Processor mining: the best CPU processors for cryptocurrency mining, profitability and payback calculator, programs and video instructions for getting started


Despite the fact that bitcoin has been growing and falling in recent years, mining continues to be relevant, and its complexity is growing. Ordinary computer users have no chance. But you shouldn’t focus only on bitcoin – you can use mining on the processor to produce young cryptocurrencies, which can bring profit in the future.

The editorial staff of considered what opportunities there are for CPU mining in 2020 and what equipment is better to use for this.

Recommended for review: Mining on video cards.

Processor mining

Features of mining on the processor

CPU (Central Processing Unit) is an element that allocates computer resources to perform the tasks necessary for the user. But it is also one of the most economical ways to mine cryptocurrency. Of course, video cards are much faster and more productive in mining, but they are also much more expensive and consume a lot of electricity.

So for the initial entry into mining, it is reasonable to use a good productive processor and mine a promising cryptocurrency on it. Of course, everyone dreams of bitcoin, but you have to come to terms with the fact that its mining is now not available to everyone and requires huge investments.

In the meantime, many altcoins are quite processor-friendly and even prohibit multiple installations at once, so that everyone has a fair chance to receive a reward.

How to choose a suitable processor for mining?

How to choose a suitable processor for mining

In fact, there are two main selection criteria:

✅ Motherboard support. If the processor will be bought for the motherboard that you currently have, then you need to know its model and see which processors it is compatible with. If you are building a new PC for mining, then also pay attention to this nuance. Specifically, you need to know the socket type. Or just go to the motherboard manufacturer’s website and find on it a list of processors that a particular model is compatible with.

✅ Price. It is necessary to make preliminary calculations and find an option that will provide the best return on investment. There is no point in taking the most expensive model on the market, otherwise you will not see profit on your investment for a long time, despite the fact that with it you can earn $ 30 or more per month.

As for manufacturers, Intel is more often chosen among the leaders (AMD and Intel), since they are widely supported by almost all motherboards, and among their range it is easier to find an option with an optimal price / quality ratio. However, for certain types of mining (for example, on the RandomX algorithm) AMD processors perform better.

The best CPUs for mining: table and review of processors

Consider current processors for 2020 that can bring profit. Here we will indicate examples of coins that are effectively mined on these processors. Although, in fact, there are, of course, much more options for cryptocurrencies.

Processor modelSocketRandomX hashrateEnergy consumptionCost, rub
Intel Core i7-9700KLGA-11511.97 h/s95 watts33 000
Intel Core i5-7600KFCLGA1151230 H/s91 watts21 000
AMD Ryzen 5 1600XAM4480 h/s95 watts8 000
AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1920XSP3r21,3 h/s180 watts24 000
AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950XSP3r21,4 h/s180 watts40 000

Intel Core i7-9700K

Intel Core i7-9700K

Suitable for mining Ravencoin, Zcash, Electroneum, Monero. A powerful model capable of handling multi-threaded tasks perfectly. Provides overclocking capabilities. However, it is inappropriate to buy it purely for mining – rather, this option is suitable for those who at the same time need a high-quality gaming processor.

  • 8 cores
  • 8 threads
  • Base Clock 3.60 GHz
  • Maximum clock frequency 4.90 GHz
  • Intel Core i5-7600K

Intel Core i5-7600K

Intel Core i5-7600K

Intel Core i5-7600K processor is suitable for mining Monero, Zcash, Ravencoin, Electroneum, EpicCash. It has fewer cores and threads than its counterparts, but it is more expensive – however, its advantage lies in the high power of the cores, which can be additionally overclocked. The processor is suitable for both mining and games at the same time.

  • 4 cores
  • 4 streams
  • Base Clock 3.80 GHz
  • Maximum clock frequency 4.20 GHz

AMD Ryzen 5 1600X

AMD Ryzen 5 1600X

AMD Ryzen 5 1600X processor is suitable for mining Monero, Electroneum, EpicCash, Ravencoin, Zcash. AMD are good processors for mining and any other multithreaded task. This model has an acceptable cost and sufficient power for crypt mining. Due to its price, it is suitable for those who just want to try mining, but are not ready for large investments at the start.

  • 6 cores
  • 12 threads
  • Base Clock 3.60 GHz
  • Maximum clock frequency 4.00 GHz

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1920X

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1920X

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1920X processor is suitable for mining Monero, Electroneum, EpicCash, Zcash, Ravencoin. A relatively inexpensive and economical processor. A good choice for both beginners and more experienced miners because it has a good balance between performance, consumption and cost.

  • 12 cores
  • 24 streams
  • Base Clock 3.50 GHz
  • Maximum clock frequency 4.00 GHz

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X processor is suitable for mining Monero, Ravencoin, Electroneum, EpicCash, Zcash. Powerful processor, a real “mining beast”. Of course, the price for such indicators is quite high. It is better for a beginner to opt for more budgetary options, and if necessary, you can always make an upgrade.

  • 16 cores
  • 32 threads
  • Base Clock 3.40 GHz
  • Maximum clock frequency 4.00 GHz

Calculating profitability and choosing a currency for mining

Before you buy hardware and start mining on the processor, you need to make sure that it will be profitable.

Take the AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1920X processor as an example. The cost of electricity in the region is $ 0.05 per kilowatt. Based on this, we will calculate the profit using the NiceHash calculator.

Going to the page, fill in all the highlighted fields and click Calculate. Below you will see information about the expected profit per day, in our case it is 44 cents. At a processor price of $ 260, the ROI is 590 days.

