If you have visited the Butterfly Labs Forum in the last few weeks you will have noticed that they are taking a bit of heat from their regular posters, there has been an upsurge in dissatisfaction. The discontent stems from a perception that information is not coming quick enough.
It seems that BFL_Josh as the staff forum representative has stepped up and decided to front with a new set of photographs of their new production line in their new factory assembly being built. If you go to their forum you can see the entire series but I would like to draw your attention to this image (from BFL_Josh);-
I am sorry about the photography skills (BFL_Josh needs to take classes, or get glasses), but what you are looking at in this image a ‘PnP’ machine, or pick and place machine, a very important part of the production line that places the extra components on the PCB to make an ASIC come to life.
I will leave it up to you to decide if to decide if the photo is fake or not, but I would like to point out that if the images are not to be believed no one is going to pay an estimated cost of about $250,000 USD to fake a photo.
The big implication of this is, while we have seen ASCIMiner show images of their new ASIC chips we know nothing about their production line. It may be that ASICMiner can put 30 GHash/s online tomorrow, but with this kind of equipment Butterfly Labs may be able to put 1 THash/s on your desk next month.