We regularly take apart the topic of mining in detail and from different angles. For example, yesterday we compared the profitability of Etherium mining on video cards and ETH stacking in a PoS network. Earlier in the fall we dealt with the topic of unlocking so-called LHR-video cards with Gminer, and then we took up T-Rex. Today’s article is about Ravencoin cryptocurrency and peculiarities of its mining.
RVN is one of the most popular coins for mining, second only to Ethereum (ETH) and Ethereum Classic (ETC). The cryptocurrency belongs to the Proof-of-Work consensus algorithm and has a hybrid algorithm (Kawpow) that engages both the core and the video card memory.
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Because of these features, this algorithm cannot be called “cold”. It depends heavily on the overclocking of the video card and on the allocated power (Power Limit, PL).Overclocking video cards when mining Ravencoin. How is it similar to Firo?
On October 26, 2021, the Firo cryptocurrency was hardforked, changing the mining algorithm from MTP to the new FiroPoW algorithm.
We wrote about it in a separate article “Firo (ZCoin) will be updated. How to prepare for the hardforward?”.
The FiroPoW algorithm is a modification of the ProgPoW algorithm. The same applies to KawPoW, which is used in RVN mining.
As a result, we have two algorithms – FiroPoW and KawPoW – which are derived from the ProgPoW algorithm. They are very similar to each other, so their overclocking principles are exactly the same. Accordingly, and although this article is written about RVN mining, it can be successfully used to overclock cards for the FiroPoW algorithm for Firo mining.
How do I overclock graphics cards when mining Ravencoin?
Overclocking video cards primarily depends on the willingness of the miner to experiment and the cost of electricity. However, in addition to the medium-optimal overclocking parameters, a hard downvolt is also possible, giving only 80 percent of the average hash rate, but reducing the power consumption of the video card by 33-39 percent. And vice versa, we can almost always add 10-15 percent of hash rate sacrificing 22-30 percent of excessive consumption.
Important: the profitability calculators always indicate some average optimal overclocking for each model, available on most video cards. However, an experienced miner should know the possible minimums and maximums for each of his video cards.
For example, an RTX 2070S card can deliver 17.05 MH/s for 89 watts of power consumption (only 5.22 watts per 1 MH/s), but it can also deliver 20.88 MH/s for 121 watts (only 5.8 watts per 1 MH/s). And if we have free electricity, this graphics card can be overclocked up to 26.05 MH/s at 209 watts at all (the card will consume as much as 8 watts per 1 MH/s). In this case you should not forget about good video card cooling.
Below is a summary table with some of the most interesting overclocking options and mining hash rates for this coin in different models of Nvidia video cards.
The data in the table were obtained on the T-rex 0.24.2 miner and will be supplemented as new models are tested or significantly more efficient miners are released.
Principles of video card overclocking for the Kawpow algorithm
The hash rate of video cards when mining this algorithm is affected by almost all the parameters of video card overclocking. Therefore, it is necessary to overclock everything. However, if we overclock everything at once, we will not know the true cause of failure when video cards become unstable.
Therefore, it is necessary to accelerate in stages.
Step 0. Before you start the acceleration, determine the profitability of the algorithm – the 2CryptoCalc calculator will help here. Next, write down how much the cost of 1 kWh of electricity is for you.
Taken together, we get an estimate of the rationality of overclocking in terms of energy cost. Then we use these values to determine a reasonable level of power consumption by the video card.
Step 1. Find a stable maximum in memory.
To do this, step by step increase the memory by +50 MHz to the stability limit. Backing down one step.
An important aspect: when the video card heats up, video memory chips are also heated and the value of stable overclocking decreases.
The second important aspect: there is no need to turn on “tablet” for 1080 and 1080ti video cards. With a fixed PL it will not add speed, and overclocking stability will definitely decrease.
Step 2: Core overclocking.
If you are mining on a Windows operating system, you can record the core voltage in MSI Afterburner. This will increase the stability of overclocking and increase the level of maximum achievable energy efficiency.
Increase the core frequency by +25 MHz upwards, find a stable maximum, step down from it by 1 step.
