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I'm interested in using NFTs to track assets that valued at around $3 USD

As I understand it, each NFT requires:

  • Token Metadata account
  • Master edition account
  • Associated token account
  • A token mint account

The total cost of rent is around 0.012 SOL (if I understand correctly). If SOL goes back to all-time-highs, the rent will be higher than the value of the asset.

Am I understanding correctly? Are there any plans to solve this problem in Solana, or other blockchains where inexpensive assets can be tracked economically?

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First of all I'd point out that the 0.012 is the cost to make the accounts rent-exempt. So it's paid when the account is created, and never again. If you create the accounts now and SOL goes to $250+ then that won't affect your costs. But you're right that if SOL is at $250+ and you need to create those accounts, it'll cost more than $3 as-is.

What I think you probably want though is NFT compression: https://www.metaplex.com/posts/expanding-digital-assets-with-compression-for-nfts

I'm not sure how many of these assets you want to track. But with compression you'll be able to mint 10,000 NFTs for 3.5 SOL, 1M NFTs for 5 SOL, or 1B NFTs for 500 SOL.

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  • Thanks for the link! I'm not too worried about the assets I create today, but I'm looking to build an application where minting NFTs is part of the flow, so I don't want the application to become suddenly non-economically-viable if SOL reaches a specific price. NFT compression looks really interesting. IIUC, it works by storing the initial state of all assets in one program, and then tracking changes to the initial state via transactions. One thing I'll need to do is update specific fields of metadata, but that seems theoretically doable with this. I'll explore this.
    – Sandy Soto
    Nov 15, 2022 at 20:27
  • I do have one question about your costs estimates though. I'm guessing that cost only includes the creation of the initial Merkel tree (where the NFTs are not yet owned by anyone) When a person acquires one of these, an NFT will need to be created to track the ownership. The space will be small, since the metadata is stored in the tree already, but we still need to create the 4 accounts stated in the original post to create the NFT. How much extra will it cost to create this (small) NFT?
    – Sandy Soto
    Nov 15, 2022 at 20:39

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