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Bitcoin mining has received a lot of attention lately. What Made Bitcoin Mining Worthwhile Before? Mining bitcoins has been a very profitable venture for a very long time. While many people who tried Bitcoin mining failed to profit, didn’t receive their mining rigs due to fraudulent or inept companies, or barely reached a positive ROI on their Bitcoin mining attempts, that was not true for the more experienced miners. FPGAs were the norm, and the rise of ASICs bitcoin mining hardware. These ASICs completely changed the game by increasing the efficiency of mining bitcoins by many orders of magnitude, and completely destroyed the profitability of mining with a traditional computer. Why Mining Bitcoins With GPUs Was Worth It Until 2013 Before the ASICs, Bitcoin mining was worth it simply because the difficulty stayed quite close to Bitcoin’s price.
Many Bitcoin miners were only mining part-time, and were simply using GPUs that they already had purchased for gaming to mine when they were not using their computer. This completely removed the equipment cost from the ROI equation, as the ability to effectively mine bitcoins was just a benefit of having a decent gaming computer. At that time, there were very few huge Bitcoin mining farms. A large portion of the mining community, at that time, were not mining for profit alone. FPGAs began to skew this slightly in 2012, then ASICs shattered it completely. In early 2013, Jeff Garzik received the first Bitcoin mining ASIC, produced by Avalon.