NVIDIA GTX 1070 Ti – the new crypto mining king?

Mining hardware

NVIDIA slipped the GTX 1070 Ti on the market without much fanfare, and I should say I’m really curious about its mining performance. The GTX 1070 was a blast for Ethash (well, not on the AMD level, but still better than GTX 1080) and even Equihash (Zcash, BTC Gold,, etc.) mining, as well as any memory-heavy algorithm, chasing the GTX 1080, yet it is mostly unsuitable for anything else because of the low number of CUDA cores – it has nearly half of the 1080 Ti’s cores, so most core-heavy algos don’t do well on it. On the other hand, the GTX 1080 was great in any algorithm that scaled with the cores, having 25%+ more of them and didn’t care about memory speed or latencies, but it is extremely slow for Ethereum mining (22-23 MH/s) and somehow… not fast enough in Equihash with it’s optimized 560 Sol/s. I liked it’s price at a time, but things change.

Naturally I’m interested in a card that combines ALL of the strengths of GTX 1070 with some near GTX 1080 performance in core-heavy algos. With 2432 CUDA cores, the 1070 Ti sits just a step under the 1080 in terms of gaming performance, but we don’t care much about gaming, right? A small wonder NVIDIA decided to slip it quietly instead of hurling rings and bells about beating AMD again, so it kind of slipped under my radar too. But then I decided it’s time for another rig, and naturally I wanted to avoid paying a small fortune if I was going to run mostly well known algos on it. Let me run you through the options:

First of all – I do consider difference per same speed. Nearly all of the cards can be used for mining at reduced voltage and at speeds around 1898-1911 MHz with easy, with 1080’s going to 1949 for a change, but not in every algorithm. So what I usually do is lock the power and the speed on some stable combination and leave the TDP at max as it doesn’t matter. For 1080 Ti it’s 925 mV, 1911 MHz, for the 1080’s (some of them – jus never buy KF2 cards!) it is 925 mV 1936-1949 MHz. I don’t own 1070s.

GTX 1080 Ti

It’s now out of the question for me and I will never build another rig with them if the pice stays so high. The first ones I bought came at nearly the current GTX 1080 prices, but now they cost exactly 50% over GTX 1070 Ti. Sure, preformance-wise they are still monsters, but at the end of the day you will get nearly the same amount of BTC out of a rig of 6 1080 Tis and a ig of 8 1070 Tis, if only by using different algos. Also meaning you can get 6 of the newer cards for each 4 1080 Ti you buy, and have much less problems with power supplies. 6 of the big ones require at least 1600+ W power supply and that will only work with TDP optimizations, otherwise you are looking at even more power than that. They also require quality PCI-E extenders, or you risk problems.

GTX 1080

My fleet of cards, I love them, but the price changed and where I bought some EVGAs before (amazing cards, great if you set the voltage low), now they are a bit expensive for what they offer. Problem is that the 1080 is extremely bad for Ethash and I do like to have the option to mine it, and they suck a bit in Equihash too compared to GTX 1070. I mean after optimizations you are likely to get 560-570 Sol/s without much of a reduction in the power draw, so you are looking at 180-190W per card . They are good for Blake2s, Lyra, xevan, x17 and any algo that doesn’t eat memory, but now they only have a small advantage in the number of cores over the 1070 Ti and are still substantially slower in Ethash (like 50% slower). Their cost is a bit higher, so I just took them out of the consideration.

GTX 1070

Well, they are great, but now that we have almost everything they could offer + more with a lower power rate and cheaper price, why bother?

AMD Vega

I know they are really hot for some algos, but they are AMD and I didn’t want to suffer through the BIOS updates, driver issues and what not. The list of things to do on Vega is long, while with the GTX 1070 Ti I would simply plug them and run the same software I already have on my other rigs.

 

The GTX 1070 Ti

With Ethash mining capability near that of a 1080 Ti, and Equihash speeds a tad less than those of GTX 1080s, I think I found teh new king of the mining. I already ordered a rig with 8 cards and tomorrow I’m ordering another one:

The cards were actually another brand as the Asus ones were out of stock, and the power supply was a risk as I wanted to see if it’s any good. with the second rig I will risk with MSI Armor edition because of their price, although I’ve heard that it’s better to steer clear of them. The second power supply is EVGA’s 1600W, which should be able to run 8 of the cards even w/o any optimizations, and I got mainboards with more slots just in case I could add cards some day.

 

Of course, all this is a speculation, I will provide much more data when I get to try them next week!

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