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DDR-400 Dual Channel Memory Roundup - Part 1 - Pricing and Conclusions

Dual Channel, Dual Channel, Dual Channel - it is one of the key buzzwords taking the IT industry by storm at the moment courtesy of chipsets from nVidia and Intel. Which Dual Channel branded memory kit do you choose? Do you even need actual branded Dual Channel memory? Which overclocks the fastest? Shawn "Toxic" Baker answers all these questions in this 20-page monster roundup comparing memory from Crucial, Mushkin, Kingmax, TwinMOS, Buffalo and Corsair!

| Editorials in RAM | Posted: Jun 22, 2003 4:00 am

Pricing

 

Before we get into the individual conclusions on each brand of RAM, here is a pricing graph to give you an idea on the cost of all the different memory as it is one of the most important aspects of your overall buying decision.

 

Prices were sourced from NewEgg and Price Watch - it is important to remember memory prices fluctuate daily and are only valid at time of writing.

 

 

Conclusions

 

- Crucial PC3200 Final Thoughts

 

Crucial have placed together this excellent module that was capable of not only pulling ahead at stock speeds but again when it came to overclocked results. Considering the memory was rated at CAS 3 DDR-400, it was interesting to find how high it was able to go with the more aggressive timings used throughout all our benchmarks.

 

Overall: Thanks to the fantastic speeds and great pricing Crucial have earned our TweakTown Editors Choice award and a rating of 9.5 out of 10.

 

 

- Mushkin PC3200 Final Thoughts

 

Mushkin have produced two excellent modules that are capable of doing some very high speeds at DDR-400. While it couldn't overclock as well, thanks to the excellent design of the modules they were still capable of holding up against the Crucial that had quite a large lead on it when it came to overclocked FSB. Unfortunately after all this they are let down with quite a high price tag which for people wanting DDR-400 memory is going to be out of reach.

 

Overall: Mushkin's PC3200 scores a very healthy 7.5 out of 10.

 

- Kingmax PC3200 Final Thoughts

 

Kingmax are the cheapest module available, is very quick and look very nice thanks to their new style of colored chips to help prevent chip piracy. Like the Crucial stick, this is going to be excellent for people wanting memory that will simply do DDR-400 speeds and being slightly cheaper then Crucial, it will be the perfect module for anyone interested in buying bulk.

 

The only thing that held it back was that is was limited by its overclocking, and while this will not be a big thing for a lot of people, Crucial were able to produce a stick with similar speeds and pricing but capable of handling higher clock speeds.

 

Overall: An excellent module for 90% of the market and scores a very high 9 out of 10 - second in place to Crucial.

 

- TwinMOS PC3200 Final Thoughts

 

TwinMOS memory was let down by poor DDR-400 performance and poor overclocking. While Mushkin and Kingmax could not achieve high FSB overclockability, due to the excellent design of their modules, they were still able to outperform TwinMOS.

 

TwinMOS have recently released some higher rated memory modules and it will be quite interesting to see how they perform.

 

Overall: TwinMOS scores a low 6 out of 10 as the price of the modules cost quite a bit.

 

- Buffalo PC3500 Final Thoughts

 

Buffalo, the memory company that we hadn't heard of before, did not do too well at DDR-400 but thanks to the high speed modules they were able to shine in the overclocking tests thanks to its high FSB which it was capable of reaching.

 

Overall: Considering 512 Meg modules are considered slower then 256 Meg modules, Buffalo have produced an excellent and affordable module which scores a very respectable 8 out of 10.

 

- Corsair PC3500 Final Thoughts

 

Corsair, who produces the most expensive modules, did similar to Buffalo where it was quite slow in our DDR-400 tests. Although thanks to the higher overclock they did quite well when overclocked.

 

Overall: The only thing holding back the Corsair modules is the high price which gives it a 7 out of 10.

 

We are already working on our follow-up to this roundup which will include memory modules from companies featured in this roundup and bunch of new ones. This is not the end.

 

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