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Author Topic: Raspberry Pi $25 PC - Could we run GPUs/FPGAs on this?  (Read 13880 times)
P_Shep
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February 23, 2012, 11:03:51 PM
 #41

the Pi would be nice, but I think I'll get another router to do this.
Though, it is 3x more expensive.
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February 24, 2012, 01:34:17 AM
 #42

The majority of people will likely buy both the car and the earphones @ Store B because in their minds, they think "$100 isn't very much in the context of a $12,000 purchase," so they aren't willing to drive all the way back for such relatively meager savings.

I completely disagree.  Most people would use the total cost of their purchase to decide where to buy, not some relative proportion.  You fell victim to the "everyone but me is stupid" disease.  It runs rampant on the internet.  Humans making rational decisions is part of the foundation of economics...


Any basis for your claim? I certainly used to do it (especially the other irrational decision people often make comparison shopping, looking at relative performance to other similar objects, then paying a high premium for something which really doesn't affect my enjoyment of the purchased item just because it performs slightly better than the much cheaper item). Basis of argument was from http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_gilbert_researches_happiness.html I believe (could've been something else he did -- I don't have time to watch it again).

Don't mix your coins someone said isn't legal
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February 28, 2012, 01:24:13 PM
 #43

Controlling an FPGA farm can be done with almost any microcontroller you want to use.  The new wave of all these microcomputers (beagleboard, panda etc etc) simply allows you to do so while using familiar linux kernels; if you want to control an FPGA farm with minimal power and space consumption, you have a couple of options that are simpler, really...
-Arduino w/ Ethernet Shield
-NXP mBed MCU
-Make your own board with a PIC/ARM/AVR/whatever and either tap into the GPIO on an FPGA board or put the FPGA on your board yourself.  Regardless it's gonna consume minimal power and minimal space.  And it's easy, mbed or arduino are both great platforms to start working on, from both a learning and business perspective.

And which FPGAs need an ATX PSU...?

Is the idea here that it would be smart for me to try to make an uber cheap controller board rather than try to compete with BFL or ZTEX in FPGA mining tech?  Cause that I can do, let me know the specs of what size constraints and power consumption you'd like to deal with and I'll put up a design, no problem.
By that I mean something you plug a miner into one end, the wall into the other, an ethernet cable for getworking, and control all your mining on a little LCD onboard the device without all this nonsense "uPC" overhead. 

Some of you may not be particularly impressed with my work over on "Nanominer", fine, whatever, I'm not asking anything for this, I'd like to get into the hardware design game and I don't mind doing this all on spec, what sorts of features/constraints are we talking?

Nanominer <=  www.nonverba.org/nanominer
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February 28, 2012, 01:43:48 PM
 #44

And which FPGAs need an ATX PSU...?

Well no FPGA needs an ATX PSU.  Still if efficiency is the goal wallwarts tend to be horribly inefficient.   If you have say 20 boards buying a single high efficiency ATX PSU is cheaper, cooler, neater, and more efficient than 20x individual PSUs.

I would much rather have 20 20W boards running on a 500W 80Plus-Gold PSU @ 92% efficiency than 20 70% efficient wallwarts with extension cords, and power strips running everywhere.  The cleaner power of higher quality PSU is just a bonus and good for longevity.

Quote
Is the idea here that it would be smart for me to try to make an uber cheap controller board rather than try to compete with BFL or ZTEX in FPGA mining tech?  Cause that I can do, let me know the specs of what size constraints and power consumption you'd like to deal with and I'll put up a design, no problem.
By that I mean something you plug a miner into one end, the wall into the other, an ethernet cable for getworking, and control all your mining on a little LCD onboard the device without all this nonsense "uPC" overhead. 

If it has things like web reporting showing stats, charts, etc, and can monitor/control multiple FPGA you likely have a winner.  I think a lot of people would pay some decent money for a "turn key" solution.  Now if it requires console access, limited functionality, and has less features & capabilities than existing solutions (mATX board, w/ linux & cgminer) you likely won't have much demand.

If you can make it user friendly with some webpage charting/stats/control honestly you might end up making more than the FPGA developers.  I would imagine most of the value would come from the "turnkeyness" not the component costs and with no competitors you likely could mark it up significantly and still have sales.

To give you an idea.  An atom board + RAM + usb drive = $80.  That gets you no case, having to install linux yourself, get cgminer up and running, find some web monitoring package, still use ssh for control, etc.  I would pay $100 for something which is clean & easy (maybe has a small cube case optional?) I don't care if it costs you $18 to build it. 

The $100 is paying for the functionality not the parts.
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February 28, 2012, 09:27:10 PM
 #45

I would pay $100 for something which is clean & easy (maybe has a small cube case optional?) I don't care if it costs you $18 to build it. 

The $100 is paying for the functionality not the parts.

