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The 2018 Mining Rig Open Air Case Build - 8 GPU using M.2 PCIE Riser


Dave
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Updated Below:

 

I just ordered a few parts to do a mining rig build and thought I would share it with you since I did a considerable amount of research on the different parts. I have three PC's running right now and all loaded with cards.  This build will allow me to move all those cards into one "box" and reclaim some PC hardware to do other things.  Like plotting HDD's for Burst!  That's another post.

 

Motherboard - The ASROck Z270 LGA 1151 - https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157746&Tpk=N82E16813157746  Here is why.  Six PCIE slots.  Two M.2 Slots.  This allows a total of 8 GPU's.  It also will do onboard video so the GPU does nothing but mine.

Screen Shot 2018-01-18 at 1.20.37 PM.png

 

Stick O' Ramhttps://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820313741&Tpk=N82E16820313741

Cheapest CPU you can find - https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA1K66RA3156&ignorebbr=1  The box is going to be a GPU miner, not a CPU beast.

 

I also need a few parts to make it all go.

 

PCIE Risers - http://amzn.to/2Dji40J  These allow you to extend the PCIE slot to way above the motherboard in order to mount and cool all the GPU's.  They work amazingly well.  I have two already so this 6 pack will finish me up.

Screen Shot 2018-01-18 at 1.25.45 PM.png

 

Screen Shot 2018-01-18 at 1.27.36 PM.png

 

Now, the secret sauce. http://amzn.to/2EVMx5j  This little jewel will convert your M.2 slot into a PCIE slot.  You still need the riser board though.  When you populate the M.2 slot it will also use a SATA plug.  Not physically.  Check your mobo manual.

 

The Rest of the Gear

 

If you are a builder you may have some parts laying around.  HDD for the OS, Power Supply, Case, OS, etc.  I'll be building a wooden frame to house all of this goodness. I'll follow up with you on that.

You will need a decent amount of power and you need a way to link the two power supplies (I'll be using two) and a power switch.  Dig in your stash, you may have some wiring for all of this.

Power Switch / Reset Switch - http://amzn.to/2riG0zJ

I already have this for the power supply - CRJ 24-Pin ATX Red LED Power On/Off Switch Jumper Bridge Cable, Black Sleeved 22" - http://amzn.to/2Dh9XBA

You can also use this - http://amzn.to/2DglvFd - to link your two power supplies together and they will turn on at the same time.

 

That's it!  Build, Mine, Be Happy!

 

 

1st Update

 

2nd Update

I loaded the M.2 adapter onto the motherboard and then placed the 7th card using it and a PCIE riser.  I checked the bios prior to doing this and there were no settings in the M.2 storage area so I loaded it all up and went back into bios to see if anything had changed.  No settings.

I let Windows boot and gave it plenty of time to sort itself out.  When adding cards you always let Windows settle for at least 5 minutes. Watch the HDD light.  Fired up Device Manager and the 7th card was there.  The problem now is I don't have the 8th card to test the last M.2 slot!  Good problem to have as the 7th card is a bonus.  Happy with the build.

 

If you are looking at this build I haven't completely used all the parts purchased yet.  As in, the processor listed above.  I took an i3 from a Dell box and put it in the rig because I was tired of waiting for it to arrive.  I have yet to swap them around.  The Dell won't start up with the CPU i purchased so I need to swap them around to get them both running.  I'm waiting on a backplate to arrive.

 

Lastly, I had some power cables laying around that I used.  I simply ran out of 6 pin power cables so consider that an expense.  I also chose to take advice from Trig below in not powering the riser card with SATA cables that are molded.  I powered a few cards with crimped SATA cables but my preference would be 6 pin.  I'm using some lower end cards on this rig so I don't think there will be any issues with those crimped SATA cables.

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Be aware of pushing gpu power over sata power, they're only rated to 35w or something, there's plenty of pictures of burnt ones..

On the board front, I've seen people having issues getting lots of cards running, check the board specs and have a Google see if there's any issues...

Edited by Trig0r
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Ok. I figured that you couldn't use 4 SATA power plugs per cable coming out of the power supply.  Like you can with HDD's.  Maybe two whether it's molex or SATA.

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The motherboard delivers tomorrow.  That's the advantage of having a NewEgg warehouse nearby. WillCall would have been today.  Sadly the CPU is next week! Time to build a frame.

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Got 3 GPUs in my machine now.

 

Only mining with the CPU and the rx580, need to faff with configs to get the other 2 running, not for the hash rate as it's only an r9-270x and GTX670 but for the learnings...

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While the idea of building one of these monsters in intriguing I just can't financially justify it.  The biggest problem is the GPU cards have become really EXPENSIVE and in short supply.  The GTX-1060 3GB card that I bought back in October for $219.00 is now almost $500 on Amazon.  I don't have spare GPU cards laying around with nothing to do so I would have to start buying cards.  My current mining rig only has 1 PCIe slot so I couldn't expand it back in November / December.  Now I am wishing I had hoarded a few GPU cards because I could probably double my money selling them on Ebay.

 

@Dave what are the GPU cards that you will be putting into this mining system?

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