Mining with a single GPU is a simple process. However, mining with multiple GPUs raises some questions for beginners that are still finding their way through the crypto world.
In this article, we will cover frequent doubts about the matter, so that you can set up your mining rig with enough certainty that everything will work correctly.
Can you mine with 2 different GPUs?
Yes, it is completely possible to mine with more than one GPU. Plenty of miners do this, as mining with more than one GPU is always more effective.
However, you need to pay attention to the brand of your GPUs. It is easier to set up your mining rig with GPUs that use the same driver (Nvidia or AMD), or else you will have to install two of those and that can lead to instability.
Can you mix and match GPUs?
You definitely can. If you have two GPUs made by different manufacturers, you can still install both of them on the same computer and start mining.
Sure, your motherboard should have support to two GPUs, and also you need to make sure you have enough ventilation and power to supply them.
Now talking about software, there is a safe way of doing this without running into issues.
Here is what you can do to ensure that your rig will work fine with an Nvidia GPU and an AMD GPU:
This way, you can make a fresh install of them later, which is recommended for everything to work accordingly.
After you downloaded all the programs, disconnect your mining rig from the internet (unplug the Ethernet cable if you are plugged).
Use the DDU to uninstall any drivers. Now, turn your rig off and connect your GPUs.
After making sure they are in place, turn your rig on again and install any of the drivers.
When you install one of them, restart the system so that the changes can have an effect, and then install the other one and restart again.
Now that all is installed, connect your rig to the internet again.
What GPUs are best to mine with?
GPUs are used to mine because of the computing power that helps them solve the cryptographic equations to validate new blocks of transactions in the blockchain of a cryptocurrency.
Thus, the more powerful the specs of a GPU, the best it is to mine.
Some GPUs might escape this definition, as some of them have been manufactured to be mining-resistant (some Nvidia models fall within this range).
The old Tesla GPUs series, for example, was extremely powerful but not good for mining.
If we want even more data about the power of each GPU for mining matters, we don’t need to personally test each and every one of them.
The site Kryptex already compiles data of mining around the world. Based on this data, we will recommend you some great GPUs you can acquire to mine.
NVIDIA RTX 3090
If you are after full power and great profitability after the card pays itself back, then the Nvidia RTX 3090 should be your choice.
It is not an investment you can make if you don’t have a few bucks to spare, of course.
However, if you can buy it, you will set it up and see it mining a lot right from the start.
Its average hash rate is 125Mh/s mining ETH, and it is able to generate an average monthly profit of $308,54.
During the first 276 days, however, all this earning will cover its own cost. After that, it is genuine profit.
If you like AMD’s functioning too, the best GPU by the brand with attested efficiency is the AMD VII.
Its price is a bit below the RTX 3090, and so is its hash rate, thus making the average monthly profit around 70 bucks less.
However, this is still top-notch considering all GPUs in the market.
Mining ETH, the AMD VII can reach 95Mh/s, being able to generate around $234 monthly.
This graphics card takes more than the RTX 3090 to pay for itself, so you should see that happening in around 304 days.
NVIDIA RTX 2080Ti
If you don’t want the most expensive GPU for mining, but would rather invest in something cheaper however still good, the RTX 2080Ti is a great option.
It is no 3090, so all specs are lowered, but it still is a great mining unit and can generate steady profit after it pays for itself.
This is a really special GPU, as it has an average of 55,5Mh/s and can generate $124,93 monthly mining Ether.
It takes almost one year for its price to be completely paid by mining, but afterward, you will make a good amount each month. If you already have one GPU and are looking to buy one more, this can be it.
AMD RX 5700 XT
Within the same price range as the Nvidia GPU above, you can get the AMD RX 5700 XT. The hash rate on this GPU is 56,5Mh/s when mining Ether, making for a $127,10 average monthly earning.
Fortunately, Nvidia and AMD make GPUs that usually fall within the same price range when they have similar specs or at least specs that make them have a similar hash rate.
That way, you can choose AMD if you like the brand better, or Nvidia if you like this manufacturer.
However, if you don’t care about the brand, the smart move is to go with the product that mines better and lasts longer.
How to use multiple GPUs for mining?
Decide how many GPUs you will use. Multiple GPU rigs are common, but going up to 4 or 5 cards should be enough.
When you are past that number, troubles that happen on your rig make it go offline as a whole and it is harder to figure out what went wrong.
If you are not an expert in hardware and software, stick to a safe number.
Get a proper power supply unit (PSU). Make sure of which GPUs you are going to use and calculate how much power the whole rig is going to need.
When you are sure of that, get a PSU that can handle feeding all that electricity.
Gold and platinum PSUs are optimal for this task as you can run them closer to max output safely.
Motherboard. Any motherboard with a combination of full-size PCI-e slots and Mini PCI-e slots should be fine. Risers are necessary to control the rig’s temperature and make room between cards. 2-3 full-size slots are okay for the task. This shall depend on the motherboard’s layout, though.
CPU, RAM, and HDD. Mining is all about the GPU, so you can get the cheapest CPU, RAM, and also HDD.
For CPU, you can safely go with an Intel i5 6400t. It can stay on while consuming low power while still doing good CPU mining.
As for RAM, 8GB is enough if you are using this machine solely for mining. Storage-wise, go with a 128GB SSD. You really don’t need any more than this.
As for temperature control, there are some things you should consider. The optimal temperature for your GPUs while mining is between 60 and 70ºC.
If it goes up to 80ºC, you should check if everything is fine and try to lower the temperature with some countermeasure.
It should go without saying that temperature control should be done as a preventive measure, so you should already set your rig in a way that there is enough ventilation.
Doing this requires you to buy some fans. Put one large fan in front of the whole rig and smaller ones to put in front of each GPU. This way the heat can be dissipated.
Leave an open window if you can do and get a net that prevents insects from getting in. Air conditioning isn’t cheap and doesn’t do as good a job as fans, so don’t even spend on that.
Can I use one GPU for mining while using the other for gaming?
Yes. This is, in fact, an optimal setup. This way, each GPU will have its power used for only one task. Your gaming GPU will last longer while you can still make money from mining.
Moreover, remember that each task also uses the CPU. You can only do this if you have a genuinely powerful CPU (say, at least an Intel i7 of the last generations) and enough RAM (16GB, minimum) to distribute between tasks.
When using one GPU for gaming and the other for mining, all you have to do is point the mining software to one of the GPUs and configure the other to be used for gaming.
Whether you have AMD or Nvidia, configuring this should be easy on each manufacturer’s software.
Again, if you are running multiple GPUs, make sure you are letting them breathe enough.
Multiple GPU rigs are the next step after you started mining with a single GPU or CPU and saw confirmation that this business can be profitable.
Only a few extra worries are necessary when moving towards this configuration.