If you have a time-differentiated electricity tariff, and you want to automatically switch to cold mode on the expensive tariff, and overclock cards on the cheap tariff, you need to overclock the core for all kernel fix points.
It is better to start with the highest desired voltage point. At the same time you should remember that the higher the core voltage, the less you can overclock it. On the same card at 950 mV the card can have a maximum overclock of +125, at 800 mV the core is already +175 MHz, and at 700 mV even +225 MHz – especially for the RTX 30xx series.
In this case, it is better to retreat down to 50 MHz with a reserve at the high voltage points. After all, the card is maximally unstable there, and if the driver fails, all points are dropped at once.
RVN and Ethereum dual-mining
In the memory of modern video cards it is quite possible to fit work files for mining two cryptocurrencies at once. However, they will compete with each other in memory and core usage, so the final speed will significantly depend on the intensity of each algorithm.
Note: Windows 10 has excessive video memory consumption of all video cards. Dual-mining is not possible for video cards with only 8 GB of memory, but it is possible when using Windows 7 or Linux-based mining operating systems like RaveOS.
In practice, with the global dominance of Etherium in terms of mining yields over other cryptocurrencies, the use of Dual mode mining in 2020-2021 did not lead to the ability to earn more on cards without mining protection.
For example, RTX 2070 Super graphics cards can produce 40+ MH/s when mining only one algorithm at 93W per Ethereum. If the cards hold 7800 in memory, the figure also increases to 42-43 MH/s. When mining Ravencoin, one can get respectively 21 MH/s at low consumption of 121W or more than 26 MH/s at high consumption, i.e. at 200W.
Using dual mining at different intensities, it is possible to get ETH speeds of 16.5 MH/s and RVN speeds of 16.5 MH/s, while consuming up to 200 watts of electricity. That’s just under 40 percent for Ether and just under 70 percent for RVN.
It is easy to calculate that in the last two years pure mining of a single Ethereum coin has been more profitable in the vast majority of cases, plus it consumes much less energy.
Note: different miners were used in the tests, so you can change the intensity of each coin. The values obtained may not be the maximum.
If you have so-called LHR video cards, then in theory dual-mining will make sense, although it will not give a large increase in remuneration. This option is relevant only if you have a cheap source of electricity.
RVN mining on Nvidia RTX 30xx video cards
As you may have noticed, the rate of RVN mining in most cases is half the rate of ETH mining in megahesh.
The RTX 30xx series – like the 20xx cards – use very fast memory, which can transfer huge amounts of information and uses very high frequencies. In this case the bottleneck is the data bus.
This is why cards with the same bus are very similar in their mining speeds. For example, it is 3060ti and 3070 or 2060S, 2070 and 2070S.
With the release of the 30xx cores video cards became even more powerful and with faster memory, but the bus bit rate remained the same. Therefore, it is relatively useless to overclock the core, because the RVN mining speed on the 3070 card will not go higher than 30-33 MH/s. But the consumption will increase, so on RTX 3070 or RTX 3060ti when mining RVN and ETH to achieve maximum energy efficiency it is necessary to overclock the memory and reduce the core frequency as much as possible.
It depends on the memory overclocking: you can get 31 MH/s with 8200 MHz memory.
For the same reason it is relatively useless to use different variants of dual-mining on cards without LHR, if you run RVN+FIRO, RVN+ETH, RVN+ERGO and others on one card. It is impossible to achieve profitability increase relative to single coin mining.
Results. Is Ravencoin mining profitable?
RVN cryptocurrency mining is already one of the most current options to mine something other than Ethereum. Well, in the light of the upcoming serious updates, inspired by the desire of Ethereum developers to completely abandon video card mining, Ravencoin mining can be seen as a very good alternative. Especially considering its wide range of options for selecting the desired energy efficiency of mining within even one model.
There is no telling how much time is left before Ethereum fully migrates to PoS. However, it is already worth the time to check your cards on their ability to mine alternative currencies, as well as to learn possible stable ranges of hash rate/efficiency depending on overclocking.