Mining is one of the main features of cryptocurrency. There are different ways cryptocurrencies maintain network consensus and security. Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin use proof of work mining protocols. Mining Bitcoin is no longer feasible with GPU, and Litecoin has also had ASIC miners developed to be used on its Scrypt algorithm. However, the biggest question those in the crypto mining industry are asking is whether 2018 will be the year when ASIC machines finally overtakes all forms of GPU mining.
Why is this possible? Two developments happening in 2018 make this very possible: Bitmain’s pursuit of an Ethereum ASIC miner and Samsung’s entry into ASIC chip production.
What’s an ASIC miner? Read more on https://www.abitgreedy.com/asic-miner/.
Bitmain to develop an F3 Ethereum Antminer
Concerns about ASIC mining completely eliminating GPU mining were intensified early this year, after reports surfaced that Chinese Mining giants Bitmain were trying to develop an Ethereum ASIC miner. But that isn’t the first time these concerns have been floated around. Application specific integrated circuits made Bitcoin mining out of reach for GPU miners a while ago. Ethereum, the other major crypto, uses the Ethash mining algorithm that is ASIC resistant. But the question has always been whether someone would be able to navigate the protocol and introduce an ASIC miner capable of mining ether. Never mind that Ethereum is known to be in the process of shifting from a proof of work system to the non-mining proof of stake consensus by implementing the Casper protocol.
However, as that hasn’t been fully implemented yet, Ethereum alongside Bitcoin, Litecoin, and a few of the other cryptocurrencies remain profitable for miners. And the need to maximize profitability leads to the need for powerful dedicated mining hardware. While you can still mine a few of the coins with graphics card unit rigs, powerful mining farms need more. Having an ASIC for Ethereum has been mooted before, and the question always was whether it would be done before Casper.
Well, that seems to be the next thing on Bitmain’s 2018 agenda, prompting renewed concerns that GPU mining is soon going to be a thing of the past.
The move by Bitmain comes at a time when GPU prices have been skyrocketing due to increased demand by miners. It should be remembered that Graphic cards used in GPU mining rigs are the same ones utilized by gaming companies. The majority of these graphics cards are on demand for building Ethereum mining rigs, creating a scarcity of sorts. But Bitmain may be of help to gamers if they introduce ASIC miners for Ethereum. While that will ultimately help reduce prices, an ASIC miner on any platform immediately pushes a GPU miner to the periphery.
Bitmain is rumored to be actively involved in the production of an Ethereum ASIC miner that is reportedly going to cost you somewhere between $2500- $3000. The new hardware equipment will have 200-250MH/s.
According to reports attributed to tweaktown.com, Bitmain is in the process of the Ethereum ASIC miner, an Antminer F3. The specifications given for the F3 Antminer make for a powerful tool, packed with enough computational power. The F3 miner, specifically being designed for Ethereum, will come packed with 3 motherboards, and each of the motherboards will have 6 ASICs. Also included will be 32 DDR3 memory chips, each of which will have a 1GB capacity.
What you are looking at with this information is a really good Ethereum ASIC miner, promising energy efficiency and a powerful computational performance. Such an ASIC miner is capable of rendering GPU mining for Ethereum redundant the moment they hit the market.
If the reports are true, then early production is slated for later this month and we could see an Ethereum ASIC miner before Q4 in 2018. Taiwanese company TSMC is working with Bitmain on this project, according to the same source at tweaktown.com. Isn’t this a reason to think that ASICs will put GPU mining out of contention before the end of 2018?
Samsung is said to be developing ASIC chips for mining
The Bitmain rumor about the building of an Ethereum ASIC miner isn’t the only new development regarding ASICs completely eliminating GPU from mining. There is another player on the field. And to confound the matter, even more, it has been revealed that South Korea electronics giant Samsung is developing ASIC chips that will be used in mining. This latest development and confirmation means that we could see an influx of ASIC miners in the market. The end result is nothing but imminent doom for GPU cryptocurrency mining.
This story is breaking at a time when Samsung is now said to be bigger than Intel in the manufacture of computer chips. Samsung’s ASIC chips are designed to be used in the mining of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and a host of other crypto.
According to technology news site TechCrunch, an employee of Samsung confirmed that indeed the company was in the process of manufacturing chipsets for use in cryptocurrency mining. Nevertheless, the spokesperson maintained that no further details concerning the specific clients would be disclosed.
It is quite interesting to note that Samsung produces some of the best memory chips that are used in Graphic cards. These cards have been traditionally used for gaming and in computers, though they have also been used in creating cryptocurrency mining rigs.
The entry of Samsung into the ASIC market could result in a competition between companies that manufacture mining products. One such intense competition would be between Samsung and Taiwanese rival TSMC. If the two companies were to intensify their market search for ASIC chipsets, then we could be looking at a scenario where Bitmain gets competition in the manufacture of ASIC miners.
ASICs are always going to relegate GPUs to the rear when it comes to mining. It happened with Bitcoin, though it was helped by Bitcoin’s SHA-256 algorithm. While it should be acknowledged that GPU mining on the Ethereum platform will still be killed by the Proof of Stake algorithm, an accelerated effort by Bitmain and now Samsung means it may happen in 2018.