How many do you think would be interested - I'm getting a raspberry, so could have something within a week or two, and then it's just a case of having an image that can be written to an sd card similar to BAMT. Put up on a torrent, and you'd have to buy your own raspberry_pi. The only drawback is that there are no cases yet - given the number of FPGA boards without, would that be a problem?

you might also be interested in the following, though I don't know when it will be shipping (End of Feb?)
http://www.solid-run.com/ 99EUR/135USD
CuBox is an almost 2" cube, hence the name (Cube-Box), its features include:
Marvell Armada 510 based 800MHz ARM processor
ARMv7 Instruction set, including VFP3 floating point unit and wmmx SIMD unit.
1GByte DDR-3
HDMI
OpenGL|ES 2.0 GPU
Peripherals:
10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet
2 x USB 2.0 (host)
eSata 2, 3Gbps
Infra-red receiver
Optical audio SPDIF transmitter
microSD for operating system
microUSB (device) for debug and recovery
The platform is provided with completely open source SDK:
Android 2.2
Linux kernel 2.6
Demo software for demonstrating capability of the platform:
XBMC
Ubuntu and Debian


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February 28, 2012, 09:42:18 PM
 #46

From what I know:
Quote
BitSyncom has plans to use this as their routing device on the meshnet tower.

They are currently in the process of porting pfSense onto it. They have also been working with debian-arm group working on a rather different project(ultimately still to have the option to boot debian from a arm device), the word currently is Raspberry Pi will see some play in the Meshnet project if not for miningOp management.

if there's enough interest I'll bug Yifu and write an article on it since there's talks on considering investing into a BFL Single or multi-set ups, feel free to ask any questions.
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February 28, 2012, 10:19:48 PM
 #47

The majority of people will likely buy both the car and the earphones @ Store B because in their minds, they think "$100 isn't very much in the context of a $12,000 purchase," so they aren't willing to drive all the way back for such relatively meager savings.

I completely disagree.  Most people would use the total cost of their purchase to decide where to buy, not some relative proportion.  You fell victim to the "everyone but me is stupid" disease.  It runs rampant on the internet.  Humans making rational decisions is part of the foundation of economics...


Any basis for your claim? I certainly used to do it (especially the other irrational decision people often make comparison shopping, looking at relative performance to other similar objects, then paying a high premium for something which really doesn't affect my enjoyment of the purchased item just because it performs slightly better than the much cheaper item). Basis of argument was from http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_gilbert_researches_happiness.html I believe (could've been something else he did -- I don't have time to watch it again).

I'm just laughing at the preposterous idea that people go out shopping with that kind of list in their head - "right, ok, today I need to buy me some headphones... and a car".
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February 28, 2012, 11:57:03 PM
 #48

the gpu is Not really needed. I wonder about getting a model1 and use a usb-ethernet adapter.depends on if arm linux kernel has that support
 
I can imagine something like this combining with FPGA for an all in one miner.. Or even gpu sockets

Might be able to fit it inside a bfl single box...
BkkCoins
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February 29, 2012, 07:10:02 AM
 #49

Looks like the first Raspberry Pis are on sale.
I was hugely disappointed to see they changed distribution to use RS and Farnell.

Both sites are overloaded now but even after waiting a long time and getting to the Farnell page I see they're selling them for $50 not $35. I can't tell yet if that includes shipping because the pages keep hanging. I can't imagine that passing them thru distributors like these guys will allow them to make any money for the foundation nor keep the pricing promises. My experience with "mainstream" distributors is they always want to ship by FedEx or UPS and charge a fortune for it.

What a shame.

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February 29, 2012, 08:07:33 AM
 #50

Looks like the first Raspberry Pis are on sale.
I was hugely disappointed to see they changed distribution to use RS and Farnell.

Both sites are overloaded now but even after waiting a long time and getting to the Farnell page I see they're selling them for $50 not $35. I can't tell yet if that includes shipping because the pages keep hanging. I can't imagine that passing them thru distributors like these guys will allow them to make any money for the foundation nor keep the pricing promises. My experience with "mainstream" distributors is they always want to ship by FedEx or UPS and charge a fortune for it.

What a shame.

There's actually two products on the Farnell site.  One for $50 and one for $38.   No idea what the difference is, but I obviously ordered the $38 one Smiley   Free shipping as well which is nice.

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February 29, 2012, 08:32:36 AM
 #51

RASPBERRY-PI - RASPBRRY-CHIPSET - CHIPSET, RASPBERRY PI, MODEL B - £21.60 (google tells me thats € 25.54)
RASPBERRY-PI - RASPBRRY-PCBA - SBC, RASPBERRY PI, MODEL B - € 33,02

What I think (but can't find clear on the website) is the first one is the components (chipset) and the second is the complete assembled version.
The first one is listed under accessories, the second one under primary platform.

/edit, seems I can't order them yet.
Binnenkort verkrijgbaar - registreer hier uw interesse (Coming soon - register your interest here) at farnell site.
Register here to express an interest in Raspberry Pi at rs site.
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February 29, 2012, 09:02:13 AM
 #52

RASPBERRY-PI - RASPBRRY-CHIPSET - CHIPSET, RASPBERRY PI, MODEL B - £21.60 (google tells me thats € 25.54)
RASPBERRY-PI - RASPBRRY-PCBA - SBC, RASPBERRY PI, MODEL B - € 33,02

What I think (but can't find clear on the website) is the first one is the components (chipset) and the second is the complete assembled version.
The first one is listed under accessories, the second one under primary platform.

