G.Skill Announce High Speed DDR4 Memory Kit

The extreme performance memory giant, G.Skill, proudly announced yet another extreme speed DDR4 memory kit. We’ve recently seen memory manufacturers hit over 3000MHz in consumer memory kits; G.Skill then took it up a notch, up to 3666MHz at only 1.35v. This is a first of its kind memory kit; high-speed, 16GB (4x4GB) using premium class Samsung 4GB IC chips.

 This speed was validated on a Gigabyte X99 SOC Champion motherboard, the Ripjaws 4 DDR4-3666MHz memory kit pushes the high-end X99 chipset to new levels of performance.
DDR4 has come a very long way since release back in August 2014. We all know that the limiting factor of the Intel X99 CPU and motherboards are the other components; this new 3666MHz speed has given a glimpse of what that platform can really do. This speed means you can have the ultimate gaming system of workstation with the ability to run smoother than ever before. 

The G.Skill 3666MHz memory kit is equipped with the latest Intel XMP 2.0; a standard that was developed for the X99 platform. This means enthusiasts and overclockers can overclock this memory kit to boost their system with 100% stability with ease.

Like all of the G.Skill memory kit range, this kit includes G.Skill’s limited lifetime warranty; with support via online forums, emails and telephone.

Are you looking to upgrade your memory? Are you waiting for Intel Skylake before you take the plunge? Let us know in the comments.

Crucial Ballistix Sport 2400MHz Quad Channel DDR4 16GB Memory Kit Review

Introduction


Memory, the most vital part of any computer that gets overlooked the most. There’s not a lot to say about RAM apart from its expensive and very confusing. DDR4, the newest iteration of RAM is currently the fastest version of the consumer RAM, with speeds exceeding 3333MHz.

Crucial are one of the big players in the RAM game, providing us with solid performance at a more affordable price. Today’s kit is the Ballistix Sport 2400MHz, one of Crucial’s cheaper sets, providing us with minimal heatsinks and the base unit to use a black PCB. Let’s see how this set compares to the likes of Corsair, G-Skill and our base 32GB Crucial DDR4 set.

Specifications

Packaging and Accessories

We won’t dwell on the packaging too much as it is very plain and simple. Ffour modules neatly packed into a small rectangular box. This kit is a quad-channel variety so each module is 4GB in size.

A Closer Look

The Ballistix Sport kit looks very understated. A very slimline heatsink panel on each side. Such a minimalistic design which I think might put some off due to looking a little “cheap”. Hopefully that is not the case with the performance.

Crucial Ballistix Sport LT 16GB 2400MHz Quad Channel DDR4 Memory Kit Review

Introduction


With every new DDR memory release comes a decline in operating voltage and a decrease in heat output. In the transition from DDR2 to DDR3 and now DDR4, we’ve seen voltages drop and the need for large memory heatsinks are no longer necessary. This allows memory brands to release high-performance memory kits in compact low profile form factors that require minimal cooling. Crucial Ballistix Sport LT is a great example of this – it boasts high frequency yet it still has a low profile design making it ideal for use in compact system builds and with large tower heatsinks that are definitely going to be necessary to cool some of Intel’s swanky new Haswell-E Core i7 5XXX processors.

2400MHz sits on the higher end of the consumer DDR3 kits, as a result we should expect to see some excellent performance from this new Crucial 2400MHz DDR4 kit but the real question is: how well can most applications take advantage of the improved memory architecture? Let’s find out in today’s review.

Specifications

Packaging and Accessories

Packaging is very boring here, a simple clip case displaying two modules with a very small amount, but useful information.

A Closer Look

Crucial seem to have taken the original SPORT memory kit design and added a lip to the upper edge, which hugs the top of the PCB and meet the other side at the top.

Crucial Ballistix Elite 2666MHz Quad Channel DDR4 Memory Kit Review

Introduction


Memory, no matter how you look at it, you need it. Starting life as super slow DDR modules, it has come a long way from the simple 600MHz speeds, now exceeding 3000MHz in most higher end consumer kits. Module sizes have also come a very long way, back in the day with 128MB, yes Megabyte, to now 4GB modules as the standard with 8GB becoming the norm very soon.

The kit we have in today is the Crucial Ballistix Elite DDR4 2666MHz. This is currently the highest clocked memory modules that Crucial produce, which is lower than what the likes of Corsair and G-Skill offer, but let’s see if this Elite 2666MHz kit has what it takes to compete with the big boys.

Specifications

Packaging and Accessories

We won’t dwell on the packaging too much as it is very plain and simple: four modules neatly packed into a small rectangular box. This kit is a quad-channel variety so each module is 4GB in size.

A Closer Look

The Crucial Elite range is all very similar, but the transition from DDR3 to DDR4 has seen the fins removed from the top of the heatsink; A lower profile makes room for a bigger CPU heatsink.

