, Capgemini Consulting released a paper named “Smart Contracts in Financial Services: Getting from Hype to Reality ” which highlighted how Ethereum contracts reduce risk, inefficiency, error and fraud for the banking industry in comparison to the traditional paper based contracts. The report foresees most first world banks moving to smart contracts in totality as early as 2020.

Some of the area’s within the banking industry that have been identified as ideal for smart contracts include:

Mortgages:

These require huge amounts of data to be collected, documented and monitored, including property values and large amounts of personal data of all the parties involved. Through access to online information such as title deeds and Land registries, the process can be automated and the turn around time greatly reduced. In addition the monitoring of the activity in terms of the contract can be done automatically reducing the delay of manual interactions and eliminating the chance of error. Capgemini estimated savings of up to $960 per mortgage.

Smart Bonds:

Due to the ability of Ethereum smart contracts to calculate and manage huge amounts of data and execute complex calculations, the development of smart bonds,where the legal requirements of the bond are coded into the contract, is a given.

Knowing your customer: before any interaction with a bank a large amount of information about the customer needs to be collected. With the introduction of smart contracts and blockchain the information of all current clients will be easy to access and update new applications, reducing the frustration of the customer and the costs and time delay for the financial institution.

Clearing and Settlements:

This is another huge processing area for a bank where smart contracts can make a big difference. Currently a consortium of banks is testing the possibility of smart contracts in this arena to understand the possible impact. By using smart contracts the calculations of the trade settlements can be done automatically and show significant savings.

Not all the possibilities mentioned here are immediately available for the banks. In most cases, careful thought and planning still needs to be applied before the move to smart contracts in total, but the opportunity for the banks to improve their service, accuracy and bottom line makes involvement in this area inevitable.

http://blockchainapac.fintecnet.com/uploads/2/4/3/8/24384857/smart_contracts.pdf

https://btcmanager.com/a-cost-benefit-analysis-of-using-smart-contracts-in-banking/

https://www.bizjournals.com/bizjournals/how-to/technology/2017/09/business-advantages-of-blockchain-smart-contracts.html

Smart Contract Applications

Smart contracts are digital contracts that can be used in place of all the standard legal contacts such as leases, shares, property sales or anything else required by contracting parties.

A smart contract is a self executing contract that behaves exactly according to the manner in which it has been written. They are less expensive that traditional contracts as there is no need to hire a middleman to write the contract and they cannot be lost or ignored as they have been duplicated across the network.

Ethereum contracts are secure and un-hackable. Ethereum was designed specifically for smart contracts and is the most popular platform due to its flexibility. For more information on what smart contracts are and how smart contract blockchains are explained, visit https://www.coindesk.com/information/ethereum-smart-contracts-work/.

Smart Contract Applications

The application of smart contracts in the ever growing digital world is limitless. Here are a couple of smart contract examples to demonstrate why they are growing in popularity in all industries:

Smart Contracts:  Insurance

Smart Contracts Insurance

A challenge with traditional insurance policies is the amount of time needed to process the claim and the intense administration requirements. By converting the insurance policy into a smart contract, once an incident occurs that should begin the claim process, such as a car accident, the contract can be triggered. The pre-agreed limitations and circumstances surrounding the claim would have been written into the contract and the claim can be processed or denied based on the information. Administrative costs are reduced, subjectivity taken out of the decision making process and settlement happens faster.

Smart Contracts:  Entertainment

One of the contracts that could be simplified by writing them in Ethereum instead of managing on paper, would be the payment of royalties to artists. With the multitude of songs available, tracking and managing who is the valid artist due a royalty payment is complex and  susceptible to error. Should all these contracts be recorded digitally and available for view to multiple parties, tracking the rightful owner and initialising the royalty payment would faster and more efficient and as changes cannot be made to the contact without the permission of all the parties involved, the artists are assured of receiving their due.