/edit, seems I can't order them yet.
Binnenkort verkrijgbaar - registreer hier uw interesse (Coming soon - register your interest here) at farnell site.
Register here to express an interest in Raspberry Pi at rs site.

You could earlier (when I ordered).  They've disabled the buy button now though.

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February 29, 2012, 09:08:57 AM
 #53

Apparently, according to the Rasp Pi twitter, they sold out the first batch and the "register interest" is so they can gauge demand for the next batch. It's still a bit unclear as the twitter doesn't seem to be definitive on that and whether both sites are now out, or just Farnell.

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February 29, 2012, 10:10:48 AM
 #54


There's actually two products on the Farnell site.  One for $50 and one for $38.   No idea what the difference is, but I obviously ordered the $38 one Smiley   Free shipping as well which is nice.

There are two models, A and B. The A was 128Mb RAM but it got upgraded to 256MB like the B. The B also has ethernet and 2 USB ports.

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February 29, 2012, 10:55:37 AM
 #55


There's actually two products on the Farnell site.  One for $50 and one for $38.   No idea what the difference is, but I obviously ordered the $38 one Smiley   Free shipping as well which is nice.

There are two models, A and B. The A was 128Mb RAM but it got upgraded to 256MB like the B. The B also has ethernet and 2 USB ports.

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Only the B has been manufactured so far, so it's not that.   The $50 version may have a shorter delivery timeframe, we'll see Smiley



"All of the first units to be produced are the $35 Raspberry Pi Model B. We are launching with Model Bs as there has been a much larger demand for them from the community."

http://raspberrypi.org/#modelb

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February 29, 2012, 11:48:08 AM
 #56

Broadcom BCM2835 700MHz ARM1176JZFS processor with FPU and Videocore 4 GPU
GPU provides Open GL ES 2.0, hardware-accelerated OpenVG, and 1080p30 H.264 high-profile decode
GPU is capable of 1Gpixel/s, 1.5Gtexel/s or 24GFLOPs with texture filtering and DMA infrastructure
256MB RAM
Boots from SD card, running the Fedora version of Linux
10/100 BaseT Ethernet socket
HDMI socket
USB 2.0 socket
RCA video socket
SD card socket
Powered from microUSB socket
3.5mm audio out jack
Header footprint for camera connection
Size: 85.6 x 53.98 x 17mm

this is taken from RS components site...

Where it says GPU is capable of 1Gpixel/s, 1.5Gtexel/s or 24GFLOPs with texture filtering and DMA infrastructure you'll have to excuse my ignorance here, FPGA stuff is like an alien world to me,  but isn't 24GFLOPs a rather large number..... can anyone compare this to say a 6970? GFLOPs for GFLOPs

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February 29, 2012, 11:50:57 AM
 #57

Where it says GPU is capable of 1Gpixel/s, 1.5Gtexel/s or 24GFLOPs with texture filtering and DMA infrastructure you'll have to excuse my ignorance here, FPGA stuff is like an alien world to me,  but isn't 24GFLOPs a rather large number..... can anyone compare this to say a 6970? GFLOPs for GFLOPs
AMD's GFLOPs # for 6970 is 683, or >28x greater.

Don't mix your coins someone said isn't legal
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February 29, 2012, 12:33:02 PM
 #58

Where it says GPU is capable of 1Gpixel/s, 1.5Gtexel/s or 24GFLOPs with texture filtering and DMA infrastructure you'll have to excuse my ignorance here, FPGA stuff is like an alien world to me,  but isn't 24GFLOPs a rather large number..... can anyone compare this to say a 6970? GFLOPs for GFLOPs
AMD's GFLOPs # for 6970 is 683, or >28x greater.
https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Mining_hardware_comparison
So the 6970 gets 397 MH/s with 683 GFLOPS, or 1.72 GFLOPS / MH/s
So the raspberry pi GPU gets 24 / 1.72 = little under 14 MH/s
14 MH/s for $25 (A type is cheaper but with the same GPU) is $0.56 / MH/s

Conclusion, the normal GPUs for a normal pc are 3 to 6 times more efficient.

Another point, (most? all?) GPU miners are probably written with the opencl library, I don't know if there exists a version of it for the raspberry pi.
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February 29, 2012, 12:50:03 PM
 #59

interesting...

so assuming 14MH/s

to get anywhere near a 6970 in terms of raw MH/s power even at a conservative guestimate.... your probably looking at at least 25-50 of these units all hashing away at around 14MH/s to the same pool under a single account to get near say 600MH/s ( 42 rasberries )

Obviously really inefficient but would look really neat in a rack with loads of these things hooked up... sort of backwards retro

TIPS/Donations: mwahahaha.. not that desperate, just a thank you or a flame please but if you must... 1NTZcWQGfdGang9piBKUv9Z1VZ7x6cTXjV
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February 29, 2012, 04:28:36 PM
 #60

from a quick google it doesn't support opencl

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