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Obelisk SC1 – the First SIA ASIC Miner Is Confirmed!

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SIA is a cryptocoin based on SIA Storage – a decentralized cloud storage system that allows users to enjoy safe and 100% anonymous storage for a small fee. The system is based on decentralized nodes all around the world.

The storage service received many positive reviews so far and looks like it is becoming a decent alternative and rival to giants such as Amazon S3 and Dropbox.

Until not long ago, the only way to mine SIA coins was by either using a GPU rig or by renting HDD space to others via Minebox. It does make sense since the decentralized storage system relies on thousands of users from all around the globe who provide free HDD space.

However, not long ago SIA Tech released an ASIC for SIA coins.

Meet the Obelisk SC1

SIA Tech was a bit reserved about this ASIC miner. Therefore, no one knew exactly what it will be until Friday 23th. Even then, there is still little information about it and new info is being released every day.

What we know so far is that the Obelisk is a 28nm full custom ASIC that is being designed and will be manufactured by a third-party US-based semiconductor company. According to SIA Tech, it is a trustworthy company wit a 20-year track record in ASIC design. If that is true, then we might expect good quality hardware, opposed to those ASICS that are designed by enthusiasts.

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Hashrate and Price

Until Friday 23th, it was unclear about the hashrate and the price of the Obelisk. Now we know that the ASIC costs $2499 and can be preordered on their site.

The presale will start in 1 day (Wednesday, 2pm eastern time) and will last for one week.

The expected hashrate of the Obelisk is 100 GH/s, which means that with a block reward of 20M SC/DAY the monthly revenue will be of 60,000 SC. The revenue will be higher in the beginning and is expected to get to 60,000 SC/month when 10,000 Obelisks will be sold. This is expected to happen by June 2018.

SIA Tech claims that the power draw of the miner will be below the 500W mark. Combined with the expected hashrate of 100 GH/s, we get some impressive numbers. It is certain that once the Obelisk is released, there will be no room left for GPU SIA coin miners.

Finally, SIA Tech promised to introduce decentralized mining pools by the time the miners will be shipped. This will allow users to choose between solo and pool mining.

Shipment and Payment

While the presale starts in 1 day, the first ASIC shipments are expected to happen in June 2018. There might be delays since ASIC manufacturing isn’t something SIA did before, so personally I take the expected shipment date with a pinch of salt.

Just like most ASIC manufacturers, SIA Tech will only accept Bitcoin for their miners. They won’t accept SIA coin as payment since the relatively new coin does not have the liquidity it takes to handle such massive transactions in such a short period of time. Bitcoin does.

Package

According to SIA Tech, the miner package includes everything, even the power supply. They promise that the setup is minimal.

Controversy and Critics

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Now, there has been a lot of controversy regarding the release of the Obelisk SC1. You probably noticed the tension in the forums about this new ASIC. That was expected since ASCIS are rarely welcomed in the mining community to begin with. On the other hand, the introduction of ASICs was rather beneficial for the cryptocurrency world and it defined cryptomining as we know it today. This is why I prefer to stay away from any bias as much as possible when making my research about any specific ASIC.

People have been also complaining about SIA Tech only accepting Bitcoin as payment. The daily fluctuations of the cryptoccurency price greatly affect the final price of the ASIC and many users are not okay with that. Yesterday, SIA Tech officially acknowledged this issue and promised to compensate the loss if the price of the currency drops by up to 5%.

The main downside about the Obelisk SC1 is that it does not support any other algorithms except the one for SIA coin. Most popular ASICs can work with multiple coins that are based on the same algo, which gives them more versatility and lifespan. This is the only downside about the Obelisk SC1 that does make sense in my opinion.

In Conclusion

Whether the Obelisk SC1 will be a good ROI or not, it will definitely change the way SIA coin is mined and traded. I really hope that it will be for the best.

While the price of the Obelisk SC1 is rather impressive, the ASIC is expected to outperform any GPU rig. According to the official site, each ASIC chip performs as well as 100 GPU’s. I think that’s something to consider.

What do you think about this upcoming ASIC? Will it be worth the money? How will its release impact the SIA coin?

Thank you for reading. As always, your comments, suggestions and questions are welcome.

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  • E_

    It’s such a large up front investment for mining only one coin. Is siacoin really the future for cloud storage? What about Storj or Filecoin? I know siacoin has a bit of a head start, but so did yahoo over google in 1999. I’d love you hear other people’s thoughts on this.

  • Lorenzo Matteo

    Will it mine other coins, such as Burst, Sotorj, Decred?

  • sc3pilot

    So $2500 for an initial revenue stream of about 900/mo, with the typical exponential difficulty increases of 1.5x per month…

    Month 1 – $900
    Month 2 – $600
    Month 3 – $400
    Month 4 – $266
    Month 5 – $178
    Month 6 – $119

    That’ll pay for the unit, and then you get about $100/month and falling fast for your investment of $43/month in electricity (at 12c/kWh)

    And, of course, all the risk is yours to take as the revenue may fall off much faster than that – and this is after you’ve already spent thousands building your mining rig that is instantly obsolete for Sia once this thing ships.

    Also, if there’s an ASIC for Sia now, you can bet that ASICs for all other Blake coins are not far behind. And, with Ethereum going Proof of Stake in a few months, there will be nothing left for GPUs to mine for profit except maybe ZCash, which will become unprofitable fast with every GPU in the world switching to it.

    Time to put all my cards on Ebay while they are still way overpriced.

    • micmren

      Your math is based on them actually selling 10,000 ASICS now if they don’t meet that goal lets say they only sell 1,000 you can add another 0 to that equation. Granted its all risky and no one truly knows how many will sell or the difficulty bump or if another company comes out with an ASICS chip prior to this one.

  • David in Texas

    First shipments approximately 1 year from now? No way. Too much can happen.

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