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Author Topic: Avalon ASIC users thread  (Read 432459 times)
GandalfG
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September 08, 2013, 10:59:58 PM
 #2781

BTW-

Has anyone tried taking Avalon batch 3 modules apart? In the four module version, they combined modules 1 & 2 and 3 & 4. I'm not sure if there is an easy way to separate them into individual modules.

If anyone wants a fried batch 3 module let me know, maybe you could fix it. I am not sure what fried on it, but I saw sparks flying so it can't be good.
You can remove only broken submodule. Each module usually contains 8 mini modules (PCBs) with 10 chips. I see only on low quality  photo batch 3 module. They have 2x40 chip PCB, but I'm not sure.
I test Avalon with only one chip and works fine Smiley So in my opinion You can work with any quantity PCB. I am happy to buy the defective unit without heat sink - depends on the price.

 

Want to say thanks? 16ragydppe9QFRVhrdwEUjgfMS7KCfEFGY
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6raygp
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September 09, 2013, 01:46:16 AM
 #2782


When the Avalon is turned on, immediately the red light comes on & it won't hash. The fans aren't spinning either.  Huh
Replacing the PSU... nothing
Flashing to ckolivas' newest firmware... nothing


Ive been having similar issues, when using http://ocz.com/consumer/psu/zx-series-850w-1250w-power-supply ZX Series 850W-1250W - Power Supply
I get red and yellow leds and the fans dont spin.

When placing the original power supply back in fans spin and I get yellow and green leds.

Ive checked all connections to make sure nothings unplugged, reflashed the wr703n, unsuccessfully tried replacing the power supply(red and yellow led), copied every setting from a functioning avalons luci/cgminer settings.

I've posted the system, kernal and cgminer error logs here.
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=140539.msg3089903#msg3089903

Any help would be greatly appreciated, Thanks in advance.
6ray
As well I understood Avalon works without problems with original PSU  ?
If not remove all modules and try run with  one. Than check next one.

With the orginal PSU the fans spin, wr703n functions fine but we still have a yellow/green leds.

When you talk about removing a module to you mean removing the power chord attached to the module, removing the pci data ribbon or both?
GandalfG
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September 09, 2013, 06:49:50 AM
 #2783


When the Avalon is turned on, immediately the red light comes on & it won't hash. The fans aren't spinning either.  Huh
Replacing the PSU... nothing
Flashing to ckolivas' newest firmware... nothing


Ive been having similar issues, when using http://ocz.com/consumer/psu/zx-series-850w-1250w-power-supply ZX Series 850W-1250W - Power Supply
I get red and yellow leds and the fans dont spin.

When placing the original power supply back in fans spin and I get yellow and green leds.

Ive checked all connections to make sure nothings unplugged, reflashed the wr703n, unsuccessfully tried replacing the power supply(red and yellow led), copied every setting from a functioning avalons luci/cgminer settings.

I've posted the system, kernal and cgminer error logs here.
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=140539.msg3089903#msg3089903


Any help would be greatly appreciated, Thanks in advance.
6ray
As well I understood Avalon works without problems with original PSU  ?
If not remove all modules and try run with  one. Than check next one.

With the orginal PSU the fans spin, wr703n functions fine but we still have a yellow/green leds.

When you talk about removing a module to you mean removing the power chord attached to the module, removing the pci data ribbon or both?
Yes both, data and power connector from all modules, and start connecting one by one.

Want to say thanks? 16ragydppe9QFRVhrdwEUjgfMS7KCfEFGY
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September 09, 2013, 10:13:56 PM
 #2784

I am certain it is the module, after messing around with it for a while I started to smell that infamous burning electronics smell. To further prove it's the module, I saw it spark up pretty good upon flipping the switch on... scared the crap out of me lol.

This just happened to me too.   Angry

On mine it's clearly the chip near the center of a miner with a big + sign and "680 e31" - it looks and smells burnt

In my unit two modules are connected and two are not.  The problem is on one of the connected modules, though it looks like I could separate it fairly easily.

Still searching... is there a warranty or some way to get this fixed?


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September 09, 2013, 10:47:27 PM
 #2785

I am certain it is the module, after messing around with it for a while I started to smell that infamous burning electronics smell. To further prove it's the module, I saw it spark up pretty good upon flipping the switch on... scared the crap out of me lol.

