The first thing you need to figure out is what and how you plan to mine. If you do not have large financial resources, about several million dollars, bitcoin mining seems pointless to me.
Therefore, I would recommend to mine altcoins by using GPU. I mean such cryptocurrencies as for example Zcash, Decret, Ether, etc. It is necessary to constantly monitor the current exchange rates and hash-rate of their networks, e.g. here. It's better to decide what and when you plan to mine based on this data.
So, let's say we made up our mind and decided to mine Ether with graphic processor. It should be realized that if you built a relatively small farm, let's say 25 kW, then doing solo-mining will be completely pointless, since 25 kW for Ether network is a drop in the bucket.
Your farm can work incredibly long, without getting a reward for mining a single block. In that case mining becomes a kind of lottery you have no chances to win. Therefore, joining the pool is more likely to bring you regular payments.
Of course, any pool is a commercial project, and of course it will charge you a commission fee, and sometimes it may be quite disproportionate. Therefore, choosing a pool is also not so easy for a beginner miner.
When choosing a pool for mining, one should pay attention to the following points:
I'll take a more detailed look at the pools, their pros and cons, in one of my next articles.
When starting to mine, do not forget about the wear and tear of equipment. As with any chip, a video card has its own life resource, and if it works 24 hours a day, of course this term is reduced.
And this fact must be taken into account when calculating potential profit from mining. To extend the life cycle, it is necessary to monitor the temperature of your video cards and try to keep it in optimal condition. It can be different for each graphics processor and must be specified by the manufacturer.
In conclusion, I would like to note that quite often, it is more profitable to simply buy growing cryptocurrencies rather than investing in their mining.