Configuring The R9 280x For LiteCoin Mining With CGMiner

Any veteran can tell you that there is more to mining than just creating a batch file and hitting GO. Personally, it took me days to configure my case cooling, work out stability issues, learn the CGMiner commands, test them,  and pouring through forums for additional advice or an edge, calculations, etc… It really is a lot to take in if you are new to the scene, and the clock is ticking because every few days the difficulty goes up! Hopefully I can save you a bit of time and quickly cover the basics. My aim here is to explain all of the CGMiner commands I tested, along with some of my recommendations based on my experience over the past several days obsessing with these numbers and commands!

 

Right Now I’m currently hitting 740 kh/s with my ASUS r9 280x. Completely stable, running at 74c, and consuming  ~345w of power. Here are my Stats:

Expand to see more stats…

  • Windows 7 – 64 bit
  • OCZ Agility SSD
  • Asus Sabertooth 990fx
  • 16gb ram
  • Asus r9 280x – DC2T-3GD5
  • Corsair 750w – gold rated PSU
  • CGMiner 3.7.2 / SDK  2.9
  • Avg. rejection rate = .47 %
  • Hardware Errors = 0
  • Pool = HyperNova

 

Final_Config_Proof

And My CGMiner config…


But wait there is more!
– Before you just copy and paste the above into your batch file and take off. I implore you, don’t just take my word as law when it comes to configuring your own batch file. It is a good place to start – no doubt. But if you really want to get the most out of your GPU and actually understand the commands you are throwing at your expensive hardware and what they are doing! – Expand the below sections for an expansive list of popular commands, alternative values and some of my  personal recommendations.

[learn_more caption=”GPU Specific Options”]

–auto-fan

Auto Fan will automatically control the fan speed on your GPU. You will often see this command recommended in various guides / forum posts when creating a config or .bat file for CGMiner. And while I personally use it as well, It would seem to me that the GPU does this automatically….


–gpu-fan 40-80

This command accepts any value or range of values as a percent of 100. To clarify: If you wish to keep your fan running at 40%-80% you would use the above example.


–temp-target 75

This one is pretty self explanatory – It instructs your GPU to maintain a temperature as close to 75c as possible. Running your GPU at steady temperatures vs. fluctuating over a broad span of temperatures(and fan speeds) should insure a longer life for your GPU.


–temp-overheat 85

 

Again pretty simple, Indicates when your GPU should be considered “overheating”. Your GPU should then start throttling itself down until it gets to a safer temperature.


–temp-cutoff 90

If your GPU reaches this temp, this command will tell it to shutdown mining operations.
(Still need to verify this behavior!)


–gpu-memclock 1500
Recommended: 1500

Manually sets your Memclock value for your GPU. This is one of few values that I recommend keeping at the value shown. Every time I changed this value, it resulted in either my PC crashing or zero change in kh/s values.


–auto-gpu –gpu-engine 1000-1100
Typical values range between 1000-1100 (for a 280x card)

Auto GPU is slightly more complex than most of these options on the list, but to put it simply – Auto GPU will attempt to adjust your gpu clock speed for maximum performance without reaching your “overheat” thresh-hold. (85c by default if not specified) For all the caveats of auto-gpu you can check out the CGMiner Readme.


–gpu-engine 1070

Typical values range between 1000-1100 (for a 280x card)
Recommended: <Your GPUs default clock>

This value represents your core clock value. If you do a quick search in google you should be able to quickly find your cards Core Clock value in mhz. For example: My Asus 280x is factory overclocked to 1070, and while increasing this value to 1100 would give my up to 760 kh/s, it would typically (for whatever reason) end up averaging out at my usual 740 kh/s value anyways. Higher values often slightly increase your kh/s value, while consuming more electricity than it is worth for a meager 10-20 kh/s gain. If you have the cash, I highly recommend getting a UPS, not only to protect your expensive mining equipment – but it will also make it easier to monitor your watts used.