Smart Contracts:  Banking

The banking world is surrounded in paperwork and contracts and the administration and management of these contracts, combined with the huge amount of documents that accompany these contracts, cost the banks millions in salaries and storage space. Many of the contracts could be moved into the smart contract space and large mounts of money saved.  An example of this could be the mortgage contracts over properties. The smart contract would specifically state the terms of repayment, the actions when a client defaults and once the mortgage has been settled, the transfer of the property from the banks name to the new owners. Other applications that are being investigated in the banking environment are those of bonds, interbank clearings and settlements, coupon payments, and overdrafts and loans.

If you’re looking for applicable areas for smart contracts banking is certainly an attractive option.

Government

Smart contracts are also being considered in area’s of government as well to see how they can be used to streamline voting, identify management and simple contracts between state and citizen such as rates and taxes. The list above is just a small indication of the possibilities and we have not even looked at the opportunities in Technology and Energy.

Further Reading:

For some more ethereum contact examples and more smart contract use cases, please visit the following sites:

Ethereum Contracts Explained

This article explores the idea of smart contracts, looking specifically at Ethereum contracts and some of the many potential use cases.

Ethereum contracts: what are they?

A smart contract is quite simply a legal contract that is created in a digital environment using blockchain technology. Smart contracts can be used in place of all the standard legal contacts such as leases, shares, property sales or anything else required by contracting parties.

The relationships and the requirements of the contract are enforced using crypto-code and the contracts self-execute in the exact manner that they have been set up to do by their creators.

The advantage of using a self executing contract versus the traditional legal contract is the elimination of a middleman and the associated costs and delays. The decentralised nature of the Blockchain technology used for the creation of smart contracts also ensures higher security of the contract, which accounts for its rising popularity among banks and governments.

Smart contracts are generally associated with the cryptocurrencies and although they started in the Bitcoin environment, Ethereum has fast become the platform of choice because of it’s unlimited processing capacity. The duplication of the smart contracts across the network also ensures that the contract cannot be lost or misplaced.

Ethereum smart contracts explained

Ethereum contractsIn the traditional world, when you need a contract drawn up you would contact an attorney and discuss the terms and requirements with them and after a period of time, arrange with the other party to sign.

The executions of the clauses are also dependent on the attention of the parties or attorneys to enforce. In the case of a digital contract, the process has been likened often to that of a vending machine, you put your cryptocurrency in, determine the terms and out comes your contract.

The contract is created and becomes a part of the public ledger, while the parties remain anonymous. Once the triggering event takes place, which could be a date or a action by one of the parties, the contract becomes self-executing and the terms are enforced and the funds transferred.

Smart Contract Use Cases

Looking at the cast array of smart contract applications gives you an idea of the kind of impact this technology could have.

Smart contracts can be set up across multiple parties and the execution of the contract can be triggered when a certain percentage of the participants, or the majority, have approved the transaction.

Due to the flexibility and security, the application of smart contracts is limitless with it being considered for use in many industries including:

  • Banking
  • Health
  • Insurance
  • Government

When it comes to ethereum smart contracts, banking looks set to be one of the most heavily impacted industries, with the potential to completely transform the way money is moved around the world.

In 2015, Blockchain smart contracts were used by the depository Trust and Clearing company to process more than 345 million transactions worth more than $1.5 quadrillion. Suggestions have even been made for using Smart contracts to replace the current voting system, as it will be faster, safer and more efficient, possibly increasing voter numbers.

The US Postal services has also been looking at using smart contracts for money transfers.

Smart contracts are gaining popularity across many industries and are replacing the use of traditional contracts in many instances.

Ethereum Contract Example

Below is one of many simple smart contract examples:

A smart contract could be used for the delivery of a news article by a freelancer. The parties will agree on the cost of the article and the date on which it should be submitted.

Once the editor has received the piece and is happy, the payment is triggered and the funds transferred via cryptocurrency to the freelancer. If the writer does not deliver, then the newspaper is refunded.

Trezor vs Ledger Nano S

Trezor vs Ledger Nano SHardware wallets are physical devices for storing cryptocurrencies and tokens in a safer and more secure environment than the traditional software wallets.  Where software wallets are often developed in open-source and generally more susceptible to hacking and theft, a hardware wallet is isolated from the Internet and has to be attached to your computer for the codes to be accessed, rendering your tokens more secure.

