Skip to content →

CPU Mining in 2018: relevancy, profitability, and guideline

CPU MiningIf you are new to the whole cryptocurrency topic, you probably have lots of questions about mining, CPU farms (the ones built on a processor) and their profitability in 2018? To answer these questions, we need to start with basics.

A processor is essentially an integrated circuit or an electronic unit. It is a central part of a PC or any other device. A video card is a graphics processing unit, whose purpose is to process graphics and reproduce 3D images and other effects through the monitor.

Both processors and video cards have the similar mode of operation, but they have different goals, which determines their mining efficiency.

Content:

  1. Where can I use CPU miners?
  2. Differences between CPU and GPU mining
  3. Calculating profitability
  4. How to mine Zcash using a processor on Windows

Where can I use CPU miners?

Before moving on to the technical aspects of the CPU mining, we need to figure out where exactly we would get cryptocurrency. You have two options:

  • To search for the most suitable algorithms, cryptocurrencies, and mining pools on your own;
  • To use a convenient online tool.

MinerGate is one of such tools. This project exists for more than a year and, trust me, people make some serious money there.

We think that MinerGate is the optimal solution because it can help you achieve the same (sometimes even higher) profitability as if you would make your individual search. Moreover, it does not require a high level of technical knowledge and constant monitoring of the situation on the cryptocurrency market.

Differences between CPU and GPU mining

Processor core can process 4 32-bit, or 8 32-bit, depending on the chosen clock cycle (a period of time between two pulses that is required by CPU to perform several operations). Video card, on the other hand, is capable of processing 3150 32-bit instructions with the same clock cycle. As the result, the GPU mining is 800 times more profitable than the CPU one.

And how about the processors with 12, 8, or 6 cores? They should be super popular in mining, right? Unfortunately, even a relatively weak video card will be much more effective than these processors, so they cannot be considered as an alternative to GPU mining.