–gpu-powertune 10
Typical values range from 5-20.

From what I understand – Powertune is a Radeon/AMD card feature that allows your GPU to raise/lower voltage 5-20% to maintain a performance standard without throttling the card down. If you are under/over-volting manually, please be careful when using this option!


–gpu-vddc= 1.150

Typical values: 1.100 – 1.200

My understanding is that, If your card is not “voltage locked” you can run this command to instruct CGMiner to run the GPU at the specified voltage setting. Unfortunately this didn’t work at all for me personally – However, using the ASUS GPU Tweak utility to adjust this setting seems to have done the trick.

**GPU Tweak is only for ASUS branded cards. Check with your manufacturer to see if they have any similar tools available. Alternatively, if are feeling adventerous you can check out the great guide @ Cryptobadger.com for adjusting your gpu voltage by use of a custom video bios.

[/learn_more][learn_more caption=”Scrypt Specific Options”]

setx GPU_MAX_ALLOC_PERCENT=100
Typical values: 40-100
Recommended: 60-100

You really should only need this if you plan on setting your thread-concurrency setting above 8192(in theory). Miner GitHub page mentions that you may not even notice a improvement in hashing rates after a value of 40.


setx GPU_USE_SYNC_OBJECTS=1

Typical values: 0, 1

It didn’t seem to matter which value I specified in my .Bat file, as long as I specified one. I averaged 740 kh/s with it set at 0 & 1. Contrary to what I’ve read in some other guides, omitting this value had a huge impact on my kh/s – Resulting in an average of 480 kh/s  VS. 740 kh/s!


–thread-concurrency

Typical Values: 8192,10240, etc..
Recommended: 8192

Thread concurrency tunes the amount of work that your scrypt can do. Ideally it should be a multiple of your specific cards “shader count”. For example my 280x has a shader count of 2048. CGMiners ReadMe page recommends a TC value of x4 your shader count if you are using a 7xxx model card. And since the 280x, is essentially a re-branded Radeon 7970 – Our recommended TC value is 8192 😀


–lookup-gap 2
Suggested Value: 2
Recommended: exclude

This is kind of an interesting one… I see this option posted in tons of peoples configs… but when not specified it defaults to 2 anyways! The CGMiner Readme pages say that performance peaks at a value of 2. So feel free to set this manually if you would like, but I now leave it out and haven’t noticed any change in stability or kh/s.


-w 256 / -worksize 256
Typical values: 256, 128, 64, 32
Recommended: 64 -or- 128

If your mining pool doesn’t allow you to specify a worksize, you should be able to manually specify a value in your CGMiner scrypt. Typically 32,64,128 are within GPU range – While you might try something lower for CPU mining, like 8 or 16.

As it relates to your Kh/s:


-I 13
Values: 12-20
Recommended: -I 13

Intensity values ranges from 12-20. While this can be tweaked to any of the aforementioned values to adjust performance – setting it beyond an intensity level of 13 will almost always result in all kinds of stuttering or pixelating issues if you are using your mining rig as a functional desktop as well. I would suggest keeping this @ 12 or 13 if you are mining on say a gaming rig / while dedicated mining rigs can probably get away with pushing this number closer to -I 19 / -I 20.


-g 2

Values: 1-4
Recommended: -g 2

Most users find their best results with a value of 1 or 2 depending on their card, memory and core clock settings. CGMiner has noted that most cards crash at values over 4, and each increase in value only increases kh/s results slightly.

[/learn_more][learn_more caption=”Additional CGMiner Resources”]

Below are some of the best resources available for CGMiner commands.
(Aside from this one of course…)

[/learn_more]

 

Additional GPU Tweaks

So now you got a handle on CGMiner, But it is going to take a bit more than just throwing together a batch file to maximize your ROI. For most users, if you really want to maximize your performance and reduce energy costs – You will want to under-volt your GPU. Below is a list of tools for each Hardware Manufacturer of the 280x that I could find.