To date there have been no reported thefts of tokens or coins from a hardware wallet, however even hardware wallets do have their vulnerabilities.

The cost of a hardware wallet is higher than that of a software wallet and with the small returns many miners are seeing, the cost of the hardware wallet might not be easy to justify.

If you’ve invested in an ethereum rig, or cloud mining service, you definitely need a safe place to store your ether and an Ethereum hardware wallet is definitely a good bet. And of course you will in turn want a somewhere secure to put your physical wallet, and there are a variety of safe manufacturers out there that can help, but that is a separate discussion!

Trezor vs Ledger Nano S

Trezor

Trezor was first to market with a hardware wallet for cryptocurrencies in August 2014. Each Trezor wallet has a unique passcode that prevents anyone from accessing your transactions should your wallet be stolen and in cases where you Trezor is lost or stolen; you can recover your tokens by accessing the wallet with this passcode. Trezor works with a long list of client wallets such as ArcBit, Chrome Extension, Electrum, Sentinel and Etherwall. Trezor is fully supported on Windows 7 and higher, OSX and Linux platforms as well as being compatible with most Android devices which have a USB on-the –go.

Trezor safely stores tokens for Bitcoin, Litecoin, Dash, Zcash, Ethereum, Namecoin and Dogecoin.

Trezor is a small device, about the size of a key, with a screen, which connects to your computer via a USB cable.

Trezor is slightly more expensive than some of the other hardware wallets available.

Ledger Nano S

The Ledger Nano is a slightly less expensive hardware wallet option comparative to the Trezor but offers a similar level of advanced security versus a software wallet, however it does not offer passpharse support.

A passphrase is an additional text the user creates when setting up the account, which is required when the wallet needs to be recovered, thereby adding another layer of verification.  The Nano S requires the user to set up a PIN code that keeps device secure and after three failed attempts to enter the correct PIN code, the device will not be accessible.

The Ledger Nano S is very easy to setup can be done without needing to connect the device to a computer. The Open Bitcoin Privacy project voted Ledger wallets as the most private wallets available in their report in 2016.

The Ledger Nano S works with Bitcoin, Ethereum as well as Altcoins and is compatible with a variety of Cryptocurrency wallets.

You can find the ledger nano s for sale on sites such as Amazon.com or direct from the manufacturer.

Final Thoughts

Both the Trezor and Ledger Nano S have built in screens, which is advisable largely due to the increased security offered. Hardware wallets with a screen will display the generated password on the screen of the device, while wallets that do not have a screen will send the passcode to your phone.

As your phone is accessible via the Internet it does put the security of the passcode at risk. The screen also adds an additional level of verification when you are making payments.

If you’re interested in a hardware wallet you should also consider the ledger nano s vs keepkey.

For more info check out this useful video:

 

 

Ethpool vs Ethermine

The costs of mining Ether can be very high, with electricity costs and the cost of setting up a mining rig that can process at the speed required.

As the rewards of mining can be slow and intermittent, many miners choose to combine their hardware resources and create an ethereum mining pool, increasing the speed at which blocks are processed and the profits paid out.

This post will focus on the two main pools, Ethpool vs Ethermine. For information on other pools, see our post on the top ethereum mining pools.

Miners then share the rewards of the payout on proof of work. Ethereum is the fastest growing cryptocurrency, more than 2000% since its launch, in the market and Ethereum miner’s work for tokens called “Ether”.

Payments to the miners can work on different principles and calculations, depending on the type of pool they have joined.

Ethpool vs Ethermine

Two of the biggest Ethereum mining pools are Ethpool and Ethermine, which run on the same platform and have combined process of more than 25% of the total network hashpower. However the manner in which the pools run, and the risks and rewards are quite different. Both pools run on a global network with servers based the United States, Europe and Singapore, which are fully redundant and run 24/7.

