Made My First Purchase with Bitcoin!

the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
I posted about Bitcoins not too long ago (mainly about starting to mine). About a month ago I picked up a few USB ASIC miners and used one of my older systems to let it mine. I had an ok amount built up and was trying to figure out what to do with it (no one likes to let money just sit there haha). Anyhow, I'm not a huge fan of Halloween and usually go to the movies. I found an app that lets you purchase gift cards with your Bitcoins. Regal happened to be one of the providers, so I figured why not give it a spin?

I have a mobile app for my wallet, so I set my threshold for my mining pool and had it send the coins to my wallet. Top of the hour, autopay happens and just about 15 seconds later I get an email that the coins are in my wallet. Pull up the gift card app, set the amount for the purchase, and pay. Again 15 seconds later the gift card appears in the app! Small headache is Regal doesn't accept mobile gift cards yet so I'll have to print off the gift card in order to use it.

Overall, a very nice and quick experience. I tend to think Bitcoins will take off, but who knows.
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Comments

  • veritas_libertasveritas_libertas CISSP, GIAC x5, CompTIA x5 Greenville, SC USAPosts: 5,735Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Hey, what ASIC USB devices are you using?
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    ASICMiner Block Erupter USB - they hash at about 330 MH/s. I have five of them running and ordered another five. I have them in a powered usb hub, though only my Mac has been able to see all five of them. Windows has a weird issue where for some reason at most it can see four.
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  • veritas_libertasveritas_libertas CISSP, GIAC x5, CompTIA x5 Greenville, SC USAPosts: 5,735Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Yikes! Those are cheap...
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Yup the price dropped on them big time. You won't be a millionaire by mining with them, but you could recoup your costs in about 5 months (if you purchased 5).
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Correction, three months not five months.
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  • BGravesBGraves Posts: 339Member
    Hey thats cool! I myself finally got my Butterfly Labs Jalapeno @ 5GHs (that I ordered like 10 months ago or something!) Set it up and got it running
    just a few days ago!

    I could use a few more like this one, plug it in to a USB Hub like you mention and let it go! Nice tip!

    Curious what the App name is for the bitcoins to giftcard, care to share?
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Sorry about that, app is called Gyft - Mobile Gift Card Wallet. Not a ton of vendors available, but they do have a lot of the big ones most people here would care about. I wanted to by a Jalapeno, but all I hear about is the wait so I am leary.
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Oh, I should note to be careful about which powered USB hub you purchase. Only certain ones work properly for mining purposes.
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  • BobbyDCBobbyDC Posts: 72Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    What hub are you using? I think I might pick up a few of these.
  • DoubleNNsDoubleNNs Posts: 2,013Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    the_Grinch wrote: »
    Yup the price dropped on them big time. (if you purchased 5).

    Didn't they drop in price because of the link to drugs? (Silk Road)
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  • redzredz CISSP-ISSAP, ISSEP, ISSMP, CAP (& others) Posts: 265Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    And prostitution, assassination, basically anything you wouldn't want traced to you. Thanks, Silk Road!
  • ptilsenptilsen Posts: 2,835Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    I started looking into this after seeing this post. From what I'm reading, after you account for the cost of electricity and hardware, it is very hard to make money with these. The main issue is that the difficulty keeps increasing, so your bitcoin for the next six months, for example, is going to be less than for the previous. From what I understand, it will be drastically less. Another concern is the cost of electricity. To run any computers I have on-hand for 24/7 bitcoin mining would likely cost another $100-150 a year. The arguably largest concern is the volatile price of bitcoins.
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  • YFZbluYFZblu Posts: 1,462Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    ptilsen wrote: »
    I started looking into this after seeing this post. From what I'm reading, after you account for the cost of electricity and hardware, it is very hard to make money with these.

    Right - Financially, it doesn't really make any sense right now. But it sounds like the OP is a bit of an enthusiast, so the enjoyment factor is worth something.
  • lsud00dlsud00d Posts: 1,571Member
    I have made quite a few bucks with the recent rise in BTC price...it will only go up woot.

    Also as ptilsen hinted at, mining is no longer profitable. CPU miners were forced out by GPU miners, GPU miners were forced out by ASIC's, and now ASIC's are being forced out by difficulty, in an extremely watered down explanation. People are dumping their X GH/s devices which only came out a few months ago because it is no longer worth the price of the device, which will never be recouped.

    Best investment strategy is to buy in and hold on for the long run.

    Also--
    the_Grinch wrote: »
    I tend to think Bitcoins will take off, but who knows.

    I kinda laughed...for something that started at a fraction of a penny in value, to peak at $264 within 3 years and currently holds at ~$200 per BTC...it's already taken off icon_wink.gif
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Hub I brought is a Rosewill 10-Port High Speed USB 2.0 Hub (got it for $30 bucks on Amazon). I'll be testing it for 10 ASICs tonight so we shall see (definitely works for 5 though).

    I tend to think the price drop came due to the availability of ASIC's with much higher hash rates (you can buy one with a rate of 10 GH/s for $250 not including the power supply and other things you'd need to set it up) so people all, but left using the USB ASICs I use.

    Yeah I'm definitely not in it for the cash that's for sure. I find the whole idea very interesting and thus decided to support it. Making a little something (whether I break even or not) is really just icing on the cake.

