When we review memory DIMM modules often it's all about memory timings and the highest frequency possible, especially the latest high-end generations memories can manage 2000+ MHz.
The latest reviews all however have shown that after 1600 MHz performance you will need to seek really hard to see a noticeable difference in performance. Hence most of our recommendations always have been this: it's better to get more memory than faster memory as long as you stick to say 1333 MHz.
We feel that more memory is rather important, and in that trend memory manufacturers have started to increase the density of DIMM modules. Where 1 and 2GB DIMM modules have been the standard, we now see very good progress in 4 GB DIMM modules.
Today we'll do things a little different, G.Skill designed a 8GB low voltage DDR3 kit (2x 4GB) that can be set at 1600 MHz yet still run a CAS latency of 7. And that is truly interesting because the denser the ICs get, the higher latency typically gets.
So against all rules and odds, we'll pop this 175 EUR dual-channel kit on a triple channel motherboard. See, typically we test at triple channel 3x2 GB at 1333 MHz as baseline. This kit offers more 2GB more memory, we'll pursue the performance of 8GB in dual-channel with that memory clocked at 1600 MHz CL7 on a triple channel motherboards/processor.
The end results will be very interesting, our test suite software will be run of the mill, we'll simply take all standard PC configurations and processors and compare this memory seated on a Core i7 965/X58 setup and evaluate it to the baseline performance of other chipsets/processors and their respective reference baseline performance.
Will these dual-channel 4GB DIMMs be slower than tripple-channel ? Will performance drop opposed to other configurations? Nope, the end result is a PC that, when directly compared to the triple channel Core i7 965 based PC, is something that is slightly faster, though marginal .. it is very interesting to observe.
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