Can a Butterfly Labs Mini Rig SC cause health concerns if stored in a bedroom?


Assuming heat and noise factors are not a concern, are there any additional issues (radiation) to be concerned about?

How far should this device be stored away from children's play rooms and sleeping rooms? Can it be in a locked ventilated cabinet?

I'm trying to understand if this device, when powered on at full capacity, causes any health and safety concerns.


Posted 2012-09-30T18:11:59.800

Reputation: 12 166


"Assuming heat and noise factors are not a concern [...]"

In a child's sleeping room, nothing can be assumed. Use your head. Don't consider doing this. – Stephen Gornick – 2012-10-09T18:30:49.883

@StephenGornick Of course I'm not going to put it in children's room, I don't have kids either (see my profile). I added that bit to get people to think about even the smallest health concern, which it seems to have accomplished. – halfbit – 2012-10-09T18:44:33.243



I don't know the actual design of the Butterfly Labs machines, but I assume that the health risks should be similar to a traditional mining rig. Probably the main concern would be the noise level of any fans installed in the machine, as well as potential electric shock should the machine be operated haphazardly and without proper grounding. You also might be worried about potential static build up, high-temperatures and overheating (should the machine gather dust over a period of time). One way or the either, the common sense would dictate that the machine should generally be safe under normal conditions, but I would keep it out of kids' reach.

Again, I have no practical experience with dealing with any Butterfly Labs hardware, and while I have a technical electronics diploma, I'm not an expert in safety or similar devices.


Posted 2012-09-30T18:11:59.800

Reputation: 42 235


At the time of writing no hardware is available for inspection. However, the standards body for your country will provide the necessary health and safety criteria that should be adhered to. In the case of the US you should look for UL laboratories. In the EU the CE regulations apply.

Do bear in mind that the BFL equipment is likely to designed for an industrial environment so will have higher noise and interference than domestic equipment.

Gary Rowe

Posted 2012-09-30T18:11:59.800

Reputation: 7 383

A 1,500W space heater might have UL rating but that UL rating doesn't tell you about common sense where turning it on high and leaving it in your kids bedroom running 24/7 is a bad idea. – Stephen Gornick – 2012-10-09T18:29:11.773

Fair point - I'm coming at it from the point of view of consumer electronics standards so no noxious fumes, risk of explosion etc. Obviously, common sense should prevail. – Gary Rowe – 2012-10-10T08:44:12.163


Would you place always-on 1,500 Watt space heater in your kids room?

Of course not.

But that's effectively what that Mini Rig SC becomes.

Plus, it is a $30K piece of computing hardware -- something not made to handle squirt guns, pillow fights and whatever else goes on.

Stephen Gornick

Posted 2012-09-30T18:11:59.800

Reputation: 26 454


health concerns.... same as a normal pc, i have a 1500w psu, with 4 amd 7970's, it defnitly does'nt translate directly into heat as Stephen said, because the heat produced by the processors is the wasted energy, where as the majority of energy is used to compute...

for examle: just like a light bulbs purpose is to make light, but it produces some heat because nothing is ever 100% efficent, thus the heat raidiated is lost or wasted energy.

and in the pics it looks like the mini rig will have 42 (+-:120mm) fans so i assume it would be loud if all the fans are above 50%.


Posted 2012-09-30T18:11:59.800

Reputation: 9

Heh, all energy "used to compute" results in either vibration, sound or heat. There is no bending the laws of physics, and with this equipment, nearly 100% of the electrical consumption results in heat. – Stephen Gornick – 2012-10-09T18:35:07.367