Let’s look at the hardware and operations costs involved with a
3/4 1 PiB farm, what those earnings look like, and how long it takes to get that operation up and running. Enjoy this complete Chia Farming Blueprint 🌱🚜 (half rack diagram)
Chia Hardware Costs
First, we have to make a decision. Do you have space/capacity for gear (like a house) or are you confined more to a smaller footprint (apartment)? If you can go the route of enterprise gear, this is much preferred as it is geared for longevity of operations, engineered to provide proper airflow, and more resilient to typical hardware issues. There is a downside to this, and that is noise. You cannot alter the audio output of a NetApp disk shelf, and while they are not “loud,” you do not want to live in the same room as one. Hence, the garage, extra room or basement would be better choices to setup your Chia farm. Often you get these in a house layout, but some cool condos and apartments have garage space as well. Note the issue is NOT electrical capacity at a circuit? That is because farming Chia is not an energy intensive operation. 300 – 400 watts can farm a PiB. Given the issues we see around electrical costs this should be a part of every crypto operation’s goals, and it aids in long term viability of a Chia operation vs, say, a Bitcoin ASIC operation.
I will present you with 2 plans. The first plan is for enterprise gear, which I strongly encourage you to use if you can. The second plan is for consumer gear, which will have higher temperatures associated with it. For a handy guide on how many chia plots fit on a specific size hard drive, we have a writeup for you on that.
Enterprise Chia Farm Template
How To Install Server Racks – Tie and Level Racks
1X R720 W 2X2680/256gb (Ensure has LFF trays) RAM
3x 24 bay drive shelves DS4243
3x APC rails – works for netapps
1x APC 1500RM2U UPS – for disk shelves
In the cart on eBay this is just under 10,000 USD
(at the time this writing – March 22th, 2022) UPDATED 12/10/2022. You can get a 1000TiB (1 PiB) Chia Farm for this estimated amount. This, as we will see in a few seconds, is a way cheaper price than what we will get with the same size in a consumer level device.
For electrical you need a single 20-amp circuit, with 2 plugs. Use one of them for the UPS. Use one of them for the Dell Poweredge R720 while plotting, you can put the R720 on the ups after you have plotted the disks (take out the extra PSU in the R720 if it has one). Check the rack diagram below for more info on this.
Consumer Chia Farm Template
Okay this one is very different than the above as the drives are all external USB and 16TB in size attached via USB hub. Just so we are clear, this is 50 plugs for the USB drives and 5 for the USB hubs. 55 total plugs needed. Yeah, it’s going to be an octopus but just roll with it here.
Okay now brace yourself, we are building an octopus here. We need 55/4 plug expanders.
I would not leave this investment in drives unprotected from a power surge.
Now, at the time that I did this comparison that is about 15.5 K, which is significantly more than going the enterprise route. Yet another reason I have continuously mentioned that as an option for those who have the space, as that makes a whole lot of sense. Drives outside of the USB case will also be much cooler than drives inside a USB case. Heat has a long-term negative impact on the lifespan of a drive, so you couple the price difference and the heat and it’s a pretty clear picture why I think gear built for running 24/7/365 workloads is a winner.
Chia Profitability Sheet (copy 2 your drive) https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1lXviouJ1dZhT3s_4wQgdySnTMJJX3E5LXcJJv5xftdg/edit?usp=sharing