🖳 zeroAPM // Blueprint for an AMD GPU mining rig with six cards

in #charonlast year (edited)

Recently I've been asked alot about the technicalities of GPU mining a lot. Thus I have compiled some of my findings into easily digestible tables and lists for all you aspiring miners out there. Let's figure out what we need, how to put it together and if it's even worth it in the first place!

“During the gold rush its a good time to be in the pick and shovel business”

  • Mark Twain

The most basic of GPU mines consists of one mainboard, one cpu, one ssd drive, one stick of RAM, one Power Unit and a graphics card. In this exercise we'll be looking at an AMD based build. We are aiming for a build with six simultaneous AMD GPUs.

If we have six GPUs to play with, the first question we ask ourselves is how to make them all fit on the mainboard at once. The answer is that we can not. The mainboard we are using can only have two GPUs plugged into it directly, then you run out of space. So we require a 6-Pin Powered PCI-E PCI Express Riser Card for each GPU we are planning to use. This will allow us to install the GPUs "off" the mainboard as they connect via a small cable to the PCI and PCIe slots. Now we can fit six!

Here is what a completed build should look like in blueprint:

Click for higher resolution

Required Hardware:
  • GPUs: eg 6 x Dual Radeon RX 480 OC
  • Mainboard: MSI Z170A
  • SSD: Drevo x1 Series 60 GB SSD
  • RAM: 4gb DDR4 RAM 2400mhz
  • Processor: Pentium G4400
  • Power Unit (PSU): 2 x Corsair HX1200 80PLUS Platinum 1200W ATX 2.4 (recommendation)
  • 6-Pin Powered PCI-E PCI Express Riser Card
  • PSU to PSU adapter
  • SATA cable
  • 16gb USB stick
  • Keyboard/Mouse/Monitor
  • Cable Binding
  • Electric Screwdriver


Six neatly sorted PCI riser cables connecting to their GPUs. Since it's so tidy, naturally this wasn't me.
Photo Source


This is a slightly tricky one. Most people won't be able to get a single Power Unit that has enough wattage to power six graphic cards at once. The simplest workaround is to combine two weaker units into one using a PSU to PSU adapter. It is crucial that you use identical models of PSU if you link them together. Once you are at this stage you are dealing with serious power consumption. Please keep in mind safety procedures for dealing with electricity and that you are doing this at your own risk. Use a surge protector between socket and wall. Ground yourself. When you are sure that you have a stable connection, fuses and power grid turn on the second PSU first, then the other one, then turn the computer on. Please consider how you are impacting the environment.

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Just before I threw that bastard of a PSU out and replaced it with two smaller ones. Note there are only two GPUs plugged in currently (follow the blue cables).

Calculations for mining at scale:

Been mining for days on your mom's old laptop and only gleaned a couple of fractions of a coin? Here's how to figure out how worthwhile your mining operation will be using Monero (XMR) as an example:

(as of 20/6/2017)

77400Hash = 5 Monero Coins = Projected Daily Payout

15.5 KH/s = 1.00 XMR / d
4.5 KH/s = 0.29 XMR / d
1.8 KH/s = 0.12 XMR /d

Average Hashrate of used GPUs = 758 H / s
77400H / 758 = 102,1


102.1 is the amount of GPUs we need running at the same time to achieve a projected daily payout of 5 XMR (249,9€x)

P.S: You can use today's price of XMR to figure out how much more difficult it has become to mine XMR since then, I can't do all of the work for you ;)

A small GPU mining operation could look something like this. Hopefully not though!

What do we learn from this? Solo mining on a single GPU is a lot slower than most people believe even if you are mining the most profitable coin at the time. At smaller scales the payout/potential gain comes as an incremental increase every day with the chance of your coin "going to the moon" so it may be wiser to pick coins that are "less mainstream" if you are going at it alone. Consider your electricity costs!

Multi GPU mining however can quickly become a very profitable endeavour with considerable daily payouts. The barrier of entry has become very high though. Just the 102 GPUs from the example above that it would take to achieve a payout of 250€ would set you back around 30600€ if we calculate an average price of 300€ per GPU (which is generous). Of course you'd also need 34 power units, 17 mainboards, cpus, ram sticks and SSD drives and a whole bunch of cables and extras. The sweat and labor needed to plug it all together and make it run should also not be discounted.

If you'd like to know more about which graphic cards are good to choose for a projects like this, check out my previous article on Workable AMD Architectures for GPU mining.

So it adds up. I'm the engineer, I don't really have a stake in mining anymore so I'm happy to share this stuff with you guys. Let me know if you think it's useful!




gl hf and happy days,


This outlet is a digital twin of Styx : https://www.nyx-labs.com/%f0%9f%96%b3-zeroapm-blueprint-for-an-amd-gpu-mining-rig-with-six-cards/

That was an interesting look into the world of mining. My friend has mentioned a desire to do this and I think I’ll send this post to him. Thanks for sharing your knowledge!!