Zcash Mining Hardware

Zcash, a privacy centered cryptocurrency, made a mark in the mining scene by use of its ‘Equihash’ Proof of Work mining algorithm. The algorithm distinguishes itself from others with its focus on memory. In short, to mine Zcash, you’ll likely need more memory than what you’d need for other cryptocurrencies. But don’t worry, Zcash’s whopping $350+ USD trading value gives you enough incentive to get started.

So look no further if you’re trying to gain an understanding of how to proceed with your Zcash mining endeavors.

Best Zcash Mining Hardware

Zcash mining is largely limited to GPU and CPU mining rigs. One one hand this means that it is more accessible to beginning miners. On the other hand, this also means that you there are a plethora of hardware options to choose from.

Some worthwhile options to consider are:

AMD:

Nvidia:

It’s worth noting that the AMD solutions tend to have a better ROI than than what you’ll get with Nvidia GPUs. However, if you find good oppers on Nvidia GPUs, don’t hesitate to choose those over the AMD alternatives.

Keep in mind that Equihash makes CPU mining still somewhat feasible for Zcash. However, you’ll mostly receive a better RoI with GPU investments, so consider the options above first before exploring your CPU options.

Best Zcash Mining Software

The answer to this question depends mostly on the hardware that you’re planning to use. Here are some options to mull over:

nheqminer
Claymore Miner
Silentarmy
Optiminer
EWBF’s CUDA

Some of the above specialize for AMD GPUs, whereas other are tailored to Nvidia GPUs. However, you’ll find that the Claymore Miner works just fine for both, so the choice is ultimately a matter of preference.

Zcash Mining Pools

We all love getting consistent feedback for our work. After all, there’s nothing more frustrating than mining into the void. That’s why mining pools are so popular for miners nowadays. Instead of waiting to receive rewards on your own (which takes very long because of how unlikely it is), just join a pool to receive a fair proportion in the worth of your hash contribution to the network. Mining pools break up the rewards proportionally between all participants, which is why it’s the preferred way to mine for most lower-hash miners.

Here are some Zcash mining pools to consider:

flypool
f2pool
Miningspeed
Coinotron
Mining Pool Hub
Waterhole
Dwarfpool
Slushpool
MinerGate
Nanopool
suprnova
CoinMine

Keep in mind that many of the pools above support several other cryptocurrencies. Also, considering that the field is very active, there might be other pools that have emerged since the time of writing.

Zcash Mining Profitability

It is most wise to make sure that you estimate you projected profits before getting too invested in your Zcash mining plans. To do so, check out a Zcash mining profitability calculator.

Keep in mind that your profitability will depend mostly on your electricity and internet costs. As such, it’s common to find large mining operations close to power plants, as those ventures tend to strike up B2B rates with the plants themselves to ensure profitability. But don’t worry, it’s likely that your conditions could lead to a reasonable ROI (Return on Investment) as well. Just make sure to calculate the ins and outs of your situation before you make a sizable investment.

It can also help to check your equipment on different mining profitability websites. Sometimes the estimations vary so you can get a more accurate prediction by trying out different calculators. Some worth mentioning are:

CoinWarz
Miningspeed
BitMakler
WhatToMine
NiceHash
badmofo

With the resources above you should be well on your way to estimating you projected profitability.

Zcash Mining Algorithm

Zcash makes use of the Equihash algorithm – a Proof of Work algorithm that is unique to Zcash for now. It was invented by Alex Biryukov and Dmitry Khovratovich, and makes use of Wagner’s algorithm to provide the PoW that’s required for consensus in the Zcash Blockchain.

Equihash is memory-hard but also fast to verify. Proof of Work is established by requiring “… two parameters: N (width in bits) and K (length), which determine the complexity of the underlying problem …”. The complexity of the underlying problem directly influences the memory and time required for the computation. If you want a run-through of the algorithm itself, take a look at this informative post on the Zcash forum.

Mining Other Equihash Coins

It seems that Zcash is the only Equihash cryptocurrency for the time being. However, given that Equihash was developed independently of Zcash, this is likely to change in the foreseeable future.