Crypto mining - is it killing gaming?

Discussion in 'PC Gaming & Rigs' started by MIghtyG, Jan 22, 2018.

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    1. No problem at all with it

      17 vote(s)
      23.9%
    2. I dont like it and think its damaging to PC gaming

      27 vote(s)
      38.0%
    3. Its fine in moderation, its the whales that are ruining it

      13 vote(s)
      18.3%
    4. Im looking forward to cheap equipment once the crypto market dies

      16 vote(s)
      22.5%
    5. its going to kill the second hand market if/when it floods the market with cheap, well used GPUs

      8 vote(s)
      11.3%
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    1. MIghtyG

      MIghtyG
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      With the increasing popularity/interest in crypto currencies since Bitcoin hit an all time high towards the end of last year, I am starting to see more and more about crypto currencies and mining online.

      Here alone we have the 18 page thread on the topic. And large tech youtubers are starting to hop on the bandwagon to either explain or try out crypto or to derise it as a flash in the pan or to flat out condemn it and anyone who tries it.

      So, I was wondering what the pulse towards Crypto is on here?

      Is it something that people are actively avoiding because it is driving up the prices of some mother boards, power supplies and most of all, high powered graphics cards? or is it something which is worthwhile getting into and something to be celebrated within the PC gaming community? Or, as with all things in life, is it great in moderation?

      My take on it all is its fine in moderation, I am starting to dabble in mining and have bought a second GPU to do it (that and a little SLI gaming when it works). I dont see the issue with someone buying 1,2,3+ graphics cards to mine with or even setting up a dedicated 6GPU system to mine 24/7.

      I can see why people get annoyed as prices are going up, but I would say this is caused by the whales, people buy 50+ GPUs directly from the manufacturers which is killing supplies.

      for the moment I am seeing mining as something fun to try out for a while and hopefuly, something which will make buying/upgrading PC components in the future a little easier to swallow, if my PC can pay for itself in 12 months then maybe I will be able to start justifying annual upgrades rather than my normal "wait until it dies/cant play a thing, then upgrade"
       
    2. Clarey

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      Last week I bought a 1080 from the classifieds here for £425 and today sold my 1070 on eBay for £447.
      Embrace the crypto miners and get a cheap upgrade I say.
       
    3. Cha1ky

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      I think its damaging. The prices out there now because of it are outrageous, they were high to begin with but they're just crazy now.

      I can't agree its fine in moderation, only the whales are to blame stance either. You buy a card specifically to mine then you're part of the problem in my eyes, whether you bought 1 or 20. If everyone bought just one thinking only the whales are the issue then it would be a lot worse!

      Quicker the bubble bursts the better for me TBH.
       
    4. Psycho Sonny

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      people who think the guy with 20 GPU's in his house should be hanged don't have a clue.

      some of the big farms are spending £100K a week on GPU's from a single retailer. that is what is making the impact not the guy with a couple of grands worth a year.

      go look on youtube you will see farms with millions of pounds worth of equipment in the video. rows and rows of GPU's stacked 10 deep and 10 high for miles on end.

      as for abused cards. mining cards if run efficiently only hit 50--55C whilst mining as they are run at 60-75% tdp. they also are warrantied for 2-5 years. evga being the best
       
    5. aslird

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      I do not think they are the cause of the problem, but they are part of the problem, in my view. Rising RAM costs, coupled with low (intentional?) supply always leads to price increases, so when supply does reach the supplier, it is snapped up instantly by people buying 3, 4, 5 cards, when normally the average gamer would be buying one card.
      Good article about it here - https://www.gamersnexus.net/industry/3211-what-do-manufacturers-think-of-mining-and-gpu-prices

      The bigger problem is the high use of electricity. I read somewhere that if "crypto-mining" was a country, it would use more energy than 158 other countries. Reality Check: Bitcoin's energy use
       
    6. Psycho Sonny

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      i believe the energy usage is wildly exaggerated. it still uses less than mining gold for instance iirc.

      also the major mining farms are all based where energy is plentiful and cheap because it's coming from renewable sources. iceland (geothermal), northern china, south africa (solar).

      you have to realise bitcoin mining will decrease over time. as soon as it hits 2020 90% of the miners will stop mining bitcoin. as the coin starts paying out less and less. also with the lightning network being released this year we could see the number of people mining BTC dramatically drop too.

      the energy being used is still peanuts compared to other industries with this amount of cash involved.

      there will come a point when mining stops too apart from a few who do it for transactions fee's, etc. it's not going to grow forever it will to a full u-turn and go the other way at some point. so the energy usage point is a mute one.

      also in the UK you can choose to have solar panels and a leccy provider which only uses renewable energy. we have huge investment into windfarms and solar in the UK. we will be burning less and less fossil fuels every year regardless of energy consumption.
       