This just happened to me too.   Angry

On mine it's clearly the chip near the center of a miner with a big + sign and "680 e31" - it looks and smells burnt

In my unit two modules are connected and two are not.  The problem is on one of the connected modules, though it looks like I could separate it fairly easily.

Still searching... is there a warranty or some way to get this fixed?




What frequency were you running?

I try to be respectful and informed.
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September 09, 2013, 11:41:30 PM
 #2786

I am certain it is the module, after messing around with it for a while I started to smell that infamous burning electronics smell. To further prove it's the module, I saw it spark up pretty good upon flipping the switch on... scared the crap out of me lol.

This just happened to me too.   Angry

On mine it's clearly the chip near the center of a miner with a big + sign and "680 e31" - it looks and smells burnt

In my unit two modules are connected and two are not.  The problem is on one of the connected modules, though it looks like I could separate it fairly easily.

Still searching... is there a warranty or some way to get this fixed?



What frequency were you running?


It was set to 325 mhz and oc'd using --avalon-auto

It's a b3 with ckolivas's 20130821 firmware and for options "--real-quiet --avalon-auto --avalon-fan 100 --avalon-freq 325-370 --avalon-cutoff 90 --avalon-temp 70"

Previously it would get up to the high 340's, sometimes hover around 350/351.  I never did any forced or "crazy" oc'ing, just used avalon-auto.

Last week it was stuck at 325 most of the time, and put up the expected hash rate (measured at the pool).

I got in today and found the red light on, fans not spinning, toggled the power switch, and got a loud pop and the burnt smell, I immediately shut it off and started pulling it apart.  The PSU is good, per the two testers I tried on it.

I have my a/c feeding four b3's 24/7 and the other three are doing well (no slowdown or other signs of trouble) all with temp2 in the mid 60's.

I disconnected the bad module and have the remaining three running now.  I tried changing the miner count from 32 down to 24, but that made it run like only two modules were installed.  I put it back to 32 and it's doing about 78 GH/s @325 Mhz.  Also interesting is that avalon-auto doesn't seem to be kicking in.  It's been stuck at 325 Mhz for almost half an hour now (since my last restart), just like last week.  I tried setting avalon-freq to 330-370 just to get it to move and it won't.

Could this be due to a bad flash?  I haven't seen anyone else report that problem.






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September 09, 2013, 11:46:04 PM
 #2787


When the Avalon is turned on, immediately the red light comes on & it won't hash. The fans aren't spinning either.  Huh
Replacing the PSU... nothing
Flashing to ckolivas' newest firmware... nothing


Ive been having similar issues, when using http://ocz.com/consumer/psu/zx-series-850w-1250w-power-supply ZX Series 850W-1250W - Power Supply
I get red and yellow leds and the fans dont spin.

When placing the original power supply back in fans spin and I get yellow and green leds.

Ive checked all connections to make sure nothings unplugged, reflashed the wr703n, unsuccessfully tried replacing the power supply(red and yellow led), copied every setting from a functioning avalons luci/cgminer settings.

I've posted the system, kernal and cgminer error logs here.
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=140539.msg3089903#msg3089903


Any help would be greatly appreciated, Thanks in advance.
6ray
As well I understood Avalon works without problems with original PSU  ?
If not remove all modules and try run with  one. Than check next one.

With the orginal PSU the fans spin, wr703n functions fine but we still have a yellow/green leds.

When you talk about removing a module to you mean removing the power chord attached to the module, removing the pci data ribbon or both?
Yes both, data and power connector from all modules, and start connecting one by one.

Would i remove the power from the pci ribbons at the fpga or at the chips? Do I need to change the miner count for running one module? I cycled threw and unpluged the power from all but one and then pluged in one at a time and rebooting the avalon to no avail.

Thanks in advance.
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September 10, 2013, 12:16:10 AM
 #2788

miner suddenly stopping for 2hrs+ until manual restart for no reason again

i've managed to capture the cgminer api log but forgot to capture the kernel and system log.

any idea why?

