PH Miners: Should You be Suspicious?
Whenever a new company announces they are selling dedicated mining hardware for Bitcoin and Litecoin, the digital currency community is on high alert. Over the past few years, various companies have claimed to offer this type of service, although very few of them have been able to deliver on these promises. PH Miners Inc. is […]
Whenever a new company announces they are selling dedicated mining hardware for Bitcoin and Litecoin, the digital currency community is on high alert. Over the past few years, various companies have claimed to offer this type of service, although very few of them have been able to deliver on these promises. PH Miners Inc. is a new mining hardware company, and we wanted to find out if they can deliver on their promises.
Also read: Obama Asks For Middle Ground With Encryption
PH Miners Issues Major Press Release
A quick Google search for pH Miners Inc. yields no significant results, other than various copies of the press release the company has sent out over the past week. The company website does appear in 4th place on Google, but it doesn’t offer much substantial information.
It is not uncommon to see new companies issue press releases, as it is an excellent way to gain additional exposure for the services they are trying to offer. However, press releases are usually accompanied by fully developed websites with several sources of useful information about the companies’ products.
General information on the company is hard to find as well. Even though pH Miners has listed their office addresses on the website — two small locations in the United States and Japan — their company information is hidden in the WHOIS records.
Nevertheless, PH Miners CEO Eric Franklin seemed to be excited about his company’s products, stating:
“This is an exciting time in the cryptocurrency market, and it’s a great opportunity for us to release these two miners to people across the globe. Both Bitcoin and Litecoin have risen in value and popularity over the past several years, and more and more people, financial institutions and organizations are looking at them as viable alternatives to more traditional, government-created currencies. After a great deal of hard work from our team, we are very pleased to officially launch these innovative cyber currency miners.”
The products offered by pH Miners include a 25TH/s Bitcoin miner, at the price of $3,000 USD. The company does not provide technical details on the machine, such as which mining chips are being used. The only thing mentioned is that the chips are 16nm High-Performance Process chips. After reaching out to the company, a representative explained that “we have developed our own chips, we have our own factory.
This bitcoin miner will consume up to 0.1 Watt per GH/s, or a total of up to 2500 Watts at full load. Strangely enough, the machine has an embedded 2,100 Watt power supply, which won’t be powerful enough to let the machine run at full power at all times. The company’s representative told us that this wattage discrepancy existed because they “set up the device to run on optimized performance and not overclock,” which apparently means that the included power supply should actually provide sufficient power.
Their second product is a 1000MH/s Litecoin Miner, which can also be used to mine any other digital currency using the Scrypt algorithm. Similar to its Bitcoin counterpart, there is no useful chip information, presumably due to the company’s claim that it manufactures its own chips. The website advertises that this chip is a 20nm High-Performance Process, which will consume roughly 830 Watts of electricity.
The Litecoin miner has an advertised warranty of 15 years, whereas the Bitcoin miner will “only” get five years of warranty coverage. The pH Miners representative told us that the warranty differences were based on algorithms that “estimated time for the device life under optimized performance.”
The Litecoin miner will set customers back by $3,000 USD, which is the same price as the Bitcoin miner. While we might expect Bitcoin miners to be more expensive due to its popularity compared to Litecoin, pH Miners told us that manufacturing costs for the two machines were almost the same, resulting in identical retail prices for both miners.
The images used for both products look identical, making it impossible to distinguish between the designs for either miner. The design similarities could just be external though, because the company’s representative told us that they used the same case for both machines. The representative did not comment on the internals of the miners, though, so we cannot be sure what is actually housed inside the cases.
Free Shipping, No Company Visits
PH Miners wants to sweeten the deal by offering free shipping to any part of the world. The company will use courier services offered by UPS and FedEx, ensuring delivery within three to seven business days. Free shipping is uncommon with mining hardware orders, since miners are generally heavy and rack up high shipping costs.
PH Miners will not allow customers or interested parties to visit their offices in person. According to their FAQ, there have been “several cases of industrial espionage in the past.” When asked for comments, the company didn’t have much to say on this issue, telling us that “before we launched our products . . . we had some issue which resulted on [sic] a information spreading.”
All in all, it appears the offering by pH Miners raises more questions that it provides answers at this time. There is very little public information about the company. Virtually nothing is known about the mining chips used in their miners, other than the claim that they were produced in-house. Identical cases on both the Bitcoin and Litecoin miners make it impossible to distinguish any differences in design, given the lack of information regarding internal components. Finally, no one is allowed inside pH Miners’ facilities to confirm that their business is legitimate, due to the convenient excuse that they have had past problems with “corporate espionage.”
Previous scams in the mining scene — such as Butterfly Labs — make digital currency enthusiasts wary of any new companies that make big promises but offer little information about themselves. PH Miners falls into this category, selling two different mining rigs at top-shelf prices while neglecting to give potential customers any substantial information about the devices. We can’t say for sure if you should be suspicious of pH Miners, but we do advise that you be cautious. Invest in these products at your own risk.
What do you think about pH Miners? Let us know in the comments below!
Evan Faggart contributed to the writing of this article.
Source: Pr Newswire
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, pH Miners