AsusGPU Tweak
AMDOverDrive
Club3dRoyalFlush
DiamondVideo OC Utility
GigaByteOC Guru
MSIAfterBurner
PowerColorPowerTuner
SaphireTrixx
VistionTek – OverDrive or AfterBurner
XFX – ??

If your card manufacturer doesn’t have their own OC utility, Or if you aren’t satisfied with its capabilities – I highly recommend checking out CryptoBadgers Guide on manually under-volting your GPU.

 

If you are currently running a mining rig using a 280x card, feel free to show-off your settings and results in the comments!

 

  • N3w !nc0m3

    Hi,

    Thanks for this useful description. I’m completely new to this mining business and required this basic information in brief. Really, thanks a bunch!! 🙂

    I also have the same GC and following your .bat file config. I’m able to achieve variable kh/s in between 710~715, at 74 degree. Tried increasing and decreasing some paths in the config., but results got worse and didn’t increase to 760 kh/s or more. So any idea how can I achieve that??

    Here’s my setup info.:

    GC : Single Asus R9280X-DC2T-3GDDR5
    Mobo: Asus M5A78L-M LX V2
    PSU: Seasonic G-550 W GR 80+
    HD: 250GB Western Digital
    Processor: AMD Sempron 145
    RAM: G.Skill 4GB DDR3

    Please do give your input. 🙂

    Once again thanks!!

    Best regards,
    N3w !nc0m3

  • Rionoskae

    I’m glad you found the post helpful 🙂 I also have a few other helpful posts regarding LiteCoins & Bitcoins if you are still searching for information:

    http://everyday-tech.com/the-complete-litecoin-mining-guide-for-windows-7/
    http://everyday-tech.com/bitcoin-mining-101/

    Ok…so you are getting close with your ~710 hash rate, that is great! A few more pieces of information though…

    What version of your catalyst GPU Driver & SDK are you using?
    What version of CGminer?

    I personally use 13.11(beta) & no SDK. And v3.7.2 of CGMiner.

    Also, Can you post your .bat file for me? Then we can start to figure out where we can improve 😀

  • gtcristiangt_Cristian@hotmail.com

    Hi! Thanks for this great article. I am also using your settings and my R9 goes at 740kh/s. What is your accepted/rejected shares ratio? I am at about 10% and I believe it is way to high. Do you know how to improve this ration? Thanks!

    • Rionoskae

      Thanks Christian, Glad you found the article helpful 😀

      Rejection rate = ~%0.5
      Accept rate = %99.5

      There are a few things I would try to start narrowing down the issue:

      *What is your GPU Temp? High temps can cause poor performance and high rejection rates
      *Try a different Pool. Do you get the same rejection rate?
      *Try lower settings in CGminer.

      You can also feel free to post your CGminer config and I may be able to pinpoint possible issues there. Please post back after you’ve tried the above and let me know where you stand.

      P.S. If you are using CGwatcher and constantly stopping/starting mining and changing settings each time – your rejection rate will be fairly high. Is 740 kh/s your average hash rate…say over 8 hours??

  • Hey there, does it make a difference whether youre on win7 64 or 32?

    • Rionoskae

      Shouldn’t have any impact that I am aware of.

  • Madcoco

    I’m getting a high number of rejected shares (150) and I’m running 4 r9280x, my intensity is at 13, could it be my internet connection?, I’m using wireless

    • Rionoskae

      What is your rejected %?

      While it could be your wireless connection that is at fault, it may be unlikely… Mining doesn’t take up very much bandwidth.

      Please take a look at my previous post in this comments section regarding rejection rate and post back here once you have tried all of the above. In your case, If you suspect it may be your wifi… I would also try running an ethernet cable to your mining rig as well to see if that makes any difference.

      ~Cheers

  • Hey Guys, I tried every possible settings in cgminer 3.7.2 and the most I can get is about 645/Kh/s. Some other people have posted 750/Khs.