Code:
[Firmware Version] => 20130703
cgminer-a011fe5
luci-d854edc+
cgminer-openwrt-packages-800cc58
Reply was 'STATUS=S,When=1378765220,Code=70,Msg=CGMiner stats,Description=cgminer 3.3.1|STATS=0,ID=AVA0,Elapsed=130,Calls=0,Wait=0.000000,Max=0.000000,Min=99999999.000000,baud=115200,miner_count=32,asic_count=10,timeout=36,frequency=350,fan1=0,fan2=0,fan3=0,temp1=0,temp2=0,temp3=0,temp_max=0,no_matching_work=3256,match_work_count1=697,match_work_count2=521,match_work_count3=475,match_work_count4=630,match_work_count5=502,match_work_count6=527,match_work_count7=629,match_work_count8=600,match_work_count9=469,match_work_count10=528,match_work_count11=641,match_work_count12=526,match_work_count13=562,match_work_count14=494,match_work_count15=559,match_work_count16=573,match_work_count17=395,match_work_count18=511,match_work_count19=469,match_work_count20=426,match_work_count21=451,match_work_count22=512,match_work_count23=493,match_work_count24=397,match_work_count25=475,match_work_count26=362,match_work_count27=342,match_work_count28=372,match_work_count29=308,match_work_count30=417,match_work_count31=298,match_work_count32=246,USB Pipe=0,USB Delay=r0 0.000000 w0 0.000000|STATS=1,ID=POOL0,Elapsed=130,Calls=0,Wait=0.000000,Max=0.000000,Min=99999999.000000,Pool Calls=0,Pool Attempts=0,Pool Wait=0.000000,Pool Max=0.000000,Pool Min=99999999.000000,Pool Av=0.000000,Work Had Roll Time=false,Work Can Roll=false,Work Had Expire=false,Work Roll Time=0,Work Diff=1.00000000,Min Diff=1.00000000,Max Diff=1.00000000,Min Diff Count=2907,Max Diff Count=2907,Times Sent=3,Bytes Sent=219,Times Recv=7,Bytes Recv=20457,Net Bytes Sent=219,Net Bytes Recv=20457|STATS=2,ID=POOL1,Elapsed=130,Calls=0,Wait=0.000000,Max=0.000000,Min=99999999.000000,Pool Calls=0,Pool Attempts=0,Pool Wait=0.000000,Pool Max=0.000000,Pool Min=99999999.000000,Pool Av=0.000000,Work Had Roll Time=false,Work Can Roll=false,Work Had Expire=false,Work Roll Time=0,Work Diff=64.00000000,Min Diff=64.00000000,Max Diff=64.00000000,Min Diff Count=4,Max Diff Count=4,Times Sent=2,Bytes Sent=140,Times Recv=6,Bytes Recv=2316,Net Bytes Sent=140,Net Bytes Recv=2316|STATS=3,ID=POOL2,Elapsed=130,Calls=0,Wait=0.000000,Max=0.000000,Min=99999999.000000,Pool Calls=0,Pool Attempts=0,Pool Wait=0.000000,Pool Max=0.000000,Pool Min=99999999.000000,Pool Av=0.000000,Work Had Roll Time=false,Work Can Roll=false,Work Had Expire=false,Work Roll Time=0,Work Diff=0.00000000,Min Diff=0.00000000,Max Diff=0.00000000,Min Diff Count=0,Max Diff Count=0,Times Sent=3,Bytes Sent=219,Times Recv=5,Bytes Recv=7011,Net Bytes Sent=219,Net Bytes Recv=7011|'
[STATUS] =>
(
   [STATUS] => S
   [When] => 1378765220
   [Code] => 70
   [Msg] => CGMiner stats
   [Description] => cgminer 3.3.1
)
[STATS0] =>
(
   [STATS] => 0
   [ID] => AVA0
   [Elapsed] => 130
   [Calls] => 0
   [Wait] => 0.000000
   [Max] => 0.000000
   [Min] => 99999999.000000
   [baud] => 115200
   [miner_count] => 32
   [asic_count] => 10
   [timeout] => 36
   [frequency] => 350
   [fan1] => 0
   [fan2] => 0
   [fan3] => 0
   [temp1] => 0
   [temp2] => 0
   [temp3] => 0
   [temp_max] => 0
   [no_matching_work] => 3256
   [match_work_count1] => 697
   [match_work_count2] => 521
   [match_work_count3] => 475
