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Author Topic: 1GH/s, 20w, $500 — Butterflylabs, is it a scam?  (Read 116571 times)
gmaxwell
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October 18, 2011, 02:16:31 PM
 #1

http://butterflylabs.com/products/

Their claims are not outside the realm of physical possibility like some past hardware miner scams have been— but they also don't appear to be possible, at least with current commercially available parts.

The webpage is very thin on evidence that they aren't a scam. The most compelling thing I've seen is that they're looking to hire someone who speaks mandarin, though while that bodes well for their honesty it doesn't bode well for their product actually existing. Smiley

I understand that a fair number of bitcoiners have sent them money (or, well, that they claim so— but I only know of one).

Anyone have any information?   It would be a pretty good deal if it were true.



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October 18, 2011, 05:09:24 PM
 #2

Their claims are not outside the realm of physical possibility like some past hardware miner scams have been

I would say their wattage claim is completely outside the realm of possibility. 50MH/W?  Thats nearly 3x the best FPGA designs and 25x current efficient GPU.

I doubt even a custom ASIC would be 3x FPGA in terms of power.  Maybe 50% to 100% better but not 3x.

I also find the fact that their first prototype just happens to be exactly 1GH/s to be very scammy.  They just happen to find the parts that magically work out to 1GH/s.

The price is equally implausible.  Well outside range of FPGA manufacturing cost (much less retail price).  Hell it better than the best video cards (which have the advantage of volume in the millions).  The only thing that could come close is a custom ASIC but if you developed a custom mining chip would you price it that low.  Hell at $800 it is an amazing deal and if not a scam would completely undercut any GPU miner.  ASIC would have huge R&D costs to make up and generally you don't do that by undercutting your competitors by 90%.

Not sure what you see as not being outside the realm of phyiscal possibility.   If anyone wants to put a bet out there on this being honest I will take the otherside.
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October 18, 2011, 05:39:36 PM
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I would say their wattage claim is completely outside the realm of possibility. 50MH/W?  Thats nearly 3x the best FPGA designs and 25x current efficient GPU.
I doubt even a custom ASIC would be 3x FPGA in terms of power.  Maybe 50% to 100% better but not 3x.

Well, now that you mention it... that number is only somewhat higher (2x-ish IIRC) than some estimates we did a while assuming a direct ASIC implementation, which was really a lowball figure and ignored support electronics and practical considerations. (Basically a straight account of gate energy usage with a basic unrolled miner on the 45nm process we had specs handy for).  So not completely impossible, but impossible for a FPGA on that process.

If someone was offering 22nm SASIC it might be a bit more plausible.
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October 18, 2011, 05:52:06 PM
 #4

Just remember --

Wherever there is greed, there will be scams.
That is, people willing to play off that greed to rip people off.

Scams can't operate without greed, or a similarly pressing need.

Right now, there are a lot of people still into bitcoin mining, that wish they could have a low-wattage solution so they could weather whatever BTC price storms occur -- something that will ensure that they'll be the last man standing, no matter what.

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Gerald Davis


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October 18, 2011, 05:56:20 PM
 #5

If someone was offering 22nm SASIC it might be a bit more plausible.

Even if someone did have a 22nm SASIC you don't cut your price just to cut your price.

If it honestly had 50MH/W and a density of 1 GH/s per card (which looks like up to about 60GH per server that is insanely valuable.  FPGA are >$1 per MH and "only" 15MH/W or so.

This imaginary product wins on raw hashing power (more powerful than a 6990), wins on efficiency (3x efficiency of best FPGA designs) and wins on density.

So imagine you have a product that is vastly superior to any other product on the market by any metric.  Where do you price it?

50% of the price of nearest inferior competitor?  Really?  How about just low enough to maximize profit while stealing 100% marketshare (up to your manufacturing capacity).

If this was real it would be an incredible steal at $1000+.  If bitcoin was performing better I might buy one at $1200 assumming it had a warranty just to simplify my rigs.  Replace a garage full of hot, noisy, bulky rigs (10GH/s) with a single cool and nearly silent workstation that I can keep in an airconditioned office.  Even better put it in a datacenter (preferably one which accepts bitcoins and just collect a check each month).  SIGN ME UP.

