Antminer S15 Bitcoin Miner Machine In-Depth Review

Bitmain is known for its specialized high-speed, low power custom ASIC chips. They have produced a large number of custom chips, especially for mining purposes. They were established in 2013. Bitmain has a specialized team for designing these custom chips. They launched the first generation of the Antminer machine also in 2013. It is known by the name Antminer S1 miner machine. Bitmain has released multiple variants of Antminer mining machines over a span of 5 years. It includes the S1, S2, S3, S4, S5, S7, and S9 miner machines. The two latest models of Bitcoin miner machines from Bitmain are the S15 and the T15 miner machines. Both these miner machines went for sale on 8 November 2018.

Bitmain makes use of a 7 nm chip in the S15 miner machines. According to the official specifications from the manufacturer, the S15 miner machine is very durable. In addition, it comes with a high energy-saving feature. Thus, you will be able to save more power. They have also mentioned about the high performance of the S15 miner machines. There are two mining modes in the S15 miner machine. They are the standard mode and the low power consumption mode. The total power consumption ratio of the S15 miner machine is around 57 J/T as per the official specifications in the standard mode. In the low power consumption mode, the power consumption ratio of this miner machine is 50 J/T. These values of power consumption ratio were really a new record for the Bitcoin miner machines. No other miner machines were good enough to match these specifications.

Official Parameters of the Ant S15 Bitcoin Miner machine

We will have a look at the various official parameters of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine from Bitmain. The miner machine comes in two modes – Standard mode and Low Power mode. The maximum rated hash rate of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is around 28 TH/s. There is a deviation of +/-5 percent in this value. The other supported hash rates include 15.5 TH/s +/- 2 %, 18 TH/s +/- 2 %. So, there are 3 hash rates supported by this miner machine. The power consumption for each of these hash rate values are 1596 W +/-7 %, 775 W +/- 7 %, 900 W +/- 7 % respectively. The energy efficiency ratio of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is around 57 J/T when the ambient temperature is 25 degrees Celsius in the standard model. The energy efficiency ratio is around 50 J/T for the low power mode when the temperature of the ambient is 25 degrees Celsius.

We have received an evaluation copy of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. So, we will evaluate the performance of this miner machine and see if it meets the expectations.

Appearance of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine

The Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine from Bitmain makes use of an all-in-one machine design. It comes with a parallel fan design. If you compare the packaging box with that of the previous generation miner machines from Bitmain, you can clearly see that there is a major change in the packaging design. The earlier package has a cuboid shape. The current package is almost a cube shaped one. You can find the manufacturer information and other necessary information for the logistics and the warehouse in the packaging box. You can also see other details like the logo of the manufacturer, barcode, and specifications of the machine in the box. The size of this packaging box is 48.6 cm x 38.8 cm x 26.5 cm. The total weight of the whole package is around 8.7 kg.

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You will be able to find two customized pearl foams inside the packaging box. These two foams will ensure that the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine stays inside the box in an encapsulated condition. One of the foams will be covering the upper side of the miner machine, and the other foam will cover the lower side of the miner. Thus, the miner machine will remain safe during the shipping process. Bitmain has provided gaps around the pearl foam. It helps to provide easy access to the machine.

You can easily view the main body of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine when you remove one of the pearl foams from the box. The whole body of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is wrapped in an electrostatic bag. If you compare the size of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine with that of the packaging box, you will be surprised to see that the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is much smaller than the packaging box. It will only take half of the box space. So, the design of this miner machine is very compact.

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If you see the miner machines S1 to S9 series, you can see the single-tube and the double exhaust style design. The design of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is completely different from these two designs. It makes use of a dual-fan parallel single-side air intake design. In addition, the power supply required for the miner is integrated along with the miner. The size of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is 27.9 cm x 17.5 cm x 22.1 cm. The total weight of the miner machine is 7.13 kg.

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The Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is a small and tidy one. Both the mining machine interface and the air inlet are on the same side of the machine. You can find the fan on the air outlet side. Bitmain makes use of a honeycomb-shaped baffle design.

