When DDR-2 memory was first introduced with the launch of the Intel 915 and 925X series of chipsets back in the middle part of last year, enthusiasts around the world expected big memory bandwidth performance increases over the tried and tested DDR memory technology. It was soon discovered though that DDR-2 in its early stages would be no quicker (and sometimes slower) than many of the enthusiast DDR modules available from memory makers such as OCZ and so on.
When it was first released, DDR-2 was only marginally quicker on paper than most DDR modules in terms of clock speeds but was let down with high latencies which reduced performance compared to equivalent DDR memory with much tighter timings. With the introduction of the Intel 925XE chipset bought along with it an FSB of 1066MHz with the Intel Pentium 4 Extreme Edition 3.46GHz and now 3.73GHz processors. This meant that you could now run DDR-2 PC-4200 memory at synchronous speeds of 1:1 with the CPU which reduces latencies since the memory is not waiting for the CPU to act.
Around about when the 925XE chipset was launched, many memory companies introduced PC-5400 memory which runs at around 333MHz. This means that users of both the Intel 925X and 925XE (more so the latter) could use memory dividers to increase memory bandwidth on their systems. Several companies not only released PC-5400 memory but also released "high performance" PC-5400 memory with relatively tighter timings compared to cheaper memory of the same nature.
Today we'll be comparing three high performance PC-5400 modules from OCZ, Corsair and Kingston at their default shipping speeds and as far as we can overclock each with loose (high = slower) timings. If you're on the market for a new high-end Intel motherboard and processor you'll need the RAM to go with it.
So which one will it be for you? Read on!
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