6 Rig RX580 GPU Mining
The first crypto currency mining rig I decided to build was an open air 6 GPU RX580 rig. This guide will follow all the steps needed from buying the components until you receive your first coins into your wallet.
!! If you want to jump straight to the full list, without the guide check it out here !!
Why RX580’s? Well I’d narrowed it down to either a Nvidia GTX 1070’s, or an AMD RX580 rig. The reason for this is both provide pretty decent mining power vs. price point. I also wanted 8gb cards to future proof the rig as much as possible.
In addition you can run six of each of these cards on a single high quality PSU. This is important for your first rig, as you don’t really want to be messing around with two PSU’s and accidentally bricking components!
For my first rig I went with the RX580 as they came in at around £100/$100 cheaper for each card over the GTX 1070.
Where to buy
Your first stop will probably be eBay/Amazon and everything below can be purchased from both sites. However, you will probably find components cheaper and in stock in other online retailers. Amazon in particular is having huge delays on mining rig components, especially GPU’s and PSU’s, so you really can’t rely on their anticipated delivery dates.
My advice is to shop around and don’t just stick to eBay/Amazon. A great supplier in the UK that consistently beats Amazon prices is Overclockers.
Motherboard, Ram, CPU bundle
When you look for a new desktop PC the spec of your CPU and the amount of Ram tend to be fairly high up the priority list. This is absolutely not the case with a crypto currency GPU mining rig.
You really just want the cheapest latest gen CPU and a compatible motherboard with 6 pci-e slots. For ram you want the cheapest you can find that’s compatible with your motherboard and you really only need one 4gb stick. Any more will not help your mining at all.
You want the latest gen processor if possible, because they use less power than older models and as you will find out later, mining is all about minimising your power usage. If your motherboard has 6 pci-e slots, then chances are it is designed for mining.
To make sure your motherboard/CPU/ram are all compatible you need to check the socket on the motherboard matches your processor i.e. if you by an Intel socket 1151 motherboard, you must buy an Intel socket 1151 processor and not say an Intel socket 1150.
For ram you need to make sure you are buying desktop ram and not laptop ram. You also need to make sure it matches the memory type i.e. if you motherboard has DDR3 slots you need to buy DDR 3 Ram. If you are not sure what you are buying is compatible, please leave your spec in the comments and I’ll check.
This is my current preferred bundle:-
- CPU: Intel Celeron Dual-Core G3900 2.8GHz Socket 1151 2MB Cache Retail Boxed Processor – £26/€29
- Motherboard: Gigabyte Intel H110-D3A Socket 1151 ATX Mining Motherboard – £71/€80
- Ram: Crucial 4GB DDR4-2400 UDIMM – £40/€45
Total cost £137/€154.
I would aim to get you motherboard/ram/cpu for under £150/€170 including postage.
Summary: Cheap latest gen CPU (Celeron are a good choice), 6 pci-e slot motherboard with the same socket as your CPU, 4 gb desktop ram (same type as your motherboard).
This is possibly the most important component in your rig. Buy a cheap, or low powered PSU and your whole rig can blow out. For a 6 card rig I would recommend a decent quality 1,200W PSU as a minimum. I prefer 1300W-1400W to be safe. You can stretch to a 1500w or 1600w if you are really nervous, but the price starts to increase a lot at this point.
What ever you choose, make sure you have 6 pci-e 8 pin power cables, ideally all separately connected to your PSU and enough spare 6 pin or 4 pin molex connections to power 6 pci-e risers (see the section later on).
You want to go for a gold rated, or platinum rated PSU which means they are more efficient and cost you less in electric.
My preferred PSU is:-
- PSU: PC Power Supply EVGA SuperNOVA 1300 G2 – £245/€276
It can be hard to come by, but do a bit of searching and you will find it in stock at some suppliers. The reason this PSU is so good (aside from the good brand) is that it has enough cables to power each card on a separate cable directly your PSU.
You can also look at server PSU’s as a cheaper alternative, but I have always stuck to modular desktop PSU’s which are in my opinion easier to use for beginners.
Total cost £245/€276
Summary: A good quality brand PSU either gold, or platinum rated is a must. Minimum 1,200w for a 6 card rig.
