The bitcoin network is growing, so are the number of transactions. All bitcoin transactions are recorded in a ledger, in this case a decentralized one called Blockchain. The transactions happening over blockchain needs to be verified and miners are the ones who contribute the processing power for the algorithm to verify these transactions. In return miners receive rewards in the form of freshly minted bitcoin.
As the bitcoin network grows, the amount of processing power required to decrypt the information on blockchain and verify transactions also increases. Which in turn means, the miners contribution greater processing power will earn more. Bitcoin mining these days involve specialized hardware custom made for the application and these are called ASICs (Application Specific Integrated Circuits). Mining ASICs pack a lot of processing power and they consume a lot of power in return to churn it out. Many companies are currently involved in optimizing these ASICs with latest hardware architecture to create energy efficient and more powerful miners. Bitmain is one such company based out of Beijing, China.
Bitmain has recently introduced its latest mining ASIC labelled BM1385 which it claims to be the most power efficient publicly available chip till date. According to the company, Bitmain BM1385 is capable of churning out 32.5 GH/s. It also consumes 50 percent less energy while offering 45 percent greater hashrate than the company’s previous BM1384 28nm ASIC.
The upcoming Bitmain S7 Antminer models will also come equipped with the latest BM1385 chips. Antminers are generally sold to business clients, but these chips can be bought by consumers as well.
Currently there are very few mining ASICs available for consumers to purchase. The mining industry is also facing legal issues with regard to ASIC sales to consumers. Even for consumers, mining is not an attractive option anymore, as many companies have set up data centers and using industrial scale miners, which makes it hard for individual miners to even cover the costs involved in operating their mining rig.