Crucial 4GB DDR3-1333MHz UDIMM

..:: Introduction ::..


Today, I have a stellar new product up for review from Crucial, their recently announced 4GB DDR3-1333MHz UDIMMs. Crucial has always been a well known and trusted name in the world of consumer and, more recently, performance DRAM. Throughout their history, Crucial has been able to pride itself on quality products for countless platforms. For those who may not be familiar with Crucial, here’s a snippet from their website.

A wholly owned subsidiary of Micron Technology, Inc., Lexar Media, Inc. boasts one of the most comprehensive offerings of memory product lines in the industry. We deliver high-quality, award-winning products in every memory category: USB flash drives, all popular form factors of memory cards and card readers, DRAM computer memory for PCs and Mac systems, and solid state drives (SSD). We back our products with outstanding customer support and industry-leading warranties, and we strive to expand our offerings to meet the ever-changing needs of our customers — customers just like you.

With 64-bit operating systems such as Windows 7 being utilized by an ever increasing user base, Crucial has begun to offer new solutions that take advantage of the increased DRAM capabilities of a 64-bit operating system. The 4GB UDIMMs we will be looking at today are a step in the direction of providing high reliability, high density DRAMs to the consumer. As modern motherboards can support anywhere from 16GB of DRAM and up, these new 4GB UDIMMs position Crucial to take advantage of this evolving market.

Now, does everyone need 8GB, 12GB or 16GB of DRAM? No, such high densities are really only required for users of memory hogging applications such as video and photo editing, computer aided design and engineering, etc. Can an everyday user still benefit from increased DRAM? The simple answer to this is yes, if only from the fact that it will allow more system critical data to stay in DRAM vs. being stored on the HDD. This will allow for a more responsive system, and one that can handle a far greater beating when it comes to multitasking. Don’t forget, there are also benefits to multi-channel setups with additional DIMMs. Before we crunch some numbers and see how these 4GB UDIMMs perform in different setups, let’s take a quick look at Crucial’s official specifications, as well as the modules themselves.

Corsair TWIN2X2048-6400PRO

..:: Introduction ::..

Let’s be frank here, does Corsair really need any introduction in the enthusiast community? I doubt it. Corsair is arguably the most well known name when it comes to high performance RAM. I can remember back when I first began adventuring into the world of overclocking on more than a generic scale. Corsair was the most recommended performance RAM brand that I could find, and since that day I have yet to be let down by a Corsair product.

DDR2 RAM on the other hand has been around now for a little while, and has started to pick up pace with development. In the initial runs, there weren’t too many options out there for high performance DDR2 modules, but with time we’ve seen some spectacular frequencies coming from the latest DDR2 lines. As of now, only the latest and greatest chipsets from Intel support the DDR2 standard.

Today, we’ll be taking a look at Corsair’s XMS2 Pro Series, more specifically the TWIN2X2048-6400PRO. This kit is made for those out there looking to pack their system with RAM. Any serious gamer knows the benefits of increased RAM. Albeit small in the scheme of things such as FPS, there are clear load time and smoothness benefits, especially in arenas such as Battlefield 2. Anyone who’s played BF2 with 1GB and 2GB of RAM knows about the difference I’m speaking of. Before we examine the modules and performance, let’s take a look at the official specifications of Corsair’s TWIN2X2048-6400PRO.

Super Talent T1066UX1G5 1066MHz DDR2

..:: Introduction ::..

Well, it sure has been some time since I was last able to take a look at some high performance RAM here at MBR, but today we end that cycle with a breath of fresh air. Vista is here and so is the need to upgrade RAM for all those early adopters out there, myself included. Today’s testing will be conducted on a WindowsXP platform, however look out for several Vista results in the coming weeks.

Super Talent isn’t exactly the most well known performance RAM manufacturer out there. Most will lean towards the performance powerhouses like Corsair and OCZ, but there can be some more affordable options if you’re willing to look. Super Talent has taken aim at the overclocking community with their T1066UX1G5 modules. Boasting a rated operating frequency of 1066MHz and 5-5-5-15 timings, these sticks should offer anyone with a willing board and processor, substantial performance headroom. Will they? There’s one way to find out…

 

..:: Super Talent T1066UX1G5 Specifications ::..

  •  
  • 1066MHz DDR2
  • CL 5-5-5-15 (CAS-TRCD-TRP-TRAS)
  • 2 x 512MB Modules
  • Unbuffered
  • Single-Sided Heatspreader
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty
  • 240 Pin DIMM
  • Non-ECC

As you can see from the specs listed above, these modules are competitive with the big boys in terms of rated frequency and timings required to achieve said frequency. Super Talent does not provide any rated voltage for reaching this frequency, so for testing purposes we ran them at 2.2V, which is a common option on performance oriented motherboards.

