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Author Topic: OK, i confirmed the model of FPGA they are using in BFL single.  (Read 15841 times)
ngzhang
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May 07, 2012, 08:30:23 AM
 #41

This means anyone with a chinese source of used FPGAs could manufacture BFL Single clones producing about 5 Mh/s per dollar(!), making it by far the most economical mining platform.

Yeah, anyone who can write a firmware for it to work Smiley

but the main question as i said, these "second hand" chips are really cheap because NO BODY USE IT. that means, if you want to buy them in bulk, will cause 2 effects:

1, there are only hundreds of them. there are no followup because they are second handed.
2, the seller will soon increase the price several times because they realize somebody "REALLY NEED THEM".

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May 07, 2012, 08:42:06 AM
 #42

Yeah, anyone who can write a firmware for it to work Smiley

Yes, multiple people in this community are capable of designing (or have designed) a 400 Mh/s mining core on the EP3SL200, and I believe are capable of shrinking it to fit on the EP3SL150.
ngzhang
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May 07, 2012, 08:56:05 AM
 #43

i disassemble the box and start a JTAG probing on JTAG2.
...
by soldering the 0R resister back, I can detect the FPGAs by the JTAG normally.

Nice job, ngzhang!

I've been offering a 10BTC bounty to whoever did this; I've sent you twice that in recognition of your thoroughness:

 http://blockexplorer.com/tx/588034bf2d854c442fdbff09d38133efa56b8ac8d9593043db956f63bfadf25d



oh, that's really generous man. thank you!  Grin

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May 07, 2012, 09:09:51 AM
 #44

1, there are only hundreds of them. there are no followup because they are second handed.
2, the seller will soon increase the price several times because they realize somebody "REALLY NEED THEM".

Some of those resellers on alibaba only accept 100 unit minimum orders and state they can supply 10000 units (per day) . Like this one:
http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/427677808/EP3SL150.html
Sounds like they have boatloads of these on shelves.

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May 07, 2012, 09:25:49 AM
 #45

Some of those resellers on alibaba only accept 100 unit minimum orders and state they can supply 10000 units (per day) . Like this one:
http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/427677808/EP3SL150.html
Sounds like they have boatloads of these on shelves.

Don't put too much trust in what a Chinese seller on Alibaba puts in an ad. Sometimes the people that makes the ads and fills in the form don't even speak English. They just copy and paste what others have written. In the link you provided, the seller also states they can sell the FPGA:s for 0.1 USD/piece, provided you buy a big enough quantity. Do you think that's possible?

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May 07, 2012, 09:55:08 AM
 #46

Why debate? Just send a message to 2-3 vendors asking them specific details and see what's true and what not!

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May 07, 2012, 09:59:55 AM
 #47

Then make a FPGA miner that does 3/4 the MH/s with 1/2 the power and 1/2 the price Smiley

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ngzhang
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May 07, 2012, 10:19:26 AM
 #48

1, there are only hundreds of them. there are no followup because they are second handed.
2, the seller will soon increase the price several times because they realize somebody "REALLY NEED THEM".

Some of those resellers on alibaba only accept 100 unit minimum orders and state they can supply 10000 units (per day) . Like this one:
http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/427677808/EP3SL150.html
Sounds like they have boatloads of these on shelves.

if you really ask them, they will start to search the market (they have nothing in their hand), and tell you the actual price and supply ability.
 i have some friends do this job at past Cheesy

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May 07, 2012, 11:19:14 AM
 #49

As long as they deliver it at a good price i don't see any problem if they don't have it in hand.

Edit: ...if BFL hasn't aquired all of them Cheesy

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May 08, 2012, 08:29:16 AM
 #50

As long as they deliver it at a good price i don't see any problem if they don't have it in hand.

Edit: ...if BFL hasn't aquired all of them Cheesy

Exactly that might just be the problem. BFL are using EP3SL150's, and they are buying every chip they can find for less than a certain threshold. This makes the market price increase, and is probably also one of the reasons why BFL singles have so long waiting times - BFL can't buy enough FPGA's.

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May 08, 2012, 10:21:38 AM
 #51

...BFL singles have so long waiting times - BFL can't buy enough FPGA's.