   [match_work_count4] => 630
   [match_work_count5] => 502
   [match_work_count6] => 527
   [match_work_count7] => 629
   [match_work_count8] => 600
   [match_work_count9] => 469
   [match_work_count10] => 528
   [match_work_count11] => 641
   [match_work_count12] => 526
   [match_work_count13] => 562
   [match_work_count14] => 494
   [match_work_count15] => 559
   [match_work_count16] => 573
   [match_work_count17] => 395
   [match_work_count18] => 511
   [match_work_count19] => 469
   [match_work_count20] => 426
   [match_work_count21] => 451
   [match_work_count22] => 512
   [match_work_count23] => 493
   [match_work_count24] => 397
   [match_work_count25] => 475
   [match_work_count26] => 362
   [match_work_count27] => 342
   [match_work_count28] => 372
   [match_work_count29] => 308
   [match_work_count30] => 417
   [match_work_count31] => 298
   [match_work_count32] => 246
   [USB Pipe] => 0
   [USB Delay] => r0 0.000000 w0 0.000000
)
[STATS1] =>
(
   [STATS] => 1
   [ID] => POOL0
   [Elapsed] => 130
   [Calls] => 0
   [Wait] => 0.000000
   [Max] => 0.000000
   [Min] => 99999999.000000
   [Pool Calls] => 0
   [Pool Attempts] => 0
   [Pool Wait] => 0.000000
   [Pool Max] => 0.000000
   [Pool Min] => 99999999.000000
   [Pool Av] => 0.000000
   [Work Had Roll Time] => false
   [Work Can Roll] => false
   [Work Had Expire] => false
   [Work Roll Time] => 0
   [Work Diff] => 1.00000000
   [Min Diff] => 1.00000000
   [Max Diff] => 1.00000000
   [Min Diff Count] => 2907
   [Max Diff Count] => 2907
   [Times Sent] => 3
   [Bytes Sent] => 219
   [Times Recv] => 7
   [Bytes Recv] => 20457
   [Net Bytes Sent] => 219
   [Net Bytes Recv] => 20457
)
[STATS2] =>
(
   [STATS] => 2
   [ID] => POOL1
   [Elapsed] => 130
   [Calls] => 0
   [Wait] => 0.000000
   [Max] => 0.000000
   [Min] => 99999999.000000
   [Pool Calls] => 0
   [Pool Attempts] => 0
   [Pool Wait] => 0.000000
   [Pool Max] => 0.000000
   [Pool Min] => 99999999.000000
   [Pool Av] => 0.000000
   [Work Had Roll Time] => false
   [Work Can Roll] => false
   [Work Had Expire] => false
   [Work Roll Time] => 0
   [Work Diff] => 64.00000000
   [Min Diff] => 64.00000000
   [Max Diff] => 64.00000000
   [Min Diff Count] => 4
   [Max Diff Count] => 4
   [Times Sent] => 2
   [Bytes Sent] => 140
   [Times Recv] => 6
   [Bytes Recv] => 2316
   [Net Bytes Sent] => 140
   [Net Bytes Recv] => 2316
)
[STATS3] =>
(
   [STATS] => 3
   [ID] => POOL2
   [Elapsed] => 130
   [Calls] => 0
   [Wait] => 0.000000
   [Max] => 0.000000
   [Min] => 99999999.000000
   [Pool Calls] => 0
   [Pool Attempts] => 0
   [Pool Wait] => 0.000000
   [Pool Max] => 0.000000
   [Pool Min] => 99999999.000000
   [Pool Av] => 0.000000
   [Work Had Roll Time] => false
   [Work Can Roll] => false
   [Work Had Expire] => false
   [Work Roll Time] => 0
   [Work Diff] => 0.00000000
   [Min Diff] => 0.00000000
   [Max Diff] => 0.00000000
   [Min Diff Count] => 0
   [Max Diff Count] => 0
   [Times Sent] => 3
   [Bytes Sent] => 219
   [Times Recv] => 5
   [Bytes Recv] => 7011
   [Net Bytes Sent] => 219
   [Net Bytes Recv] => 7011
)
[/code]
6raygp
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September 10, 2013, 02:16:43 AM
 #2789

