ASIC Mining: Relevant? Profitable? How`s it Going in 2018

The future of mining of many leading cryptocurrencies is rather uncertain in the long term. As the number of Bitcoin users increases and as more coins are produced, mining becomes more complex and expensive. In addition, Bitcoin’s architecture provides a gradual reduction in the reward for each generated block. Ten years ago miners received 50 Bitcoins per one block, but as every new 210,000 blocks (approximately every 4 years) appear, this amount is reduced in half. Mining is also affected by electricity prices, as it requires a lot of energy, and the cryptocurrency market conditions in general.

What`s ASIC and what problems does it solve?

As the complexity of Bitcoin blocks generation increased, it became no longer profitable to mine this virtual currency using graphic cards (GPU-mining) or processors (CPU-mining). More processing power was required to make calculations, so the first equipment, specially designed for Bitcoin mining appeared in China around 2012. These were ASIC-miners. ASIC stands for “application-specific integrated circuit”. In fact this technology was invented long before cryptocurrency market, back in the early 1980s. At that time the British company Sinclair Research installed ASIC on personal computers to advance their graphic performance.

ASIC is a chip that performs a strictly defined type of work. That’s why it does its job better and faster than other chips that are responsible for solving multiple tasks. So, in our case, ASIC miners can calculate algorithms of particular cryptocurrencies blockchain much faster and much more efficient than graphic cards or processors, involved in many other activities. Currently it is no longer profitable or even possible to mine some digital currencies (first of all BTC) in any other way except ASIC. ASIC miners solve the problem of processing power lack, but here’s more to come. They also help reduce power consumption – the second major problem of cryptocurrency mining. One graphic card is usually not enough to ensure really profitable mining so miners need many of them which means they also have to pay a lot for electricity. ASIC miners can advance this process – they take less space, reduce electricity costs and increase processing power.

ASIC miners are blocks that include a frame, a cooler, an ASIC chip, a memory block, and connectors for external devices.

What to mine using ASIC-miners?

ASIC-miners were initially designed to mine Bitcoin and still are first of all associated with this virtual currency. However, later special equipment appeared that was able to calculate algorithms of other cryptocurrencies. Today users can mine a number of coins using ASIC-miners, for example:

  • Bitcoin Cash, BitcoinDark, Namecoin (SHA-256 algorithm)
  • Dash ( X11 algorithm)
  • Ethereum, Ethereum Classic (Ethash algorithm)
  • Litecoin, Dogecoin (Scrypt algorithm)
  • Zcash (Equihash algorithm)

At the same time, some cryptocurrencies (for example Ethereum) can also be mined using graphic cards.

So, is it profitable?

Well, it’s not possible to calculate a general profitability rate of ASIC-miners, as it depends on a type of a device, cryptocurrency that is mined, electricity costs, etc. Rates of virtual currencies are rather volatile and unstable, which means that today it can take for example 6 month to get a payback of a couple thousand dollars spent on equipment purchase and related costs, while tomorrow one might waite for 1.5 years or more. One way or another, the “mining euphoria” is decreasing, and already in 2017 – the golden year for cryptocurrency industry – some began to talk about twilight times for mining. Today those who want to join ASIC mining have to make considerable investments which is basically too expensive for many users. Yes, there are still some Bitcoins to mine and other cryptocurrencies are also quite interesting. Indeed, mining is no longer the same as it used to be, but it’s not over yet. Anyway, before going down into a cryptocurrency mine and start extracting digital coins, you’d better consider if it’s easier and cheaper just to purchase some.

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Bitmain Closed Its Branch In Israel Due To Crypto Market Situation

Chinese mining giant, Bitmain, has closed its branch Bitmaintech Israel in Ra’anana. It was set up two years ago as a company which specialized in developing blockchain technology, AI technology and controlled one of the mining pools Connect BTC in Israel.

The branch was headed by Gadi Glikberg, who held the title of VP International Sales and Marketing. He and his 23 employees will be laid off.  The reason of closing the branch is that Bitcoin trading price fell down by more than 80% since its all-time high, while Ripple’s XRP and Ethereum decreased by more than 90% since the peak of their prices.

Glikberg commented on the situation: “The crypto market has undergone a shake-up in the past few months, which has forced Bitmain to examine its various activities around the globe and to refocus its business in accordance with the current situation.”

We remind you:

Is Bitmain Really Dying, or How Much Money Was Lost in 2018?