Bingo! Mystery solved!!! Now BFL is not a SCAM, not a CON, just lack of production supplies.

How ridiculous can a human look, when he is so jealous, that he can not afford himself to accept a simple fact...
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May 08, 2012, 12:45:19 PM
 #52

...BFL singles have so long waiting times - BFL can't buy enough FPGA's.

Bingo! Mystery solved!!! Now BFL is not a SCAM, not a CON, just lack of production supplies.

How ridiculous can a human look, when he is so jealous, that he can not afford himself to accept a simple fact...

Well he is least guilty of shady business tactics.
If he played by the rules he would have come forward straight ahead with the real, not inflated specs, the fact that there will be a limited supply and what hardware he is gonna be using. I would have bought one if I knew what I get.
Instead he decided to claim he is using a custom chip and stated the product will have 120% the performance and 60% the power requirements it actually turned out to be.
Lots of people are feeling the same way.

He fucked up, he could have secured himself a cutting edge position in the market with a innovative idea. Now BFL will probably end up as a side note alas:
'First closed source mining implementation using discount pro-grade fpgas'

And BTW: This could very well still turn out to be a scam.
What do you think will happen if there aren't enough EP3SL150 available for cheap to actually build the rig boxes people ordered?

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they keep laughing, then they start choking on their laughter, and then they go and catch their breath. Then they start laughing even more.
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May 08, 2012, 01:06:34 PM
 #53

i'm no expert but i think they use different chips.
Either you are wrong or ngzhang is lying.

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they keep laughing, then they start choking on their laughter, and then they go and catch their breath. Then they start laughing even more.
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May 08, 2012, 01:07:33 PM
 #54

i'm no expert but i think they use different chips.
Either you are wrong or ngzhang is lying.
Different chips in the rig box.
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May 08, 2012, 01:16:10 PM
 #55

i'm no expert but i think they use different chips.
Either you are wrong or ngzhang is lying.
Different chips in the rig box.

Ah, yes that could be the case.
But since BFL hasn't come forward with any information either that is pure speculation.

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they keep laughing, then they start choking on their laughter, and then they go and catch their breath. Then they start laughing even more.
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May 08, 2012, 03:36:42 PM
 #56

Thanks for confirming, ngzhang. It is not too surprising of a discovery, as the Stratix III EP3SL150 was one of xaxik's reverse engineering guesses: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=53530.msg720365#msg720365

The most surprising, for me, is to learn that used units of these FPGAs sell for $50-60 in China. Two chips per Singles, plus $50-80 for the remaining components, means that the BOM cost for a BFL Single (with used FPGAs) is ~$150-200. This means anyone with a chinese source of used FPGAs could manufacture BFL Single clones producing about 5 Mh/s per dollar(!), making it by far the most economical mining platform.

Will someone be able to produce free software for it ?
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May 08, 2012, 05:03:51 PM
 #57

Nice job!
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May 08, 2012, 06:01:17 PM
 #58

Designing an 80watt board is not as easy as designing a 40watt (8watt per chip) board. And obviously whoever designs it will be interested on making a decent profit on it. So maybe it won't be less than $500 USD.
enmaku
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May 08, 2012, 06:09:47 PM
 #59

Well at least I got a meaningful update to my FIT data question. Not that any FPGA would be the weak point in those calcs anyway...

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May 08, 2012, 07:42:25 PM
 #60

Thanks for confirming, ngzhang. It is not too surprising of a discovery, as the Stratix III EP3SL150 was one of xaxik's reverse engineering guesses: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=53530.msg720365#msg720365

The most surprising, for me, is to learn that used units of these FPGAs sell for $50-60 in China. Two chips per Singles, plus $50-80 for the remaining components, means that the BOM cost for a BFL Single (with used FPGAs) is ~$150-200. This means anyone with a chinese source of used FPGAs could manufacture BFL Single clones producing about 5 Mh/s per dollar(!), making it by far the most economical mining platform.

Will someone be able to produce free software for it ?

The nice thing about VHDL / Verilog is that it can be compiled for every FPGA.
Optimizations for the specific device can be done so it probably wouldn't get BFLs performance initially but would most likely surpass it considering how many more people are involved.

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they keep laughing, then they start choking on their laughter, and then they go and catch their breath. Then they start laughing even more.
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