I decided to settle the score once and for all and find an objective way to measure which is the best Monero miner. To do this I needed to find the most efficient miner. When I say most efficient I mean the miner that will give you back your upfront investment the fastest. In this post, I will walk you through my research and the methodology I used to rank Monero mining CPUs and I will show how I identified the winners.
#1: Most efficient CPU
AMD EPYC 7J13 64-Core Processor which delivers 6% ROI and breaks even after 17 years.
#2: Most efficient CPU runner up
AMD EPYC 7713 64-Core Processor which delivers 5% ROI and breaks even after 19 years.
#3: Highest absolute yearly profits
AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3990X 64-Core Processor with $152 in yearly profit but with a 37-year break-even.
Below is the analysis of how I came up with those CPUs and numbers.
To identify the best XMR miner I needed the following:
- H/s: how many hashes per second the CPU (Central Processing Unit) performs
- Cost: how much Monero mining rigs cost in total including CPU, RAM sticks, Motherboard, and PSU.
- Electricity costs: how much electricity each CPU consumes
Let me show you how I collected the data for each.
First the hashrate.
Which Monero miners have the highest Hashrate
The first place most people go to when they want to check the performance of a CPU for XMR crypto mining is the XMRig benchmark data.
The benchmark shows you the top H/s achieved for more than 1,000 CPUs.
From the data below you might conclude that the AMD EPYC 9554 64-Core is the best CPU for Monero mining because it has the highest hash rate. However, that would be a wrong assessment.
There are a few things to note here:
#1. Number of CPUs
If you click on the AMD EPYC 9554 you will see that it achieves such as high hashrate because the rig uses a dual-socket motherboard with 2 CPUs.
#2. Miner tuning
The other thing to register is that when it comes to cryptocurrency mining each machine can be tweaked to a large extent.
For example, when you click on that first result you will see it is using a massive amount of RAM using 12 out of 24 slots in this case. This means the person running the machine has bought 12 RAM sticks funneling a sh*tload of memory to their machine.
Consider also that a RAM stick costs about $40 on average.
But it’s not only about how much RAM you have.
Here are a few other important factors that will affect your hash rate:
- Silicon Lottery: some chips just turn out better than others in the manufacturing process. So you may end up 3-5% variance in performance depending on the quality of your chips.
- Clock speed. You can adjust your processor to overclock or underclock compared to its default base clock settings. This in turn will affect power consumption. The top results in the benchmark may just be aiming for maximum hashrate without caring about how much it will cost in electricity.
- Volting: related to the point above many miners try to undervolt their CPUs to give them only the bare minimum amount of watts necessary to power their machine. Again top results in the benchmarks may not be optimizing voltage.
- Operating System (OS). The OS you use and the settings you implement can also impact the hashing output of your machine
- RAM speed and timings can also be further tweaked to underclock/overclock. See How Much Ram Is Needed to Mine Monero for more.
All in all, there are loads of variables that can affect your hashrate and this is what gets miners excited and what they predominantly discuss on forums like the Monero mining subreddit.
How I collected data on H/s
To collect a representative sample of hashrate performance I looked at the top results and took the average hash rate per CPU for the top 10 rows where all CPU cores were being used.
In total, I had 14 models to compare.
9 of these models had the highest H/s and I chose the other 5 based on feedback others gave me on the Monero mining subreddit.
As far as GPU mining is concerned I did not look into that at all because it simply does not make sense when it comes to mining XMR.
GPUs are not at all good at mining Monero’s RandomX algorithm.
See CPU or GPU for Monero Mining? Definitely Not GPU in 2023 for more on this topic.
Here is the average hash rate for each of the top models in the benchmark:
|#||CPU||Machine Hash Rate (H/s)|
|1||AMD EPYC 9554 64-Core Processor||64,178|
|2||AMD EPYC 7T83 64-Core Processor||42,195|
|3||AMD EPYC 7J13 64-Core Processor||49,463|
|4||AMD EPYC 7742 64-Core Processor||48,823|
|5||AMD EPYC 7H12 64-Core Processor||42,480|
|6||AMD EPYC 7B12 64-Core Processor||43,055|
|7||AMD EPYC 7713 64-Core Processor||45,222|
|8||AMD EPYC 7702 64-Core Processor||42,531|
|9||AMD EPYC 7662 64-Core Processor||24,568|
|11||AMD Ryzen 9 7950X 16-Core Processor||25,160|
|12||AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3990X 64-Core Processor||59,510|
|13||Intel® Xeon® Platinum 8153 CPU @ 2.00GHz||6,810|
In the table above you can see that the most powerful processor is the Bitmain X5 followed by the AMD EPYC 9554 and the AMD Threadripper 3990X.
