Crypto mining has absolutely blown up in popularity in the past several years, with more and more PC enthusiasts becoming interested in it. And while mining for bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is possible to do for nearly anyone that owns a desktop or laptop computer, it can also be significantly more time-consuming without a powerful computer processor.
In today’s post, we’ll be taking a look at some of the best CPUs that we recommend for crypto mining, ranging from CPUs that offer more value for your money, are best for those on a tight budget, more high-end picks, and more.
Best CPUs For Crypto Mining in 2021
Things to Look for When Choosing a CPU for Mining
Number of Cores
The more cores, the better. This is because crypto algorithms are designed to utilize each core in a CPU separately. So you want to find yourself a CPU with as many cores as possible for crypto mining.
Speed of Clock
For crypto mining, faster clock speeds translate to faster hash rates which translates to more money. Look for high GHz numbers when choosing a processor for mining.
This is one of the main detriments to crypto mining; mining uses a lot of CPU power, which in turn consumes large amounts of power. Finding a CPU that has a lower power consumption will inevitably save you lots of money in the long run, and can make a huge difference.
If electricity costs are high in your area, you may also want to look at crypto coins that make use of lower power. You can also consider mining less strenuous coins (CRC) or joining a mining pool with low fees like Coinotron where electricity costs are covered by the pool.
Fancy cooling options like water cooling might be something you want to look for if electricity costs aren’t too high in your area, but they can be pricey.
There are plenty of great options ranging from both the aforementioned water cooling systems and more traditional air cooling CPU fans, both of which are great options.
Another important factor to consider when purchasing a CPU is whether it will retain its value on the secondary market.
An expensive processor might have a high hash rate and serve you well for crypto mining, but it won’t do much good if it can’t be sold for a fair price once you’re done using it for mining. Because of this, you should always do your research before buying.
- Cores: 16
- Threads Supported: 32
- Base Clock: 3.4 GHz
- Boost Clock: 4.9 GHz
- TDP Rating: 105 Watts
- Hash Rate: 12.9 kh/s
Last but not least is AMD’s Ryzen 9 5950X, which is another extremely fast option for crypto mining. While we mentioned that crypto coin blockchains are single-threaded by nature, that doesn’t mean you can’t get a decent amount of crypto mining performance when using this CPU – it has 16 cores and 32 threads.
For crypto mining, the faster the better when it comes to clock speeds because high clock speeds will help with both crypto coin blockchains and applications with multithreading capabilities too when you aren’t actually crypto mining.
The Ryzen 9 5950X can run at a max turbo frequency of 4.9GHz and a base clock speed of 3.4GHz – which isn’t as high as some other CPUs, but high enough to give decent mining performance.
- Great price-to-performance value
- Very powerful
- High Power Consumption when overclocked
Bottom Line: The AMD Ryzen 9 5950X is our pick for best overall CPU, as it offers great crypto mining performance for a fair price, while also simply being a fantastic processor.
- Cores: 16
- Threads Supported: 32
- Base Clock: 3.5 GHz
- Boost Clock: 4.7 GHz
- TDP Rating: 105 Watts
- Hash Rate: 7.23 Kh/s
AMD’s Ryzen 9 3950X takes the cake for the best value CPU when it comes to crypto mining. Not only is it a fantastic CPU, boasting 16 cores and 32 threads, but its price tag is also fairly affordable, coming in under $750
When crypto mining, you want to make sure that your CPU is at the highest single-core frequency possible. This is because crypto coin blockchains are not multithreaded – they have all of their processing done in a single thread.
The Ryzen 9 3950X has a maximum turbo clock speed of 4GHz, which isn’t quite as high as some of the others on this list, but its base clock speed of 3.5GHz makes it just fast enough for crypto mining. Plus, when looking at other benchmarks for this CPU, it does very well in most applications, so you can use it for just about anything outside crypto mining too.
- Great performance
- Very affordable price
- Limited potential for overclocking
Bottom Line: AMD Ryzen 9 3950X is our pick for the best value CPU because of its excellent balance between price and performance.
- Cores: 8
- Threads Supported: 16
- Base Clock: 3.6 GHz
- Boost Clock: 4.4 GHz
- TDP Rating: 65 Watts
- Hash Rate: 7.47 Kh/s
Another fantastic choice when it comes to crypto mining is AMD’s Ryzen 7 3700X. As with the Ryzen 9 3950X, its price tag makes it a great option for those on a budget in addition to crypto mining – coming in under $350 USD (MSRP).
But what really sets this CPU apart from other cheap options is its core and thread count – 8 cores and 16 threads. While crypto coin blockchains are single-threaded by nature, having more cores can help you get good performance especially when it comes to mining coins that have not been moved in a while because they take longer to find blocks.
The max clock speed of this CPU is 4.4 GHz as well, so you won’t want to overclock it to get better crypto mining performance. You’ll likely want to keep it at its base clock speed of 3.6GHz, even though you might have to turn up the voltage a little bit in order for it not to throttle.
- Incredibly low price
- Great gaming performance
- Low mining hashrate
- Single-threaded performance is lower than ideal
Bottom Line: AMD Ryzen 7 3700X is our pick for best budget CPU because it offers an incredibly competitive price, while still remaining a solid processor for crypto mining beginners.
- Cores: 64
- Threads Supported: 128
- Base Clock: 2.9 GHz
- Boost Clock: 4.3 GHz
- TDP Rating: 280 Watts
- Hash Rate: 40 kh/s
If you are looking for the absolute best cryptocurrency mining performance out there, look no further than AMD’s Threadripper 3990X with 64 cores and 128 threads. Its price tag is also incredibly high, but if crypto mining is your thing then this CPU is just worth every penny – it’s one of the best investments possible considering what crypto coins are going for these days.
In crypto mining, the higher the clock speed your CPU can run at when it hits its maximum turbo frequency, the better. The 3990X has a base clock speed of 2.9GHz and a max turbo frequency of 4.3GHz – which is pretty much as high as you can get with crypto mining performance.
- Great mining performance
- Superior to Intel Core X-Series
- Strong multi-threading performance
- Enormous size
- Very expensive
- High power consumption
Bottom Line: The AMD Threadripper 3990X is our pick for the best premium option as it offers incredible crypto mining performance that is unmatched, though it comes with a hefty price tag.
- Cores: 2
- Threads Supported: 4
- Base Clock: 2.9 GHz
- Boost Clock: 3.6 GHz
- TDP Rating: 35 Watts
- Hash Rate: 0.9 kh/s
While the Threadripper 3990X is great at crypto mining thanks to its powerful hardware, it’s anything but energy inefficient. For those looking to save on their energy bills while crypto mining, we suggest Intel’s i5 4570T.
It doesn’t have the highest core or thread count, coming in at just 2 cores and 4 threads, but it can handle crypto mining pretty well nonetheless – making it perfect for those who need something energy efficient to keep their crypto coin miner powered up full time.
Its base clock speed is 2.9GHz with a max turbo frequency of 3.6GHz – so while it may not be as fast as some of Intel’s other CPUs on this list when crypto mining, it is still powerful enough to do what you need it to do.
- Very low power consumption
- Slow mining speeds
- Performance is underwhelming
Bottom Line: The Intel i5 4570T is our pick for the best energy-efficient CPU, as it uses a very low amount of power while still being powerful enough to mine cryptocurrency at a steady rate.
In crypto mining, you’re looking for a balance between speed and power consumption when choosing your CPU. You’ll want a system that can work efficiently but still offer some value if resold on a secondary market.
With all of this said, we hope that this guide has been helpful to you in some way. Remember to do your research and happy mining!