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The fact that the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is an all-in-one design helps to reduce the number of wire connections in the machine. Thus, the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine will look more concise. The maintenance will also be easy in such a design. You can also use more machines in the same area.

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You can view the model name of the miner machine in the nameplate of the body of the miner. You can also see the barcode for machine identification and the computing power on the nameplate. They have not provided any ant slip pad at the bottom of the machine. I think it would have been really a great design if they could include it in the design. It will help to improve the stability of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine when you keep it in the standing position. You can place the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine in both vertical as well as horizontal positions. So, the rack size will decide the placement technique for the miner.

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Dismantling the Internals of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine

You can see the fragile stickers on the new Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machines from Bitmain. These are stuck to the machines when they leave the factory. So, we recommend not to disassemble the miner machine by yourself. If you disassemble the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine, it will affect your machine warranty. So, avoid doing it.

  1. Disconnect the fand and the connecting cable

There are two DFB3800012000T fans inside the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. The power consumption of the fan is around 3.14 A. These fans are used to remove the excess heat from the miner machine. The parallel design implemented in the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine not only helps to reduce the cooling path but also helps to lower the wind resistance. Thus, it helps to improve the cooling efficiency of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. You can see a cable tie used for coupling the fan cable and the cable connecting the power supply and the control board. This cable tie is used to improve the appearance of the design. If you are removing the fans, you will have to remove the wires that connect the fans also. After that, you can remove the four-control board and the hash board in the miner.

  1. Disconnect and remove the power supply.Ant S15 Bitcoin miner13Ant S15 Bitcoin miner15
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First, you need to remove the connection between the mining machine and the power supply. In order to remove that, you need to use an Allen wrench. Next, you need to push the iron piece under the power outlet. It will help you to remove the power supply unit. Bitmain has provided the provision to plug in the power supply one by one. It is possible with the help of the all-in-one design. Thus, the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is easy to operate as well as maintain. You can also find that the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is connected to a voltage regulation line. The control board of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine helps in regulating the voltage of the power supply unit. This voltage regulation helps to operate the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine in two modes, standard and low power mode.

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Bitmain has made use of the 7 nm BM1391 chip in the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. This single-chip comes with a design of 1 billion integrated transistors. There is a great improvement in the performance of the BM1391 when you compare it with the previous generation chips from Bitmain. The BM1391 chips do not use the traditional over-molding packaging method. Instead, it makes use of the Exposed die packaging scheme. In this new packaging scheme, the heat sink will be in direct contact with the wafer of the chip at the back. Thus, this design helps to remove the excess heat efficiently. If you look at the hash board of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine, you will be able to see a heat sink connected to the backside of the BM1391 chip.

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This improvement in the heat transfer efficiency of the hash board of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine comes with a great advantage. It helps to reduce the area taken by a single board. Thus, it is possible to place more number of chips in the same area. The removal of the heat sinks from the design has also helped to make the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine more compact and smaller. You will be able to see four hash boards inside the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. Each of these hash boards contains 72 BM1391 chips. Thus, there are a total of 288 chips inside an Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine.

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The Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine makes use of an APW8 power supply unit. It is a high-conversion power supply. It helps lower the loss in power conversion when the miner is running. It makes the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine more energy efficient. The APW8 power supply module is capable of delivering voltage in the range of 16.32 V to 20.04 V. The design of the power supply unit is really good. You can see two fans in the power supply unit to remove the heat. They are 12E 12 V fans. These fans are rated for 0.35 A. These fans ensure that the power supply will not get heated.

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If you compare the control board of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine with the previous versions, you can see that it is smaller in size. The size is 11.5 cm x 9.5 cm.

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Full Dismantling Image of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine

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You can see the comparison of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine and the Antminer S9 Hydro water cooling here.

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If you just look at the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine, you will find it difficult to perceive the size and shape of the miner machine. So, we will also get the Antminer S9 Hydro cooling miner machine side by side. It will make the appearance comparison process easy.

