Building a 6 GPU Ethereum mining rig from scratch is a rewarding project. Here in this guide, we will walk you through selecting the best ethereum mining hardware, assembling the parts, and configuring the software to get your very own Ethereum mining rig up and running. It should take you about three hours to assemble this mining rig.
6 GPU Ethereum Mining Hardware Build List
Listed below is the hardware you will need to purchase and assemble. To break it down, you are simply building a custom open-frame computer, but instead of one or two graphics cards (as you would find in a gaming computer), you will be adding SIX to the build requiring riser cables and a frame as shown in the photo.
1x Power Supply – EVGA SuperNOVA 1200 P2 – The key here is to have an efficient power supply that will save you over the long run in electricity costs. This 1200w power supply is platinum rated (as opposed to silver, bronze or gold). This is the industry standard for rating the efficiency of a PSU.
1x Motherboard/CPU Combination – What is the best motherboard for mining Ethereum? Finding a Motherboard/CPU combination that is compatible with building a 6 GPU mining rig, can be a challenge, since they are often sold out at most retailers. I've listed below some combinations that have been tested and will work for mining with 6 video cards. Keep in mind, you only need one of these motherboard/cpu combos to build your gpu mining rig.
- ASRock Z97 Anniversary LGA 1150 Motherboard | Intel Celeron G1840 Processor
- ASRock ATX H97 Anniversary Edition Motherboard | Intel Celeron G1840 Processor
- MSI Z97 Intel LGA 1150 Gaming Motherboard | Intel Celeron G1840 Processor
- Asrock H61 Pro BTC Motherboard | Intel Celeron G1840 Processor
- Asrock H81 Pro BTC Motherboard | Intel Celeron G1840 Processor
- Asrock B85 Anniversary Motherboard | Intel Celeron G1840 Processor
- Gigabyte F2A88X-D3H Motherboard | AMD Athlon X4 860k Processor
6x Graphics Cards (GPUs) – Here are the current (updated weekly) recommendations for the best GPU to mine Ethereum with:
- Sapphire Radeon Rx 480 – This card can mine at 27mh using only 150 watts of electricity
- Sapphire Radeon Rx 470 – The Rx 480 is the best, but if the price difference is high due to demand, this would be my second choice. This GPU can mine at 25 mh using only 140 watts of power. Also, the rom can be modified to produce 27mh if desired.
- Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1070 – If you pay more than $0.08/kwh for electricity, the very efficient Nvidia GTX 1070 can produce 28mh using only 90 watts of electricity. The initial purchase price is steep, but long term will produce the best ROI after factoring in your reduced electricity costs.
1x RAM (System Memory) – 4GB DDR3 1600Mhz RAM – You don’t need a lot of system memory to mine ethereum effectively. 4GB is about as small as a stick of RAM comes these days, so I recommend just picking up a cheap one for about $20.
1x to 16x Powered Riser Cables – (6 pack) PCI Express 1X to 16X Powered Riser Cables – These are to connect the 6 graphics cards to the motherboard and allow spacing between cards for heat dissipation. Powered risers are necessary when building a rig with this many GPU’s.
1x Custom Mining Case – You can build one of these yourself with angled aluminum from your local hardware store. There are several custom case builders selling these as well. I’d recommend this one. If you choose that last option, it comes with USB risers, so keep that in mind when ordering all the parts for your rig.
Extra Cooling -– Box Fan (I find supplemental cooling from a box fan to be helpful in keeping the temperatures down on the graphics cards)
Operating System – Windows 10 supports 6 GPU’s, but if you’re familiar with Linux you can of course download it for free (some folks consider Linux to be the best OS for Ethereum mining, since it keeps your overall costs down, improving your Ethereum mining ROI or return-on-investment). Keep in mind that undervolting/overclocking works better in Windows vs Linux for mining due to better drivers in the Windows world. You can load almost any operating system with a thumb drive these days, but some folks might prefer to load the OS from an install CD, in which case you’ll probably want to pick up a $30 external USB powered DVD drive. Many laptops in the ‘thin & light’ category are shipping with no internal optical drive, so it will probably come in handy for other uses as well. I have one that I use fairly frequently around the house.
Assembling the Custom Ethereum Mining Hardware
- Un-package everything
- Build / assemble custom open air mining case
- Install processor and RAM on motherboard
- Plug in all riser cables
- Place motherboard in custom open air mining rig case and connect motherboard PSU connector (leaving PSU unplugged from the wall of course)
- Plug in SATA hard drive (or optional Linux on USB stick)
- Connect all GPUs to riser cables and fasten them to custom case. You might need to experiment for optimal spacing to keep the cards cool.
- Plug in all power supply connections.
- Connect mouse, monitor and keyboard and an internet connection (I use a USB WiFi adapter)
- Check all connections once more
- Fire it up! Install the OS if needed. Install Graphics card drivers. Install mining software.
- Make sure fans are fully functional. Start the mining software, tweak settings for maximum hash rates and let it run!
Congratulations! You are now the proud operator of your very own custom built 6 GPU ethereum mining rig.
By the way, if you’ve read this far and the technical aspects of building a mining rig scared you off, you can simply purchase Ethereum or Bitcoin and hold them as part of your investment portfolio. I recommend CoinBase as the easiest way to purchase either currency. I have been using Coinbase since 2013 to buy and sell cryptocurrency with no issues.