Best Monero Mining Hardware and XMR Mining Comparison 2021 (Recently Updated)
In this Monero mining hardware comparison, we’ll tell you the best XMR miners that will help you win those valuable XMR block rewards 💪🏻
Note: Before you start mining Monero there’s one thing to sort out first: the wallet where you’ll send your Monero mining profits to. The worst thing that you could do is send your XMR to an exchange, since they get hacked all the time, can freeze your crypto, or otherwise mismanage your funds.
One option is to use the official Monero wallet. Though note that the wallet only supports Monero and can take a long time (hours, days, or weeks - depending on your Internet speed) to download the Monero blockchain.
An alternative is to store your newly mined XMR with your own Exodus Monero wallet. Exodus is multi-currency and allows you to start using your XMR in seconds. Here are just some of Exodus’ most popular features:
- Support for 100+ crypto assets
- Focus on premium design and ease of use, so you can focus on mining!
- Giving you the ability to exchange cryptos for other cryptos right from your wallet - without creating an account! (desktop guide, mobile guide)
- Support for the best decentralized applications like Compound Finance
- Allowing you to stake some of the hottest cryptos for crypto passive income
- The ability to sync your wallet between desktop and mobile
- and 24/7, fast human support if you ever need help
* Note that if you’re sending your mining rewards to your Exodus wallet, it is better to send your rewards in larger chunks and/or less frequently. This will prevent your wallet from running into issues when sending many small transaction inputs at once.
An alternative is to use the official Monero wallet to mitigate this issue, though you’ll be missing out on multi-currency support, a no-account exchange, and other features found in Exodus.
Now, let’s have a look at the best Monero mining hardware. Though first, we’ll look at general Monero mining information before comparing XMR miners. (Feel free to skip to the “Monero Mining Hardware Comparison: 3 Best Options” if you already know about Monero mining).
Is Mining Monero Profitable?
Just like any other cryptocurrency, there is no straightforward answer. Imagine a scenario where you can get your equipment and electricity for free. Then yes, Monero mining is profitable! But for everyone else, profitability will depend mostly on electricity costs, how cheaply you can source equipment, and what the current mining hashrate is.
As a general rule, in order to be profitable mining Monero you’ll need some sort of edge. That could be cheap electricity or maybe you have an inside source to buy central processing units (CPUs) at a steep discount.
If your electricity costs are normal, and you’re paying retail prices for mining rigs, then Monero probably won’t be that profitable to mine.
Of course, that might not apply if we’re headed into a new crypto bull market. If the price of XMR is rapidly going up then it could become profitable to mine no matter what! Later in this article, we’ll discuss some mining calculators that you can use to find out if Monero will be profitable to mine.
Monero Mining Reward
The Monero block reward (mining reward) is different from Bitcoin’s. Unlike Bitcoin’s set block reward that gets cut in half every four years, Monero has a decaying block reward that decreases gradually over time.
The current block reward is about 1.65 XMR and a new block is mined about once every 2 minutes. That means that in any 10 minute period (an amount of time equal to one BTC block) approximately 8 XMR are mined. You can find out what the current block reward is by checking here.
Monero has another interesting feature that differentiates it from Bitcoin. In the Bitcoin community, there is some concern that as the block reward is continually cut in half, miners will drop off the network and security will deteriorate (by contributing mining resources to the network, miners make it harder for any 1 miner or group of miners to gain control of the network).
Monero has a solution to this problem. According to MoneroOutreach.org the, “Reward rate will steadily decrease until the end of May 2022, when there are 18.132 million XMR in circulation, at which point a 0.6 XMR block reward will remain indefinitely.”
So Monero will accept a very small amount of inflation in order to ensure that there is always a security budget. The day that Monero moves to this small reward model is rapidly approaching.
It will be interesting to see how the network reacts and whether a significant number of miners drop off the network when it happens or if mining remains profitable.
