There are a number of other cryptocurrencies which came afterwards, collectively known as altcoins. One such popular alternative currency is that of SiaCoin.
The SiaCoin isn’t your typical cryptocurrency. This is because the currency has been created for a very specific purpose. Unlike Bitcoins, Ethereum and a number of other cryptocurrencies which are being used for multiple purposes, the concept of SiaCoin was a little different.
To understand what SiaCoin is and the use of this currency, let us take a look into what Sia is:
It is essential to understand Sia to understand SiaCoin.
SiaCoin came into existence because of Sia - a blockchain based decentralized cloud backend. Sia is a cloud storage provider unlike any other in the markets as of now. Here’s why Sia is so unique:
Privacy: Sia is high on privacy compared to other cloud storage providers. It ensures that your files can be accessed and controlled only by you.
Inexpensive: Sia also offers a cheaper offering compared to most other cloud storage providers. The company claims that they are as much as 10x cheaper than most providers. Sia offers 1TB of storage space for about $2 per month. This is compared with $23 per month on Amazon S3.
Uptime: Sia also promises of a better uptime compared to other cloud storage providers. This is attained because Sia stores tiny pieces of the stored files on dozens of nodes across the globe.
Open Source: Sia is open-source. It allows users to build innovative applications that run on top of the Sia API.
There’s an entire Sia Blockchain upon which the cloud storage is based. Those who rent for a space in the Sia storage pay with SiaCoins. These coins can be easily mined for, as well as traded.
The reason why Sia has come out with SiaCoin is that they want to ensure that they have their own coin and their own blockchain and do not have to be dependent upon any other currency. They claim that Bitcoin and Ethereum tend to have a congested network, and can be affected by forks or vulnerabilities. However, owning their own cryptocurrency and their own blockchain gives them a far greater stability.
SiaCoin has been among the top 15 currencies for quite some time now. It has been playing around in the top 10 over the past couple of months and the value has been quite stable compared to most other currencies. It is quite beneficial if you’re planning to rent cloud storage on Sia.
If you’re not planning to rent cloud storage, but want to buy a safe altcoin which remains stable while others keep fluctuating, Sia is indeed a good option to purchase and hold. However, this isn’t a rule of the market but more of a general observation.
SiaCoins can easily be traded for Bitcoins over exchanges such as Bittrex with ease. Thanks to the open source nature of the Sia platform, more applications of the SiaCoin can be expected in the near future.
Let us now dive into mining for SiaCoins.
SiaCoins can be mined with ease and it is quite easy to set up the mining process. It isn’t much complex either and requires average technical know-how.
There are four components that need to be kept in mind
SiaCoin Mining Hardware
SiaCoin Mining Software
SiaCoin Mining Pool
Let us take a quick look at each of these components:
The most important part of SiaCoin mining is getting the hardware. This is where a bulk of your investment goes into. There are some cryptocurrencies which can be mined using only GPUs. There are others like Bitcoins for which you can make use of specialized hardware devices - ASICs. SiaCoins fall in the latter category, though this is a very recent development.
When it comes to mining for SiaCoins with the help of GPUs, the best one out there is the Nvidia GTX 1080 series. Users claim to be making as many as 500 SiaCoins per day with this GPU.
However, in 2017 there has been another major development in the world of SiaCoin mining. An ASIC device has finally been developed for mining for SiaCoins. This is the Obelisk SC1. The website of Obelisk clearly indicates that the power of 1 ASIC is comparable to 100 GPUs.
The move to ASICs is inevitable as that is how the trend of the markets is. It happened with Bitcoins and now mining for Bitcoins using GPUs will not give you a profit for a really long time. When it comes to mining cryptocurrencies, ASICs are certainly the future.
The specifications indicate that the Obelisk SC1 - a specialized ASIC device meant for mining SiaCoins mines at a hash-rate of 300 GH/s. It runs on a Blake2b algorithm. The miner consumes a maximum of 500W of electricity. Another really interesting fact about this SiaCoin miner is that the Obelisk SC1 doesn’t even need external cooling and has been optimized to function at room temperatures!
The miner costs $2499. Shipping in the US/EU/China is $35 per unit, and everywhere else $70 per unit. As of this writing the miner is still in a pre-sale mode, and pre-sale will close in late November of 2017. The device is expected to reach users who have pre-ordered it by late December or early in 2018.
For the sake of simplicity we will assume that you are currently mining SiaCoins using GPUs.
If you’re using an Nvidia GPU, you will need to install CUDA.
If you’re mining for SiaCoins using an AMD GPU, you would need to install OpenCL.
Now that we have the GPU requirements out of the way, let us focus on the SiaCoin Mining Software:
There are a number of SiaCoin miners that you can install. However, the best SiaCoin miner in the markets as of now is the Marlin Miner. We consider it as one of the best because it is compatible with both, CUDA as well as OpenGL - giving you the freedom of using Nvidia or AMD cards unlike some other miners which might be a little more restrictive.
You can download the Marlin Miner here.
Now that you have set up the hardware and the software and are ready to begin mining - it is best advised to join a pool. A mining pool, for those who might not be aware, is basically a group of users who pool in their resources and mine for cryptocurrencies collectively. Each user in the pool is rewarded based on the resources they have put in.
There are a number of mining pools which users can join but when it comes to SiaCoins, Nanopool and Siamining are among the best options you’ve got.
These pools pay you periodically where each user is rewarded based on the resources they have put in in the pool. Users who have mined using more equipment and have spent more time mining are paid more. The reward comes in the form of SiaCoins and is deposited to your SiaCoin Wallet.
You can use our SiaCoin Mining Calculator to calculate profitability.
Finally, after you’re done with everything you’d need to set up a wallet where your mining rewards would come to you. There are very few cryptocurrency wallets which support SiaCoin. Among these wallets, our top two picks are
The Sia-UI Wallet, which has been developed by the Sia developers. It is the only Windows wallet available for Sia. It can be downloaded and installed on to your PC. (Download)
The other option is to create an account on Bittrex and set up a wallet for SiaCoin there. Your SiaCoins will be stored in your Bittrex account and you can use their public wallet address to have your Bitcoins transferred from your pool to you.
This is how you mine for SiaCoins.
You can also read our tutorial on how to buy SiaCoin if you don’t want to mine them.