Two new Bitcoin ASIC Miners : Scam or Real?

16/09/2013 15:35
EST. Journalist:

As we are all aware of, if you want to keep on mining in the Bitcoin universe, you’ll need an ASIC miner sooner or later , if you want to be profitable that is. We’ve been through a passage of USB ASIC miners (the Block Erupters) which are now rapidly declining in price.

It has recently come to my attention that there are 2 new ASIC’s announced, which are supposedly in stock. That is something you don’t see too often (but it has happened before). So let’s take a look at these two new Bitcoin ASIC’s, shall we?

First up, we have the Red Fury USB miner. Yes, that’s right, a new USB miner. Although you can’t quite compare it to the Block Erupter, because it runs a lot faster, and is also carrying an entirely different chipset.

Red Fury USB Miner

The Red Fury USB Miner contains a BitFury chip , which you might had already guessed by paying close attention to the device’s name. Why red, you wonder? Simple! They have a red led on the board, which indicated they are mining. Ah, those little things in life amuse me…. But anyway, let’s take a closer look at the specs of this new miner.

The Red Fury USB Miner’s creator (or vendor?) claims that these babies run at 2.5 GH/s, which makes them roughly 7.5 times as efficient as a USB Block Erupter. Off to a good start i’ld say. But, if it’s more powerful, it should also require more power, right? Well, it’s not as bad as you might expect. In the development of these ASIC chips, the manufacturers also have the power consumption in mind, and BitFury seems to have done a great job.

Apparently, these devices run on 2.5 watts and 500 mA, like the Block Erupter. So you basically get a way more efficient USB miner, using the same amount of power. That’s excellent! But, this doesn’t come cheap of course. A Red Fury USB Miner will cost you 2.1 Bitcoin (as of this writing), however, this also INCLUDES worldwide shipping. All in all, it’s not a bad price, considering the price of 1 BitFury chip is 130$, and shipping is usually 0.15-0.4 BTC. Products will be shipped from Indonesia, so you may be subject to paying VAT/Customs fees when buying these items.

There is a dark side to this coin aswell though. The person selling them on BitcoinTalk has uploaded several images, aswell as a Youtube video showing the devices in action. However, there is no website for these products. And the only payment information we have is a Bitcoin address in the topic’s original post. This is not unusual, but so far no one from BitcoinTalk has confirmed they actually received the product.

PLEASE NOTE : i am NOT claiming this a scam. I’m just giving you a heads up, as I’m sure you are all adults, very capable of making your own monetary decisions.

I’ve also enquired about reviewing a free demo unit, but that request was swiftly declined. Understandable, because I’m not an actual developer for one of mining programs. Ckolivas, the developer of CGMiner, will be sent a unit in the next week(s). This does mean that the current version of mining programs will most likely NOT work with the mining program you use right now. This, i cannot confirm, we’ll have to wait and see i suppose.

The second Bitcoin ASIC we will discuss is called the HashBuster. Catchy name, isn’t it? This miner is comparable to the Red Fury USB Miner, as they both run the same speeds (~2.5GH/s) because they use the same BitFury chipset. Power consumption is a different matter though. The Red Fury USB Miner can be connected to any USB port on your computer or USB hub. The HashBuster comes with a Molex connector, which has to be plugged in to your PSU. The required voltage for the HashBuster is between 5v and 15v, however, 12v is supposed to be optimal.

Should you order this device, you will receive a 40mm fan and a USB cable aswell. Basically, a complete package to get you up and running as soon as you receive it. Pricewise, the HashBuster is also slightly more expensive than the Red Fury USB Miner. The HashBuster comes at the price of 2.5 Bitcoin, EXCLUDING shipping costs. Worldwide shipping is available for 0.2 Bitcoin added to the price of the device.

Whether or not the HashBuster is supported by your favorite mining program is unknown as of this writing, but it wouldn’t surprise me if it doesn’t work 100% correctly yet. However, I’m sure that the mining software developers will work hard to support the new devices as soon as possible.

As with the Red Fury USB Miner, you cannot buy the HashBuster on a website. There is a topic on BitcoinTalk about the device, with some pictures, but no Youtube video (yet). If you try to visit, you’ll simply be redirected to the BitcoinTalk topic.

I’ve also enquired about reviewing a free demo unit for the HashBuster, but i was met with the same reply as i had received from the Red Fury USB Miner seller. As said before, completely understandable. This does create both credibility and suspicion though. Credibility because they aren’t desperate for putting units into atleast 1 person’s hand, but suspicion because we have no actual proof of the devices existing or being shipped.

Once again, I’m NOT claiming either of the devices are a scam, you are smart enough to do research & make your own decisions.

Conclusion : it looks like the ASIC market has gotten a bit bigger now, with two new devices which “should” be available for immediate dispatch. Both run at similar speeds, yet require a slightly different power supply. Pricing is slightly different aswell, so pick your poison and hopefully you’ll get what you paid for.

By: Jdebunt for

This post was last modified (EST) on 20/08/2014 08:58

Jonas Borchgrevink @JonasBorch

Founder of and Passionate about how technology can empower people to create a more just and sustainable world.

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