So who pays the fees?

After reading lots of pages about payouts and zksync vs. L1 payouts, I don’t understand much of anything about it. There are a few crucial bits of information that I can’t seem to track down.

One thing that is frequently asserted is that L1 payouts have higher transaction fees (aka “gas”) than zksync, due to the high congestion on the Ethereum blockchain.

I’d very much like to see it clearly stated who typically pays those fees/gas. I can’t find that info anywhere, including in the Terms & Conditions.

The rest, I suppose, will require a lot of reading on how blockchains and cryptocurrency works. There’s probably not a quick answer. But I’m uncertain what L2 vs L1 is, why I might want to convert from one to the other, why L2 is less convenient in terms of converting STORJ to ETH or $USD or whatever… it’s a lot to learn about. Any tips or pointers suitable to somebody fairly new to cryptocurrency appreciated; links to discussions among people already familiar with the basic concepts, often speaking in shorthand, sadly do not help much.

In super short, zkSync is an implementation of zkRollups, which uses a side chain to deal with transactions that stay on that side chain, while periodically updating proof of ownership on the main Ethereum block chain.(every few minutes)

Transactions within zkSync or L2 (for layer 2) are super cheap, because they don’t require a transaction on the main chain directly. So as long as you stay on L2, it’s very cheap.

At this point there are not exchanges that support zkSync, so unfortunately selling the tokens would require you to withdraw to L1. You can do that directly to an exchange address though and depending on the situation you pay between 2% and 44% more to transfer from L2 to L1 compared to L1 to L1.

For that slightly higher cost though, there is no threshold for payouts. Which means you always get whatever you’ve earned in the last month. This is because payouts on L2 are an L2 to L2 transaction for Storj Labs and because of that MUCH cheaper. Additionally, unlike with transactions on L1, you can pay for the transaction with Storj tokens, which is especially useful if you don’t have any ethereum yet as it prevents you from having to buy ether to get to use your tokens.

In my opinion zkSync is worth it for beginning node operators. The advantages are especially useful for node operators just starting out as they often make small amounts and don’t have any ether.

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Thanks – but the main question is, in a typical payout transaction (whether L1 or L2), does Storj pay the transaction fee or gas (not sure which to call it), or does the SNO pay the fee/gas?

Of course, I do grasp that a high transaction cost is generally a “bad thing” regardless of who pays it. Still, I feel ill-equipped to follow discussions (much less make informed judgments about my own decisions) when I can’t find such foundational information as whose expense is being discussed.

In both cases Storj pays the fee for the payout, whether that is to L1 or L2.

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Great, thank you!

In that case, my evaluation (I think) is the opposite of yours. If there is cost associated with accessing funds received on L2, it seems like moving from L1 to zksync would be less costly for Storj, but more costly for me (in addition to introducing additional complexity for me).

I get that sticking with L1 might mean it’s many months until my income surpasses the threshold for a payout, but…meh. Accessing the funds immediately is not my priority, but (a) avoiding unnecessary complexity and (b) avoiding unnecessary expenses are certainly things I’d like to do.

I’m not getting this part, and maybe it’s significant. Under L1 payments, once the Storj token has been transferred to my wallet, couldn’t I just transfer it (no fee) to, e.g., Coinbase Pro, and then trade it (paying low fees in Storj tokens) for BTC or USD?

There is no such thing as a transaction with no fee. If you want to transfer it to coinbase, you’ll have to pay for that transaction and in many cases that transaction is only 2% cheaper than doing it from L2. And you pay for that transaction in ethereum, which you will have to buy unless you already have some.

Interesting. This page seems to imply that there is no fee for the transfer from a Coinbase wallet to I guess I’ll need to dig into that a bit and see whether that’s accurate.

It says right there.

Please be aware that senders will be charged a miner fee.

Ah. I had understood that (in the context of the related pages I was reading) to mean “another person who sends you crypto to your Coinbase Wallet app” rather than "me as I’m transferring from Coinbase Wallet to

OK. Still lots to learn, but I have some months to figure it out before earnings accumulate to payout level. Thank you for this crucial piece.