Ethpool

Ethpool is a predictable solo mining pool and 100% of the proceeds are paid to the miner that contributed the most work. By using Ethpool you get the advantages of pooled mining with a solo mining payment scheme.

Ethpool offer miners the ability to mine anonymously and supports all types of Ethereum miners. Full support is offered to miners, including those using Stratum protocol. There is a big reduction in variance so miners earn their payment as soon as their work is equal to the difficulty of the block. The site includes online mining statistics and can help you estimate your earnings, when used with a calculator. The pool fee is currently 1%. Ethpool offers e-mail monitoring of your work in progress and e-mail notification of found blocks.  Ethpool has about 12,500 active workers and processes about 5 blocks an hour. Uncles (blocks that are almost correct) are paid on top of full block rewards.

Ethermine

Ethermine works on the PPLNS (Pay Per Last N Shares) payout scheme, which includes a luck factor in the calculation of the payment and favours loyal pool clients versus those that jump from pool to pool.

As with Ethpool, full Stratum support is available and payments are made instantly with the minimum payout being a single Ether. The pool fee for participation is also 1%. Ethermine promises all miners accurate hashtag reporting and low costs due to the efficiency of the mining rigs.

E-mail reporting and tracking is available on Ethermine as well as notifications of invalid shares and detailed per-worker and global statistics. Ethermine has more than 200,000 active workers and process about 35 blocks an hour.

Cloud Mining

As an alternative to Ethereum pool mining, a miner can use Ethereum Cloud mining, where instead of providing a Ethereum rig and combining resources, an organisation that specializes in cloud mining will do the mining on the miners behalf for a fee and then pays a percentage of the profit made.

Other Mining Pools

Although these are regarded as the two main ETH mining pools, there are other pools available, particularly a few multi currency pools. Check out our article on Nanopool vs. Ethpool to see how these two stack up.

 

Ethereum Hardware Wallet: The Most Secure Way to Store Ether

Ethereum is one of the most popular blockchain platforms of 2017. Released in 2015, the Ethereum platform features smart contracts and lightning fast transactions. The token used to run the Ethereum platform is called Ether.

For the purpose of this article, we are going to use Ethereum and Ether interchangeably. Like Bitcoin, Ethereum uses a public and private key system. The public key being similar to an email address and the private key being similar to your password.

The holder of Ethereum is responsible for protecting their private keys.

Mining hardware is incredibly expensive and it is foolish to store mining profits on exploitable software and hardware. It was recently discovered that the Jaxx software wallet stored private keys unencrypted.

Ethereum Hardware Wallet

One of the oldest and most secure ways of securing cryptocurrency is by using paper wallets. The problem with paper wallets, is that a lot can go wrong when creating them. For example, a paper wallet created on a computer connected to the internet is technically a hot wallet.

This is because paper wallets make the private key visible. There is no way to know who may be snooping around your computer while it is connected to the Internet.

The better option is to use a hardware wallet. The two most popular Ethereum hardware wallets are the Ledger Nano S and the Trezor.

These wallets function as external USB drives that store your private keys and encrypt them using a mnemonic backup phrase. This makes storing and securing your Ethereum user friendly. Because even if you lose the hardware wallet, you can always restore your Ethereum using the mnemonic backup phrase.

A mnemonic backup phrase is usually a list of easy to remember words that can be stored in multiple locations.

The Ledger Nano S is the easiest to use, of the two, because it features it’s own Chrome app. The downside is that delivery has been slow.

Trezor, the oldest of the two, secures your private keys using the open source website MyEtherWallet. There is a bit of a learning curb connecting MyEtherWallet with Trezor, but the upside is that Trezor is a solid Bitcoin hardware wallet as well. The Ledger Nano S can be configured with MyEtherWallet as well.

Trezor has been around a long time and during the Bitfinex hack, it was joked that it could have been prevented by using a Trezor hardware wallet. No matter which hardware wallet you choose, both are going to be better than storing your coins on an exchange, your computer or your phone.

For more information, see our full article on trezor vs Ledger Nano S

How does one become a holder of Ethereum?