But just because a computer is powerful it doesn’t mean that it’s the most efficient.
To find the most efficient XMR mining CPU you also need to consider costs.
There are two types of costs
- Fixed costs i.e. the mining rig itself, and
- Variable costs where the only input here is the cost of electricity
Let’s take a look at fixed costs first.
How much does a CPU and other hardware cost?
There is a big range in terms of how much a CPU costs.
In my comparison the most expensive CPU costs just under $6,000 while the cheapest one costs $165.
Apart from the CPU costs you also need to account for the cost of the following hardware:
- RAM sticks usually come in pairs and you will be needing at least two. A combo will usually cost about $90
- Motherboard: a b450 will set you back by $80
- PSU (Power Supply Unit): a 550 Watt PSU will cost about $65
- Peripherals such as cables and glue: say $25
- Hard drive: $40
For high-end machines, depending on the climate of where you live you may also need to look into additional fans or other cooling solutions.
I have not included extra cooling costs for the purposes of this study.
Here is a summary of all total costs for each CPU:
Monero Mining CPU and Hardware Costs
|CPU||Average Benchmark H/s||Cost of Machine||Additional Hardware||Total Cost|
|AMD EPYC 9554 64-Core Processor||64,178||$5,490||$260||$5,750|
|AMD EPYC 7T83 64-Core Processor||42,195||$2,028||$260||$2,288|
|AMD EPYC 7J13 64-Core Processor||49,463||$2,069||$260||$2,329|
|AMD EPYC 7742 64-Core Processor||48,823||$5,786||$260||$6,046|
|AMD EPYC 7H12 64-Core Processor||42,480||$3,450||$260||$3,710|
|AMD EPYC 7B12 64-Core Processor||43,055||$1,180||$260||$1,440|
|AMD EPYC 7713 64-Core Processor||45,222||$1,635||$260||$1,895|
|AMD EPYC 7702 64-Core Processor||42,531||$4,886||$260||$5,146|
|AMD EPYC 7662 64-Core Processor||24,568||$1,258||$260||$1,518|
|AMD Ryzen 9 7950X 16-Core Processor||25,160||$575||$260||$835|
|AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3990X 64-Core Processor||59,510||$5,300||$260||$5,560|
|Intel® Xeon® Platinum 8153||6,810||$165||$260||$425|
|Ryzen 9 3900X||12000||$500||$260||$760|
But it’s not only the upfront investment you should care about. There is also going to be running costs in the form of electricity bills.
Let’s take a closer look.
Variable costs: Electricity consumption
Now I am going to be honest.
In most countries, residential electricity prices are too high for you to turn a profit mining the Monero Network.
However, if you are able to procure electricity for less than 0.13 $/kWh then you may be able to make a small margin.
In the US some states offer cheap electricity.
These states are
- Idaho: 0.1 $/kWh
- Louisiana: 0.12 $/kWh
- North Carolina: 0.12 $/kWh
- Texas: 0.13 $/kWh
- Utah: 0.13 $/kWh
- Washington: 0.12 $/kWh
- Washington D. C.: 0.13 $/kWh
If you live outside the US then according to Statista the following countries have cheap electricity
- Mexico: 0.1 $/kWh
- China: 0.08 $/kWh
- India: 0.08 $/kWh
- UAE: 0.08 $/kWh
- Turkey: 0.07 $/kWh
- Saudi Arabia: 0.05 $/kWh
- Russia: 0.05 $/kWh
- Venezuela: 0.05 $/kWh
- Qatar: 0.03 $/kWh
- Nigeria: 0.03 $/kWh
For this analysis, I assumed a cost of 0.12 $/kWh
For the electricity consumption of each CPU, I took the TDP and raised it by 10% to account for the consumption of the other components as well.
Huh? What’s TDP?
That was precisely my reaction too when I first read about it.
TDP stands for “Thermal Design Power,” and it’s a specification used in the computer hardware industry to indicate the amount of heat a component, such as a CPU or GPU, is expected to generate under maximum or typical load.
TDP is typically measured in watts (W).
The cool thing about TDP is that you can find it in the specs of each model on the manufacturer’s site.
While TDP technically refers to the amount of heat generated it’s also an okay-ish proxy for how many watts your CPU will consume. It’s not the best but it’s the best we have.
