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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Teamgroup Xtreem PC6400

Team Group Xtreem PC6400

Our second contestant of the day comes from Team Group. Last year (2006), Teamgroup was a real newcomer in the European memory arena. Actually, it's not until 2006 that I came across this memory on the Xtreme Systems forums, where many of the worlds enthusiasts compete. Upon seeing the results of their new DDR2 memory, I decided to get a PC5300 "micron" kit for myself. This kit already scaled well beyond 1000Mhz, so when this roundup came up, I decided to ask Team Group for one of their high end modules.

They were kind enough to send us the following kit :

Madshrimps (c)
The team memory kit comes in a specific, rather small package

The memory kit we are reviewing today is thus a memory kit from their "Xtreem" series, which sits at the top of their memory series besides the low end "value" line and the middle end "Elite" line. The Xtreem lineup consists out of 4 different memory kits, each in two sizes. The memory of the day, the PC6400 "333", has long been their top rating memory kit, only recently being replaced by their PC8500C4/PC9600C5 kit. These kits are squarely aimed at the overclocking community, and that's exactly what we'll be doing with them...

A little check up on the specifications:

  • Rated speed : PC2-6400/800MHz
  • Rated timings : 3-3-3-8 (CAS-TRCD-TRP-TRAS)
  • Layout : 64x8 DDR2 FBGA Chips
  • 240pin DDR2 dimm
  • Parity : Non-ECC, Un-buffered
  • Aluminum Heat-spreader
  • 6 Layers Ultra Low Noises Shielded PCB
  • Warranted voltage : 2.2V - 2.35V
  • Programmed EPP settings
  • Lifetime Warranty

    I'd like to give an extra word on the rated voltages. When you take a really close look at the picture below, you might see the small print on the label that says : "CL=3-3-3-8 (2.35V-2.45V)". This is different from the specifications that are printed on Team's website, and are shown above. As the modules clearly print an allowed voltage of 2.45V, this is also exactly the voltage I've been using during our bench testing. However, I wouldn't advise this kind of voltage for too long without applying some extra cooling to the modules. Team Group warrants their memory for life, just like the other contestants, but obviously does not warrant their parts against over-volting.

    Madshrimps (c)
    front of the module, with specifications

    Madshrimps (c)
    back of the module, with serial number

    As you can see, the modules have a really simple look, for some a bit too simple maybe... The heat spreader is a basic plate of aluminum that is glued to the memory banks. The plate has been "stamped" with the "Team" and "Xtreem" labels, and feature the necessary specifications by means of a sticker. Actually, there are two heat spreaders applied, which are not interconnected: the spreaders are open at the top side of the memory, allowing air to move between the banks. This way, the front as well as the back of heat spreader can aid in the heat dissipation. Other than that, the modules look deceptively simple: when I first lay hands on an Xtreem series I thought I was holding a value part... This is not a module you want to include in you plexi case for showing off, or wait, maybe you do... because like many things in life, first looks can be really misleading...

    Onto the next kit ->
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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!