CCN reviewed the BTCGarden AM-V1 310 GH/s Bitcoin ASIC Miner back in August, a dual blade unit. A solid entrant in the SHA-256 miner market that had many upsides like the ability to stack several together. The V1 X2 can run several on one Raspberry Pi as well as being a very quiet miner. BTCGarden then took the next step quickly with the introduction of the BTCGarden v1 X2 miner. The V1 X2 updated both the board as well as the packing of four blades into one easy to stack chassis.
The new boards are not quite as wide being shorter by 2 inches. The V1 is 14″ wide plus the extra 1″ for the stacking tabs. The specs are roughly the same although the power consumption has come down a tick with the board refinement. The 12″ boards on the V1 X2 allow for the fans to focus the airflow into a tighter path over the heatsinks. This setup leads to even better cooling than the V1 as well.
Specifications: BTCGarden V1 X2 610 gh/s
Chips: 64x ASICMiner Gen3
Hashrate: 610 gh/s to 620 gh/s
Power Consumption: 620W x2 when stacked for 1240 watts total
4x 120mm Fans
Integrated GPIO connection for RPI
Can connect more that one V1 X2 unit per RPi via board interface
For this review, we stacked 2 V1 X2s for a 1.2 th/s unit running from one RPi and one EVGA 1300 Watt Supernova PSU and also two Thermaltake 750 Watt PSUs. The boards use the same cable settings from the AM V1 so attaching the extra blade set is a snap. Just make sure you start at the top with the RPi starting on the left connection using the GPIO and the cable going to the next board going from right to left connectors all the way down the chain.
The shipping gods were again benevolent and the first of the V1 X2s arrived from Minersource without any damage. The first BTCGarden V1 that we had reviewed was damaged during shipping, so there was some worry, but with the new packing and safe handling it showed up in one piece. The V1 X2 having shorter boards allows for less bend and travel that I believe helps with shipping and stacking. The second V1 X2 we received from ASICPuppy, and it also arrived with no issues.
The BTCGarden RPi image has been updated to allow for controller updates right through the console as opposed to burning a new image. You log into the console using 192.168.1.123, from here you set your board nums, pool info and IP address if you wish to change it. For the V1 X2 you will set the board nums to 4, for 2 of the X2s you will use 8. Once setting your board number is done, and you have entered in your pool information save and apply, and the miner will start mining to your pool. The simple setup makes it a breeze for those new to mining to setup and use. The stacked V1 X2 ran at 1.1 th/s to 1.2 th/s with no issues. The ASICMiner Gen 3 chip normally has had a 10%+ reject rate. The newest version of BTCGarden’s RPi image seems to have cut down on this. The average reject rate was under 7% which like the Rockminer T1 and the ASICMiner Tube are steps in the right direction.
A robust PSU must be used to stack two of these due to the higher power draw of the V1 X2 averaging 1200 to 1260 watts at the wall during my tests. We recommend that you use at least two 750 watt gold rated PSUs or higher to run a V1 X2 dual stack, one per four boards. While here I pushed an EVGA 1300 watt PSU to the limits, that would lead to failure over a short amount of time.
The four fans pull air over the blades creating an even airflow over the heatsinks. Each V1 X2 comes with a lid that you can put on the top to further direct the air over the blades helping to keep them much cooler.
As with the V1 dual blade the easy access to the power connections and RPi connection makes setup a breeze and simple.
CCN was able to ask Matt, one of the co-owners of Minersource, some questions on the BTCGarden miners. Minersource has co-location hosting services, so ease of access and use is a must.
Does the stack-able design and chaining of the BTCGarden miners make for simple setups and has this helped in the co-location and maintenance aspect of using them?
It does help the in colocation aspect, when blades and such die, or replacing PSUs, work is very easy.
What things are you looks for BTC Garden to improve upon in their next revisions? Like Rockminer, BTCGarden has been very active in communicating with their customers.
It would be great if the power consumption were improved, and possibly better density.
Have sales of the BTC Garden been as strong as some of the other miners you carry?
They have been neck and neck with our S3 and SP31/35 Sales, so very strong.
Minersource is always evolving and changing to meet the fast paced changes that are always happening in the mining industry what are some things to look forward too?
We have been working with SP-Tech very closely the last few weeks. Now we provide colocation here in the US for a large number of their customers, as well as stocking and selling their wide range of products, like the new SP20. We Even started carrying a new PSU, the HP1200W, just to power the SP20.
The BTCGarden V1 X2 is an excellent miner that can be setup at home and built upon by easily adding new sections. This same ease of use is great for large farms as well. The simple design lends itself to racks of them with easy access to the connections and blades for quick setup and servicing. The power consumption could be better, but it is on par with the other ASICMiner Gen 3 chip units out there. The controller software is getting better each revision I am looking forward though to a more robust package that can be monitored with different programs like MultiMiner. Right now it cannot be as the API is net accessible and not setup to allow it.
The BTCGarden V1 X2 miner is definitely one I will be keeping, and we at CCN are looking forward to their next generation of miners to see what their next evolution is.
Images from BTCGarden