In terms of product packaging, minimalist is the way I’d describe it. Super Talent packages the two modules in a plastic casing, along with the little graphical identification card. Other than these items, the package is bare. If you don’t know how to install RAM, clearly not the best option, but then again if you don’t know how to install RAM you probably shouldn’t be delving into overclocking just quite yet.

The modules themselves are both single-sided. The heatspreader is affixed only on the side with the RAM chips, unlike some other single-sided modules that have a full wraparound heatspreader installed. In this case it probably won’t make too big of a difference even with some additional heatspreader material. The heatspreader itself is even quite plain, silver with the Super Talent logo emblazon in light blue and a sticker identifying the module type.

OCZ 2GB PC2-6400 Vista Upgrade Edition

..:: Introduction ::..

OCZ Technology is a name that needs no introduction to the computer enthusiast community. OCZ is easily one of the most well known and recognized names when it comes to high performance RAM. They have consistently provided some of the most recommended performance RAM brands available, often leading the market in clock and cooling enhancements.

Windows Vista on the other hand is in the infant stages in terms of being out in the wild world. Vista has promised many new features, and as we all are familiar with, software drives hardware requirements. Thanks to many of the new features of Vista, performance users will need to upgrade to 2GB+ of RAM to achieve the same relative smoothness as was seen on WindowsXP platforms with up to 2GB of RAM. This is where OCZ has stepped in.

Today, we’ll be taking a look at OCZ’s 2x1GB Vista Upgrade Kit. This kit is designed for those users that are migrating from WindowsXP to Windows Vista with limited RAM, 1GB for example. OCZ even goes as far as describing this kit as “the ultimate upgrade from 1GB of RAM ensuring the best possible gaming and productivity on Vista systems”. Any serious enthusiast, and especially gamer, knows the benefits of increased RAM. Albeit small in the scheme of things such as FPS, there are clear load time and smoothness benefits. Thanks to the new SuperFetch feature in Windows Vista, this performance boost becomes far more noticeable in terms of load times. It is important to note that the Vista Upgrade Edition modules are also available in single quantities of 1GB, so if a 2GB kit is out of your price range you can still hit the 2GB mark. Before we examine the modules and performance, let’s take a look at the official specifications of OCZ’s 2GB Vista Upgrade Edition.

 

..:: OCZ Vista Upgrade Edition Specifications ::..

  •  
  • 800MHz DDR2
  • CL 5-5-5-15 (CAS-TRCD-TRP-TRAS)
  • 2 x 1GB Modules
  • Unbuffered
  • Copper Mirrored XTC Heatspreader
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • 240 Pin DIMM
  • 1.85V EVP ±5%

As you can see from the specs listed above, upgrade is the proper term for describing these modules in terms of the EVP rating. Most of the high performance overclocking kits have extreme EVP ratings in the 2.1-2.2V range, while here we only see 1.85V which isn’t much over stock DDR2 voltage. Timings also fall in the upgrade category as several DDR2-800 performance kits have tighter timings than 5-5-5-15 now.

In terms of product packaging, OCZ adopts a keep it simple stupid approach. Unlike what we recently found with our DDR2-1066 Super Talent kit, OCZ has included a small folding manual of sorts in all five main languages. Given that this is an upgrade kit rather than an enthusiasts dream, this makes logical sense and should be expected.

The modules themselves feature OCZ’s XTC heatspreader affixed on both sides of the modules. These XTC heat spreaders have been out for some while, so I won’t go into too much detail on how they work other than the obvious fact that the honeycomb cutouts allow cool air to flow around the RAM chips far better than solid metal, reducing hot spots. These also allow for a much lighter cooling solution. Finally, the only markings on the heatspreaders are the typical production identification sticker. You can see that each module is 1GB and rated as PC2-6400, or DDR2-800.

Super Talent T1000UX2G5 DDR2-1000

..:: Introduction ::..

It was only a few months prior that we had our first experience with a DDR2-1066 kit from the likes of Super Talent. Since that time, Super Talent has been making headway into the enthusiast market with improved products capable of higher frequencies at lower timings. The modules we’ll be taking a look at today belong to the T1000UX2G5 2GB DDR2-1000 kits. This is the C5 kit that Super Talent offers, however they do also have a C4 kit that we hope to take a look at in the near future.

Super Talent still isn’t exactly the most well known performance RAM manufacturer out there. In fact, they likely aren’t even one of the names that come to mind to an enthusiast when they think of performance DDR2. Most will lean towards the well-known industry powerhouses like Corsair and OCZ, but those kits typically come with a name premium attached. The last kit from Super Talent left us feeling good, will it continue with these T1000UX2G5 modules? Read on to find out!

