Crypto Passive Income Comparison | Staking, Masternodes & Exchange Coins

There are a number of different ways that you can earn passive income with cryptocurrencies. These methods vary quite considerably in terms of the minimum investment requirements, returns, ease and other factors, which we have outlined simply below. That said, there are a few key points that you should take note of before diving in!

  • Returns are only an estimate and are liable to change. Be sure to check calculators and consult members of the community for the most up to date information before investing.
  • Return estimates often do not take into account the cost of electricity – depending on calculator – or investment in equipment. Crypto passive income methods that require running full nodes will undoubtedly add an extra cost.
  • Always remember the continuation of earning interest is dependant on the success of the project, so lower market cap coins are likely to be higher risk. Always do your own fundamental research before investing.


Proof of Stake Comparison

Earning interest by staking is one of the easiest ways to earn passive income with crypto. Usually all that is required is to buy some of the coin and hold it in a wallet. Some will require you to have the wallet open and running in order to earn interest, whilst others do not. Depending on the staking type, some may also require voting which adds a bit of extra work/cost.

CoinStaking TypeAprox. Returns Per AnnumReward CurrencyCalculatorWalletRecommended MinNotesMore Info
ArkDPoS9-12%ARKArk CalculatorArk Client100 ARKRequires voting costing 1 ARK, 1 vote per address. Wallet can be closed.Ark Blog
LiskDPoS10%LSKLisk CalculatorLisk Nano400 LSKRequires voting costing 1 LSK per vote, max 4 votes at once. Wallet can be
NeodBFT3-6%GASNeo CalculatorNeon WalletNoneDoes not require wallet application to be run constantly. No setup.
PivXPoS4-5%PIVXPivX CalculatorPivX DesktopNoneWallet must remain open. Reward oscillates with masternodes, see calculator. PivX Guide
NavCoinPoS5%NAVNavCoin CalculatorNavCoin CoreNoneWallet must be running constantly, can run on Raspberry Pi.
ReddcoinPoSV5%RDDReddcoin CalculatorReddcoin CoreNoneWallet must be running constantly.
DecredPoS16-20%DCRDCR StatsDecrediton65 DCRVoting - a little more complicated than others. Wallet always on. Staking pool fees 1-5%Decredible Staking Guide
NeblioPoS10%NEBLNeblio CalculatorNeblio CoreNoneWallet must be running constantly, can run on RPi. Coin age affects rewards, weighting starts at 24h and reaches max at 7 days.Neblio Blog
StratisPoS1-2%STRATStratis CalculatorStratis Staking WalletNone Wallet must be running constantly.
BlocknetPoS9-14%BLOCKBlocknet CalculatorBlocknetDXNoneWallet must be running at all times. Blocknet GitHub
KomodoPoSUp to 5.1%KMDAgama Wallet10 KMDWallet does not have to be open. KMD rewards stop accruing after 1 month and need to be collected to reset gaining of interest by initiating a transaction/s.KMD Staking Guide
QtumPoS5-6%QTUMQtum CalculatorQtum CoreNone, but more increases chance of rewardsWallet must be running consantly, can run of Pi

Masternode Comparison

Running a masternode is not something recommended for beginners as you will usually need to have some programming knowledge. Barriers to entry are also significant, with high minimum coin requirements and the need to purchase specialist equipment.

MasternodesStaking TypeAprox. Returns Per AnnumReward CurrencyCalculatorMinimumNotesMore info
DashPoS7-7.5%DASHDash Calculator1000 DASHRequires dedicated IP address, computer to be running 24 hours a day, server or VPS installed with Linux. High barrier to entry. % of block reward reduces by 7% every 380 days - currently at 45%.
PivXPoS5-6%PIVXPivX Calculator10,000 PIVXRequires dedicated IP address, computer to be running 24 hours a day, server running Rasp Pi or Linux. Relatively low barrier to
BlocknetPoS13-17%BLOCKBlocknet Calculator5000 BLOCKRequires two computers - one to host node and one to host wallets. Wallets required for each coin you want to support, but only node computer needs to be running constantly.
NEMPoI5%XEMNEM Calculator10,000 - 3,000,000 XEMVesting done at rate of 10% per day. Min vesting amount of 10,000 XEM for delegated harvesting, min 3,000,000 for Supernode. Delegated harvesting can be done offline. High barrier to entry for Supernode.NEM Blog

Exchange Coin Comparison

Exchange coins are a relatively new mechanism for earning interest with crypto. They are essentially shares in an exchange that pay you dividends – usually as a percentage of trading fees. As such, returns will depend entirely on trade volumes, with higher volumes leading to more fees and a better ROI.

Coin% of FeesApprox. Returns Per AnnumReward CurrencyCalculatorRecommended MinNotesMore Info
KuCoin50%4-4.5%KCSKuCoin Calc6 KCSFee share planned to reduce to 15% in future. Automatic distribution of KCS shares to exchange wallet every 24 hours.KuCoin FAQ
COSS50%7-8% (before distribution fees)Currency of TradeCOSS Calculator2000 COSSFees fixed at 50% due to DAO hard coding. Fee share paid in currency of trade. 0.002 ETH fee to claim each coin share, which is why there is a high viable minimum, and must be claimed manually with weekly distribution. COSS can be stored in MEW, but requires smart contract setup for payout. COSS FAQ
CryptoBridge50%5-10%Currency of TradeBridgeCoin Staking CalculatorNoneCoins are locked for staking period of either 1 month (0% bonus), 3 months (20% bonus), 6 months (50% bonus), 12 months (100% bonus). Payouts are bi-weekly and still occur when locked but BCO cannot be traded. CryptoBridge Staking Tutorial
Cryptopia Fee Share Token4.5%7-10%?Currency of Trade? - likely inaccurateNoneFixed supply of 6300 CEFS. Limited information available from Cryptopia, so not recommended. Cryptopia Twitter
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