The math is something like;

  • you earned 10$ in 2025 may (fictive date)
  • if it is higher than the payout threshold they will try to send you 10$ worth of storj (with a 2025 may avg storj-usd price)
  • for the send, they need to pay 2$ worth of gas for the eth network, so they will send you only 8$ worth of storj
  • for the send storj labs pays the 2$ and you get all the 10$

If you go to L2 the transaction fee is lower, and the price to convert L2 to L1 can be paid when you want to convert , so instead of losing 2$ every month, you lose 0.1$ every month, and transfer for 2$ once at the end of the year, and you get 20.8$ profit compared to using L1.

All of my prices are made up, I have no up-to-date info what are the current transaction costs. Ofc. Storj labs will not do a 50$ transaction for “free” so you can get your subdollar storj :slight_smile: This is why they have payout thresholds.

EDIT: fixed my statements based on the below posted source.

No, this is wrong, you will always get what you earned, so you will get $10 and Storj pays the additional $2.

Yapp you are right; Feb. 8 Update on SNO Payouts and High Ethereum Gas Prices

For many SNOs, this means the SNO payments will happen much less often when fees are high. On the positive side of this option, we’re currently paying the transaction fee for SNOs here, but on the negative side, these fees really add up.

I missread it somewhere. I’ll fix my comment.


I think there is a confusion here, or maybe I am the one that is confused.

My understanding is that there should be effectively no costs (or negligible cost) in transferring from coinbase wallet to pro. Maybe coinbase covers it or something or has it worked out between their coinbase wallet and coinbase pro software to facilitate instant and no-cost transfers.

It seems to me that we avoid fees entirely if we transfer directly to a wallet associated with an exchange (assuming you do not have zkSync enabled). Just set your Storj payment address to either your coinbase wallet storj deposit address or your coinbase pro storj deposit address. I have my payment address set to my Gemini storj deposit address. It seems that should work just fine and I won’t be paying any fees period.

The advantage of using zkSync is mainly that you get monthly payments instead of having to wait and thats about it as far as I can tell. The trade off is that there most likely would be a fee that you have to pay to send the L2 coins to an L1 exchange, which is most likely what you will be using if you decide to exchange the coin or withdraw it to your bank account. I personally have not looked into exchanges that support zkSync yet though, so I don’t really know. I also don’t know how much this payment would be, to transfer from L2 to L1 and then again to an exchange. The other benefit is that it seems you will be helping Storj Labs by lowering their fees for getting us SNO’s payments handled.

Can anyone double check my understanding here? Sorry if I’m providing wrong info.

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Using exchange’s deposit as a wallet always comes with downsides: Can we use an exchange as a wallet for STORJ tokens? – Storj


Jeeze! Thank you. I somehow missed this article. Good thing I posted something before I got my first payment.

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Reading again more carefully, I think everything I said before still stands for the most part actually?? I don’t understand what the article means by, say, a Gemini Storj deposit address being “not valid.” I think it is unlikely that the exchange will randomly change my deposit address or not allow me to access the tokens, albeit those are valid concerns. I should be able to still use my Gemini Storj address (or coinbase/coinbase pro storj deposit address) with these concerns in mind, shouldn’t I?

In the past people have used ethereum deposit address for example. If you do that the tokens will be lost. They can also delist a token, which usually invalidates deposit addresses too. There have also been changes to deposit addresses on certain exchanges in the past. They generally stay the same, but as far as I know none of them guarantee that they will. I think the main point is that when storj has paid out to the address you have provided, their part is done and they can’t help you to recover anything that has been lost due to any exchange related issue. You can of course still use it for payouts as long as you understand and accept those risks.


@BrightSilence is absolutely right. Using exchanges’ deposit always risky. The main concern - in the blockchain who owns the keys to the address, they owns the money on it.
Since keys from deposit belongs to the exchange - they owns your funds sent to the deposit.
And then you will have to deal with the consequences - you will be forced to trust them that they will not steal and block your funds.