Now the most important part; your GPU’s. This guide is for RX580 cards, but it would also work with RX570’s (and Nivida cards for that matter). Once you have decided on the card type, do not get too caught up on the card brand (MSI/Asus e.t.c). Whilst there might be some slight variations between different manufactures, most RX580’s can be flashed to get 30mh/s mining Ethereum.
Any marginal increase from the better cards will be completely out weighted by the extra cost of those cards. I have found currently the Power Color Red Devil cards to be cheaper than other brands and more importantly often in stock.
For this build I will use:
- PowerColor Radeon RX 580 Red Devil 8192MB – £260/€295
Total cost for all six cards: £1,560/€1,465
In order to connect your GPU’s to your motherboard you are going to need powered pci-e risers. Effectively all these do is connect your pci-e ports on your motherboard with your GPU’s, without having to actually plug them directly into the motherboard.
The reasons you want to do this are:-
- There probably isn’t enough space to fit them all next to each other.
- If there is enough space, cooling would be a nightmare.
- For most motherboards you don’t want them all drawing power from directly from the board.
I’m have a separate guide on how to connect riser cards, as there are a lot of scare stories on the net about the SATA converts melting, or catching fire. All I’ll say at this point is that all of my rig builds do not use any SATA connectors to power your risers.
For now you will want to buy either the 4-pin molex, or 6-pin pci-e powered risers and possibly a combination of the two. This is completely dependant on your PSU power cables.
For the EVGA SuperNOVA 1300 you will need:-
- Risers: 2 x 6pin PCIe 16x to 1x Powered Riser Cards – £10/€11 each
- Risers: 4 x 4 pin molex PCI-E 1x to 16x powered Riser Cards – £10/€11
- Cables: 2x 6-pin PCIe to 6-pin PCIe cables – £5/€5 each
Total cost £70/€76
The above lets you have one GPU and one riser max on each cable, without using any SATA connectors. You can however use any combination of 6 pin, or 4 pin risers depending on your PSU.
You will note that riser cards have a version number that is usually 005c or 006c e.t.c. Try to get the latest version you can find for the best price. I tend to go for version 007, or 008.
For this build we I’m going to go for an open air case. You can find many 6 GPU Open Air cases on eBay and Amazon, or you can even build your own from scratch.
The case I bought and have been fairly happy with is:-
- Case: 6 GPU Open Air Case for Crypto Currency Mining Rig Frame(Ethereum / ZCash) – £48/€54.
It has plenty of room for your GPU’s to be spaced out nicely and has an extra rack for 4 fans pointed between your GPU’s. Many cases are fine, just check the reviews and try to get one for around £50/€55.
Total cost £48/€54
Any generic SSD hard drive can be used for your mining rig. You don’t need a lot of space (120gb is fine), just a nice fast drive with enough space for an operating system and your mining software.
I’ve gone for:
- Hard Drive: SanDisk SSD PLUS 120 GB – £59/€67.
Not much else to say here really. Any SSD 120gb+ will do.
Total cost £59/€67
There are a few other components you will need before you get going:-
- Power/reset switch – generic on/off and power rest switch – £3/€3 (any will do)
- Operating System – Windows 10 OEM Pro 64bit – £4/€4 – (yes the £4 copies do work and apparently are legal licences for new build computers)
Total cost £7/€7
All of the above comes to £2,126/€2,400. Considering the graphics cards alone would cost you that a few months ago, it’s not too bad.
Below I’ve listed a few non essential option extras.
- Wi-fi card – TP-LINK TL-WN823N 300 Mbps Mini Wireless and USB Adapter, 2.4 GHz. £10/€11 (if you are not using a wired connection you will need a wi-fi usb dongle, as your pci-e cards will all be used up).
- Case fans: ARCTIC F12 – 120 mm Standard Low Noise Case Fan – £4/€4 x 4 = £16/€16 ( you will want extra cooling unless your rig is in an air conditioned room, or you live in Iceland!).
- Power monitor – TP-Link HS110 Wi-Fi Smart Plug with Energy Monitoring – £30/€34 (to monitor your power usage at the wall as opposed to using inaccurate monitoring software).
- Thermal paste – Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound 3.5g Tube – £4/€5 (because the gunk that comes with your CPU is rubbish).
That’s it for my build guide. Check out Part 2 for how to put it all together.