For anybody who has been involved in cryptocurrency mining for sometime, you will no doubt have considered using NiceHash.

This is the premier crypto-mining marketplace in the world and it is where miners and blockchain projects go to source excess hashing and computing power. Through a combination of user friendly mining software and a strong infrastructure, NiceHash has built a formidable presence.

However, is NiceHash all that it cuts out to be?

In this comprehensive NiceHash review, we will give you everything you need to know about the marketplace. We will take a look at the costs, returns and competition. We will also show you how to use NiceHash as well as the the key considerations.

Let’s jump in.

What is NiceHash?

NiceHash is an online marketplace for buying and selling your computer’s processing power. This processing power is known as hashing power in cryptocurrency terminology. It’s like an exchange service where you’re exchanging computing power for Bitcoin.

Anyone can sell their hashing power, even if you only have a small gaming machine. And anyone can buy hashing power if they want to take advantage of mining without spending an exorbitant amount of money on mining hardware.

NiceHash Statistics
NiceHash Statistics. Source: Nicehash Website

NiceHash has been in business since April 2014, so they know quite a bit about cryptocurrency mining and exchange. Since opening its virtual doors, NiceHash has become the largest hashpower marketplace in the world, with over 170,000 miners, more than 3.3 million orders served, and over 181,000 BTC paid out.

Needless to say, NiceHash has gained the trust of cryptocurrency enthusiasts around the world. One other reason for the success of NiceHash is its low fees and ease of use, making it a good choice for first time miners just getting their feet wet.

NiceHash has servers located across the globe and uses cutting edge technology in its infrastructure and delivery. Each registered user also receives a secure and insured BitGo wallet for BTC deposits.

How NiceHash Works

NiceHash can be used by both sellers of hashing power and buyers of hashing power. This significantly increases it potential user base, and some sellers also become buyers and vice-versa. Buyers are able to begin ordering hashpower immediately following their initial registration, and sellers don’t need to register at all if they prefer to remain anonymous.

As a buyer you can choose which cryptocurrency to mine, with the service supporting 34 different algorithms, including SHA-256, Blake, Equihash, Scrypt, X11, X13, X15. You can mine whichever algorithm is most profitable at the time and payments are made in Bitcoin. To determine which coin is most profitable try using Whattomine.com.

NiceHash Mining Algorithms
20 of the 34 different hashing algorithms on NiceHash

You can also choose which mining pool you’d like to use. After making the decision on which coin you’ll mine simply deposit some Bitcoin (minimum 0.01 BTC) and then go to the NiceHash marketplace to place your order. You can choose either the U.S. or EU marketplace and specify the maximum price you’re willing to pay. Note that all the prices are shown in Bitcoin, regardless of which cryptocurrency you’re mining.

If you’re looking to sell hashing power, NiceHash makes it very easy to do so, no matter what kind of rig you’ve got. You can sell hashing power from a GPU, and ASIC rig or an entire rig farm if you want. You can also choose your algorithm and the location of the servers you’re mining with.

NiceHash currently operates servers in Amsterdam, Chennai, Hong Kong, San Jose, Sao Paulo and Tokyo. You should use the location that’s closest to your own location for the best performance.

Nicehash Profit Calculator

Of course your main objective when mining is profitability, and NiceHash wants you to be profitable as well. So, they’ve created this handy Mining Profitability Calculator that lets you plug in that type of hardware you have and your electricity cost and then tells you how much you can expect to make with the service over 1 day, 1 week and 1 month.

NiceHash Mining Profitability
Mining Profitability Calculator on NiceHash

You’ll see that not all hardware is profitable, but since that’s based on current Bitcoin prices it might be that the future price will be high enough to make selling your hashing power now profitable in the future.

NiceHash Plans & Pricing

There are no fixed subscription plans at NiceHash and you can start with as little as 0.005 BTC. While prices are quoted on a BTC/day basis you can create a contract for less than a day or longer than a day. And the prices fluctuate based on the market prices of coins and the total hashing power directed at a given algorithm. NiceHash refreshes the price list every 10 seconds based on the real-time information they are getting from various networks and exchanges.

Buyers have two options for purchasing hashrates:

  • Standard bidding – With standard bidding you can place an order with a lower price, but there’s a chance you’ll eventually be outbid and need to increase your bid. Still, this is the cheapest method for bidding on hashing power.
  • Fixed – This is a good option for those who want to know their cost basis, and don’t want to mess about changing their bids and orders. Your initial price will be higher, but it is fixed for the life of the contract, so if prices for standard bidding go up later you could end up with quite a good deal. Fixed orders are limited to 24 hour duration, and are also limited to 50% of the total hashing power available to ensure there is still hashing power available for standard bids.

Note that all payments to NiceHash must be made in Bitcoins.

NiceHash Fees

Of course there are fees to consider when using NiceHash. Some of the fees you’ll encounter are as follows:

Buying Hashing Power

  • Non-Refundable New Order Fee: 0.0001 BTC
  • Amount Spend on Orders for Buying Hashing Power: 3% (unspent amount on cancelled orders is not subject to this fee)

Selling Hashing Power

  • Payouts for Balances Less than 0.1 to External Wallet: 5%
  • Payouts for Balances Greater Than or Equal to 0.1 BTC to External Wallet: 3%
  • Payouts for Balances Greater Than or Equal to 0.001 BTC to NiceHash Wallet: 2%

Withdrawals And Deposits

  • Withdrawals from NiceHash Wallet: Withdrawals to any BTC wallet of 0.002 to 0.05 BTC, the fee is 0.0001 BTC. Withdrawals of more than 0.05 BTC to any external BTC wallet have a fee of 0.2%. Withdrawals of more than 0.001 BTC to Coinbase has no fee.
  • Deposit Fees to NiceHash Wallet: 0 BTC for amounts greater than 0.01 BTC.

