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Author Topic: Which USB hub to use with Block Erupters | NanoFury NF1 | BPMC Red Fury | Ant U1  (Read 128276 times)
Photon939
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September 26, 2013, 06:50:06 PM
 #561

@Gomeler: If you decide to go for it, this post might be of interest: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=253749.msg2863038#msg2863038

@Photon939: Thanks for the additional info on Rosewill. Do you know if D-Link 7-port has backfeed protection? It appears it does not from my empiric experience, but I have not opened it.

I don't have any Dlink hubs, but if you can pop the cover on one and post a picture I can probably tell you what you're dealing with
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September 26, 2013, 06:54:30 PM
 #562


Good report.  I have one of the same hubs.  My initial impression matches yours.  I tossed mine in the "oh well, it might have been good" pile when I saw the power plug.  I would emphasis that this hub REQUIRES modification to be useful for mining.  It is cheap and not only that but unlike most 10 port hubs it is constructed internally as a 4 port hub plus a 7 port hub, unlike most which have a 4 port hub feeding two other 4 port hubs.  It is one of the few hubs I have seen that uses the 7 port chip.

p.s.  gotta love that picture.  A vacuum tube sitting next to a computer keyboard is righteous.  Even I don't keep that many generations of technology living on my desk..

Maybe you got a slightly different version? Mine had 3 separate 4 port chips and 3 separate crystals for said chips. It had a few itty bitty bypass capacitors on the hub chips but that obviously wasn't enough for a device that has significant inrush current.


Before I dive down a potentially deep rabbit hole, has anyone considered building their own USB hubs? I spent an hour last night reading up on USB.org's design guides for USB2.0 design and looking into TI's 7-port USB chip schematics and it all looks very simple. From what I can tell, it sounds like most of the USB hubs are integrating overcurrent protection ganged across all the ports, rather than a per-port OCP.

I'm thinking to start using TI's 7-port USB2.0 hub chip, provide 500ma OCP per port, and have a Molex 8981 header to power the hub + ports. I'm doing this mostly as I just received some BEs and want to immersion cool them in mineral oil after I replace their oscillators. My only concern is current consumption of modded BEs and whether 500ma is sufficient or if I should step up to 1a and configure the hub for charging downstream ports.

edit: Screw it, going with 1.5 amp per port as per the charging downstream port requirements.

You will definitely need the higher current capacity if you plan on overclocking them, they push the USB spec envelope a bit at the stock frequency and when overclocked can consume 1A or more.

The hubs I've seen so far haven't bothered with individual port OCP, or any OCP at all. The Rosewill 7 and 10 port hubs had spots on the PCB for picofuses on each port but they were all soldered with 0 ohm resistors. The 7 port however did have backfeed protection via four 1A schottky diodes. The 10 port Rosewill did not have any host power passthrough at all) The cheapo $10 10 port china hub I just got had wimpy wiring, cheap board design, no electrolytic capacitors, questionable soldering quality and the host PC USB +5v rail was tied directly to the barrel jack for power input.

Making your own hub could be rewarding but hardly cost effective. The amount of time spent designing and having board designs sent off for fabricating would cost quite a bit when the $25 rosewill hubs are built quite well otherwise.

Thanks for the info. I'm not concerned about being cost effective, this is just more practice designing and assembling PCBs. If I happen to be even remotely close to commercial offerings then great, otherwise I'll have fun building these and powering up my Block Eruptors on an overbuilt USB hub.
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September 27, 2013, 03:48:43 AM
 #563

My BEs have evolved to this:



The array consists of 70 devices with daisy-chained hubs hosted by a single USB 2.0 port on an old netbook that's running Windows 7 x86.  A BFL device is also in the mix (the netbook didn't like hosting it separately on its remaining available USB ports) and works just fine.  I decided to populate each hub with only 5 BEs, loading their respective 4A power bricks (which theoretically supports up to 8 BEs) at about 62.5% in an attempt to be within the peak efficiency envelope (around 50% load).  The array is mounted and fits nicely on a 9"x12" clear plastic clipboard.  The netbook draws 11W off the wall (120V AC) while mining.