    7. ArmitageShanks

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      Here's a question: if almost everyone stops mining Bitcoin (or whatever the latest cryptocurrency fad is) due to the limit being reached or becoming economically unviable, who validates the blockchains for future transactions?

      I doubt transaction fees are going to be enough of an incentive. The whole thing is likely to collapse unless they come up with a better scheme...
       
    8. drinkturps

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      How long will it be before NVIDIA and AMD produce cryptomining optimised devices or indeed start sponsoring certain currencies? Good luck to those making money from it, yeah it sucks that prices are up for our upgrades but if the manufacturers increase the supply of GPUS things will balance out again.
       
    9. Furnace Inferno

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      Crypto-mining seems so stupid to me, why on earth are people allowed to waste energy for the sole puporse of mining imaginary money?!

      It literally has no purpose beyond that.
       
    10. Delvey

      Delvey
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      Isn't all money imaginary? Since it is something that was created by the human race, and it's value is dictated by the human race, just as crypto currencies are.
       
    11. Furnace Inferno

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      Sure but what I mean is the waste of energy to mine imaginary coins, it’s just insane.
       
    12. MIghtyG

      MIghtyG
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      Is there any difference between someone who buys two cards with the goal of a little mining in the downtime vs. someone who buys two cards for an SLI/crossfire system which does nothing during its downtime?

      Although the prices are high at the minute for some cards, I am beginning to see mining in a positive light. before the demand for high priced graphics cards was relatively limited, when the 1080s etc came out it was "the gaming elite" that could afford it when most people were getting by with 1060s/1070s. This increased demand on the cards means that the card manufacturers now have a massively increased market to work with which could (in the longer term, if this isnt a flash in the pan) start to drive prices down as manufacturers can begin to take advantage of better economies of scale. Maybe wishful thinking on my part though!

      its not using energy to mine coins, its using energy to perform complex calculations which maintain the ledger, the complexity of the calculations make it impossible for people to commit fraud and create counterfit coins. Not something that can be stopped with conventional currency.

      As @Delvey says anyway, all money is "imaginary" we imbue it with value, the downside of conventional money is the government can simply decide to print itself some more money when it needs to which de-values the money you have in the bank. With crypto currencies (most of them at least) thats impossible.
       
    13. Grangey.

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      It is ultimately a phase.

      I remember back when you could directly mine bitcoin from your PC- sadly back then I didn't understand its benefits so after running it for 2 days gave it up (oohhhh how I'd be a multimillionaire now!), but none the less this phase is no different.

      The crypto world is in its infancy, and with the thousands of altcoins available, they need support with mining. As the crypto world develops, and particularly blockchain starts to become utilised in "public"/day to day transactions, just like BTC, Gaming PC rigs will not be able to cope with mining, and people will either develop specialised mining rigs - freeing up their previous rigs back into gaming... or stop.

      Ok this is a good few years away, and I do think there will always be an opportunity for mining in some shape or form that's profitable- thats the point of blockchain ultimately- it benefits everyone. Its impact on the gaming world though will be short term, people looking to cash out and get free upgrades while there is all the hype in the market, but gamers will ultimately still want to game, so I cant see a single PC gamer effectively stop gaming entirely in favour of mining... short term maybe... mid-long term the bug is still there.

      The only part that's "killing" it is the raise in GPU prices making those looking to update purely for the sake of gaming hard done by... but that's just supply and demand, and cost of entry changes constantly in most markets.

      Fast forward a year and I wouldn't be surprised if we see GPU manufacturers releasing more specific mining focused cards, that might be less desirable for gaming and more so for mining, hopefully settling the pricing somewhat.