 

..:: Super Talent T1000UX2G5 Specifications ::..

 

  •  
  • 1000MHz DDR2
  • CL 5-5-5-15 (CAS-TRCD-TRP-TRAS)
  • 2 x 1GB Modules
  • Unbuffered
  • Cast Aluminum Heatspreader
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • 240 Pin DIMM
  • 2.20V VDIMM

 

As you can see from the specs listed above, these modules are competitive with their rated frequency and timings required to achieve said frequency. Unlike what we found with the DDR2-1066 kit, this time Super Talent does indeed provide a rated voltage for reaching the 1000MHz rated frequency, 2.2V. This is a typical voltage for achieving such a high frequency.

In terms of product packaging, minimalist is the way Super Talent seems to go. This time there was a little more to it with an information card, but in comparison to some of more in depth guides offered by the big boys, this certainly left a little to be desired.

The modules themselves are both double-sided. The blue, cast aluminum heat spreader is affixed on both sides of each module and should provide adequate cooling for the chips. These heatspreaders felt much more substantial than those found on the DDR2-1066 modules reviewed previously. They also looked much nicer. A sticker declaring all of the information about the modules is placed on one side in the center of the heatspreader.

OCZ PC2-8500 Reaper HPC Edition

..:: Introduction ::..

With the recent release of Intel’s P35 chipset, and the upcoming release of the performance and budget grade chipsets supporting newer DDR3 technology, DDR2 is about to begin a measured drawdown in performance machines. Granted, we won’t be equating DDR2 to the Dodo for a substantial amount of time, but as soon as DDR3 becomes more plentiful and cheaper, it’ll be time to upgrade if not simply for the significant frequency capabilities of DDR3.

For those of you out there looking at DDR3 and sneering at the prospect of upgrading anytime soon, today we’ll be taking a look at some impressive DDR2 modules from OCZ, the PC2-8500 Reaper HPC Edition 2GB kit. With this line of performance DDR2, OCZ has implemented a heatpipe cooling system for the DDR2 chips. In theory, such a cooling system should allow for increased cooling efficiency given the effectiveness of heatpipes, if everything is implemented correctly of course. Before we delve more deeply into the implementation and effectiveness of this cooling setup, let’s first take a look at the official information and specifications from OCZ for the PC2-8500 Reaper HPC Edition.

 

..:: OCZ PC2-8500 Reaper HPC Edition Specifications ::..

The Reaper HPC is an innovative patent-pending cooling solution developed by OCZ to effectively minimize heat produced by high-speed memory. As heat rises into the thermo-conductive copper heat pipe conduit, it is dissipated through the strategically-placed compact aluminum fin array. By guiding performance-robbing heat away from key memory components, the unique Reaper HPC design helps facilitate improved overclocking performance, while improving longevity and stability of the modules.

The first modules to be incorporated with the new Reaper heatspreader are rated at 1066MHz and run at CL 5-5-5. Featuring an EPP (Enhanced Performance Profiles) programmed SPD, PC2-8500 Reaper HPC modules will immediately boot at the rated specs on the latest generation of NVIDIA® SLI™ chipsets. Although the OCZ Reaper HPC series was coined for enthusiasts, EPP eliminates the need for manual configuration and makes memory optimizations a household item for the complete range of consumers looking to maximize system performance through overclocking.

As part of OCZ’s line-up of premium memory, PC2-8500 modules are backed by a Lifetime Warranty and industry-leading technical support.

*The Reaper HPC series uses heat pipe technology to rapidly remove heat from the main body of the memory modules and conduct the thermal load to the extended radiator fin array. The addition of the extended fin array nearly doubles the total surface area available for heat dissipation while the heat pipes warrant near isothermicity throughout the entire design. The result is a doubling in effective heat dissipation at equal delta t or, in real systems, a significantly lower operating temperature of the memory modules.

**OCZ EVP (Extended Voltage Protection) is a feature that allows performance enthusiasts to use a VDIMM of 2.35V without invalidating their OCZ Lifetime Warranty.

  •  
  • 1066MHz DDR2
  • CL 5-5-5-15 (CAS-TRCD-TRP-TRAS)
  • 2 x 1GB Modules
  • Unbuffered
  • Heatpipe Conduit Cooling
  • OCZ Lifetime Warranty
  • 240 Pin DIMM
  • 2.30V VDIMM

 

..:: OCZ PC2-8500 Reaper HPC Edition – A Closer Look ::..