Anyone smart enough to build something like this is smart enough to know its value.

Someone releasing a product 3x better than anything else seen is suspicious but someone releasing a product 3x better at half the cost well that is a slam dunk scam.  Free markets simply don't work that way.

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October 18, 2011, 06:18:37 PM
 #6

but, hey ,,, Drivers are available.
http://butterflylabs.com/drivers/

they even have their own coffee mug, this must be true
http://www.cafepress.com/butterflylabs
norulezapply
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October 18, 2011, 06:37:04 PM
 #7

It's a scam.

Quote
Are your algorythms, PCB’s or other products available for purchase separately?

They spelled algorithms wrong.

If they can't even spell algorithms, how the fuck do they manufacture products that solve them more efficiently than any other product in existence today?

ANSWER: They don't.

If my post helped, I'll happily accept a few bitmills!   15rGg6A1JFZV3b7TTbtpAaiYGdUD1e1oAm
plastic.elastic
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October 18, 2011, 08:05:40 PM
 #8

Who would be dumb enough to fall for this?

They dont even have the real pic of the product.

And that PCB is rendered. LOL

I would love to see suckers fall for this trap.

Tips gladly accepted: 1LPaxHPvpzN3FbaGBaZShov3EFafxJDG42
JL421
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October 18, 2011, 10:48:25 PM
 #9

Someone should order with paypal...if it doesn't work, chargeback...
CanaryInTheMine
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October 18, 2011, 11:03:00 PM
 #10

i hope it's not a scam.

anyway... i ordered one via paypal.

if it's a scam, we will know as soon as I or anyone else here who orders receives one of these, or don't receive it...
if a scam, i will reverse the charges. simple as that

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October 18, 2011, 11:18:32 PM
 #11

i hope it's not a scam.

anyway... i ordered one via paypal.

if it's a scam, we will know as soon as I or anyone else here who orders receives one of these, or don't receive it...
if a scam, i will reverse the charges. simple as that

What is ETA on delivery?  Your right to chargeback expires in 60 days.  So if they promise delivery in 90 days...
CanaryInTheMine
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between a rock and a block!


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October 19, 2011, 12:10:27 AM
 #12

i hope it's not a scam.

anyway... i ordered one via paypal.

if it's a scam, we will know as soon as I or anyone else here who orders receives one of these, or don't receive it...
if a scam, i will reverse the charges. simple as that

What is ETA on delivery?  Your right to chargeback expires in 60 days.  So if they promise delivery in 90 days...

yep... i will definitely pay attention to that.  they say 4-8 weeks, so i'll watch the deadline...

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Tmoney
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October 19, 2011, 12:30:57 AM
 #13