Alrighty, now let’s put this data all together and see which is the best CPU.
Result of analysis: Which is the best CPU for mining Monero
Best Monero Mining CPU
|#||CPU||Machine Hash Rate (H/s)||Watts||Cost of machine||Yearly Revenue||Yearly Electricity cost ($)||Yearly Profit ($)||Breakeven (years)||Yearly ROI|
|1||AMD EPYC 9554 64-Core Processor||64,178||396||$5,750||$513||$416||97||60||2%|
|2||AMD EPYC 7T83 64-Core Processor||42,195||308||$2,288||$337||$324||14||171||1%|
|3||AMD EPYC 7J13 64-Core Processor||49,463||248||$2,329||$395||$260||135||17||6%|
|4||AMD EPYC 7742 64-Core Processor||48,823||248||$6,046||$390||$260||130||47||2%|
|5||AMD EPYC 7H12 64-Core Processor||42,480||308||$3,710||$340||$324||16||238||0%|
|6||AMD EPYC 7B12 64-Core Processor||43,055||264||$1,440||$344||$278||67||22||5%|
|7||AMD EPYC 7713 64-Core Processor||45,222||248||$1,895||$362||$260||101||19||5%|
|8||AMD EPYC 7702 64-Core Processor||42,531||220||$5,146||$340||$231||109||48||2%|
|9||AMD EPYC 7662 64-Core Processor||24,568||248||$1,518||$196||$260||-64||Never||-4%|
|11||AMD Ryzen 9 7950X 16-Core Processor||25,160||140||$835||$201||$147||54||16||6%|
|12||AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3990X 64-Core Processor||59,510||308||$5,560||$476||$324||152||37||3%|
|13||Intel® Xeon® Platinum 8153 CPU @ 2.00GHz||6,810||138||$425||$54||$145||-90||Never||-21%|
Most efficient CPUs
From the table above the CPU that breaks even the fastest is the AMD EPYC 7J13 64-Core Processor which delivers 6% ROI and breaks even after 17 years.
A close runner-up is the AMD EPYC 7713 64-Core Processor with 5% yearly ROI and 19 years breakeven.
Most profitable CPU
The processor with the highest absolute profit per year is the AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3990X 64-Core Processor.
This CPU will fetch $152 in yearly profit but takes much longer to break even (37 years) given its higher cost.
There are a few things that are obvious from this analysis
- Even if you choose the best hardware it’s not worth mining Monero unless you can get really cheap components or cheap electricity. To really geek out read: How Profitable Is Monero CPU Mining: Why It Is Not Worth It.
- The highest output machines are not the best CPUs for mining Monero because they also cost a lot.
- The cheap CPUs are not so great because they have a low hash rate.
I will also share a little secret with you.
Even if the price of Monero were to double, assuming Monero’s mining difficulty remains constant, it would still take a couple of years for your mining operations to break even.
You can play around with variables and assumptions using a Monero mining calculator.
- Monero coin (XMR) price: $151
- Pool mining fees: 1%. Monero mining pools charge between 1-2% and yes you should join one as otherwise, the likelihood of you solo mining a block on your own is extremely low.
- Monero blockchain difficulty: 360G which is what it is at the time of writing. It’s ranged between 300 and 400G for the past few years.
- Mining rewards: 0.61 XMR i.e. 0.6 XMR block reward + fees.
- Electricity cost: 0.12 $/kWh
Note that for these calculations I did not look at what the results would look like if you used cloud mining services. I also wrongfully ignored the cost of using XMR mining software which usually costs 1%.
Best Monero Mining Hardware per wattage
To conclude my study I examined the breakeven periods for different wattage levels.
The reason I did this is because it’s really hard to know just how much electricity your rig will consume beforehand. And because margins are so tight with Monero mining it makes a difference how much energy you consume.
Using the TDP +10% for electricity consumption was just a proxy.
But I wanted to understand which is the best miner even if I hadn’t got the wattage consumption right.
Looking at the graph below you can see that the AMD EPYC 7B12 is the best miner if you are able to get to run for under 150 watts.
My analysis is naive in that it does not account for the fact that as you increase wattage H/s output will increase. However, it is good for when you have a specific range of power consumption that you think your machine can run on in mind.
You are going to need more than one CPU machine to mine 1 Monero per day. Currently, the most powerful Monero mining hardware will give you just over 0.03 XMR coins per day. So to mine 1 Monero coin in a day you will need 32 of these mining rigs. Let’s take a close look at the calculations. Read more.