Processors’ performance in mining

ModelkH/sWattsGHzCores
Pentium M 7400,81,731
Pentium M1,231,61
Atom N2702,575.5 (TDP)1,661
Atom N2702,781,8
Atom N4502,615.5 (TDP)1,661
Atom N26004,881,06
Atom N28005,816.5 (TDP)1,872 (4 threads)
Celeron 440435 (TDP)21
Pentium Dual T34008,535 (TDP)2,162
Core 2 Duo MacBook Pro 5.2 (2009)112,8
Core 2 Duo T55007,281,662
Core 2 Duo T65709,522,1
Core 2 Duo T7250522
Core 2 Duo T725062
Core 2 Duo T75006,52,22
Core 2 Duo T950017,7635 (TDP)2,62
Core 2 Duo E22009,22,92
Core 2 Duo E43003,251,8
Core 2 Duo E660010,452,42
Core 2 Duo E73007922,72
Core 2 Duo E750013,12,932
Core 2 Quad Q66009,68105 (TDP)2,44
Core 2 Quad Q840021,62,664
Core 2 Quad Q955027,52,834
Core 2 Quad Q955032,23,44
Core 2 Extreme QX977529,23503,24
Core i3-450152,9
Core i3-54015,43,062 (4 HT)
Core i3-210019293,12 (4 HT)
Core i3-212021,565 (TDP)3,32 (4 HT)
Core i3-21302365 (TDP)3,42 (4 HT)
Core i5-520M122,4
Core i5-65017,183,22 (4 HT)
Core i5-7503096 (TDP)3,34
Core i5-2467M121,64
Core i5-2400S32,82,54
Core i5-2500T2845 (TDP)2,44
Core i5-2500K3110354
Core i5-2500K48904,94
Core i5-34704377 (TDP)3,24
Core i5-3570K55834,54
Core i7-740QM161,734 (8 HT)
Core i7-860251532,84 (8 HT)
Core i7-87035,43,44 (8 HT)
Core i7-920372,674 (8 HT)
Core i7-9204144 (8 HT)
Core i7-260047,153,44 (8 HT)
Core i7-2600K494,64 (8 HT)
Core i7-2700K50803,94 (8 HT)
Core i7-3630QM39493,294 (8 HT)
Core i7-3770604,384 (8 HT)
Core i7-3930K982004,56 (12 HT)
Core i7-3960X1014,296 (12 HT)
Core i7-2630QM165024 (8 HT)
Core i7-2630QM212
Core i7-2760QM382,44 (8 HT)
Core i7-3720QM3745 (TDP)2,64 (8 HT)
Core i7-3720QM422,64 (8 HT)
Core i7-477080843,44
Core i7-47709384 (TDP)3,44 (8 HT)
Core i7-47709584 (TDP)3,44 (8 HT)
Xeon 5160173
Xeon 516020,793
Xeon L342619,3645 (TDP)1,874 (8 HT)
Xeon E540518,824
Xeon X545022120 (TDP)34
Xeon E55044222×4
Xeon E562026,42,44 (8 HT)
Xeon E3-122040,580 (TDP)3,14 (1 HT)
Xeon E3-123044,480 (TDP)3,24 (8 HT)
Xeon E5-162050,183,6
Xeon E5-165064,61130 (TDP)3,26 (12 HT)
Xeon E5-262093,912
Xeon E5-2630L4160 (TDP)26 (12 HT)
Xeon E5-2650129,32002
Geode LX 8000,120,51
Fusion E-3502,418 (TDP)1,62
Athlon 64 X2 5600+6,789 (TDP)2,82
Sempron 14510,6545 (TDP)2,82
Athlon II X3 425~9.595(125) (TDP)2,74
Phenom II X4 940 BE20125 (TDP)34
Phenom II X4 955 BE22125 (TDP)3,24
Phenom II X4 955 BE27,85125 (TDP)3,94
Phenom II X4 965 BE~25125 (TDP)44
Phenom II X6 1045T30,495 (TDP)2,76
Phenom II X6 1055T34,6125 (TDP)3,16
Phenom II X6 1055T40,195 (TDP)3,56
FX-630050,64,56
FX-8120463,258
FX-812065125 (TDP)4,54M/8T
FX-815056125 (TDP)3,64M/8T
FX-835041125 (TDP)48
FX 8350574
FX-835065125 (TDP)48
PowerMac G5 DP 2.38,528523002
PlayStation33812932001 (2 Hyper), 6 SPU
ARM 1176JZ(F)-S0,194121
ARM 1176JZF-S0,53,510001
ARM Cortex-A80,628001
ARM Cortex-A8 (L2=512KiB)0,9910001
ARM Cortex-A92,3912002
ARM Cortex-A9 (L2=1MiB)2,7810004
ARM Cortex-A9 (L2=1MiB)3,5210004
ARM Cortex-A94,72614004
ARM Cortex-A92,98615002
ARM Cortex-A153,8117002
ARM Cortex-A154,091517002
Qualcomm Krait4,315002
Qualcomm Krait3,98615002
Qualcomm Krait APQ80647,215004
Sun UltraSPARC-II0,174501
Fujitsu SPARC64-VII8,9624004 (8 SMT)
Oracle UltraSPARC T22,4812314158 (64 SMT)
Oracle UltraSPARC T411,8728508 (64 SMT)
IBM Power 716,431008
Amazon High-CPU Extra Large Instance388
Core 2 Quad Q955027,52,834
Core 2 Quad Q955032,23,44
Core 2 Extreme QX977529,23503,24
Core i3-450152,9
Core i3-54015,43,062 (4 HT)
Core i3-210019293,12 (4 HT)
Core i3-212021,565 (TDP)3,32 (4 HT)
Core i3-21302365 (TDP)3,42 (4 HT)
Core i5-520M122,4
Core i5-65017,183,22 (4 HT)
Core i5-7503096 (TDP)3,34
Core i5-2467M121,64
Core i5-2400S32,82,54
Core i5-2500T2845 (TDP)2,44
Core i5-2500K3110354
Core i5-2500K48904,94
Core i5-34704377 (TDP)3,24
Core i5-3570K55834,54
Core i7-740QM161,734 (8 HT)
Core i7-860251532,84 (8 HT)
Core i7-87035,43,44 (8 HT)
Core i7-920372,674 (8 HT)
Core i7-9204144 (8 HT)
Core i7-260047,153,44 (8 HT)
Core i7-2600K494,64 (8 HT)
Core i7-2700K50803,94 (8 HT)
Core i7-3630QM39493,294 (8 HT)
Core i7-3770604,384 (8 HT)
Core i7-3930K982004,56 (12 HT)
Core i7-3960X1014,296 (12 HT)
Core i7-2630QM165024 (8 HT)
Core i7-2630QM212
Core i7-2760QM382,44 (8 HT)
Core i7-3720QM3745 (TDP)2,64 (8 HT)
Core i7-3720QM422,64 (8 HT)
Core i7-477080843,44
Core i7-47709384 (TDP)3,44 (8 HT)
Core i7-47709584 (TDP)3,44 (8 HT)
Xeon 5160173
Xeon 516020,793
Xeon L342619,3645 (TDP)1,874 (8 HT)
Xeon E540518,824
Xeon X545022120 (TDP)34
Xeon E55044222×4
Xeon E562026,42,44 (8 HT)
Xeon E3-122040,580 (TDP)3,14 (1 HT)
Xeon E3-123044,480 (TDP)3,24 (8 HT)
Xeon E5-162050,183,6
Xeon E5-165064,61130 (TDP)3,26 (12 HT)
Xeon E5-262093,912
Xeon E5-2630L4160 (TDP)26 (12 HT)
Xeon E5-2650129,32002