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September 27, 2013, 07:38:09 AM
 #564

My BEs have evolved to this:



The array consists of 70 devices with daisy-chained hubs hosted by a single USB 2.0 port on an old netbook that's running Windows 7 x86.  A BFL device is also in the mix (the netbook didn't like hosting it separately on its remaining available USB ports) and works just fine.  I decided to populate each hub with only 5 BEs, loading their respective 4A power bricks (which theoretically supports up to 8 BEs) at about 62.5% in an attempt to be within the peak efficiency envelope (around 50% load).  The array is mounted and fits nicely on a 9"x12" clear plastic clipboard.  The netbook draws 11W off the wall (120V AC) while mining.



A+ for neatness!  Well done!
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September 28, 2013, 03:49:36 AM
 #565


A+ for neatness!  Well done!

Thanks!

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September 28, 2013, 09:23:49 PM
 #566

My BEs have evolved to this:



The array consists of 70 devices with daisy-chained hubs hosted by a single USB 2.0 port on an old netbook that's running Windows 7 x86.  A BFL device is also in the mix (the netbook didn't like hosting it separately on its remaining available USB ports) and works just fine.  I decided to populate each hub with only 5 BEs, loading their respective 4A power bricks (which theoretically supports up to 8 BEs) at about 62.5% in an attempt to be within the peak efficiency envelope (around 50% load).  The array is mounted and fits nicely on a 9"x12" clear plastic clipboard.  The netbook draws 11W off the wall (120V AC) while mining.



What is your total power draw including the netbook, USB's and fan?

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September 28, 2013, 09:52:55 PM
 #567

My BEs have evolved to this:



The array consists of 70 devices with daisy-chained hubs hosted by a single USB 2.0 port on an old netbook that's running Windows 7 x86.  A BFL device is also in the mix (the netbook didn't like hosting it separately on its remaining available USB ports) and works just fine.  I decided to populate each hub with only 5 BEs, loading their respective 4A power bricks (which theoretically supports up to 8 BEs) at about 62.5% in an attempt to be within the peak efficiency envelope (around 50% load).  The array is mounted and fits nicely on a 9"x12" clear plastic clipboard.  The netbook draws 11W off the wall (120V AC) while mining.



What is your total power draw including the netbook, USB's and fan?

That would be 3W*70BEs=210W + netbook=11W + USB fan=2.8W for a grand total of 223.8W at the wall (120V AC).

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September 29, 2013, 01:32:58 AM
 #568

My BEs have evolved to this:

The array consists of 70 devices with daisy-chained hubs hosted by a single USB 2.0 port on an old netbook that's running Windows 7 x86.  A BFL device is also in the mix (the netbook didn't like hosting it separately on its remaining available USB ports) and works just fine.  I decided to populate each hub with only 5 BEs, loading their respective 4A power bricks (which theoretically supports up to 8 BEs) at about 62.5% in an attempt to be within the peak efficiency envelope (around 50% load).  The array is mounted and fits nicely on a 9"x12" clear plastic clipboard.  The netbook draws 11W off the wall (120V AC) while mining.



That's a nice setup.  Is this the same hub you used?  Looks like it.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/270993842142

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September 29, 2013, 10:47:17 AM
 #569

That would be 3W*70BEs=210W + netbook=11W + USB fan=2.8W for a grand total of 223.8W at the wall (120V AC).

I see you calculate 0.6A per BE, which is indeed closer to the truth. When I calculated power consumption using 0.5A USB 2.0 standard, I always came up seeing power shortage on some BEs, resulting in 2-3 BEs eventually lighting solid green.

And congrats on a really clean cable layout. Mine can be best described as "cable chaos", though I try hard to organise them. I actually paid dearly for the chaos the other day, when I unintentionally reduced the total network hashrate by 1.2GHs  Cry

I always take great care in disconnecting USB cables before the power, but this time one splitter got accidentally pulled out while the units were hashing, resulting in two hubs loosing aux power. A short burst of magic smoke followed and 2 BEs on each hub (the so-called charger connections on D-Links) were no longer lit. I first hoped that it was only the ports that died, but, after connecting the BEs to various ports on various machines, I saw that BEs themselves were gone. Two of them would light up solid green, but would not get recognised by either Windows or Linux (Pi). Two other would not light at all in the resistor closest to the USB connector would quickly get impossibly hot to the touch.