      As for the cryptomarket dieing? Are you kidding, it will NEVER die at least not for centuries. We are looking at the future and contributing to its development, the only thing that may change as I've mentioned is the ease of mining, and tax/government input that would make this unprofitable for most.
       
    14. Psycho Sonny

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      Sounds like you know what you are talking about.

      On the other hand go google Enjin, Ripple, etc. Enjin is a coin made by the people behind minecraft. It will be used to buy and sell virtual items within the game replacing fiat. So it has a purpose. Ripple is basically the CC version of swift currently and already in use by Asian credit card companies.

      Rather than spouting nonsense about something you know nothing about. Do your research. And by that I don't mean a couple of hours on a site. Blockchain technology has already been spouted by the top wall street firms as being technology of the future, as well as by other people who do multiple transactions daily. It's just currently in it's unregulated state that makes it so risky.

      Here is a very good post from someone who knows what they are talking about

      "That's not why it was invented... not sure where you got that from. Here's a brief overview of the history that led us to Bitcoin and why it came about...

      People used to pay each other in gold and silver. Difficult to transport. Difficult to divide.

      Paper money was invented. A claim to gold in a bank vault. Easier to transport and divide.

      Banks gave out more paper money than they had gold in the vault. They ran 'fractional reserves'. A real money maker. But every now and then, banks collapsed because of runs on the bank.

      Central banking was invented. Central banks would be lenders of last resort. Runs on the bank were thus mitigated by banks guaranteeing each other’s deposits through a central bank. The risk of a bank run was not lowered. Its frequency was diminished and its impact was increased. After all, banks remained basically insolvent in this fractional reserve scheme.

      Banks would still get in trouble. But now, if one bank got in sufficient trouble, they would all be in trouble at the same time. Governments would have to step in to save them.

      All ties between the financial system and gold were severed in 1971 when Nixon decided that the USD would no longer be exchangeable for a fixed amount of gold. This exacerbated the problem, because there was now effectively no limit anymore on the amount of paper money that banks could create.

      From this moment on, all money was created as credit. Money ceased to be supported by an asset. When you take out a loan, money is created and lent to you. Banks expect this freshly minted money to be returned to them with interest. Sure, banks need to keep adequate reserves. But these reserves basically consist of the same credit-based money. And reserves are much lower than the loans they make.

      This led to an explosion in the money supply. The Federal Reserve stopped reporting M3 in 2006. But the ECB currently reports a yearly increase in the supply of the euro of about 5%.

      This leads to a yearly increase in prices. The price increase is somewhat lower than the increase in the money supply. This is because of increased productivity. Society gets better at producing stuff cheaper all the time. So, in absence of money creation you would expect prices to drop every year. That they don’t is the effect of money creation.

      What remains is an inflation rate in the 2% range.

      Banks have discovered that they can siphon off all the productivity increase + 2% every year, without people complaining too much. They accomplish this currently by increasing the money supply by 5% per year, getting this money returned to them at an interest.

      Apart from this insidious tax on society, banks take society hostage every couple of years. In case of a financial crisis, banks need bailouts or the system will collapse.

      Apart from these problems, banks and governments are now striving to do away with cash. This would mean that no two free men would be able to exchange money without intermediation by a bank. If you believe that to transact with others is a fundamental right, this should scare you.

      The absence of sound money was at the root of the problem. We were force-fed paper money because there were no good alternatives. Gold and silver remain difficult to use.

      When it was tried to launch a private currency backed by precious metals (Liberty Dollar), this initiative was shut down because it undermined the US currency system. Apparently, a currency alternative could only thrive if 'nobody' launched it and if there was no central point of failure.

      What was needed was a peer-to-peer electronic cash system. This was what Satoshi Nakamoto described in 2009. It was a response to all the problems described above. That is why he labeled the genesis block with the text: “03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks.”. Bitcoin was meant to be a superior alternative to our current financial system, NOT a means to avoid control or hide your transactions.

      But yes, we will find out in the coming years how things will pan out, and it's obviously your choice as to whether you want to be a part of it or not. You may regret it, you may not... :)"

      I await your well informed reply

      It will be unprofitable for those that pay for leccy. Those with free leccy will have zero running costs. So they will continue it for the transaction fees. Especially if they already have hardware lying about. It will essentially be free money. I believe there is a guy on ocuk with a 100kwh solar farm. He gets paid buttons by the leccy providers who buy his excess. So he would rather use it to make more is just an example.

