Bitmain have announced that they are now taking preorders for their new miner – the Antminer V9. It is a small SHA256 miner that should output 4TH/s with a power consumption of 1000W. The miner can be preordered on their site for $345 USD. The minimum order quantity is 5 units and the amount of units to preorder has to be a multiple of 5.
According to Bitmain, 80% of the unit will be shipped April and the other 20% in May of this year.
It is interesting that Bitmain only accepts either Bitcoin Cash or USD wire as payment – you no longer can pay with Bitcoin.
The PSU is not included in the pack and you’d have to get a 1500W + one. I guess Bitmain’s APW3++ might be the best choice since it only costs $105 USD for 1600W of power. An equivalent on Newegg costs $300+ USD.
Now, here are my findings regarding the two most-asked questions about the new miner:
Q1: How profitable will the units be?
You probably know that Bitcoin ASICs are more like lottery tickets rather than passive income machines. Personally, I have no clue where Bitcoin price is going, so I will do some wild estimates based on past month’s average Bitcoin price and pretend it is going to stay like this for the next 6 months.
Since the V9 is very power-hungry, profitability also depends on how much electricity costs at your place. Here are some numbers:
- If you have free electricity you will have your money back in 6 months
- If you pay less than 8 cents per kilowatt, you will have ROI of less than one year
Now, people who pay more than $ 0.08/kW probably shouldn’t even consider buying the miner IMO, especially since it is uncertain whether Bitcoin price will start rising again.
Here is a mining difficulty estimate made by a member of Bitcointalk. Profitability as of March with a mining cost of $ 0.10 USD/kW:
Profitability after the next difficulty increase (the V9 loses profitability if costs are $ 0.10 USD/kW):
Disclaimer: this chart is simply meant to give you an idea on what you could possibly expect. Do not expect it to be 100% accurate.
Q2: Will the units be new?
Some users claim that the V9 units have been mining for Bitmain for some time now and now the company is getting rid of them. Bitmain is known for selling refurbished ASICs as new sometimes, so we are not discarding this possibility just yet.
Some sources suggest that Bitmain might be considering moving their mining factories away from China, which is why they might want to sell their old gear before moving to a different country. This is due to China government turning against cryptocurrencies. That being said, other sources claim that China Central Bank isn’t really against Bitcoin.
Some people also speculate that the “brand new” V9 is nothing more than an undervolted Antminer S7. There are two reasons for that, one being that some people have allegedly managed to underclock their Antminer S7s and make them perform as a V9 (~4TH/s with a power draw of ~1kW).
The other one is that the BM1580 chip model on the V9 could be the same BM1385 that is installed on the S7. This is because of the same amount of chips on the board and the similarity of hashrate/power consumption ratios, meaning that BM1580 and BM1385 chips perform the same, consume the same power and thus could be the same (duck test logic).
Let’s also not forget the V9 label photo that is pretty much self-explanatory.
While none of the mentioned above means that the V9’s are in fact refurbished S7’s, I thought you guys might find this info useful. If you know something else, make sure you share your findings here.
I suppose the V9 is not meant for everyone. People who have cheap or free electricity, as well as small ambitions regarding profitability might find this miner interesting. For the rest, you might want to wait for the new generation of miners to be released later in 2018. For instance, Samsung is planning on releasing 8nm and 11nm ASCIs this year, so expect some massive changes.
Thank you for reading. As always, your comments, suggestions and questions are welcome.
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