DDR3; it's the future of desktop system memory, plain and simple. However, it's far from becoming the mainstream standard. As it stands now, there is little benefit to DDR3 as high costs and latency makes DDR3 a less attractive option in its current state. It's a familiar story. If you recall, back when DDR2 was in its infancy, the same argument was made, with price and latency being major detractors. Over time, however, the technology went through the normal maturation process, and with that, the latency factor was overcome and DDR2 became the dominant memory techology.
Today we are going to give you our assessment of a new high-performance DDR2 kit from OCZ. OCZ's DDR2 PC2-6400 Vista Performance Platinum 4GB Dual Channel kit is a member of OCZ's low latency Platinum XTC line, offering an impressive package that boasts 4GB of memory backed with an 800MHz rated speed with 5-4-4-15 timings. With Windows Vista slowly moving forward as the next dominant OS from Microsoft, the memory demands of this next generation Operating System will probably warrant an upgrade. While the 32-Bit version cannot recognize a full 4GB, the 64-Bit version, as well as Windows XP Pro 64-Bit, can.
In this article, we're going to take the OCZ DDR2 PC2-6400 Vista Performance Platinum 4GB Dual Channel kit for a spin around our test bed, comparing the performance to similarly clocked 2GB kit and an older 1GB for good measure. Our goal will be to quantify what gains users can expect from making the jump to 4GB and also give some general impressions after running a system with these modules for the last month or so.
Available in 2GB Modules and 4GB (2x2048) Dual Channel Kits
Platinum XTC* Heatspreader
OCZ Lifetime Warranty
240 Pin DIMM
4GB D/C Kit PN - OCZ2P8004GK
* XTC (Xtreme Thermal Convection) heatspreaders optimize the thermal management of memory modules by promoting greater airflow by means of micro-convection throughout what is usually the dead air space inside conventional heatspreader designs. In this manner, build-up of heat is avoided and thermal dissipation of the memory components is offloaded more efficiently through the honeycomb design. At the same time, mechanical stability is maintained.
**OCZ EVP (Extended Voltage Protection) is a feature that allows performance enthusiasts to use a VDIMM of 2.1V ± 5% without invalidating their OCZ Lifetime Warranty.
As the specifications outline above, we received a 4GB kit that consists of two 2GB Dual-Channel modules. The unbuffered DIMMs are rated to run at a default speed of 800MHz at 5-4-4-15 timings (CAS-TRCD-TRP-TRAS). The modules are rated to run at a default voltage of 2.1v and come with OCZ's Extended Voltage Protection feature that supports an overvoltage of 5% without voiding the modules' lifetime warranty.
Keeping the overclocker in mind, OCZ outfitted the DIMMs with their Xtreme Thermal Convection (XTC) heat spreaders to help keep the modules' temperatures in check. The perforated design of the spreaders are supposed to help with natural convection, in a sense, allowing the chips to breathe better. Therefore, the XTC speaders help the modules maintain stability in part by disipating heat more effectively than solid heat spreaders.