A person can convert fiat to Bitcoin and buy Ethereum with Bitcoin via an exchange. A popular option is a company called Coinbase. Alternatively they can mine Ether themselves with using ethereum mining hardware, or an ethereum cloud mining service.

An upside of building an Ethereum rig is that it can be configured to mine other cryptocurrency as well. If you’ve built your own rig you need to decide whether you want to mine on your own, or collaborate with others as part of an ethereum mining pool.

Using an ethereum mining calculator, one can determine exactly how profitable your mining will be.

Altcoin Wallets

A popular method of storing cryptocurrency online is in a software wallet. Check out our full article on finding the best altcoin wallet for more info.

Ethereum Mining Hardware

Ethereum Mining Hardware

Ethereum was launched in 2015 and has been hailed by the Telegraph as the “rising star of the cryptocurrency world”.

Since the launch of the currency, it has grown in value by more than 2300% and is the second most used cryptocurrency after Bitcoin. The advantage of Ethereum over Bitcoin is that the technology allows for not just currency to be traded on the platform, but also applications.

As with other cryptocurrencies, you can purchase them through an exchange, but you can also mine them yourselves using specialist Ethereum Mining Hardware.

Ethereum Mining

Miners of Ethereum will work to earn “Ether” as a crypto token instead of earning bitcoins. Ether can be used for trading as a currency as well as for payment of transaction fees on the Ethereum network.

Using the correct mining hardware will help you save costs when mining for Ethereum, however before you purchase mining hardware it is important that you have an ethereum hardware wallet to safely store your coins. Consider the Trezor vs Ledger Nano S wallets.

Ethereum Mining Hardware

In order to mine Ethereum, you will need a computer with a GPU (instead of a standard CPU).

The better the GPU, or graphics-processing unit, the faster the hashing power of the computer, which equates to more calculations possible per second.

It is important however to take the cost of electricity into account when purchasing a GPU.

The more powerful the GPU, the higher the electricity consumption will be.  To calculate the estimated costs more accurately, find an Ethereum mining calculator and enter the numbers relevant to your requirements, investments and electricity costs.

Hardware can be purchased at different capacities from $200 upwards.  The Raedon R9 295×2 is said to have the highest hash rate of all Ethereum rigs and so will give you the biggest returns on money.

Ethereum mining rigs can be dedicated to Ethereum mining only or can be a computer that performs any other necessary tasks and does mining on the side.

Should the price of a mining rig be beyond your budget, it is also possible to build your own Ethereum rig from basic computer parts. You will need GPU’s, graphics cards, motherboards, and power supply units. Each GPU will need about 200 watts of power. For more information on building your own rig, click here.

Ethereum mining is said to be resistant to application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) as Ethereum contracts can include any type of computation and therefore ASIC’s would not add any benefit to Ethereum mining.

Ethereum Cloud Mining

Ethereum Cloud Mining

Ethereum Cloud mining is a good alternative for potential miners that do not want the expense and maintenance of owning their own hardware. By signing a contract with a company that does cloud mining and depositing your money, you can be active as a miner almost immediately.

It is important to ensure the company you contract with is reputable and will not disappear with your money. Large cloud mining companies can keep their costs down due to the large volume of hardware and data they purchase and can therefore pass better earnings over to you.

Of course the downside to cloud mining is that you will be paying a percentage of the profit over to the company managing the hardware and mining in your behalf.

Mining Pools

If you’ve already made the investment in hardware, you could join an Ethereum mining pool online to help share resources.

See our comparison of Ethpool vs Ethermine here or read more about the top ethereum mining pools

Ethereum Investing

Mining is not the only way to invest in Ethereum.

You might be wondering “where can I buy Ether?”.

You can purchase a wallet and buy Ethereum through an online cryptocurrency exchange. Selected broker has a breakdown of the best Ethereum brokers online to assist you. This is of course a far less time consuming manner to invest, however the risks are greater as the currency is fluid and volatile.

Ethereum has made a significant impact on the cryptocurrency market and is considered to be a better investment than Bitcoin.