    Ah true I guess it has taken off, but I'm thinking more along the lines of it lasting. That's the big question, will they stay relevant? Lots of questions around it right now so it will definitely be a wait and see type of deal.
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Hub only works for eight miners
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  • DevilWAHDevilWAH Posts: 2,997Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    Do you think work would notice if I got all the servers and desktops mining for me? :)
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    LOL depends on how strict they are haha. Though if you are doing CPU only, Litecoin is the way to go.
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  • CoolAsAFanCoolAsAFan Posts: 239Member
    the_Grinch - You should check out some of the mining calculators out there, I highly doubt you will recoop your investment in three months, if at all, sorry. You need to factor in an exponentially increasing difficulty like the others have mentioned.

    If you guys want to make some money with Bitcoins, and your halfway decent at poker, I have a great site for you to come check out! I'm not sure if I can say it because it's kind of advertising, but it's really not hard to figure out as there is really only 1 popular poker bitcoin site. I have made over 30 Bitcoins since I started about a month ago. There's a few solid regs, but plenty of fish. Cashouts to wallet = less than 6 hours. If you want a HUD, PM me and I can hook you up. (It's 100% legal if your wondering)

    This is the only way I have found to easily "generate" some bitcoins as I don't have a dozen ascii's sitting around and I don't have anything to sell on the dark web.
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  • mdominomdomino Posts: 81Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Hate to be that guy but Block Eruptors stopped being profitable before the price drop. Factoring in current difficulty rates and the expected jumps in the future they will literally never pay for themselves at less than $10 per. Once factoring in the electricity and wear and tear on your devices that are running them you will lose money every time you plug one in.

    Disclaimer: NOT A BITCOINER

    If you actually wanted to have Bitcoins then it would be more efficient for you to just buy them directly with your money instead of throwing it away on miners and electricity. You would actually end up with more internet funbux doing it this way.

    Just an FYI
  • jibbajabbajibbajabba Posts: 4,317Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    Electricity might be an issue when using a home PC, but how many of us have servers running anyway :p
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Ah like I said, just a hobby for me and to support the network. Definitely fun to be involved with and honestly I didn't expect to recoup my costs.
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  • CoolAsAFanCoolAsAFan Posts: 239Member
    the_Grinch, Hey just because you cant be profitable mining, that doesn't mean you can't be profitable trading bitcoin as currency. I bought my first 2 bitcoins about a month ago for ~$120 each, now look at what their trading at ($220 current mt gox). That's why I'm loving bitcoin poker, it's almost like an investment inside an investment which is kind of cool!

    I feel like trading bitcoins is a great stepping stone to learn trading stocks/currencies/etc for anyone that is interested in these things.
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    True, I've made a bit for a push into trading, albeit not a big one. I lost 7 LTC's through some crappy software (not a big deal, but still made me mad). Anyhow, I used some of what was left with my Bitcoin to purchase Litecoin when it was trading at 2.34 USD. Since then it has now climbed to 2.98, which works out to be about .30 a day. Again, I'm all for the philosophy behind these things and the money making isn't my motivation. But you are right it is nice to play the market as it were without worrying about a huge loss per say.
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  • CoolAsAFanCoolAsAFan Posts: 239Member
    I have been following LTC and have been really curious as to if it will have as much success as BTC. BTC prices are soaring again, look for a nice little dip soon and buy em up!
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Litecoin (mining wise) is still easy to get and I think as the difficulty increases people will look for an alternative. As it stands, LTC and NVC seem to be the two standouts. LTC has the better history between those two and has long been considered the silver to Bitcoin's gold.

    I was thinking about it today and I think the biggest limitation right now with Bitcoin is honestly that people convert it. It won't catch on as a currency if people don't actually use it to buy things. Obviously, a portion of that is there aren't a ton of options when looking to purchase things, but the options need to be advertised more. I would think that they would advertise on Mt Gox or Coinbase saying "hey we take Bitcoins". Very interesting none the less.
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  • lsud00dlsud00d Posts: 1,571Member
    @Grinch have you checked out the Bitcoin subreddit? You will see a lot of BTC working in the real world, i.e. people buying/selling things without needing to convert. The main reason why the value keeps increasing is because it is a viable currency and it is getting wider adoption throughout the world.

    Bitcoin
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Posts: 4,160Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Ah I hadn't, thanks for that! Yeah the price has definitely shot up over the weekend and this week. Was $198 on Friday and now suddenly up to $267.51. Craziness abounds!
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  • CoolAsAFanCoolAsAFan Posts: 239Member
    I agree that the biggest hurdle is getting people to actually spend btc without converting to their local currency. That being said, I read something new every week about a country, organization, or business that is starting to accept btc as payment. I think Amazon is even working on offering btc as a payment method soon. I have also read of people being able to pay rent in some places. There is also a kind of cool article about a couple living on strictly btc for like a week or month or something. BTC are definitely catching fire!
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  • tprice5tprice5 Posts: 770Member
    Well I don't have much to contribute to the conversation but I definitely agree it is very interesting.

    Is the end goal a universal/global currency? Is the majority of the hype (for lack of a better word) fueled by users who view this as a money making endeavor?
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