Lightning Tube ‘Treatment’ given to Avexir RAIDEN DDR3 Memory Modules

The RAIDEN DDR3 memory module series is known for their high performance and apparently for their unique feature. The modules are using the world exclusive patented technology of plasma tubes in order to mimic the lightning effect for gamers seeking a more unique look and something to brag about when presenting their rigs to friends.

The high-performance memory modules are said to pass 16 Avexir Ic Sorting Technology processes and 14 memory module functional, burn-in and compatibility tests on Intel chipset 7, 8 and 9 series before shipping, adding a heavy layer of confidence for customers looking to buy reliable memory for their PCs.

Avexir also built the memory modules with 8 layers of performance optimized design-printed circuit board and industry grade resistors and capacitors, making the RAIDEN series one of the top-level specification modules. They also feature the Intel XMP technology, allowing users to tune the memory modules to the rated speed with ease.

While prices for the modules are still unknown, it is said that Avexir will ship the modules with speeds ranging from 1866 to 2400 MHz and 4 to 8 GB density.

Thank you Guru3D for providing us with this information

Patriot Viper 3 Mamba DDR3 2133MHz 16GB (2x8GB) Memory Kit Review

A few months ago I took a look at a Limited Edition kit from Patriot which was built specifically for the Intel Extreme Masters championships, andall in all, I was very impressed with what the kit had to offer, both in terms of styling, but more so on the performance side, with its bandwidth the opened right up with only the slightest of overclocks. The Viper kit that I’m looking at today is pretty much the same as the IEM kit that I saw previously, the only difference being its capacity and colour. Hopefully the increase in capacity, still allows for a large a mount of bandwidth to be opened up with only a slight overclock like previously seen.

The Viper kit comes in four colours, giving user the choice to match their systems colour scheme, namely Limited Edition blue, green, red and black as seen below. The styling of the kits is the same throughout the range, with a simple heat spreader design and a glossy surface to the Viper branding.

Test system:

  • Asus Maximus V Formula
  • Intel Core i7 3770k
  • AMD Radeon HD 7970
  • Corsair H100i
  • Corsair HX1050W
  • Kingston HyperX 240GB SSD
  • Lian Li T60
  • AOC E2795VH

Clocked at 2133MHz at stock through X.M.P. configuration, the Viper 16GB has near identical timings to the 8GB kits with a slightly slower cycle time of 30 with the remainder of the timings staying at 11-11-11 and a 3T command rate.

After CPU-Z had confirmed our settings had been applied, we fired up AIDA64 to check the stock performance of the memory on our Z77 motherboard.

One small detail that I will point out from within CPU-Z is the unusual use of a 3T command rate – typically kits with X.M.P are seen with a command rate of 1 or 2T.

In a similar fashion to the IEM kits, the 16GB Viper kit has a pretty good stock bandwidth with 19793MB/s read, 18519MB/s write and 22083MB/s copy with a latency of 39.2ns

Seeing how far the kit can stretch its legs out, the first step is to push the clocks as far as they go with the timings left at stock – 11-11-11-30. When pushing the kit further, the CPU is also overclocked to open up the memory controller and in turn give scope for higher clocks. Working on the dividers to start, the Viper kit easily jumps up to the 2200MHz divider although anything above this resulted in a no boot scenario. Moving over to the BCLK, we know these kits don’t have much extra leeway in them and consequently a final clock at stock timings of 2222MHz was achieved.

In a similar fashion to the IEM kits, the pure Viper kits see a good gain in bandwidth with a fixed timing overclock with the gains best seen on the write bandwidth, with a gain of 2129MB/s, whilst read and copy speeds saw a gain of 1847MB/s and 2071MB/s respectively.

Allowing the timings to run free a little, there is a bit more headroom for pushing this kit a little further, although we do know from past experience that this is only by a small amount and massive overclocks should not be expected.

Trying the next divider up from 2200MHz resulted in a no boot scenario, so overclocking on the BCLK is all that remains. Edging the BCLK forward bit by bit, it didn’t take long before the kit topped out and a no post situation was seen. Leaving the BCLK at 101.7MHz resulted in an overall memory speed of 2238MHz, an overclock of 105MHz.

Whilst the gains over the fixed timing overclock are not massive, the timings remain fairly close to stock, meaning that any gains that are had are still going to be a good improvement to overall system performance.

Having seen the Viper kit in the form of the Intel Extreme Master Limited Edition 8GB kit not too long ago, I did have an idea of what was in stock, but the crucial difference between the two kits is the capacity.

Whilst 8GB kits are pretty much the standard and just about perfect for most everyday tasks, the growing number of 16GB dual channel kits on the market are showing a slight shift in trends. SFF builds are becoming more an more popular amongst enthusiasts and whilst this is great news and the sales of mini-ITX boards for example are going up, until recently, there have been not-so-many kits to choose from to maximise the capacity of these boards two DIMM slots.

