Mine cryptos with your Raspberry PI

Published: Tue 08 March 2022
Updated: Tue 08 March 2022 by Ludo In Hardware Translations: fr

Twelve years ago, Bitcoin was the only cryptocurrency. Today, there are now thousands of coins. And you can mine them all, on a Raspberry Pi. Are you curious to see how much profit you can make mining some crypto coins on a Raspberry Pi?

The Raspberry Pi is a low-cost, single-board computer that executes Linux. It is designed to be small and easy to use. It was created by the Raspberry Pi Foundation, an organization that promotes the Raspberry Pi computer and seeks to encourage developers to create software for it.

What makes the Raspberry Pi special? Being cheap and having low power consumption, it would be interesting to see how to use it to mine crypto?

So let's see what you need to start mining on a Raspberry, which crypto to mine among the thousands of possibilities, and especially evaluate if it is profitable.

Cryptos on the Raspberry PI4B

What do we need to mine coins on a Raspberry Pi?

  • A Raspberry PI 4B with the 4Go RAM option: The latest Raspberry is a must, as it is much faster than the older RPI generations for a reasonable price.
  • Raspbian OS: The best supported and maintained version of Linux for your Raspberry.
  • A Quality Power supply: A quality power supply is essential because mining will lead to a high current consumption of your Raspberry PI. Therefore, prefer the official version of the power supply. I have seen too many cheap power supplies fry after a few months.
  • Improved cooling: Add either an additional fan to your Raspberry board, or an improved passive cooling system to be installed on the processor. See this article for more details.
  • A good USB hub, if you choose to mine via one or more USB keys like the NEWPAC from Gekkoscience or COMPAC

COMPAC USB mining key

What is the best crypto to mine on a Raspberry Pi?

Two main possibilities:

  • If you are using a USB Miner like NEWPAC, then of course you will need to mine a crypto based on the SHA-256 algorithm like Bitcoin (BTC), BitcoinCash (BCH), Acoin (ACOIN), Curecoin (CURE), Joulecoin (XJO), Unbreakable (UNB), Peercoin (PPC), Mark's (DEM), Terracoin (TRC) or BitcoinSV (BSV). BTC is often the most profitable crypto to mine but there can be variations depending on the price of the cryptos.
  • If you don't have a USB Miner, then you will have to mine using the Raspberry CPU. Monero (XMR), is often the best crypto to mine in this case. The 'xmrig' software should be installed to start mining.

How much can you make from Crypto Mining on a RPI?

So yes, if you can mine a large number of cryptos on a Raspberry, the real question is: is it profitable?

If you have to pay for the electricity that runs your Raspberry PI Mining Rig, then the answer is NO, it is not profitable.

However, if you don't have to pay for the electricity, for example if you have excess energy from the solar panels, then you can make some modest profits.

But don't expect to get rich. For example, with March 2022 BTC prices, a COMPAC USB key can earn you $23 per year. This means that it will take more than 10 years to amortize the price of the key alone, not even counting your Raspberry.

If you choose to mine Monero with your Raspberry PI4 alone, and with a hash speed of 100H/s, you will earn $1 per year. You should not expect more than 19 H/s for a Raspberry PI 3 and therefore $0.2 per year. You see that using a RPI3 for mining is not really an option.

Hardware Hash/s Revenue per Year (March 2022)
PI4B and COMPAC F key 270G (BTC) $20
PI4B 100 (XMR) $1.5
PI3B+ 19 (XMR) $0.28

To conclude, we can see that mining cryptos on a Raspberry PI 4 is possible, but it won't make you rich. And if you don't have a free source of electricity like the surplus of your solar PV installation, then you will lose money.

If you know other profitable cryptos to mine on a Raspberry, please comment below 😉

LD. --

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