Nicehash calculator

Promising cryptocurrencies for CPU mining

Coins that can be mined profitably in 2020 by mining on CPU processors:

  1. Monero. A cryptocurrency focused primarily on privacy. The project team is constantly taking measures to protect it from ASIC mining, leaving an advantage to processors and video cards. So, recently a new RandomX algorithm was introduced, optimized specifically for mining on processors. Its resistance to ASIC mining is much higher than the previous CryptoNight algorithm and is expected to be a long-term solution.
  2. Zcash. Another of the confidential cryptocurrencies, here maximum anonymity is achieved using the zk-SNARKs algorithm. Mining is carried out on the Equihash algorithm – its peculiarity is that it requires a certain amount of RAM, it is still difficult for ASIC manufacturers to achieve this, although they are trying. Vitalik Buterin spoke positively about Zcash, expressing the opinion that this project definitely cannot be a failure.
  3. Electroneum. A project focused on the mobile and gambling market. The blockchain uses the CryptoNight algorithm and has good resistance to ASIC miners.
  4. Ravencoin. Uses X16Rv2, another ASIC resistant mining algorithm. It combines 16 different hashing functions and uses them in a random order. It is difficult for ASIC manufacturers to configure their devices for each of these functions.

How to start mining on a processor with video instructions?

It is much easier to mine on a processor than on video cards or ASICs. All that is required is to purchase or install a suitable processor. To do this, you can assemble a separate computer or use your own, which you constantly use. Depends on the needs – are you going to seriously engage in mining, or just run it from time to time without the goal of serious earnings.

Once the processor is installed, it only takes a few minutes to start mining cryptocurrency. We assume that you have already created a cryptocurrency wallet, where income will be received.

You must select a mining pool. A pool is the aggregation of the computing power of thousands of users in order to generate blocks faster. The reward for the blocks is divided fairly among all participants, the pool retains a commission of 1-2% for services. After registering on the pool site that suits you, add a new worker there and specify the wallet address.

Then you need to download the software. For example, the most popular application for mining Monero is XMR-STAK-CPU. Most cryptocurrencies have their own miners, you can download them from the GitHub website.

Now only a few settings separate from the start of earnings. Open the config.txt file in the archive with the miner program you downloaded and make changes to it. Which ones are always described on the pool’s website. These are mainly the pool address and wallet address.

This file is then saved with a .bat extension and launched. If everything is done correctly, then mining will start immediately, and its progress will be displayed in the console. You can also view your statistics and evaluate the effectiveness at any time on the pool website by logging in with your account.

An example of popular pools offering a large number of features are MinerGate and NiceHash. Among other things, you can download mining software with a convenient graphical interface from them: MinerGate xFast GUI Miner and NiceHash Miner.

Video instructions for mining on a processor using software from MinerGate:

Video instruction for mining on a processor using NiceHash software:


A few tips for those thinking about CPU mining:

  • Be sure to use calculators and carefully calculate future profits so as not to go into the red. But calculators also give only an approximate result, since the rate of cryptocurrencies changes daily up or down.
  • You can combine mining on a processor and on a video card. This is a common way to significantly increase your profits. But it also requires more investment.
  • The income received from CPU mining can be saved to organize a GPU farm. This is also a fairly common path. However, you need to make sure by preliminary calculations that you will not have to save too long.
  • You can also invest in cloud mining, but not now – given the current exchange rate (1BTC = $ 6900), this is not profitable. But if bitcoin grows, then this option is quite workable.

Advantages and disadvantages

Pros ✅ 

✅ The opportunity to enter the mining industry at the lowest cost.

✅ The ability to mine young but promising coins.

✅ No harm to decentralization.

✅ Minimum power consumption.


❌ It is impossible to mine top coins.

❌ The device gets very hot and wears out faster.

❌ Low profitability.

Basic concepts

  • The central processing unit (CPU) is the part of a computer that executes the machine instructions of programs. Responsible for processing data streams, and also organizes the work of various parts of the system.
  • CPU mining is the process of solving computational problems to find a hash, the purpose of which is to generate blocks of transactions. In this case, all calculations are performed with the active use of processor cores.
  • A mining pool is a combination of a number of miners in order to quickly extract rewards for blocks and distribute it based on the contribution of each participant to the process.
  • Mining software – software that gives the processor commands related to calculations and searching for a hash.
  • A mining algorithm is a set of functions, with their help a hash is encrypted, which must be found.
  • Hashrate is the speed at which a processor or other hardware can iterate over hashes in search of the one it needs. Measured in h / s (hashes per second).

Questions and answers

What are the best CPUs for mining?

The two main manufacturers are Intel and AMD. When choosing, you need to take into account power, energy consumption and cost. Budget options – Intel Core i5-7600K, AMD Ryzen 5 1600X.

Is CPU mining profitable?

It will not bring hyper-profit, but if promising currencies are mined, then in the future they can become a source of income.

Will mining harm the processor?

The processor will wear out faster during mining than during normal use. This is the only imminent danger. The rest are associated with inadequate cooling, so pay more attention to this point – the device will be very hot.

How to calculate the income and payback of mining on processors?

Using a mining calculator.

How to quickly start mining on a processor?

Download miner software from NiceHash or MinerGate.

Can Bitcoin be mined with a processor?

No, this was possible in 2009-2010, when the number of miners was still very small. With the current competition, only ASIC owners can effectively mine BTC, and preferably more than one.

Will mining harm the processor?

The processor will wear out faster during mining than during normal use. This is the only imminent danger. The rest are associated with inadequate cooling, so pay more attention to this point – the device will be very hot.

How to sell earned coins?

Use cryptocurrency exchanges, which make it possible to exchange cryptocurrency for fiat money, or exchangers. It is better to exchange large amounts in order to lose less on commissions.

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