      Why sell 1kwh for 5p if he can use that 1kwh to make £5 for instance?
       
    15. Psycho Sonny

      Psycho Sonny
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      they already tried out mining specific cards. only a handful bought them because if it does collapse (highly unlikely) then they would be worthless whereas I can always sell a normal GPU to a gamer or use it for gaming myself.

      put it this way i just had a mate at work spend like £2K on a top of the range gaming PC. has a 8 core ryxen, 2 x 1080ti in SLI, etc.

      he bought it for mining. he says if it doesn't work out at least he will have a kick ass gaming pc. think it makes him around £300 a month in the current downturn. it should be making him £500 a month if things go back to normal.
       
    16. Theydon Bois

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      I don't like that new cards are inflated, but I am one that buys a new card every 3ish years, so it may not effect me when I am due to buy again (actually this year beginning of next so it probably will)

      I don't envy the classified mods though. I would'nt want any second hand kit that had been in a mining rig.

      Other wise, good luck to the (little) miners, just make sure you diverse so you don't lose everything.
       
    17. Grangey.

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      As I've been out of the game for a while, how much have cards actually inflated by? For example the 1080ti I can see around the £800+ mark, what was this prior to the mining frenzy? I want to think it was £500 or so but cant recall for certain
       
    18. raymondo77

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      The 1080ti Founders Edition launched at £700 (I bought one then, directly from the NVidia store).

      Up until a few weeks ago they were still available to buy from NVidia for £679.

      I didn't keep track of the add-in board versions so not sure how much they've inflated by.
       
    19. ChuckMountain

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      Were they actually in stock though?

      The starting price on Scan is £850 which is somewhat higher than it used to be. Oh well there goes my upgrade ....
       
    20. raymondo77

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      Yes, I bought two (I'm part of the problem :().
       
    21. Furnace Inferno

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      So what is the point inprople buying mining rigs? Last time I paid any attention it was people mining for coins.
       
    22. Theydon Bois

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      Stupid price. My 980ti was £550. £300 increase for the same tier card? This is a combination of mining and the company being able to sell at that point (supply/demand) which is what I don't like about the whole mining thing.
       
    23. mozza54

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      While I don't have much of an issue with mining itself, I find the whole currency really interesting tbh I don't like that its driving up gpu prices and making them harder to get hold of.

      couple of years ago I built a really nice i5 system with a gtx 970 and used good parts all round, even down to the fans and cables were all Corsair or branded and all in the machine was just shy of £650 (without OS). At this minute in time, I couldn't build a 1070 version for less than a grand and finding a 1070 at a reasonable price is something of a challenge.

      I know SSDs and Ram prices don't help but at the same time, I went onto scan earlier today and all 1070ti's are priced higher than my 980ti back when I got it.. and all out of stock.
       
    24. ThuGLy

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      It'll stabilise once crypto stabalises bad news if you're in the market for a GPU at the moment but the influx of 2nd GPUs once it stabalises will make up for it. Imo anyway
       
    25. richardb70

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      Non-miner here so let's get that out of the way.

      In my experience it's been bad for gamers. When I was getting my 7950 back when, it was a popular mining card and availability was shocking, plus prices were artificially high whenever stock appeared. Now the focus is on nVidia cards and 1070 cards (for example) are either priced as launch or higher.

      It's also trashed the second hand market. There's no way in hell I'd buy a used GPU now.

      I think if I was going to leave my PC on for ages without using it (which I rarely do), I'd rather do something useful like finding a cure for cancer.
       
    26. Psycho Sonny

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      I don't mean to offend anyone here but as a purely educational point of view as well as science. I listened to a TED talk a few years back from a leading scientist. He believes cancer is the bodies natural response trigger to a problem but it has malfunctioned. He wasn't convinced it can be cured because the body itself created it as a response to something that happened to it.

      Be it corrosion of reproduction of cells. Like a cell can only heal itself so many times before it malfunctions and then when it does it spreads as it's malfunctioning. It was a really good piece from an educational point of view.

