With bitcoin now hotter than ever, there's no shortage of ways to associate yourself with the cryptocurrency through related merchandise and paraphernalia. Whether for your personal use or as a gift to a loved one who understands the benefits of the digital currency this holiday season, here's our list of five cool types of bitcoin merch:
1. Mega Hash energy drink
Bitcoin mining is hard work. The miner has to stay laser-focused on the task at hand amidst the drone of cooling fans and the stress from the unpredictable spikes and dips in the CoinDesk BPI. Intrepid miners can now turn to specialist nutrition to maintain their levels of concentration: A German bitcoiner has developed an energy drink that is specially formulated, with tongue firmly in cheek, for a "hot day at the mine".
The energy drink is named Mega Hash. Its makers claim that it will help bitcoiners harness "the power of the network". The post promoting the drink on Bitcoin Talk rhapsodises about the drink's taste:
"Mega Hash tastes invigorating, like 'future', 'move' and 'independence'! The best way to enjoy Mega hash is ice-cold. For example, on a hot day in the mine."
According to Mega Hash's producer, the drink's taste roughly translates to that of popular energy drinks.
"It tastes very similar to Red Bull," Mega Hash's maker posted, in reply to a question asking about the drink's flavour.
The Mega Hash ingredients list includes 50% whey powder, a dose of taurine, an organic acid that's also found in Red Bull; some caffeine and even a number of vitamins. A can of Mega Hash will set you back €1.59, while a six pack costs €8.99. A 'mega pack' of the stuff is priced at €31.99. Shipping ranges from €1.90 to €36.90.
2. Bitcoin Miner flask
There are many ways to express your belief in an mathematically mined cryptocurrency with no central authority. One of those ways is to swig beverages from an appropriately designed hip flask. At the eBay store 'yourwholesaleheadquarters', you can choose from several bitcoin-themed hip flasks made of 8oz stainless steel.
Select the 'Bitcoin Miner' flask, which features the outline of a pick-axe apparently dislodging some bitcoin in the depths of a mine, or the white-on-black 'Keep Calm and Mine Bitcoin' tumbler, which also includes the orange bitcoin symbol. Or perhaps the more straightforward 'Bitcoin' flask, which features the bitcoin symbol rendered in gold, speaks to you more directly. Whatever your decision, know that each flask design is professionally printed on high-quality UV-coated vinyl at a cost of $14.95 each.
3. Cryptocables neon bitcoin sign
Have you ever felt the urge to advertise that your business, or you personally, accept bitcoins, loudly and in neon? If so, you're in luck, because some absolutely gorgeous neon bitcoin signs are available for purchase.
The neon bitcoin signs are made by a company called Cryptocables, and more specifically, by someone who goes by the name of Crypt0queen. Crypt0queen designed and commissioned a set of neon bitcoin signs after a series of posts on Bitcoin Talk soliciting feedback and responses for everything from design details to pricing.
The result of Crypt0queen's community consultation was the first version of the neon bitcoin sign: two concentric circles of orange and yellow surrounding the bitcoin symbol with the legend 'accepted here' below it. This version started shipping in late September. The sign proved so popular — half the inventory was sold within a day — that a new version will be available for delivery next January.
The second iteration of the neon bitcoin sign will feature the additional script 'bitcoin' above the concentric circles. The new version is slightly taller (at 73cm compared to 65cm) but shares the same 50cm width and comes with a USA standard UL plug like its predecessor. It requires a 120 volt power outlet and are rated at 65.5 watts. The new sign costs $325.
In case the original neon bitcoin sign tickles your fancy, look out for units floating around eBay. The original retailed for $225. The one CoinDesk found has a Buy It Now price of $545 with an additional, eye-watering, $679 shipping fee. Unfortunately for the true bitcoin believer, this seller will only take payment from a verified PayPal account.
Cryptocables also sells a tabletop 'Bitcoin Accepted Here' sign that lights up with a white LED for $49.99 and rubber bracelets (think 'Livestrong') emblazoned with bitcoin-supporting slogans like 'We Love Bitcoin' for $3.50 each.
4. Bitcoin wallet QR code T-shirt
A bitcoin wallet isn't being fully utilised until its address is exhibited on your torso for the public to see. Ebayer americanbitcoin will send you a T-shirt with the slogan 'I Love Bitcoins' printed across the chest and your wallet address embedded in a QR code under it for $25. If you're feeling slightly less sanguine towards fiat currency-loving society in general, you can also opt for the 'Bit Me!' slogan shirt, which is also replete with QR code and wallet address.
One satisfied customer who bought a 'Bit Me!' T-shirt recently left this glowing review of the product:
"Very comfortable, the QR scan works! Amazing T-shirt. Highly recommend!'
5. Precious metal bitcoin rings
If only your love of bitcoin could somehow be expressed constantly through an article of jewelry wrought of precious metal. Well, that's exactly what you can do with these bitcoin rings available in silver or brass that's been plated in 22-carat gold.
A Bitcoin Talk user named goebat designed two rings featuring the bitcoin symbol as its bezel. The difference between the two designs appears to be the hoop, which is relatively thicker on one design. The rings are manufactured by Shapeways, a platform that turns user-submitted designs into physical objects using 3D printers.
The bitcoin rings are available in four precious metal configurations: two types of sterling silver, gold-plated brass and brass. All the precious metal rings are hand polished, according to Shapeways. The rings are also available in a series of other metallic configurations, including bronze-infused stainless steel, mechanically polished sterling silver and steel that has been "enrobed" in 24-carat gold. The most expensive ring, in sterling silver, costs €82.46 and the cheapest ring in 'matte bronze steel' costs €19.43.
Goebat sold his first ring in June 2011 through an auction on Bitcoin Hop. One of the issues with buying the bitcoin rings is that Shapeways doesn't accept the cryptocurrency. If you want to pay in bitcoin for this fine piece of jewelry, you'll have to send goebat a message on Bitcoin Talk. The designer is currently looking for distributors who would resell the rings for the digital currency instead of fiat currency.