The use of heatpipes for cooling memory is a recent development. Memory generally doesn't require heavy duty cooling and the simple, flat heat spreaders that dominate the memory landscape are sufficient for keeping temperatures in check. While this has been true for many years, the recent trend towards high performance memory with stock voltages exceeding 2.2V is pushing the thermal output of memory higher than before. As a result we have seen several manufacturers move to new heatspreader designs for their high-end parts.
After their success with the innovative Flex XLC product line, OCZ has succeeded again in producing yet another innovative cooling solution. Although we wished the heatpipe had been implimented differently, the Reaper's HPC remains an effective cooling system and the heatpipe does get warm during use, indicating that it's doing its job. While not quite as potent as the Flex XLC, the Reaper HPC series packs similarly high performance but at a slightly lower price point. Reaper HPC kits can be found for a bit less than comparable Flex XLC kits and the main difference is the cooling solutions they use. If watercooling doesn't interest you much, the Reaper HPC series is the better buy.
Overall, we thought Reaper HPC series memory performed well, looked great and possibly best of all, they are priced right. The top of the Reaper HPC line-up clocks in at PC2-9200 and a 2GB kit can be yours for $219.50. The excellent PC2-6400 Enhanced Bandwidth edition modules we tested are an even better deal, coming in at just $177.00. Those of you who want the slick Reaper look without the price are in luck because there is a standard non-EB version of the PC2-6400 memory and 2GB of it can be had for the affordable price of $129.99. If your looking for high performance RAM that stands out in the crowd of boring heatspreader clad memory, give OCZ's Reaper HPC line-up a good, hard look.