You can view the full NiceHash fee structure here.

How to Buy on NiceHash

If you want to mine cryptocurrencies you can buy your own mining rig (expensive), purchase a cloud mining contract (long duration) or simply order whatever hashing power you need from NiceHash.

Buying Hashingpower NiceHash
NiceHash instructions to buy Hashing Power

If you choose to buy your hashing power from NiceHash you can buy it for any algorithm they support and start mining any coin you like almost immediately. Here are the easy steps to follow:

  1. Register an account at NiceHash.
  2. Deposit a minimum of 0.005 BTC to your NiceHash wallet. Don’t forget to account for the transaction fee.
  3. Decide which coin you want to mine and which pool you’ll be using.
  4. Register at the pool you’ll be using if necessary, and create a new worker.
  5. Save the pool to your NiceHash list of pools. This includes the algorithm, Stratum server, port (some pools have special NiceHash port), worker username, and worker password (usually the worker password is x).
  6. Verify the pool with the NiceHash Pool Verifier. Please note that some pools have the option to custom set the worker’s difficulty. Usually, that is the worker’s password. In that case, you need to enter d=16383 in the password window if the pool verificator shows you that the minimum pool difficulty is 16383. Example:
    "Pool difficulty too low (provided=2048, minimum=16383)" Worker = nicehashminer Workers password: d=16383
  7. Place a new order on the marketplace and be sure to use the correct algorithm for the coin you want to mine. You will be able to select the EU marketplace or the U.S. marketplace when placing your order. Each has its own pricing for standard and fixed orders. Once you decide how much you’re willing to pay the order begins, with your Bitcoins being withdrawn as you mine and unspent coins remaining in your wallet.
  8. Finally, go to your pool and check your earnings. Note that NiceHash is only responsible for delivering hashing power to the mining pool, they are not responsible for the amount of rewards received from the pool or the payouts.
  9. For a more detailed NiceHash buying guide you can see this pdf created by the NiceHash team.

How to Sell on NiceHash

Those selling their hashing power are sometimes called miners, even though this isn’t technically correct. A seller at NiceHash can be anyone who owns computer hardware that can be used for mining, and who wants to earn some Bitcoin by using that hardware to mine through NiceHash. Getting started as a seller takes little more than 15 minutes.

Selling Hashingpower NiceHash
How to Sell Hashing Power on NiceHash

While you can sell hashing power on NiceHash from ASIC rigs and even mining farms, I’m fairly certain most of you reading this only want to sell the hashing power of your video card or GPU. You can do this with both AMD and Nvidia cards, and the easiest way to do so is to use the free NiceHash Miner software.

This will require you to register an account at NiceHash so you can use the NiceHash wallet to deposit your mining profits. The NiceHash miner makes it very easy to connect the software with your NiceHash account by allowing you to use the email used for your NiceHash account to link the two, rather than needing a long, hard to remember wallet address.

The NiceHash miner will also automatically select the most profitable algorithm and mine with that algorithm, so you don’t have to worry about the time consuming process of checking coin prices or algorithm difficulties yourself.

If you already use some other software such as CCMiner you can connect directly to the NiceHash Stratum servers to sell your hashing power.

Those few of you who are reading this and own ASIC rigs can follow the special instructions created by NiceHash for ASICs here.

Payouts at NiceHash

NiceHash uses a Pay Per Share (PPS) system to pay sellers, so you can expect automatic daily payouts as long as you meet minimums as set out below:

  • Daily payouts for unpaid balances in NiceHash wallets greater than 0.001 BTC
  • Daily payouts for unpaid balances in external wallets greater than 0.1 BTC
  • Weekly payouts for unpaid balances in external wallets greater than 0.001 BTC

NiceHash Pros

  • It’s very simple, quick and easy to setup;
  • It puts your mining on autopilot;
  • Profits are maximized by automatic switching to the most profitable algorithm;
  • Payments are made in BTC daily;
  • Can be configured to mine only when your PC is idle.

NiceHash Cons

  • You’re mining for someone else;
  • If you have very expensive electricity;
  • You worry about the hack of NiceHash that occurred in 2017;
  • Using NiceHash will be slightly less profitable than directly mining coins;
  • The fees for transferring your earned Bitcoin can be higher than with most other coins.

Conclusion

It’s quick and easy to see how you like NiceHash since the software can be downloaded and configured within 15 minutes. And if you’re considering using NiceHash as a buyer it can be even faster to secure a lot of hashing power. This can be very useful when you come across a situation where a certain algorithm or coin becomes more profitable than usual.

At the end of the day it’s your decision. I’ve mined directly before, and I’ve tried NiceHash and honestly the simplicity of NiceHash was refreshing. And I didn’t notice a huge difference in earnings.

If you’re just getting started, or are a casual miner, then NiceHash might be a perfect solution for you.

Featured Image via Fotolia & NiceHash

Posted by Steve Walters

Steve has been writing for the financial markets for the past 7 years and during that time has developed a growing passion for cryptocurrencies.