With the advent of DDR2, you’d think that DDR1 will quickly be replaced by this new generation of ram. Guess again. With still a lot of chipsets coming out based on DDR1, you can expect it to stay a lot longer than first perceived.
At the moment, only Intel’s i915x/i925x chipsets are supporting the new standard. Even some of Intel’s new chipsets are backward compatible to DDR1 technology. With AMD still shying away from DDR2, it will be some time before DDR2 gain some ground in terms of market share. With that in mind, DDR1 is very much alive.
With new processors from both Intel and AMD camps able to reach excessively high FSBs, there is a big need for much faster DDR1 memory. Enthusiast and overclockers are always on the search of such modules that will provide them with ultra fast frequencies.
Today we are reviewing such DDR RAM. For some, the current DDR500 doesn’t cut it anymore and the need for more headroom drives this company to producing modules well beyond that speed. But here’s a twist, not only did they produce these modules at high clock speeds and tremendous bandwidth but at aggressive latencies as well. Introducing, Corsair’s TWINX1024-4400C25PT DDR550 modules.
The TWINX1024-4400C25PT is a pair of 512 MByte CMX512-4400C25 DDR SDRAM DIMMs designed for extreme speed. Tested and packaged together in pairs immedietely following system test, the TWINX matched memory pairs are specifically designed for motherboards using chipsets with dual memory channels. This part delivers outstanding performance at high clock speeds. It has been tested extensively in a variety of motherboards commonly used in gaming rigs. This memory has been verified to operate at 275 MHz at aggressive latencies of 2.5-4-4-8.
Note that this is the 2nd PC4400 (DDR550) offering from Corsair but the first one was only rated to run at CAS 3-4-4-8. That’s the difference between this new offering and the old PC4400 part.
Feautures: 1024 Megabytes of memory- 2 matched CMX512-4400C25 modules Tested at aggressive latency settings of 2.5-4-4-8 on both Intel and AMD Test voltage: 2.75V Dual Channel testing environment- 275Mhz Canterwood based test setup Tested and packaged in pairs- packaged together immedietely following system test Integrated aluminum heat spreader for improved thermal performance Ultra-High Bus speed Lifetime warranty service
Packaging comes in a plastic enclosure type. This is the standard Corsair packaging we’ve seen for all their modules. The modules come with instructions in 5 different languages, a current newsletter and a “powered by Corsair” case badge. The modules are a matched pair of Corsair CMX512-4400C25 modules tested at aggressive latency settings of 2.5-4-4-8. They were tested as a matched pair in multiple Intel and AMD based setups then packaged together immediately following system test.
The Corsair TWINX1024-4400C25PT uses the latest Revision F 4ns Samsung K4H560838F-440 TCCD ICs. Surprisingly, these are the very same chips that were used by Corsair for their Extreme Low Latency PC3200 XL modules. These chips not only promises to run at extremely low latencies at DDR400 but are also capable of running at DDR550 speeds at an amazing CAS 2.5-4-4-8. Nothing like the best of both worlds. Like most DDRs now, the TWINX pair comes with an aluminum heatspreader attached to the actual memory chip by thermal tape. Corsair’s CMX512-4400C25 modules comes in both black and silver heatspreaders. Our particular samples comes in silver. Thus, the Platinum (PT) version.
What amazed us is that at CAS 2.5-3-3-6, the Corsair TWINX1024-4400C25PT managed to run ROCK SOLID up to a blazingly fast speed of 267MHz (DDR534)! Now that is really something as we’ve never had any modules to run at this speed at those timings. Impressive. At its rated CAS setting of CAS 2.5-4-4-8, the maximum ROCK solid overclock we can make the modules to work was 281MHz (DDR562). This was also the same result when the modules were running at very relaxed timings of CAS 3-4-4-8. No amount of CPU or DIMM voltage increase can make us go any further after 281MHz without causing the system instability while in Windows. Increasing the module’s voltage to push the memory further didn’t do anything as we must have hit the limits of either our board or CPU. Of course the latter is more likely. At this pace, we effectively overclocked our Pentium 4 2.4GHz chip to a rock solid 3.37GHz. Now that’s almost 1GHz overclock made possible by this pair of Corsair modules.
There is no doubt, this is currently the fastest DDR Corsair you can have. Corsair has once again delivered what every enthusiast and overclocker asks for and that is super fast dual channel DDR modules at aggressive timings. The good thing about these modules is that upgrade decisions would be a lot easier as you can enjoy the best of both worlds. You can experience ultra low latency at DDR400 and super fast frequencies at DDR550. This is of course made possible by the handpicked Samsung TCCD chips used on these modules.
Overclocking is of course the main strength of this Corsair offering. Our overclocking results will speak for itself. What amazes us is that all of this were achieved using just 2.6v. This has to be the fastest Dual Channel DDR modules we have tested to date at default voltage. We managed to overclock our cheap Pentium 4 2.4GHz chip to 3.37GHz with our DDR modules running at 281MHz (DDR562). I’m pretty sure the modules still has a bit of juice on it if only our system can handle more FSB.
Its performance and stability at both stock and overclocked settings is of course very impressive. Never did our system crashed on us during the whole week of testing and gaming we have put it through. The only time the system became unstable was when we have reached the system’s limit. Other than that, the modules worked flawlessly.
The only question now is how much for this? Well the lowest price you can find the Corsair TWINX1024-4400C25 at Pricewatch is US$283 at NewEgg. Though not exactly cheap, we were actually surprised to see this kit at a sub-$300 price. Aimed at the hardcore gamers and power users, for whom price is secondary to performance, this type of modules from companies like Corsair are actually not as expensive as they used to be. Corsair explains that they’ve driven their manufacturing cost down dramatically on this modules compared to their earlier XMS4400 product, which translate into surprisingly affordable street prices.
If you want only the fastest Dual DDR modules at aggressive timings, then the Corsair TWINX1024-4400C25 is an excellent choice. With these modules, you’ll be assured that the memory won’t be the limiting factor in your quest to push your system to the limits, be it Intel or AMD.