Re-Pasting the R9 290X and Overclocking/Tuning for better khashes

I originally wanted to do 2 separate posts but due to my work schedule I ended up missing yesterdays post on the re-pasting the R9 290X. Lets get started.

Re-Pasting the R9 290X

After getting this beast of a card I came to the conclusion that all R9 290(x) owners come to, its loud and hot. Seeing as the stock thermalpaste that OEMs use is usually not the best I decided to pick up some Gelid GC-Extreme Thermal paste and take apart the card to replace the paste. This is also the same process for R9 290 owners as the PCB is very similar, if not identical.

Disassembly & Reassembly of the R9 290X

The process was relatively simple. Unscrew the 2 screws on the backplate by the DisplayPort connector. Then remove all the misc screws on the back of the card followed by removing the GPU plate (silver X thing with 4 small screws). Carefully wiggle the PCB slightly to loosen the paste, BE PATIENT! Once this is off clean the GPU with 90+% isopropyl alcohol and a q-tip. Make sure it is 100% dry and apply a small amount of the paste and re-assemble. Make sure all the thermal pads and still in place (16 ram pads, 1 large VRM strip, 1 small VRM strip. Put the card back in and power up. There are pictures at the end of this post that I took during the process.

Before and After

Before I re-pasted the GPU core it would sit at about 90C with a 75% fan speed and being fully loaded. After the re-paste at the same fan speed and load it was sitting around 78-80C. This allowed me to run the fan speed lower (less noise) for the same target temp of 90C. I would recommend that anyone who is fairly technical to do this to get better temps. Also my wattage dropped by about 15-20 watts. Be aware that this may void your warranty. However I have never had issues RMA’ing cards that I have changed cooling on, but your mileage may vary.

Tuning for better khashes

If you do not mine coins then this part can be ignored. The settings here may not give the best gaming results but for mining they yield about 930-970/khashes/s for me. I use the latest beta of the MSI Afterburner program. This works for 24/7 on my card. However when re-starting the miner it does sometimes crash, rebooting before restarting the miner fixes this.

GPU Settings

  • Fan Speed – 80%
  • GPU Core – 1000mhz
  • GPU Memory – 1500mhz
  • Power Limit – 35%+
  • ULPS Disabled
  • AMD PowerTune Disabled (keeps GPU at full speed all the time, may not be stable without this)

CGMiner Settings

  • Intensity – 20
  • Worksize – 256
  • Thread Concurrency – 32765
  • Vectors – 1
  • GPU Threads – 1

Much loss. Very sad. Such lacking support. Goodbye Coins-E, Hello CoinedUp

A few days ago I posted a follow up to my Crypto Currency adventures. I had recommended Coins-E for an exchange at the time after Cryptsy had utterly failed me. I had been happy with Coins-E but what happened is they had a fork happen with their DogeCoin block chain. The easiest way to explain is that now I have over 130,000 DOGE that are lost in an alternative parallel universe. Now if their admins got off their butts and did something to fix this I may get my coins back. However after reading other peoples tweets and posts on Reddit it seems that their support is unresponsive in all the ways (tickets, email, twitter, etc).

What now? Well I am still mining DOGE to make some extra cash and have fun with the Crypto currency and I have since moved to CoinedUp. They are a FREE exchange that has a much better track record than Cryptsy, Coins-E, and BTER. I am going to use them and if I have any issues I will definitely post a follow review on them.

To the Coins-E admins if you could send me back my 130,000+DOGE that would be great. My DOGE address is DF21TzKkUgZmZhFpQggYQxobWow5HU3VdV

Reddit Repost – I am a tax attorney, here are my answers to the most common questions about the taxation of bitcoins : Bitcoin

I found this on Reddit and people were asking for someone to put this on one page for people to read easier. The source and credit go to dblcross121. Source of the text is at the end. Enjoy! 


I’ve noticed a significant amount of uncertainty around here about the taxation of bitcoins. In effort to provide some guidance , I’ve compiled some of the most common questions I’ve seen and tried to provide straight-forward, easy to understand answers. I am a tax attorney, but there is so much uncertainty surrounding bitcoins that I expect some people to disagree with one or more of my conclusions. If you have a contradictory opinion, please share it. We would all benefit from an educated discussion of this issue.

Keep in mind this post is intended for a layman audience. If you are a tax professional or want a detailed examination of this topic, you find this post lacking. Please don’t nit pick this post with technicalities or narrow exceptions, I purposely excluded such nuances for the sake of readability.

I should note that this post does not address aggressive tax planning strategies. Such strategies are a lot of fun to discuss, but they do not belong in this type of post. If you are interested in such strategies, perhaps we can make a follow-up post on another day.Continue reading

My Journey with Crypto Currency – A Short Intro

As most of you have heard BitCoin has taken off and ended up being a stable investment for a lot of people. If you are like me and did not really pay any mind to BitCoins and just kept up on the news you probably are regretting not getting into it sooner.

Unfortunately there is a little bit to learn and now BitCoins are no longer worth mining due to the power that is required and the hardware that is required to actually mine the coins. However there are plenty of other crypto currencies that are taking off. After reading up on the others that are taking off and gaining popularity I have started mining LiteCoins and FeatherCoins.

bitcoin image

There are a few things that you will need to get in order so that you can not only mine but also buy and sell your coins. Once you get started and all the framework in place to buy and sell coins then you will be able to start getting into this new market and hopefully make some money off it. At the least you’ll have some fun in the process.

  1. You will need a fairly powerful computer. This means a decent CPU and preferrably a dedicated graphics card (I am only going to cover ATI as that is what I have)
  2. You will need to join a mining pool (you can go solo but its not profitable)
  3. You will need to setup an account with MtGox –
  4. You will need to setup an account with BTC-e –
  5. Patience. Lots of patience.

Those are the basics. Stay tuned for more posts as I progress on this journey.