Keep in mind that processors’ operational speed may differ depending on the algorithm.

As you see, the speed is calculated in kH/s, whereas the speed of video cards is calculated in Mh/s (the table of video card’s hashrate). What does this mean? 1 Mh/s = 1000 kH/s, which means that video cards extract treasured cryptocurrencies 1000 times faster than processors.

The mining speed can be also measured in the following values:

1 GH/s – gigahash;

1 TH/s – terahash;

1 PH/s – petahash;

Calculating profitability

For example, let’s take the i7-6700K 4.6Mhz, which now costs approximately $400 and generates about 350 kH/s! What do we have in terms of profitability?

Thanks to the calculator, we can see that if we start mining Ethereum on this processor, we will lose $1.5 (the calculation was made on August 7, 2017).

Thus, we can make a conclusion that in the current mining world, where the hashing algorithm becomes more and more complicated, there is absolutely no point in using processors for mining. If you are seriously interested in mining cryptocurrencies, then we suggest you buy several video cards and build your own mining farm.

How to mine Zcash using a processor on Windows

Let’s use a mining pool called Zcash.flypool.org

The ideal software for mining Zcash on CPU is nheqminer. The nheqminer setup instructions will be provided below. However, if you need more detailed information, you can check out the video instruction.

The most important part: setting up the software

After downloading the software, you will see the following picture:

nheqminer.exe -l eu1-zcash.flypool.org:3333 -u

t1NF6yLUxAAttibU8mzfX86o8aWLcqF38DX.rig1

We highlighted the part that has to be changed in red:

  • rig1 is a username. Basically, it does not affect anything; however, it can be very helpful if you mine on several computers. You can assign them different names (rig1, rig2, rig3) and track their performance.
  • t1NF6yLUxAAttibU8mzfX86o8aWLcqF38DX is the name of a ZCash wallet, where the earnings will be sent. You should change it to your wallet name. These settings need to be written to the .bat file, which has to be put to the same folder as nheqminer.exe. Then, you need to start the software and the mining will begin.

This pool can also be used for GPU mining

To start mining ZCash using Nvidia graphics cards, you need to ensure the following settings are on:

nheqminer.exe -cd 0 -l eu1-zcash.flypool.org:3333 -u

t1NF6yLUxAAttibU8mzfX86o8aWLcqF38DX.rig1

To start mining ZCash using ADM graphics cards, you need to make the following settings:

ZecMiner64. exe -zpool eu1-zcash.flypool.org:3333 -zwal

t1YZMnyXStuGKykkFxM6Lh8DTVJdTMx6R51.YourWorkerName -zpsw x

And don’t forget to change your wallet name in the settings file.

So, that’s all we wanted to tell you about CPU mining.

P.S. The minimum payback from the pool is 0.001 ZCash. If you want to check your earnings, go to the statistics section, which is available here.