Size Comparison of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine and Ant S9 Bitcoin miner machine.

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Installation and Debugging of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine

The Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is a small and compact all-in-one machine. It helps to avoid plugging and unplugging power cables into the machine. You can place the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine on your miner rack. Connect the power cord to the machine. The other end of the power cord can be connected to the power socket. Switch ON the power. Connect the Ethernet cable to the miner machine. You can connect the other end of the Ethernet cable to the router.

You need to find the IP address of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine first. The Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine will assign the IP automatically. So, you need to enter the local router and find the IP address of the miner machine. The miner will be having the name antMiner when you check in the router page.

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You can also use the Bitmain Miner tool provided by the manufacturer to find the IP address. Use it to scan and find the IP address of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. You can update the firmware of the miner if needed. You need to set the mining pool details and miner ID in the management software. You can also use the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine with many other miner machines. You can also make use of the IP Report button in the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine to find the IP address.

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You will have to go to the miner control page to see the operations of the miner in real-time. You need to go to the browser first and enter the IP address of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. It will take you to the homepage of the miner machine. You need to enter the username and password details here. If you are using the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine for the first time, root will be the default username and password.

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In the case of the new miner machine, you need to change the mining pool and the miner’s name. In order to make the changes, you need to press the Miner configuration page. You can change the address of the mining pool and the name of the mining pool here. You can also enter the details for the two backup mining pools. You can use the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine in two mining modes. They are the standard mode and the low power mode. So, you need to make the appropriate selection to start the mining operation. Once you have entered all the necessary settings, you can go ahead and click on the Save & Apply button to save all the entered values.

Once you save all the settings, the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine will restart the mining program. The miner machine will resume its normal operation after a few minutes. You can monitor the status of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine in real-time by going into the Miner status section in the mining program. You can check various miner parameters here. It includes the run time of the miner, status of the miner machine, current mining pool, computing power of the miner machine, status of the chips, frequency of operation, temperature on the chip and the PCB board, speed of rotation of the fans, and many other parameters.

Measurement Data of Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine

There are two mining modes in the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. They are the standard and low power modes. So, we will test both these modes in the miner for around 24 hours. The temperature of the test environment is around 17 degrees Celsius. The level of ambient noise is around 36 decibels during the test.

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When you switch ON the miner, the fans in the miner will start to run at its full speed. The total power consumption during this time is around 25 W. This value will increase gradually. The level of noise is around 81.2 decibels during this time.

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Standard Mode Test

We will measure the power consumption of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine in the standard mode first. We need to wait till the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine starts to run in its normal operation mode after starting up. The total power consumed by the miner machine is around 1610 W to 1620 W. The control page computing power reached the 28T mark during this period. This measured value matches the specifications shared by the manufacturer, which is 1596 W with a deviation of +/- 7 percent.

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Now, we will measure the level of noise from the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. The ambient temperature is low during this test. So, the speed of rotation of the fans in the miner machine is around 3120 rpm. The level of noise measured is around 76.5 dB. This measurement is at a distance of 20 cm. The noise level is around 67.7 dB when the noise is measured at a distance of 2 m from the machine. So, there is good control of the noise level.

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Now, we will measure the temperature on different parts of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. There are four computing power boards in the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. Bitmain has provided one temperature sensing module on each of these computing power boards. The minimum temperature value measured on the BM1391 chip is around 44 degrees Celsius, and the maximum temperature value is around 78 degrees Celsius. The temperature at the air outlet is around 42 degrees Celsius. This lower temperature value is possible with the help of the exposed die packaging solution in the ASIC chip. The temperature measured at the power outlet of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is around 28 degrees Celsius.

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We will also measure the temperatures at the contact points between the power board and the power supply unit since the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine make use of an all-in-one design. From the measurement, it is pretty clear that the temperature is different at different points.

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Now, we will see the hash rates of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. This measurement is taken after a 24-hour test run. The average hash rate of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine in 24 hours is around 28.56 TH/S. So, the energy efficiency ratio of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is 1620 W/ 28.56 = 56.72 W/T. This value matches the specification shared by the manufacturer, which is 57 J/T.