This is where kits like this one come in and more importantly to see that whilst the capacity has doubled, the performance is still just as good, even when given a slight overclock. Pricing at this region of the market is also very good with the 16GB near to 2x the price of the 8GB kit as we would expect at around £120.

eTeknix Says: These new 16GB dual channel kits are soon going to have more competition, but for the meantime, the ‘Black Mamba’ Viper kits have got the bite and venom to put the competition to rest, still making it one of my top choices.

Patriot Viper DDR3 2133MHz 16GB (2x8GB) Memory Kit Review

ADATA XPG DDR3 2133MHz 16GB Memory Kit Review

Like we’ve seen with a number of memory manufacturers, ADATA isn’t a brand that immediately springs to mind when it comes down to performance kits, but little do some know XPG is ADATA’s performance division and they have memory and SSDs ready to fight the performance battles. When we look at the kit, it doesn’t scream out performance with outrageous heat sink designs or pack designs, but more goes with the trend of clean and simple, hopefully letting the figures do the talking.

The red heat spreader design with metal embossing on the surface is becoming more and more common and with red generally the colour of choice for users and manufacturers alike when it comes to performance gaming systems, its a good decision to make.


Test system:

  • Asus Maximus V Formula
  • Intel Core i7 3770k
  • AMD Radeon HD 7970
  • Antec Kuhler 920
  • Corsahir HX1050W
  • Kingston HyperX 240GB SSD
  • Lian Li T60
  • AOC E2795VH

Clocked at 2133MHz at stock, this particular kit comes with stock timings of 10-11-11-30 with a command rate of 2T and an operating voltage that ranges from 1.2V up to 1.65V. We’ve seen many times before that kits that come with a stock higher clock don’t necessarily overclock in the same ratio that other kits of lower speeds do, but always keeping an open mind, ready to get a surprise lets have a look at how this 16GB kit does.

After CPU-Z had confirmed our settings had been applied, we fired up AIDA64 to check the stock performance of the memory on our Z77 motherboard.

Stock performance on this 2x8GB kit is not bad at all, especially given the timings of 10-11-11-30, resulting in a read speed of 20355MB/s, write of 18517MB/s and copy of 22212MB/s at 37.6ns.

With the memory controller opened up, we found that the kit easily moved to the 2200MHz diveder, although at stock timings we couldn’t move on through dividers alone. Moving over to the base clock, we were able to squeeze a little extra out resulting in a memory timing of 2220MHz at stock timings.

As expected, we can see the kits bandwidth has gone up and this is especially noticeable on the write speeds. Overall we have achieved a gain of 3253MB/s bringing the read speed to 23588MB/s, 4632MB/s extra on the write and 4274MB/s extra on the copy speeds. The kits latency also has dropped by a good margin down to 34.1ns.

We know that typically kits over 2133Mhz stock don’t tend to overclock that much further in scale of lower rated kits. This is reflected by the overclock we go when allowing the motherboard to take hold of the timings itself.  After trying to raise the base clock with the memory divider at 2200MHz and only achieving 102MHz we decided to return the divider to 2133MHz and try from there to see if the kit would go any higher.

After a little bit of increasing and testing bit by bit, we ended up with a BLCK of 107.5MHz which in turn gave us a memory frequency of 2286MHz overall at a timing of 11-13-13-35.

With the memory at a higher frequency we did find that unlike before, the gains in speed were not as significant with only marginal differences to be had, mostly due to the slower timings that have to be enforced on the ICs to keep the kit stable overall.

Kits that don’t shout performance typically have something under their covers that give a surprise when we get them on to the test benches and push them a little further and yet again we have not been disappointed. Raising the memory multiplier on the motherboard unleashed a whole heap of speed that had a noticeable impact on the test bench as a whole – especially when loading windows.

Having such a a gain in bandwidth may seem like only a set of numbers for some, but when it comes to certain tasks such as image editing in Photoshop or rendering a video, the bandwidth that these kits can give has a substantial impact on the speed and fluidity of work overall. What makes this kit even more appealing is that it doesn’t have an attention seeking set of heat spreaders, leaving a compact build that has refined looks and price to go with it that is well placed in respect.

I get asked a lot as to how much memory is right for X application, and one the most part 8GB is generally the answer, when gaming for example. When it comes to more intensive tasks such as the aforementioned Photoshop, then more is better and given that the pricing on memory has turned in favour of larger kits, making the price point even more lucrative. On the most part 4x4GB kits are still the best way to go, but when we also take into consideration that compact powerhouse systems are become popular once again, we find systems utilising mini-ITX boards which only have two DIMM slots on them. This means that a 4x4GB kit is out of question and kits like the one we’ve looked at today are right there and perfect for the job.

Bottom line, if you’re in the market for a fast, high capacity dual-channel memory kit, then consider getting this, giving it a light overclock to unleash the hidden extra performance and you’re on to a winner.