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Tether Made It into Top-5 Cryptocurrencies

The king of stablecoins Tether (USDT) is now the 5th biggest cryptocurrency, according to the rating of CoinMarketCap. Although the coin did follow the overall downward trend, it is clearly doing better than EOS and Ethereum. The rating now looks like this:


Source: CoinMarketCap

Despite the jump in the rating, things are not particularly amazing for Tether. The coin is quickly losing holders, since its alternatives (like Gemini Dollar) have way more customer-friendlier conditions.

The crypto industry is turning upside down. Given the level of volatility, the top-5 newcomers might or might not stay there. We remind you:

Stellar Has Outrun EOS and Became the 5th Top Cryptocurrency

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Cryptocurrency Prices Today, December 11: Cryptocurrencies Are Once Again in the Red Zone

crypto prices

Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, EOS, Litecoin, Cardano, Stellar, IOTA, Dash, Monero: Cryptocurrency prices

According to the online platform Coingecko, Bitcoin (BTC) lost 1.8% over the past 24 hours. The price at the time of writing is $3425 per coin.

Cryptocurrencies are also falling in price:

Bitcoin Cash lost 3.52% over the past 24 hours and costs $99 per coin;

Ripple dropped by 1.43% and is $0.30 in value;

EOS minus 3.41%, and its price is $1.91;

Litecoin decreased by 1.50%, and its rate is $24;

Cardano lost 2.49%, and its cost is $0.029;

Stellar fell by 1.29% and costs $0.11;

IOTA added 2.85%, and its value is $0.24;

Dash lost 3.36%, and its price is $68;

Monero became cheaper at 4.77% and costs $43.

Over the past 24 hours, Ethereum lost 1.43%. The coin exchange rate is $90, according to Coin 360.

The total market capitalization is $110 billion. Bitcoin accounts for 55% of the total volume. In monetary terms, it is $60 billion.

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Top Serials Where Cryptocurrency is Mentioned

Who doesn’t like to relax on the soft couch watching a show after an intense day? The Coin Shark has made a compilation of serials about cryptocurrency, so that your rest will be complemented by benefits.

1. StartUp

This serial opens the compilation of crypto serials for a good reason. This is the first picture, that doesn’t merely deals with digital currency, but contain it in the heart of the plot.

Cybertriller about cryptocurrency, hackers, bankers and mobsters, who are combined in order to change the world. In the picture, instead of the well-known Bitcoin and Ethereum, a fictional digital coin called GenCoin is used.

TV series adviser Brian Stoeckert, expert in risk management and anti-money laundering, in the interview with CNBC said:

“People have heard about digital currency, but they really don’t understand how it operates. They just see it on the headlines,this is one way they can follow a story line and get a unique perspective on it”.

2. Mr. Robot

Sam Esmail created not just an American psychological TV show, but the whole iconic picture, which consists of 3 seasons. The serial is highly appreciated by programmers and those, who are interested in innovations.

The main character Elliot Alderson, played by an actor Rami Malek, leads a double life: by day, he is a cyber security engineer, and by night – a genius hacker. But the double life doesn’t end here!  Elliot has a split personality.

In the serial a fictional cryptocurrency Ecoin is involved, even the famous Bitcoin is mentioned. In one of the episodes, the president of E-Corp or “evil corporation” Philipp Price (the actor Christopher Michael) and a high-ranking official, whom serial fans compare to Jacob Lew, discuss the future of their cryptocurrency and Bitcoin.

“The problem here is hard cash is fading, rapidly, this is the way of the world right now and Bitcoin is spreading and it Bitcoin takes of the wheel all in a world of hell. It is unregulated,it’s already reached its transaction volume maximum and it is part plate control by Chinese miners”.

3. The Big Bang Theory

Popular comedy series, which wins our hearts with edgy sense of humor and thin sarcasm. Many believe, that the target audience of sitcom are just “techs”, since its main characters Leonard Hofstadter and Sheldon Cooper, who were played by Johnny Galecki and Jim Parsons respectively, are talented physics. Nevertheless, the humour doesn’t revolve around the science and the characters get into quite familiar situations for everyone.

The series creators were inspired by cryptocurrency so much, that in 2017 they have devoted the whole episode to it under the name “The Bitcoin Entanglement”. In the serie, the main characters recalled, that they had mined BTC and saved them on a Flash-drive, which was lost 🙂

4. The Simpsons

There is no person, who’ve never heard of The Simpsons. This yellow people are well-known around the world and head of the family Homer, voiced by Daniel Castellaneta, is often cited in comic public groups. And there is no wonder, because in this situational animated comedy you have everything you need in order to get inspired by positivity and get temporarily disconnect from worries.