      You can also see when you hit a certain age I think it was 50 or 60. You are then something like 6 times more likelier to get cancer. It's because of the degradation of cells over time to cure cancer you would need to cure degradation of cells and that would mean making us immortal. That is why he doesn't believe it was curable and will always be a risk.

      As in the current ways of curing it are cutting it out from you or nuking it with radiation (chemo) to kill the malfunctioning cells.

      I don't know I'm not an expert in the field but this guy's stance was there will never be a real cure for it, as in stopping it before it happens. The cure is to remove it before it does too much damage when it does actually effect you.

      I believe more people do think it's curable but I found this guys stance interesting as well as informative. It's always good to hear differing opinions to yourself. In fact you should always listen to differing opinions in order to gain more perspective on all the differing angles.

      Gamers are crying but say the crypto market did collapse. And suddenly 10 million cards flooded the market and retailers slashed the prices of 1070ti's to £200. You would all be rejoicing.

      My opinion is if you want a card buy it. Then mine with it on the side to re-coup the outlay. That way you have nothing to complain about. Complaining won't get you anywhere so why not do something about it instead?

      That's how I got into mining. I bought a 1050 for gaming on as I had just got back into PC gaming. I then wanted to upgrade to a 1060 so I did as my 1050 was rather weak for PUBG. Then I wanted to upgrade again as I was getting more into gaming so I got a better monitor a G Sync 27" 144hz 1440p from dell. Then my 1060 was struggling so I wanted more power but the 1080 was too expensive. So i found out why. People were using them for mining on. So I started researching mining. I then figured OMG you mean I can spend £600 on a GPU and it pays for itself in the background within 3-4 months? Why has nobody told me this before. I have spent several £K on gaming over the years and now these components can actually make me that money back. I thought it's best I just bite the bullet upgrade to a 1080 and start mining with it when I'm not gaming.

      I then ended up getting carried away and bought more cards, etc. It's a bit of a hobby to me. I check on my rigs several times a day. I get a lot of joy from it. I'm a nerd at heart.
       
      Last edited: Jan 23, 2018
    27. Psycho Sonny

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      I don't mine any coins with my GPU's. I rent my hashing power out to the highest bidder.

      Like I said before it's best you research a topic before speaking as if you know everything about it.

      I've only been in this game for 4 months and I know a lot but I still have only scratched the surface.

      I get paid in BTC for renting my hashing power out. The people who rent my power use it to mine coins for themselves.

      I may one day buy an antiminer to mine BTC directly or I may rent it's hashing power out to the highest bidder. I mine coins with my CPU directly in a pool.

      There is so much hashing power involved you need to join a pool ( a collective of miners) in order to make it worthwhile. Doing it on your own isn't really viable.

      When mining you are being paid for constructing the ledger. You are then rewarded with coins for doing so. Every coin is accounted for as part of the ledger. You cannot create them out of thin air. Some coins have a limited supply like BTC. Others don't but you cannote create more than was intended within the time set by the developer.

      Like I posted above banks create 5% more money out of thin air every year. You by sticking with FIAT are basically helping them to make yourself poorer. This is why crypto currency is seen as a major threat by the banks. This is why banks are trying to stop you from buying it and scaremongering people into it's a bubble, etc.

      blockchain technology is the future. to think it's pointless would be a pretty stupid view to take especially if you don't even know what blockchain technology even is.

      it cannot be hacked either because previous part of the chain has to agree and match up. so if you try to manipulate it, it will get rejected. this is why it's decentralised. if you are centralised the central node can be hacked and then the chain manipulated. this isn't possible with BTC and blockchain technology.
       
    28. ChuckMountain

      ChuckMountain
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      That's a bit too robust to say it can't be hacked.

      It is possible to hack blockchain its just that to do would require so much computer power and an "attack" on the decentralised nodes. Effectively you would rewrite the blockchain and then redistribute.

      With changes in computer power, technology, exploits ....

      It's highly unlikely to happen but you can't say never!
       
    29. ThuGLy

      ThuGLy
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      Imagine if it did get hacked tho it'd be like fight club

      tyler-fight-club-quote1.jpg
       
    30. duncfunk

      duncfunk
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