I've now unscrewed the heatsink plates, which would make nice keyring dongles. The rest will be discarded with honours.

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September 29, 2013, 09:00:26 PM
 #570

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Bitcoin-mining-special-design-10-port-usb-hub-Dual-power-Bitcoin-Miner-USB-hub-/121184279151?pt=US_USB_Cables_Hubs_Adapters&hash=item1c37255a6f

Check out this E-Bay ling for a new USB hub

Dual psu and 10 ports

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September 29, 2013, 10:23:06 PM
 #571

My BEs have evolved to this:

The array consists of 70 devices with daisy-chained hubs hosted by a single USB 2.0 port on an old netbook that's running Windows 7 x86.  A BFL device is also in the mix (the netbook didn't like hosting it separately on its remaining available USB ports) and works just fine.  I decided to populate each hub with only 5 BEs, loading their respective 4A power bricks (which theoretically supports up to 8 BEs) at about 62.5% in an attempt to be within the peak efficiency envelope (around 50% load).  The array is mounted and fits nicely on a 9"x12" clear plastic clipboard.  The netbook draws 11W off the wall (120V AC) while mining.



That's a nice setup.  Is this the same hub you used?  Looks like it.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/270993842142

Thanks.  Yes, it's the same generic made-in-China-special Smiley 7-port hub that's all over the interweb just like the 10-port variety.
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September 29, 2013, 11:15:21 PM
Last edit: September 29, 2013, 11:46:40 PM by visdude
 #572

That would be 3W*70BEs=210W + netbook=11W + USB fan=2.8W for a grand total of 223.8W at the wall (120V AC).

I see you calculate 0.6A per BE, which is indeed closer to the truth. When I calculated power consumption using 0.5A USB 2.0 standard, I always came up seeing power shortage on some BEs, resulting in 2-3 BEs eventually lighting solid green.

And congrats on a really clean cable layout. Mine can be best described as "cable chaos", though I try hard to organise them. I actually paid dearly for the chaos the other day, when I unintentionally reduced the total network hashrate by 1.2GHs  Cry

I always take great care in disconnecting USB cables before the power, but this time one splitter got accidentally pulled out while the units were hashing, resulting in two hubs loosing aux power. A short burst of magic smoke followed and 2 BEs on each hub (the so-called charger connections on D-Links) were no longer lit. I first hoped that it was only the ports that died, but, after connecting the BEs to various ports on various machines, I saw that BEs themselves were gone. Two of them would light up solid green, but would not get recognised by either Windows or Linux (Pi). Two other would not light at all in the resistor closest to the USB connector would quickly get impossibly hot to the touch.

I've now unscrewed the heatsink plates, which would make nice keyring dongles. The rest will be discarded with honours.

The 3WAC per BE was derived from an actual benchmark result of a hub populated with 7 BEs that were hashing and measured at the wall (120V AC) with a Kill-A-Watt.  The setup drew 21W, hence 21W over 7 = 3W/BE.  This was helpful while I was adding units to the setup.  This also showed that the PSUs are about 83% efficient (2.5WDC over 3WAC) at that particular load and most likely at 85% at 50% load.

Thanks.  I guess cable management is just a carry-over habbit from building gaming rigs.

I'm so sorry about the demise of some of your BEs.  On the bright side, they're not that expensive anymore to replace nowadays.  Excellent idea for the heatsink plates.

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September 30, 2013, 12:19:29 AM
 #573

Has anyone found a good Anker style hub that fits the depth of the Bitfury USBs?

Right now I have 4 Red Fury USBs in a 7 port aluminum Anker hub and they fit perfectly but it kills me to not be able to use the other 3 slots, lol.

I'd really like something with a similar style to the aluminum, squarish Ankers... no plastic or sleek design.  Smiley
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September 30, 2013, 02:09:24 AM
 #574

Has anyone found a good Anker style hub that fits the depth of the Bitfury USBs?