I have tried unpluging the power and data to all modules then pluging one in at a time and trying to run them individualy, I want to try to hook up the avalon usb to a laptop and attempt to mine that way... Ive read about having to remove a jumper, but i believe that was in a different avalon batch I have a batch 3 4 module.
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September 10, 2013, 10:20:23 AM
 #2790

is it possible to connect a avalon to a laptop and mine using laptop cgminer or bfgminer?
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September 10, 2013, 10:31:20 AM
 #2791

is it possible to connect a avalon to a laptop and mine using laptop cgminer or bfgminer?
Sure, I've been mining to mine from my PC since the router broke in mine.

Almost a week of mining with cgminer 3.4.2:
Code:
AVA  0: 21C/ 45C 2160R | 76.62G/82.88Gh/s | A:12151796 R:21075 HW:245816 WU:1157.9/m

Just open the top, pull the usb cable out and plug in a (printer type) usb cable from there to your PC.

Primary developer/maintainer for cgminer and ckpool/ckproxy.
ZERO FEE Pooled mining at ckpool.org 1% Fee Solo mining at solo.ckpool.org
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September 10, 2013, 10:35:13 AM
 #2792

is it possible to connect a avalon to a laptop and mine using laptop cgminer or bfgminer?
Yes, disconnect WRT router and plug in USB cable from controller  to your PC.  

cgminer-nogpu.exe -o stratum.bitcoin.cz:3333 -u XXXXXX -p YYYY -D --verbose --avalon-options 115200:24:10:45:282

Want to say thanks? 16ragydppe9QFRVhrdwEUjgfMS7KCfEFGY
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September 10, 2013, 11:09:26 AM
 #2793

I am certain it is the module, after messing around with it for a while I started to smell that infamous burning electronics smell. To further prove it's the module, I saw it spark up pretty good upon flipping the switch on... scared the crap out of me lol.

This just happened to me too.   Angry

On mine it's clearly the chip near the center of a miner with a big + sign and "680 e31" - it looks and smells burnt

In my unit two modules are connected and two are not.  The problem is on one of the connected modules, though it looks like I could separate it fairly easily.

Still searching... is there a warranty or some way to get this fixed?




That's C1, an SMD tantalum capacitor 680uF/2.5V according to the BOM.

It's a common cheap part, find a local electronics or cell phone repair shop.

Should be an easy fix, even a tantalum cap with leads could probably be substituted in a pinch, with B3s every minute counts.    Sad

And I know what part will definitely be included on my next Mouser order.    Roll Eyes
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September 10, 2013, 02:09:23 PM
 #2794

is it possible to connect a avalon to a laptop and mine using laptop cgminer or bfgminer?
Yes, disconnect WRT router and plug in USB cable from controller  to your PC.  

cgminer-nogpu.exe -o stratum.bitcoin.cz:3333 -u XXXXXX -p YYYY -D --verbose --avalon-options 115200:24:10:45:282


Thanks for the reply, i disconnected the router and plugged the USB into my host, then ran cgminer with the above bit it never detects my avalon. anything else need done?
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September 10, 2013, 05:17:48 PM
 #2795

is it possible to connect a avalon to a laptop and mine using laptop cgminer or bfgminer?
Yes, disconnect WRT router and plug in USB cable from controller  to your PC.  

cgminer-nogpu.exe -o stratum.bitcoin.cz:3333 -u XXXXXX -p YYYY -D --verbose --avalon-options 115200:24:10:45:282


Thanks for the reply, i disconnected the router and plugged the USB into my host, then ran cgminer with the above bit it never detects my avalon. anything else need done?

winusb driver! (force install with zadiag)

you are welcome

btw: unplug the jumper or your usb port gets some extra volts!

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September 10, 2013, 05:27:05 PM
 #2796

unplug the jumper? i noticed when i plugged it directly into my laptop it said unkown device can't draw enough power from the USB port, but if i plugged itinot a powered hub it did not give me this notification
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September 10, 2013, 05:28:41 PM
 #2797

I am certain it is the module, after messing around with it for a while I started to smell that infamous burning electronics smell. To further prove it's the module, I saw it spark up pretty good upon flipping the switch on... scared the crap out of me lol.

This just happened to me too.   Angry

On mine it's clearly the chip near the center of a miner with a big + sign and "680 e31" - it looks and smells burnt

In my unit two modules are connected and two are not.  The problem is on one of the connected modules, though it looks like I could separate it fairly easily.

Still searching... is there a warranty or some way to get this fixed?



What frequency were you running?