    *****This is my setup.****

    64GB SSD
    GIGABYTE GA-990FXA-UD5 AM3+
    CORSAIR XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB)
    4 x 100363L Radeon R9 280X cards
    AMD Sempron 145 Sargas 2.8GHz
    Thermaltake Toughpower Grand TPG-1200M 1200W

    **** cgminer setup ****

    setx GPU_MAX_ALLOC_PERCENT 100
    setx GPU_USE_SYNC_OBJECTS 1
    cgminer.exe –scrypt -o stratum+tcp://stratum-us.doge.hashfaster.com:3339 -u xxxxx -p xxxxx -I 19 -g 1 -w 256 –thread-concurrency 24000 –shaders 2048 –auto-fan –gpu-fan 30-75 –temp-cutoff 90 –temp-overheat 85 –temp-target 72 –expiry 1 –scan-time 1 –queue 0 –no-submit-stale

    *** Driver ***

    AMD-APP-SDK-V2.7
    Driver Version: 13.251.131206a
    Catalyst 13.12

    • Rionoskae

      Have you tried -g 2 instead of -g 1?

      Also thread concurrency and Shaders is redundant. remove one of them and check it again. Please read my guide in its entirety if you aren’t sure what commands you are putting in CGminer. Also the CGminer github page is full of even more information regarding each setting, along with various helpful tips/tricks.

      One last thought… Have you tried the configuration described in this post? What were your results?

        Update:

      Also just noticed that you are using 13.12 – I would try 13.11 beta and see if that improves performance for you.

  • GABUSAM

    Great post! Maybe your guys can help with my system crashing…

    I use 2 Asus R9 280x and when I set I as 13, the system crashes. (not just the miner). And I when I mine at I 12, then my rashrate avg is only 570.

    Here are my settings:

    —This is my setup—

    Gigabyte Z87x-UD3H
    2X Asus R9 280x -DC2T-3GD5
    PSU EVGA SuperNova 750W 80+ bronze
    i7-4770K
    Kingston HyperX 3K 120GB
    Corsar Hydro H100
    Patriot Viper Xtreme 8GB 1600

    —CGMiner Setup—
    setx GPU_MAX_ALLOC_PERCENT 100
    setx GPU_USE_SYNC_OBJECTS 1
    cgminer.exe –scrypt -o stratum+tcp://usa1.coinhuntr.com:4444 -u xxxxx -p xxxxx -I 12 -g 2 -w 256 –thread-concurrency 8192 –auto-fan –gpu-fan 40-80 –temp-cutoff 90 –temp-overheat 85 –temp-target 76 –gpu-engine 1080 –gpu-memclock 1500

    —Driver—
    Driver Version: 13.251.131206a
    Catalyst 13.12

    • Rionoskae

      Thanks Gabusam!

      Well all in all – your config looks pretty solid. If it were me, this is what I would try:

      * Try Catalyst 13.11 (beta)
      * Run each card separately and see if it still crashes
      * Make sure there are no conflicting driver versions installed
      * Perhaps try a different OS ( Check out my latest post on LTCRabbit )

      LTCRabbit has a dedicated mining OS that looks pretty promising. However I would try the first 2 things before going through the whole process of setting up a new OS. I also haven’t personally ran more than one card, so your CGminer config may need some tweaks to support dual cards…. I would also browse through the CGminer github readme pages linked above.

      Hope that helps!
      -Ryan

  • Dear,

    thank you for this config.
    i am new in this and dont know where to set this config?
    when i add in cgwatcher, he don
    t recognize this as regular config file.
    or even if i put this lines like arguments, i got same results.

    can you post cgwatcher conf file for this gpu?
    or where i am wrong? 🙂

    thank you.

  • There are 2 ways of doing it… Here is what I do:

    Settings > Profiles > Manage Profiles

    Miner Path: = your .bat file. It should then auto-fill your commands from your batch file.

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