For my first mining rig, I dropped close to 1700 dollars, but you can actually get closer to the same performance that I get for much cheaper, and it will pay for itself very quickly. Here’s how.
3x Graphics Cards - $600
None of the cards I linked are in stock? Try this out. Its automatically updated with in stock cards.
In stock 270, good brand too:
ASUS R9270-DC2OC-2GD5 Graphics Cards
My original cards for this build is out of stock, and 270s are starting to move upwards in price, if the price for 270s goes towards 250 dollars, you are better off getting a 270x for a little more, like these:
Sapphire Radeon R9 270X 4GB GDDR5 DVI-I/DVI-D/HDMI/DP Dual-X with Boost and OC version PCI-Express Graphics Card 11217-04-20G
Out of stock, last I checked:
3x Gigabyte R9 270 GDDR5-2GB 2xDVI/HDMI/DP OC Graphics Card (GV-R927OC-2GD) - People report 450 kHs with these.
(XFX 270 925MHz Boost 2GB DDR5 DP HDMI 2XDVI Graphics Card were out of stock, last I checked)
These are the core of the machine and are what gives you all your doge. Running three of these, you can hit around 1200-1350kH/s or more in mining speed. This is quite a bit for the price, and likely to be the best bargain for your money.
Or you can go for a 270x, they are more expensive but you will generally get more Dogecoins out of them:
ASUS R9270X-DC2T-2GD5 Graphics Cards R9270X-DC2T-2GD5
CPU - $38
AMD Sempron 145 Processor
Processing speed of the CPU makes no difference for mining. We just need something that can run the operating system. Plus this CPU is actually good because it uses less power.
Motherboard - $89
ASUS M5A97 R2.0 AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
This motherboard is a good choice for being cheap and able to handle the 3 graphics cards (Up to 4 actually). But you will need powered extenders.
Power Supply - $149 or $189
SeaSonic Platinum SS-860XP2 Power Supply
This is a really high quality power supply. The main benefit this has over other power supplies that are a little cheaper, is that the energy efficiency is much better than what others recommend (Being Platinum Rated). This will mean your electricity is much cheaper, and over the long run it will pay for itself. So you can pay an extra 40 bucks for this or go with a slightly cheaper one like this $149. Just make sure it is at least gold rated or you will be really wasting more electricity than necessary.
Hard Drive - $45
32 GB SATA III Internal Solid State Drive
Just big enough for the OS. Since we are just using it for mining this will be fine. You can also get away with using a fast USB drive if you want to boot Linux off of it.
Riser Cables for Graphics Cards -- $45 Total
The motherboard has 2 PCI-Express x16 and 2 1x slots. So you can go with 2 PCIE “1x-16″ risers and 1 PCIE “16x-16x” Riser or vice versa. I went with 1- x16 riser and 2 x 1 to 16 riser to reduce power usage through the motherboard. It is important for the 1x to 16x ones are powered, so that your motherboard isn’t overloaded. Risers are also necessary to help disperse heat.
1x Micro SATA Cables -- PCI-E Express 16X Riser Card with Flexible Cable - $15
2x Qody PCI-E Extension Cable: 1X to 16X (powered) - $30
Ram -- $44
Kingston Hyper X Blu 4 GB 1600MHz DDR3 Non-ECC CL9 Desktop Memory (KHX1600C9D3B1/4G)
All we need is 4gigs or so of ram. RAM has no impact on mining, we just need enough to run the OS. You might be able to pick up a stick for slightly cheaper, but this one is good and more consistently in stock. Plus free shipping with Amazon Prime.
Milk Crate Case
Most miners go with a simple milk crate to hold their components. I use 2 of them, 1 to hold my power supply and hard drive, and another stacked on top with the motherboard, graphics cards and other components. Mine are 13inches x 16inches x 10inches(Height) and I wouldn’t getting any that are much smaller. You can probably find these cheaper at an office max or a home depot than on amazon.
You will also need to line your crates, so that your motherboard can lay flat, I use Plastic Canvas. Its sturdy but has holes and helps with ventilation. Others options include using Plastic Standoffs instead of the canvas. Just make sure whatever you get doesn’t generate static electricity, as this can be very bad for your computer.
You will also need:
Some Zip Ties to help secure things in place.
Something to hold your graphics cards up. You might have to get creative here. I simply used stuff I had lying around the house. (A Wooden Square Rod with Grooves). You want something at least 20ish inches (50 cm) long, and sturdy enough to hold 3 cards. If it bows downward at all, its a no go. If it can release a static charge easily, its a no go. Something like this or this.
Some people may opt to screw their cards in. I’ve gotten fancy with zip ties but it probably isn’t as secure as actually screwing them in.
Total -- $1024 (1064 with better power supply)
Not bad! This is pretty cheap and one of the most effective machines for the price per coin you will gain.
Nice to Haves
Cheap Good Wireless Card
Make sure the wireless card is PCI, not PCIE, so if you want to add another graphics card later, you won’t be using a PCIE slot by your wireless card.
Make sure you grab one of these if you will be needing it.
You will need this if you prefer Windows over Linux.
This board supports up 4 cards, so if you wanted you could grab 4 270s, a beefier power supply (At least 1050 watts or second power supply), and another riser you could run all 4 cards at once. But this of course brings the price up.
And that should be everything you need! This assumes you already have a keyboard, mouse and monitor you can use to start your miner up.
So how much Dogecoin can you make from this? At the current difficulty of 1300, you would get around 11027 dogecoins a day for 1.20-1.3mH/s. How much cash is that equivalent to? Around 15-20 bucks a day. So it begin to pay for itself after less than 2 months! Even the machine I paid 1700 for 2 months ago has already made me back more money than I paid for it, thanks to dogecoin. But to be fair I got into it when the difficulty was much lower, and who knows what prices are a month from now. They could go up or down so its always risky. But the good thing is you still have a decent computer if you stop mining, and not lose all your cash if you bought coins. I just purchased my second rig and this is what I went with.