What is ZEC?
Zcash is a privacy-focused, blockchain-based payment network that uses zero-knowledge proofs (ZKPs) to protect transactions, making them private even on a public blockchain.
To ensure that the parties involved in a transaction are verified without giving any information to each other or the network, ZCash employs the Zero-Knowledge Succinct Non-Interactive Argument of Knowledge, or ‘zk-SNARKs’, protocol.
ZCash was created to be fast, secure, and anonymous, with transaction details shielded by default. However, there is the option to send ZEC with full transparency, in which case its transparency is similar to that of Bitcoin. Initially, many exchanges and other platforms were not able to accept shielded transactions, leading to almost all Zcash transactions being fully transparent in the early years.
The cryptographic breakthrough of zk-SNARKs essentially allowed shielded Zcash transactions to be entirely encrypted on the blockchain while still being confirmed as valid by the network’s consensus.
There are two sorts of addresses in Zcash:
- Transparent addresses, or t-addresses, that can be monitored on the Zcash blockchain in the same manner that Bitcoin transactions can.
- Shielded addresses, or z-addresses, which are encrypted, meaning you can’t see the data on the blockchain. Thus, transaction details and the amount of funds held by z-addresses aren’t visible.
Observers are unable to tell when payments sent from a t-address move to a z-address, and when a z-address transmits a transaction to another z-address it is completely hidden from prying eyes. This makes it one of the most private and secure cryptocurrencies available.
Zcash, like Bitcoin, is a mined cryptocurrency that uses the proof-of-work (PoW) consensus algorithm. Each time a block is added to the Zcash blockchain, new ZEC coins are minted and sent to the miner that added the block. A new block is added every 75 seconds, compared to Bitcoin’s 10 minutes, making transactions typically fast.
Benefits of ZEC betting
The major benefit of using ZEC is naturally its privacy. As we outlined above, Zcash users can use a t-address or a z-address, with the z-address offering complete privacy.
However, not all ZEC casinos will allow depositing to z-addresses, so make sure you check before you try, or you will lose your coins.
Countries that restrict online gambling with fiat currencies may not do so with ZEC because most authorities do not consider digital assets like ZEC to be currencies. This provides gamers with access to more ZEC casinos and games, dramatically expanding their options.
ZEC transactions are also cheap, with the average transaction cost ranging from $0.001 to $0.002, and sometimes even less. This means you can keep a larger share of your funds while betting or withdrawing your wins and opens the door to placing microbets.
Furthermore, Zcash transfers also take far less time than other PoW coins, with transactions hitting the blockchain within 75 seconds.
Drawbacks to gambling with ZEC
With Zcash being a PoW coin, transaction speeds and costs are impacted by the level of congestion on the network. This may mean that, at particularly busy times, transaction costs will be higher and speed will be reduced.
ZEC casinos will also have a set number of ‘confirmations’ that any deposit will have to go complete before a deposit is credited. This is typically 24, which can take up to an hour.
As we mentioned earlier, some ZEC casinos will not allow deposits to z-addresses, rendering the most useful aspect of Zcash, its privacy, redundant.
Despite its age, and its benefits, Zcash is still not an overly popular coin for casinos to accept, meaning that options may be limited compared to other coins.
What are ZEC slots?
ZEC slots are similar to traditional online crypto slots, except that wagers and payments are conducted in ZEC, and payouts are generally higher.
When it comes to ZEC slots, the distinctions between them and other crypto and non-crypto slots are minimal, with practically identical gameplay and games.
The only difference between ZEC and fiat slots is that fiat slots have more restrictions. You have more freedom from constraints with ZEC than you do with government-backed fiat.
What are ZEC table games?
ZEC table games and traditional casino table games, like ZEC slots and regular slots, have a lot in common.
Traditional table games such as baccarat, poker, and Texas Hold’em are usually available, making players feel right at home.
The advantages of betting with ZEC, such as improved anonymity and higher limits, afford gamers advantages that simply don’t exist with traditional online casinos.
Some ZEC casinos even provide live-action table games with professional croupiers who make you feel like you’re part of the action.
Where can I buy ZEC?
ZEC can be purchased online with a credit card, debit card, or bank transfer from several reliable cryptocurrency exchanges, from where you can transfer your funds to your favorite ZEC casino.
Certain ZEC casinos will allow you to buy ZEC directly from them, although the fees are frequently higher when buying through this method, so make sure you’re aware of all the costs before doing so.
When choosing where to buy your ZEC, bear in mind that not every cryptocurrency exchange is as secure and reliable as the next. Each one has its own set of benefits and drawbacks, so conduct some research to determine which ZEC-selling exchanges are the best for you.
If you’re looking to make use of Zcash’s privacy features, make sure the exchange you are buying from allows withdrawals to a z-address otherwise you could be disappointed. Similarly, if you want to send straight to the casino, make sure your exchange allows this feature, as some don’t.
Take note that when you buy ZEC on an exchange, the exchange will charge you a processing fee. Make sure you understand all the costs involved before you buy.
Best ZEC Wallets for gambling
For security reasons, it is always recommended to keep your coins off an exchange and in a wallet once you have them.
Being an old timer in the crypto space, there are plenty of wallets that support ZEC. However, only a few of them support the private z-addresses.
There are varieties of wallets, including hardware, desktop, and mobile, each of which has a balance of security versus convenience. Be sure to do your research and pick the one (or ones) that will give you the mobility and security you require.
Except for the Zcashd and Zebrad full node wallets for sophisticated users, Electric Coin Co. and the Zcash Foundation do not officially promote specific digital wallets.
Some options for wallets worth looking at are Ledger and Trezor (hardware wallets), Exodus (desktop wallet), and Trust Wallet (mobile wallet).
For outright privacy, ZEC has very little competition. However, this comes at a cost, in that some exchanges and ZEC casinos don’t accept private transactions.
On the plus side, gambling with ZEC means that you can take advantage of generally lower fees and faster transaction times than other PoW coins.
Adoption of ZEC may not be as high as counterparts like Bitcoin and Ethereum, but it is a well known and well respected coin in the cryptocurrency space, and so it is a solid bet to gamble with if you’re looking for something different.