Disclaimer: This answer may hold good only for today when XCH (chia coin) is dropping dud from USD1200+ to current trading price of USD151 and Total Network Space is at 35.861 EiB and I was plotting at a speed of 20 plots/day and now stopped plotting and just farming at 92+ TiB (930 plots) at a difficulty of 2976 and max of 0 to 3 plots passing the filter with estimated time to win next Chia = 3 months !
Answer: When I started plotting on the 32GB RAM and 2TB SSD on my gaming PC few months ago, I was lucky to get 2 chia (with less than 30 plots) which I could sell for a good price which was enough to buy 3 HDDs of 16TB each ! Yes the Chia was trading at $1250 and 16TB HDDs were priced around $350 - $400.
I sold those 2 chia coins. I re-invested that money and some more in expanding my Chia Farm. Bought two 8TB eHDDs, two 16TB enterprise level HDDs, additional 32GB RAM and 4TB m.2 SSD. And continued farming. Then
- Price of chia started falling (now $151)
- Total network space started increasing (This negatively affects the chance of earning Chia Coin). To compensate/compete with this, one needs to plot at higher rate like 40–100 plots a day! This kind of plotting needs server level Processors (like 64 cores) and enterprise level high endurance SSDs and petabytes of storage for farming to support 4TB to 10TB of new plots growth every day.
- Scarcity and hence the price of HDDs also started climbing (It has comedown a bit, now around $300+ for 16TB SATA HDD)
- Rigorous plotting may have burnt through 75% of life of my 4tb SSD, may need a replacement in couple of weeks. This may cost another $500 (3 to 4 chia coins at current price)
Above developments made me think, even my sufficiently configured PC (with 10 core, 20threads, water cooled Processor, 64GB RAM, 4TB plotting SSD and 104TB enterprise level HDDs for forming Space) has very limited chance of winning next Chia coin !!! (ETH/“proof of work” mining pays on regular intervals for the work performed unlike chia “proof of space n time". For now getting paid for Chia Farming is like winning a lottery, I should be lucky enough again to see next chia in my wallet)
Latest: Now that the official Chia Farming Pool protocol is live, at current price of Chia (XCH) vs the cost of Hard drives, ssds and multi-core processors, conclusion on the profitability remains the same.
[11/03/2021] I won 4 more XCH coins sold them at $160 something each. At current speed of earning Chia as well as its current market price, my feeling about farming XCH remains same.
Conclusion: Long story short, as of now, Chia coin farming is neither Green nor Profitable.