I vote scam!
Domain named registered via private proxy.
No ssl when checking out.
http://images.google.com/search?tbs=sbi:AMhZZisTwangFHMQztVt17SEW475Nq7toxwldf6coN2FuyujY0cnFXIXdJUZc8L_1JO1iPEH6j-_1Yfh-tsWOiCPVUatrmvP2wnSjbWAHvKJ2KN1i8QPStbLRHD1q_1KMIi3ahtpzFleLRwzdNVNrPNX5HOv_1ZnIOMExocGjb8jBQDwIn57a8L1nhHWzTyCOLGyCpR3UhgqRPXjjNTauy0ydDrG-ZspGAWSI7o8S1nWyHDXtrXBaCuVvpIzJ3mwsgdYSy8aYV6vZCDGROqL0XSBPS0i3Bz0ykIV6MqspjMCUgvkWuM2nnUYfrewB2P-AOb2Hcu1RfY68AgnEQvF4N9gUTT_1_1PuBGn1Y4rQB4zcQT4rXl9HHO7rhNbLuvM4pR_1w5vHM6l7jaZq91fjPjmTgrWZDhTbDTzpIyL8Na4_1jU2zKZ83qPTdc3Rl2H-V649uxnCvMXp6p6S4SmV_1eYSTdEaeinz6bp5Qc-tBWjNUgLP3Jjg7k8bx-ss7oISDtBHHva_1OefR8cULZjPJt2x0rKpOG-rrNvJmbVW5o0AIAV45JC7z_1il4dkFUz1OQWM7-UZ8zTyf-ULDTPkUx2NHrtArR3TAXBlYA8xZXM_1zChJfhN2muUqdrtD6BBlPbAcrr_1NBk6u8v9494RiM62r-qy4Nv-OGWg8UkNFHKAeuIYztw4qMeFuXyZ4xWzHm2CGE3tK8JB0yBhZX8L3FsPCRtzzh8TNp2JsKIclYR3huotqC9k-27TgdZiW1z91WU_1l557YxUD6bcMoV7xtKs3ZJbgOkAE2L-9BHkeAMYZIdiyndj4_1VXNbqA5OJFVrUWL2Y1EAk1Dk2hW0rd0V9iuzIB5EjoJMSE-0abc38r2FWlSyrLr8Kuue1ommQVnmA9TMQKIUxVD1VRTRohZ6CmFO2eZHz4RBncGst8wYUxTxl5q0-sYSdkIMF18J-pDe_1wH7S3u8ZRPrbqditzZR4H7ibP2F1De5x80_1b1mJIordxrl7MpQMDwYKfqg4YXArR4PLqQcNGlz9fU4QMzj0xZE-2m4Tg9_1AH9QvXg--Ceg&btnG=Search&hl=en&safe=off&sa=X&gbv=2&biw=1920&bih=932
I hope you do get a sweet ass HHD enclosure though.
plastic.elastic
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October 19, 2011, 12:32:41 AM
 #14

i hope it's not a scam.

anyway... i ordered one via paypal.

if it's a scam, we will know as soon as I or anyone else here who orders receives one of these, or don't receive it...
if a scam, i will reverse the charges. simple as that

What is ETA on delivery?  Your right to chargeback expires in 60 days.  So if they promise delivery in 90 days...

yep... i will definitely pay attention to that.  they say 4-8 weeks, so i'll watch the deadline...

 Grin Greed , my friend, is what makes this scam work.

Tips gladly accepted: 1LPaxHPvpzN3FbaGBaZShov3EFafxJDG42
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October 19, 2011, 12:36:15 AM
 #15

So when they transfer their your their money out of their paypal account, where will the money for the chargeback come from? Excuse my ignorance, but I haven't used paypal for quite a few years.
CanaryInTheMine
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October 19, 2011, 12:41:58 AM
 #16

my credit card.  while you all debate whether this is a  scam, I'm willing to find out with 100% certainty. and it won't cost me anything.
like i said, i hope it's not, but if it is, i'm happy to expose it with concrete proof for the mining community

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CanaryInTheMine
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October 19, 2011, 12:43:10 AM
 #17

preorder is not for these enclosures according to them.  however, the enclosure is OEM, so ppl can use it for their application...

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shakaru
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October 19, 2011, 12:44:32 AM
 #18

So when they transfer their your their money out of their paypal account, where will the money for the chargeback come from? Excuse my ignorance, but I haven't used paypal for quite a few years.

Paypal will give them a negative balance and sue them for it.

If this turns out legit. Ill order 20

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October 19, 2011, 01:00:59 AM
 #19

So when they transfer their your their money out of their paypal account, where will the money for the chargeback come from? Excuse my ignorance, but I haven't used paypal for quite a few years.

Paypal will give them a negative balance and sue them for it.

If this turns out legit. Ill order 20

Baller.

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CanaryInTheMine
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between a rock and a block!


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October 19, 2011, 01:06:01 AM
 #20

So when they transfer their your their money out of their paypal account, where will the money for the chargeback come from? Excuse my ignorance, but I haven't used paypal for quite a few years.

Paypal will give them a negative balance and sue them for it.

If this turns out legit. Ill order 20

Baller.

selling GPUs and using proceeds to buy these units (if they are real) might work... should be close to even... unless they jack up the prices...

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