As of publication, the Monero hashrate is near its all-time high of 1.28 GH/sec. The best place to check the Monero hashrate is at BitInfoCharts.
When you look at the Monero hashrate charts you’ll notice near instant drops of 50% or more. These are the result of Monero’s frequent hard forks.
On a regular basis, the Monero development team institutes a hard fork in order to discourage ASIC mining on the network (ASICs are expensive, specialized mining devices that lead to miner centralization for those who can afford ASICs).
The dev team changes the hashing algorithm, along with other changes, in order to make Monero mining more accessible to individuals.
Unfortunately one of the significant contributors to the Monero hashrate, as least traditionally, has been botnet capture. That is, botnets infect computers and force them to mine Monero without the computer owner’s knowledge.
This is a problem fairly unique to Monero as the coin is mostly mined by “regular” computers as opposed to ASICs.
Monero Mining Difficulty
For someone mining Monero with their computer, or with a small collection of CPUs, by far the best time to mine is right after one of Monero’s hard forks. This is when mining is the most profitable. Given that the date of the hard forks is known well in advance, it’s possible to plan accordingly.
The number of botnets currently mining on Monero also has a big impact on profitability. The more botnets that are mining, the more difficult it is to mine profitably.
Monero Mining Hardware Comparison: 3 Best Options
There are lots of CPUs that can be used to mine Monero. We’ll compare three of them beginning with the most powerful, the AMD EPYC 7742.
The EPYC 7742 is a truly epic CPU. With 64 cores, it’s capable of an incredible 44,000 H/s. It consumes an estimated 225 watts of power while mining.
While the EPYC 7742 is the most powerful CPU on the market, that power comes at a price tag. It currently retails for $7,000 on Amazon. It’s not uncommon for the latest generation hardware to sell at a considerable premium. That’s why it may make more sense to purchase something a bit less powerful.
The AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3970X has 32 cores and costs a reasonable $1,900 on Amazon. It can mine at 28,000 H/s with a power draw of 200 watts.
Although you can get more hashrate for less money by combining two Threadrippers versus a single EPYC 7742, the downside is that electricity usage will be 400 watts instead of 225.
Finally, there is the AMD Ryzen 5 3600. At just $175 it’s the cheapest mining CPU on our list. The Ryzen 5 is capable of 7,900 H/s and draws 65 watts of power.
For those just getting into mining the Ryzen 5 might be a great choice as it will allow you to set up your mining rig, and work out any problems. Later on you can always upgrade your equipment, once you have a better idea of how mining Monero works.
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Monero Mining Benchmark
If you’d like even more information on mining equipment, you can check the benchmark rate for various CPUs here. The benchmark rate will tell you how many hashes per second a particular piece of equipment is capable of.
Hashes per second ultimately determines mining profitability. The more hashes per second, the more likely you are to win the block reward.
Monero Mining Calculator
There are a couple of different ways to estimate how much you can make mining Monero. One resource is the MoneroHash website. MoneroHash is one of the oldest Monero mining pools and they have detailed statistics on profitability as well as how often the mining pool finds a block, etc.
You can also use a dedicated Monero mining calculator like the one at WhatToMine.com. To accurately determine your mining profitability, you’ll need to know your hardware costs, electricity costs, mining pool fees (the aforementioned MoneroHash charges a 1.6% fee) as well as input an average Monero price.
You’ll also need to know the hashrate of your equipment. Once you have all of these details, you’ll be able to accurately assess your profitability. Once you have that figure, you can determine whether Monero mining is something you’d like to get involved with.
If you decide you’d rather just purchase Monero and invest in it that way, it’s always possible to exchange Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency for Monero using Exodus (desktop guide, mobile guide). Fast, inexpensive coin switches without having to register on an exchange: A pretty good deal and a great way to begin stacking XMR!
This content is for informational purposes only and is not investment advice. You should consult a qualified licensed advisor before engaging in any transaction.