Zach Herbert, the Obelisk VP of Operations, posted an update outlining the progress being made on their Decred/Sia Obelisk ASIC miner. The miner is eagerly awaited by customers that preordered the device, but the process has been plagued with production issues as Mr. Herbert describes in his update.
A few interesting things of note: the devices will be manufactured in the US rather than China as originally planned. Herbert goes on to announce that future batches will likely be manufactured in Mexico, and that “it is currently unlikely that we will be manufacturing Batches 2–5 in China.” This change in manufacturing location should be beneficial to distributors in the US as they can avoid import fees and scheduling concerns.
Herbert goes on to explain issues in chip manufacturing with TSMC, saying that the test chips they received from the foundry “mostly worked.” Those initial issues have been resolved, but the final chips appear to run a slower hashing speed than advertised. Previous updates specified Sia speeds of 800 GH/s and 1500 GH/s of Decred hashing speed. The final specification come in lower at 550 GH/s and 1200 GH/s respectively.
The chips may also ship later than expected, with Herbert warning the final product “may ship a couple weeks after the originally anticipated schedule.” The original ship date was slated to be June of 2018.
Once the devices ship to customers we’ll provide a review of the new ASIC. Until then preorder customers will need to continue to be patient. Further details and specification of the (almost?) final device are available in the original post.
Innosilicon and Bitmain both have competing ASIC miners available for preorder now.