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Low power Mode Test

Now, we will do the power measurement in the low power mode of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. In order to set the miner to low power mode, you need to select the “Low Power Mode” option on the settings page of the tool. You need to save the application after making the selection. Now, the miner will run in the low power mode. The total power consumed by the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is around 836.6 W once the miner touches the computing power of 17T. This measured value matches the specifications of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine, which is 775 W to 900 W with a deviation of +/- 7 percent.

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We will measure the level of noise next. The power consumption as well as the computing power of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine will be less in this model. So, the speed of rotation of the fan will be low and stable. The measured value of fan speed is around 2400 rpm. The level of noise is around 77 dB when measured at a distance of 20 cm. The level of noise is around 66 dB when measured at a distance of 2 m from the miner. These values match with the values mentioned in the specifications of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine

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Now, we will do the temperature measurements on various parts of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine in the low power mode. The minimum temperature value on the chips on the hash board is around 25 degrees Celsius. The maximum temperature value is around 62 degrees Celsius. The measured value of temperature on the air outlet side of the miner machine is around 30 degrees Celsius. This value is lower than the standard mode value. Finally, the measured value of temperature on the power outlet side of the miner machine is around 20 degrees Celsius

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Now, we will measure the temperatures at the contact points of the power board of the miner and the power supply unit.

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Now, we will have a look at the hash rates in the low power mode. These hash rate values are measured after the 24-hour test in the mining pool. The average hash rate value is 17.5 TH/S. The measured value of temperature on the air outlet side of the miner machine is around 30 degrees Celsius. So, the energy efficiency ratio of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is 836.6 W /17.5 = 47.8 W/T. This measured value is lesser than the value shared in the specification of the miner machine, which is 50 J/T.

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Summary of Evaluation of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine

  1. The Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine supports two mining modes. The power consumption ratio per unit of the computing power of the miner machine in the low power mode is found to be lower than the specified value of 50 W/T. So, it is really good. The lower power consumption ratio helps to lower the coin mining costs.
  2. It is a small and compact machine that comes with an all-in-one design. It helps to reduce the wires. You can place more miner machines in your mining farm if you are using these machines.
  3. The heat dissipation efficiency of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is improved with the help of the Exposed die packaging solution of the BM1391 chip. In addition, the small size of the chips has helped to place more chips in the same area. It has also helped remove some of the heat sinks from the design. Thus, the overall weight and size of the miner machine have come down.
  4. The Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine makes use of an AWP8 power supply unit that is integrated into the miner machine. It is an easy to disassemble power supply unit. So, it helps to improve the maintenance part.
  5. The level of noise is significantly less for the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine when compared with other miner machines. The temperatures on different parts of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is also on the lower side.
  6. The computing power of the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine is found to be stable. There are no major fluctuations in the computing power.
  7. There is an exposed power connector in the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. It can create some issues if it comes in contact with the metal shelf. So, it would be good if Bitmain could make some improvements in this section.

There are lots of improvements from the Ant S1 Bitcoin miner machine to the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine. The S1 Antminer machine came with a computing power of 180 G / 360 W, and the Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine has a power of 28000 g / 1600 W. So, there is a great improvement. The Bitcoin industry has faced many ups and downs over the years. But we are seeing a great improvement in performance when it comes to the Bitcoin mining machines. The Bitcoin industry has moved a lot in this 10 years tenure. There are many stories when it comes to the mining circle and the cryptocurrency world. The S9 mining machine from Bitmain is far ahead of other mining machines. Currently, the bear market is sluggish, and the difficulty of the Bitcoin power has increased. Even with all these adverse conditions, we see more Bitcoin miner machines in the market. The Ant S15 Bitcoin miner machine from Bitmain will definitely set the benchmark for the upcoming Bitcoin miners from other companies also. So, we can expect more powerful miner machines in the market in the upcoming years.

 

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