Bitcoin mining is dominated by miners that use ASIC-based mining equipment, thereby skewing the mining rewards in favour of those able to afford large numbers of ASIC mining rigs.

Ethereum prevents this, meaning miners can still expect rewards even if they're using CPU- and GPU-based equipment.

How does Ethereum make ASIC mining less favourable?


2 Answers 2


ASIC mining is prevented using two methods.

  1. The current proof-of-work, Dagger, is very memory hard. In order to mine you require, at this moment, at least 2GB of ram. Because of this it's very hard to do with ASICs.
  2. Ethereum will switch to proof-of-stake soon. If you knew all the R&D you are doing on your ASIC would be worthless in a few months you would probably think twice before starting it up at all.

BTW: I don't really think CPU mining is efficient anymore, I wouldn't recommend doing it.

  • "Ethereum will switch to proof-of-stake soon" - could you suggest any good read on this?
    – Steve Kero
    Jan 5, 2018 at 17:15

It is designed to be ASIC resistant because computation of the ethash algorithm requires a large amount of memory (currently over 1 GB and growing). That is not cheap to parallelize because each additional processor also needs its own memory.

Serenity proposes, besides moving to Casper, an abstraction away from consensus algorithm so in theory yes, the code could be swapped to something even better in the future.

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