The cryptocurrency in the serial is mentioned in an episode in 2013. In the serie Krusty the Clown tells, that he is broke, because “All it takes, is a bad luck with a ponies, worse luck in a Bitcoin market, heavy investment in a high and bookmark company”.

Also in the 7 serie, season 25, Bitcoin was depicted on the billboard near the school:

5. Almost Human

You must admit, that it would be weird if a science fiction TV show, events of which develop in 2048, didn’t concern Bitcoin. The creator, J. H. Wyman, wouldn’t make such mistake. True, Bitcoin in the series, is not what we are used to “not seeing”. Here, the first cryptocurrency of nowadays is presented in the form of a large flash drive.

6. The Blacklist

The cryptocurrency has not fully replaced the fiat and a certain percentage of humanity doesn’t even understand what it is. But, others are already bringing clarity to the public about the digital currency. The writers,of “The Blacklist” decided not to invent a new cryptocurrency, but to use the well-known Ripple.

We want to remind you, that recently Ripple has become the second cryptocurrency by capitalization on the market.

7. Billions

This serial is mandatory to view for those, who are involved in finance and closely linked to the economy.

Billions is a melodramatic picture with a dynamic plot. The action of episodes are develop around two largest players in the US financial world – successful businessmen Bobby Axelrod and the Prosecutor of the Southern New York District – Chuck Rhoades.  Chuck knows, that Axe’s fund is maintaining shadow activity, because of that he is constantly looking for and consequently finds compromising evidence. The cast characters – Damian Lewis and Paul Giamatti respectively.

Now Billions – is the best serial about finance. The heroes begin to use cryptocurrency in the third season.

Cryptocurrency also appears in the following series: “The Good Wife”, ”Person of Interest”, ”Blindspot”, ”iZombie”, ”Family Guy”.

We hope that you will not lose the compilation of crypto series from The Coin Shark. In order for this not to happen, share it on social network with friends. Enjoy watching! 🙂  

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Andreas Antonopoulos Does Not Think Bitcoin Is in a “Death Spiral”

With the current downtrend of Bitcoin and the crypto market in general, a lot of crypto experts and enthusiasts do not see any bright future for #1 digital coin. The infamous prediction of John McAfee now seems even more far-fetched than before.

However, some people still have faith in BTC. A famous author of books about cryptocurrency and blockchain Andreas Antonopoulos made a video where he explained what a death spiral is and why it does not relate to Bitcoin so far.

According to Antonopoulos, a death spiral arises when the hashrate of the network drops.

Since it is directly connected with the mining complexity, the complexity also reduces together with profitability, causing miners to leave.

However, the author believes this is not the case with Bitcoin, since BTC miners do not react to such price jumps immediately. Their plans are usually calculated for the long-terms results. Only if Bitcoin keep dropping for a significant period of time, the danger of a death spiral may appear.

Part of the reason that’s unlikely to happen is that miners have a much more long-term perspective, meaning that they have existing investments in equipment and they usually purchase electricity on long-term plans, they don’t pay it by the week,” says Antonopoulos.

Hopefully, the crypto author is right, because if miners start leaving the ecosystem of Bitcoin, the coin is doomed.

We remind you:

Books About Bitcoin: Top Editions by Andreas Antonopoulos

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Cryptocurrency Prices Today, December 10: BTC and the Rest of Cryptocurrencies Are Trying to Restore Positions

Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, EOS, Litecoin, Cardano, Stellar, IOTA, Dash, Monero: Cryptocurrency prices

According to the online platform Coingecko, Bitcoin (BTC) gained 1.7% over the past 24 hours. The price at the time of writing is $3484 per coin.

The remaining cryptocurrencies are also in the green zone:

Bitcoin Cash added 1% over the past 24 hours and costs $108 per coin;

Ripple grew by 1.47% and costs $0.31;

EOS plus 10.39%, and its price is $1.99;

Litecoin increased by 0.84%, and its rate is $25;

Cardano added 2.21%, and its value is $0.031;

Stellar gained 2.30% and costs $0.12;

IOTA grew by 2.44%, and its value is $0.24;

Dash added 4.90%, and its price is $72;

Monero became more expensive by 2.58% and costs $47.

Over the past 24 hours, Ethereum added 1.52%. The coin rate is $93, according to Coin 360.

The total market capitalization is $112 billion. Bitcoin accounts for 55% of the total volume. In monetary terms, this is $61 billion.

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