Right now I have 4 Red Fury USBs in a 7 port aluminum Anker hub and they fit perfectly but it kills me to not be able to use the other 3 slots, lol.

I'd really like something with a similar style to the aluminum, squarish Ankers... no plastic or sleek design.  Smiley
can you fit extension cords in the other slots?
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September 30, 2013, 12:02:17 PM
 #575

I noticed that some of the poweradapters I use for the usb hubs (2x Dlink DUB H7, 3x Rosewill 10 ports) are getting pretty warm. Not extreme but do you think it would help to put a fan on/blow towards the poweradapters? just to cool them a little..

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September 30, 2013, 12:07:14 PM
 #576

Has anyone found a good Anker style hub that fits the depth of the Bitfury USBs?

Right now I have 4 Red Fury USBs in a 7 port aluminum Anker hub and they fit perfectly but it kills me to not be able to use the other 3 slots, lol.

I'd really like something with a similar style to the aluminum, squarish Ankers... no plastic or sleek design.  Smiley
can you fit extension cords in the other slots?

Yes, but barely.  And I'd rather not have cords hanging out all over, lol.  Seems a lot of us USB miner guys like a neat look.  Wink

Did I see somewhere that BPMC was going to start selling those nice aluminum hubs that they were using themselves?
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September 30, 2013, 12:21:36 PM
 #577

Has anyone found a good Anker style hub that fits the depth of the Bitfury USBs?

Right now I have 4 Red Fury USBs in a 7 port aluminum Anker hub and they fit perfectly but it kills me to not be able to use the other 3 slots, lol.

I'd really like something with a similar style to the aluminum, squarish Ankers... no plastic or sleek design.  Smiley
can you fit extension cords in the other slots?

Yes, but barely.  And I'd rather not have cords hanging out all over, lol.  Seems a lot of us USB miner guys like a neat look.  Wink

Did I see somewhere that BPMC was going to start selling those nice aluminum hubs that they were using themselves?
We are considering it. But it would depend on what people are willing to pay and how much interest we see.

Message me if you have any problems
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September 30, 2013, 12:30:00 PM
 #578

I noticed that some of the poweradapters I use for the usb hubs (2x Dlink DUB H7, 3x Rosewill 10 ports) are getting pretty warm. Not extreme but do you think it would help to put a fan on/blow towards the poweradapters? just to cool them a little..
Yes

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October 08, 2013, 01:51:48 AM
 #579

My BEs have evolved to this:



The array consists of 70 devices with daisy-chained hubs hosted by a single USB 2.0 port on an old netbook that's running Windows 7 x86.  A BFL device is also in the mix (the netbook didn't like hosting it separately on its remaining available USB ports) and works just fine.  I decided to populate each hub with only 5 BEs, loading their respective 4A power bricks (which theoretically supports up to 8 BEs) at about 62.5% in an attempt to be within the peak efficiency envelope (around 50% load).  The array is mounted and fits nicely on a 9"x12" clear plastic clipboard.  The netbook draws 11W off the wall (120V AC) while mining.




You have said that this is all running off a netbook. Question: Does the netbook get hot running 24/7? I was gonna use an old laptop and thought  it would get too hot.
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October 08, 2013, 04:56:57 AM
 #580

I think there is a hub missing in the list, only the ultimate hub! 

Here is a copy of my post:



Looking to power all your Block Erupters in your PC?  We have the solution at WTCR.


A tried, tested, and true hub solution with the lowest possible cost-per-port.  

Utilizes your PC's power supply for it's 5v.  Powered with a floppy connector but includes a molex to floppy adapter.

Running for weeks stable with all 13 ports populated with Block Erupters, it's safe to say these are the best hubs around.


http://i.imgur.com/m40WYUY.jpg
Got some CM Stackers lying around at home?  Fill up all the bays with Block Erupters!

Questions?  Simply email sales@wtcr.ca or inquire through our website.

Resellers?  These are an excellent item to include with bundles of USBs as all Block Erupters need a hub!

Just bought 2 of these hubs and they are giving me lots of problems so far....what am i doing wrong?
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