In all the years we’ve had performance RAM, we’ve seen almost anything you could dream up in terms of features to garner the attention of enthusiasts. I still remember the days when a heatspreader was the hot feature to have. With the Reaper HPC line of DDR2, OCZ has adopted a heatpipe cooling approach to maximize the cooling abilities and therefore, we hope, allow for higher voltages safely and higher overclocking speeds.

The cooling component for each module consists of two bonded pieces. Each piece of the heatspreader is tightly affixed to the RAM chips and to the other piece of heatspreader. The heatpipe runs along the heatspreader in a fitted groove, and then loops around. There is another set of small bonded heatspreader components on the top of the heatpipe to further facilitate heat exchange.

I have to say, I was quite surprised with the overall weight of each module. These are some of the lightest I have worked with due to the lessened material used for the heatspreaders. Even with the addition of a heatpipe and additional heatspreader material along the top, these modules are extremely light.

Finally, the overall look of these modules is both sleek and aggressive. The solid black heatspreaders follow along with “Reaper” theme and add a little more flavor to the product as a whole. If you’re sporting a windowed case or have a setup where you can enjoy the guts of your system, these modules would make an excellent addition to any setup.

Super Talent 4GB T800UX4GC5

..:: Introduction ::..

With the rapidly approaching six month mark since the release of Windows Vista, many of wait-and-see attitude computer users will be making a decision on whether or not to venture over into the unknown. Traditionally, many enthusiasts wait at minimum six months after a new OS release for initial bugs to be worked out. We’ve seen bugs come and go with Vista, and soon more users could be adopting Windows Vista.

With Vista come great RAM requirements for optimal performance. While this RAM is put to good use with the enhanced prefetch features in Vista, it only serves to add yet another piece of hardware that potentially needs upgrading in the move. Vista 64-bit also adds the added benefit of raising the RAM limit. In a traditional 32-bit OS like WindowsXP or Vista 32-bit, users typically hit a max around the 3.25GB mark due to the addressing limitations. They will support 4GB, but you won’t be able to use all 4GB.

Today, we’ll be taking a look at one such 4GB kit from Super Talent. This is Super Talent’s initial venture into the world of 4GB DDR2, coming in with a rated clock speed of 800MHz and CAS 5 timings. Since they released this kit not too long ago, they have since released a CAS 4 for performance users. We’ll be examining the performance on a 32-bit Windows Vista platform as 32-bit OS’ are still the most widely used and of course, it’s what we have available for testing as well. For reference, the amount of RAM available in our testing is 3.32GB according to Windows Vista. Before we venture on to the benchmark results, let’s first have a look at the specifications and the modules themselves.

 

..:: Super Talent T800UX4GC5 Specifications ::..

The T800UX4GC5 is a high performance 4GB kit of DDR2-800 DIMMs that supports CL5 latency. It is ideal for gamers and power users with a 64-bit operating system such as Windows™ Vista™ Ultimate. This product has been verified with four 2GB sticks, for a total 8GB in Windows Vista Ultimate. This kit has been tested and is guaranteed to operate at 800MHz at 5-5-5-15 latencies at 2.1 volts. It has been tested as a matched pair of modules in a dual channel motherboard to ensure ultimate reliability, compatibility and performance. These modules are clad in our custom blue cast aluminum high-efficiency (HE) heatspreaders for optimum thermal performance. Efficient cooling is essential to optimize speed and to preserve the life of the DIMMs.

 

  • 800MHz DDR2
  • CL 5-5-5-15 (CAS-TRCD-TRP-TRAS)
  • 2 x 2GB Modules
  • Unbuffered, Non-ECC
  • Anodized Aluminum Heatsink
  • Super Talent Lifetime Warranty
  • 240 Pin DIMM
  • 2.10V VDIMM

 

..:: Super Talent T800UX4GC5 – A Closer Look ::..

As you can see from the specs listed above, these modules are competitive with their rated frequency and timings required to achieve their rated frequency. Unlike what we have found in the past with other kit from Super Talent, the T800UX4GC5 kit provides a voltage for reaching the 800MHz rated frequency, 2.1V. This is a typical voltage level required for 4GB modules to attain an 800MHz frequency.

In terms of product packaging, minimalist is the way Super Talent always seems to go. Contained within the product packaging there was a little more than an information card, but in comparison to some of more in depth guides offered by the big boys, this certainly left a little to be desired.

The modules themselves are both double-sided. The blue, cast aluminum heat spreader is affixed on both sides of each module and should provide adequate cooling for the chips. These heatspreaders felt much more substantial than those found on the DDR2-1066 modules reviewed previously and are identical to those found on the DDR2-1000 modules. A sticker declaring all of the information about the modules is placed on one side in the center of the heatspreader.