Once you dive into cryptocurrency and start learning the ropes, it's no doubt that you will become a little curious about how mining Bitcoin works. Cryptocurrency mining has become a huge part of the Bitcoin ecosystem because, well, we need them to process transactions! Much like the California gold rush of 1849, lots of people are jumping on the bandwagon. Of course Bitcoin is not the only coin that you can mine and there is more than one way to strike it rich mining crypto. Follow The 'Stache down into the bitmine as I review a few popular options for getting into cryptocurrency mining for the first time or for expanding your existing mining assets.
How I Started Mining
I have been into Bitcoin & cryptocurrency since 2014, but I had always been a bit hesitant to get involved in mining. You basically have 2 options; you either build/buy your own hardware and mine on your own/with a pool, or you "remotely rent" from an already established company which is called "cloud mining" contracts. In 2017, I decided to try a cloud mining contract, loved how easy it mostly was (more on that later), and the rest is history (barely)! Of course, my first idea was to build my own Ethereum mining rig, but after looking at all the costs and projections I decided that I wanted to hold off on that until I could come up with a more sustainable personal solution that may involve solar, wind, and a small battery bank.
Until I DO build my own rig (hopefully this summer where I document the whole thing), I have been trying out different cloud mining contracts. I am going to go over what cloud mining really is and will also provide some good resources if YOU are ready to build your own rig too.
What Is Cloud Mining?
Cloud Mining is essentially just renting mining machines (or really hash rate of those machines) from an established cryptocurrency mining operation where they host and maintain the hardware & equipment for you. You can purchase cloud contracts that vary in length & conditions. This offers a quick and easy way to start mining your favorite coin without the hassle of building or maintaining your own rig. Here are some of my top options for cloud mining:
Genesis Mining - When it comes to cloud mining for just about any cryptocurrency, Genesis Mining is the de facto industry leader. They offer cloud mining contracts for Bitcoin, Monero, Ethereum, Zcash, Litecoin, & Dash. Personally I am all about the Bitcoin mining contracts, but I love that they offer a wide variety. You can use my discount code iN2Tr1 for 3% off if you want to support The 'Stache (I just get a little hashpower bonus). The only drawback to Genesis is that they don't always have contracts to offer so when they DO come up people snap them up quickly.
NiceHash - The cool thing about NiceHash is not only their mining software, but that they have created a marketplace for not only buying cloud hashing power, but selling it too! This means that if you want to sell some of your unused computing power you can on their marketplace and get a small return for it.
Honeyminer - This is a fairly new mining program, but I had to list it because of how stupid simple it is to use! Compared to a lot of other options where there is a lot to configure, Honeyminer is a simple install and turn on and that is it! GREAT for a beginner just getting into the space that wants to use their own machine to test out mining.
MinerGate - This cloud mining company offers more coins to mine than Genesis does and they also allow you to mine different coins simultaneously without a decrease of hash rate. Similar to Genesis their cloud mining contracts are not all always available. I love that they have a downloadable app and desktop application with a VERY user friendly interface.
CCG Mining - Not only can you get a good variety of cloud mining contracts through these guys, but they can also build you a custom rig if ownership is really what you are looking for. This is a cool step in the next direction of owning your own rig, but not having to built it yourself. A great way to get started in cloud mining as a beginner.
Build Your Own Crypto Mining Rig
If cloud mining is not your thing and you would rather own an operate your own rig I have some good resources I have been saving up for my own build. Here is a quick list of all the avenues I have found to build or buy your own mining rig:
Howtomine - This blog has a bunch of good articles about building your own rigs and the walkthroughs are pretty detailed with pictures.
Youtube - Of course, there are a ton of good videos on youtube about building your own rig. I don't have any in particular, but this is always a great resource.
Amazon - If you are looking for parts for your cryptocurrency mining rigs, I have found that the selection is pretty darn good on Amazon, especially if you have prime. Take a look at these really great options below:
With cloud mining contracts, getting started in mining crypto is pretty easy. If you want to build your own rig there is a lot more work to it, but I feel it can be more rewarding in the long run. Having some sort of mining in your crypto portfolio is great for diversification as mining Bitcoin is not going anywhere anytime soon!