Intel's new Bitcoin mining chip is already gaining serious traction

An illustration of Bitcoin with a financial value graph
(Image credit: eToro)

With the arrival of a major deal with one of the world’s biggest Bitcoin mining companies, Intel's new ASIC chip already seems to be gaining traction.

US-based mining firm HIVE Blockchain has revealed that not only will it buy a bunch of next-generation Intel "BMZ2" Bonanza Mine ASICs, but will also work on integrating them into its custom-built mining equipment.

The mining company expects to begin deploying the new gear in the second half 2022. Once installed, it should increase HIVE's hashrate from 1.9 Exahash per second (Eh/s) to 3.8 Eh/s, which equates to a 95% increase.

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Bitcoin mining, powered by Intel

While Intel did not disclose exactly how many ASICs it will be selling to HIVE, performance data and unit cost information is available for BMZ2.

As reported by our sister site Tom’s Hardware, a single ASIC has a 135 TH/s performance and energy efficiency of 26 J/THs. One of these devices should set HIVE back around $5,600.

Knowing that HIVE expects to almost double its hash power, that brings the total number of BMZ2 devices to around 14,000, and the total hardware costs to just above $78 million.

Bitcoin is hailed as a transformative technology by many, but the issue of energy consumption and carbon footprint is something the network is having trouble shaking off.

Even though some believe the Bitcoin network's energy consumption is exaggerated, a more energy-efficient and better-performing device on the market is a welcome sight.

Intel, which steered clear of the cryptocurrency mining industry in its nascent years, now seems to have turned a corner, as demonstrated by the vigor with which it is pursuing this new line of ASICs. 

Via Tom's Hardware

Sead Fadilpašić

Sead is a seasoned freelance journalist based in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. He writes about IT (cloud, IoT, 5G, VPN) and cybersecurity (ransomware, data breaches, laws and regulations). In his career, spanning more than a decade, he’s written for numerous media outlets, including Al Jazeera Balkans. He’s also held several modules on content writing for Represent Communications.