It was set to 325 mhz and oc'd using --avalon-auto

It's a b3 with ckolivas's 20130821 firmware and for options "--real-quiet --avalon-auto --avalon-fan 100 --avalon-freq 325-370 --avalon-cutoff 90 --avalon-temp 70"

Previously it would get up to the high 340's, sometimes hover around 350/351.  I never did any forced or "crazy" oc'ing, just used avalon-auto.

Last week it was stuck at 325 most of the time, and put up the expected hash rate (measured at the pool).

I got in today and found the red light on, fans not spinning, toggled the power switch, and got a loud pop and the burnt smell, I immediately shut it off and started pulling it apart.  The PSU is good, per the two testers I tried on it.

I have my a/c feeding four b3's 24/7 and the other three are doing well (no slowdown or other signs of trouble) all with temp2 in the mid 60's.

I disconnected the bad module and have the remaining three running now.  I tried changing the miner count from 32 down to 24, but that made it run like only two modules were installed.  I put it back to 32 and it's doing about 78 GH/s @325 Mhz.  Also interesting is that avalon-auto doesn't seem to be kicking in.  It's been stuck at 325 Mhz for almost half an hour now (since my last restart), just like last week.  I tried setting avalon-freq to 330-370 just to get it to move and it won't.

Could this be due to a bad flash?  I haven't seen anyone else report that problem.







It's a b3 with ckolivas's 20130821 firmware and for options "--real-quiet --avalon-auto --avalon-fan 100 --avalon-freq 325-370 --avalon-cutoff 90 --avalon-temp 70"

Don't the two highlighted in red contradict each other as settings? How can it run "real quiet" when the fan speed is forced to 100%?

The settings highlighted in blue seem to be pretty extreme settings. 70C temperatures and 90C as the cutoff temp? Thats pretty crazy....

Did I wake up today in a different universe where running these at 70+ degrees is a good thing with a cutoff temp of 90C? The temp on these is being measured by a cheapy temp sensor that rests on the heatsink rather than on the chip. With temps like those it is almost certain to fry....


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September 10, 2013, 08:55:13 PM
 #2798

It's a b3 with ckolivas's 20130821 firmware and for options "--real-quiet --avalon-auto --avalon-fan 100 --avalon-freq 325-370 --avalon-cutoff 90 --avalon-temp 70"

Don't the two highlighted in red contradict each other as settings? How can it run "real quiet" when the fan speed is forced to 100%?

The settings highlighted in blue seem to be pretty extreme settings. 70C temperatures and 90C as the cutoff temp? Thats pretty crazy....

Did I wake up today in a different universe where running these at 70+ degrees is a good thing with a cutoff temp of 90C? The temp on these is being measured by a cheapy temp sensor that rests on the heatsink rather than on the chip. With temps like those it is almost certain to fry....

Code:
--real-quiet        Disable all output

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September 10, 2013, 09:50:00 PM
 #2799

<snip>
It's a b3 with ckolivas's 20130821 firmware and for options "--real-quiet --avalon-auto --avalon-fan 100 --avalon-freq 325-370 --avalon-cutoff 90 --avalon-temp 70"

Don't the two highlighted in red contradict each other as settings? How can it run "real quiet" when the fan speed is forced to 100%?

The settings highlighted in blue seem to be pretty extreme settings. 70C temperatures and 90C as the cutoff temp? Thats pretty crazy....

Did I wake up today in a different universe where running these at 70+ degrees is a good thing with a cutoff temp of 90C? The temp on these is being measured by a cheapy temp sensor that rests on the heatsink rather than on the chip. With temps like those it is almost certain to fry....

Real-quiet deals with the text output, not the fan noise.

Avalon-cutoff and avalon-temp settings were recommended elsewhere in this thread for the b3's.  I think avalon-temp tells cgminer/avalon-auto at what temp to stop raising the frequency, and avalon-cutoff tells cgminer to stop hashing at that temp.

If you're only familiar with earlier batches, yes, the temps would seem high.

BTW:  I still haven't figured out what to do with the bad module.  Looking for a repair place nearby is proving challenging.  I'm near Boston, Mass. if anyone knows of one.
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September 11, 2013, 01:56:36 AM
 #2800

BTW:  I still haven't figured out what to do with the bad module.  Looking for a repair place nearby is proving challenging.  I'm near Boston, Mass. if anyone knows of one.

http://hackerspaces.org/wiki/Boston
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