DDR2 Memory Roundup Summer 2007

Memory by thorgal @ 2007-08-27

We take a look at the performance numbers of nine DDR2 2x1Gb Kits from OCZ, Kingston, Mushkin, Team Group and Corsair on the Intel P965 platform. Join us as we try to determine who´s got the fastest and most overclockable kits out there in Part 1 of our summer DDR2 Roundup.

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Corsair Dominator - P1

Corsair Dominator PC8888

The Corsair Dominator series originally consisted out of two memory kits : the PC8500C5 kit (.pdf) which offered "5-5-5-15" (cas-tRCD-tRP-Tras) latencies at 2.2V, and the PC8888C4 kit which we are reviewing today. Over the last few months, Corsair introduced several new parts in the Dominator series: from now on you can also buy a 6400C3 and 6400C4 parts. Right now, Corsair has moved its complete enthusiast lineup effectively towards the Dominator series.

Madshrimps (c)

Here are the full specifications for the PC8888C4 (.pdf) we are reviewing today :

Test Specifications:
  • Each module pair is tested together at 1111MHz
  • Tested and packaged in pairs
  • Packaged together immediately following system test
  • Tested at EPP SPD settings (4-4-4-12-2T ) at 2.4V at 1111MHz
  • SPD programmed at: JEDEC standard 5-5-5-18 values at 800MHz
  • EPP standard 4-4-4-12-2T, 2.4V values

  • 2048 Megabytes of DDR2 memory
  • Two matched CM2X1024-8888C4D modules
  • Corsair 's proprietary DHX technology dissipates heat two ways: it draws heat away from the module through the RAMs and provides an additional path for heat transfer within the module through the ground plane.
  • SPD includes Enhanced Performance Profiles (EPP) which allow automatic overclocking to aggressive performance settings.
  • Comes with Dominator Air flow Fan for maximum thermal transfer
  • 100% tested at 1111MHz in high performance DDR2 motherboards
  • Lifetime warranty

    Let's have a closer look at the modules:

    Madshrimps (c)
    Front side look, with the description of the modules

    Madshrimps (c)
    Back of the modules, as pretty as the front side

    As you can see, the lineup has a very pronounced, aggressive look indeed. The heat spreaders (or heats sinks as Corsair likes to call them) still look very nice in my opinion, but may be over the top for some who like a more sober look. The fins you see at the top lighten the design and aid in the cooling of the modules. Almost a year after its introduction, the dominator still (arguably) has the best cooling design of all the memory you'll find on the market. The height of the modules could interfere with some of the cases and/or CPU coolers around, especially Small Form Factor (SFF) cases and larger 3rd party CPU heatsinks, be sure to check compatibility with your other system parts before deciding to buy.

    Adding more cooling to the Dominator ->
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    Comment from Massman @ 2007/08/27
    Fantastic review
    Comment from Jaco @ 2007/08/27
    nice review
    Comment from jodiuh @ 2007/08/27
    So glad to see the #1 spot goes to cheap ram. Far too much importance has been placed on C21 @ 1,000 jigga watts for only $699. That's an 8800 AND your ram rec...

    I understand the ram needs to hit a set speed, but 1200mhz just isn't necessary to enjoy a game, encode a light speed, browse the web, etc. Perhaps this upsets the .001% who throw gobs of $$ to see their bar graphs rise 1/4" over us n00bs, eh?

    *raises $109 G.Skill 2x1GB HZ that lives around stock speeds up high*

    Comment from Carni4 @ 2007/08/27
    Great roundup.

    Maybe you can add these in the next part: Team Xtreem Dark 2GB DDR2 800MHz CL 4-4-4-12 It's cheap, around €100 and it has been reported to hit 1200 Mhz.

    That's pretty good memory. Would be cool if you guys could bench those sticks.

    Nevertheless, very nice article. Cheers!