two years since DDR-2 memory was introduced, modules have rocketed from
PC2-4200 speeds right through to PC2-8500! The industry has seen DDR-2 RAM more
than double its initial operating frequency. For comparison's sake, it took
almost five years for SDRAM and DDR-RAM to double in speed from its
introductory specifications... PC-66 and PC-1600 respectively.
recently the rapid succession
of DDR-2 memory speed increases has been largely overshadowed by the AMD
Athlon64 and what is known as 'low latency' DDR-RAM. With the socket AM2 AMD Athlon64 processor now
firmly relying upon DDR-2
RAM to fill its bandwidth needs, and Intel's
resurgence with its Core 2 Duo, DDR-2 RAM's star is thus assured.
Memory has introduced a whole slew of memory
in the last month; the releases spanned the gamut from low latency DDR2-800 parts
to super high speed DIMM's like the Twin2X1024-8500 C5 modules that PCSTATS
is evaluating now. Even though much of the memory has been targeted
towards Socket AM2 and Core 2 Duo users, these DDR-2 parts will work
equally well with dual core Intel Pentium 4/D processors.
latest Twin2X1024-8500 C5 memory is almost too hot to handle right out of the package.... just
look at these specs - default timings
are 5-5-5-15, each PC2-8500 module is 512MB in size,
and Corsair guarantees that its memory can run at a blistering 1066
With a retail price of $264 CDN ($239 US, £125) for
this 1GB PC2-8500 kit, the Corsair Twin2X1024-8500 C5 memory is
definitely built for the enthusiast crowd. That said, it's also among the
fastest DDR-2 on the market right now.
||RAM Memory Type: DDR2-1066 /
Individual Module Capacity: 512MB
Speed & Latency: 1066 MHz @ CAS 5-5-5-15
individual 512MB Corsair Twin2X512-8500 DDR2 DIMMs
are designed to run in a dual channel configuration. Corsair uses an
overclocker's trick to reach the 1066 MHz speed - it increases the default
voltage of the memory from 1.8V to 2.2V. That's quite a jump in power, so we'd
recommend you ensure your case cooling is moving a good amount of air through
the chassis or these modules may get a little hot.
According to Corsair, the Twin2X1024-8500 DIMMs are hand tested and
packaged together immediately following testing to ensure compatibility. Corsair
has not publicly stated which platform this memory is designed for, but based on
our experience it should function just fine on both socket AM2 AMD and Intel
Overclocking the Corsair Twin2X1024-8500 DDR-2
As usual before the overclocking madness begins, the CPU clock multiplier is first lowered to 8x. With the memory set to run at DDR2-800 mode, the motherboard clock speed was increased in small 2-6 MHz intervals.
Using 4-4-4-12 memory timings, the Corsair
Twin2X1024-8500 was pretty decent at overclocking and hit 224 MHz before the
voltage had to be increased to 1.9V to stabilize things. The memory needed
another voltage jump to 2.0V to hit 230 MHz (230MHz x 4 = 920MHz) but that was it, it would not go any farther. Seems like the Twin2X1024-8500 C5 hit an imaginary wall and just wouldn't go further no matter what we did. This memory is ideally designed as high speed high latency RAM, so let's see how it does when the timings are relaxed.
Setting the memory timings to 5-5-5-15 we wanted to see the Corsair Twin2X1024-8500 C5 really fly. ;-) Continuing from 230 MHz the memory handled overclocking now very well and hit 260 MHz before the voltage had to be increased. This time around the voltage had to go to 2.2V to stop the blue screens during WindowsXP load up, after that was done the system was perfect.
The Corsair Twin2X1024-8500 topped out at 1104 MHz or the top speed the Foxconn motherboard would run at. With another motherboard it's possible that the memory can go higher but we'll have to settle for 1104 MHz for now.