Though it’s still possible to mine bitcoins from home, you’d have to invest $1600 USD on an Antminer S9 and buy a few top-notch graphics cards before you can turn a profit with your mining. However, it’s still possible to shell out a little less and mine for altcoins like Litecoin and DASH.
What Make Litecoin and Dash Worth Mining?
Litecoin was developed in 2011. It offers several unique features:
- Transaction fees are lower;
- It was built on a different blockchain with a simpler algorithm;
- Blocks generate every 2.5 minutes — Bitcoin blocks take 10 minutes to generate in comparison, with quicker block generation meaning faster transactions; and
- 84 million LTC will be released before its cap cutoff — 4 times the number of bitcoins — allowing more people to invest.
Dash Coin was previously called Dark Coin. Dash allows users to mix their coins when they choose to do a “dark send” to anonymize their transaction. The Dash Community is full of loyal followers and people who invested in masternodes years prior. By 2016, the masternodes had earned investors returns of 6,000%.
How to Mine These Altcoins?
You can mine for Litecoin and Dash with your PC.
However, if you’re serious about earning money, you need to install one to three decent graphics cards and a USB miner. Each graphics card is going to run you $100-$300. The miners range in price from $30 to around $200. If you try hard, you could spend over $1,000, but you shouldn’t have to.
It’s important to remember that the addition of your graphics card(s) and miner will draw more electrical power, so the cost of your electricity will rise. Your system will also generate more heat (great in the winter, terrible in the summer).
A Word about Cloud Mining
When people talk about mining for Litecoin and Dash, you start hearing more about cloud mining. And when some people discuss crypto cloud mining, they tend to call it a scam. However, some investors are earning money with cloud mining. These investors are using a specific strategies though:
- They are investing dollar amounts like $1,500 to $3,000 or more;
- They own a combination of different mining contracts, collectively earning them $15 a day or $20+ a day, etc; and
- They are cloud mining through Genesis or HashFlare, the only cloud mining sites proven not to be scams so far.
For contracts that last 2 years, these are good returns. However, investors putting in less than $1,000 really aren’t getting any worthwhile returns. This investor earned .39 cents in 3 days after investing $64. He wound up paying $75 total with all his fees.
Once You Have the Right Hardware, Choose Your Mining Software and Pool
As far as miners go, Litecoin Grinder, Litecoin Miner, and Dash Miner are popular, easy-to-use options. A miner called Radioactive Miner says it mines bitcoins and all the major altcoins. It seems simple to use, but there’s not much information about the miner online and also no reviews.
As far as pools go, LitecoinPool.Org and Nanopool.Org are both popular options. Once you download your mining software, you’ll just:
- Make a few batch file edits;
- Configure your desired settings; and
- Start mining.
No Better Time, No Better Reason
The main reason to mine Litecoin and Dash right now is that you’ll likely have more success mining these altcoins than you will have mining Bitcoin right now. This is still the ground floor for these currencies.
Though not as strong as Bitcoin, these altcoins seem to have a solid foundation on the marketplace and a lot of staying power.
Have you been thinking about mining altcoins? Which coins would you choose to mine? Would you build a rig or choose to do cloud mining?
Images courtesy of Flickr, Wikimedia Commons and Gekko