One of the common terms used in the field of Bitcoin mining is the hash rate, which is sometimes referred to as hash power. This is simply a measurement of the amount of processing power that a Bitcoin network is utilizing and consuming to operate on a continual basis. It is essentially the speed at which the computer can complete an operation for Bitcoin. When the hash rate is higher, it means that it can increase the chance of finding the next block and obtaining a reward for it.
The network measures the hash rate continually and calculates the rate in an average timeframe of 10 minutes. The reason it is broken up into these 10-minute chunks is because that is the amount of time that it will take to mine a block of transactions, and to add it to the blockchain ledger, which is kept permanently for records.
Those who are getting into mining need to understand that to make a substantial amount of money, they need to be capable of providing as much hash power as possible. Consider the fact that there are constantly new and improved devices put into use all the time. These machines are faster and will therefore have a higher hash rate. While these improved devices will help to increase the overall power of the network, if you are using an older device and your hashing power remains the same, you are going to be making less and less from cryptocurrency mining.
This can make some of the older machines obsolete, which is the main reason that so many Bitcoin miners upgrade their devices when new and improved models are available. It helps to ensure they stay competitive.
Hash Rate Measurements
The following are some of the common terms used when measuring hashes. Remember, the higher the hash rate the better.
- 1KH/s = 1,000 hashes per second (one thousand)
- 1MH/s = 1,000,000 hashes per second (one million)
- 1GH/s = 1,000,000,000 hashes per second (one billion)
- 1TH/s = 1,000,000,000,000 hashes per second (one trillion)
- 1 PH/s = 1,000,000,000,000,000 hashes per second (one quadrillion)
- 1 EH/s = 1,000,000,000,000,000 hashes per second (one quintillion)
Naturally, those who are going to be working with mining devices want to choose those that have high hash rates. Let’s look at a few examples of the hash rates of single devices.
The hash rate for the Bitmain AntMiner X3, Batch 3 is 220 KH/s, which is the same as their Antminer X3, Batch 4. The Antminer D3 has a hash rate of 17 GH/s, and the DragonMint T1, which claims to be the most efficient Bitcoin miner in the world today operates at 16TH/s. Because many of the companies offering these machines provide the hash rates at different measurements (KH/s, GH/s, TH/s, etc.), you want to calculate to determine which of the machines will give you the best performance for the money.
By understanding the basics of the hash rate, and that you need to continually utilize faster and higher quality machines, you have a better understanding of how bitcoin mining works.