It's true that Intel has put a lot of hope into DDR3; it's Intel's second push with memory companies to get a new technology into the market place. DDR2 was their biggest push and it turned out a huge success along with Intel's extensive range of DDR2 chipsets. Further to that, AMD adopted it when they clearly said there was no need for it on the AMD K8 architecture. How quickly companies change their minds.
DDR3 has been around since the introduction of the P35 chipset and the Core 2 processors. The main reason it hasn't taken off when compared to DDR2 is a two-fold problem. Firstly, the yields; it has taken until now to get high clocking memory that is able to clearly outperform DDR2. On a clock-for-clock basis DDR2 is able to beat DDR3 in certain tests that rely on low latencies. The other problem is price. Compared to its replacement, DDR3 is quite a bit more costly and you can now easily get 4GB of DDR2 for around $100 AUD. But when it comes to DDR3, you're looking closer to $200 AUD; this is because of demand and lower yields.
While Intel was pushing for DDR3 as the memory of choice, their P35, P45, X38 and X48 didn't really help them as they had DDR2 memory controllers as well as DDR3, allowing the motherboard makers to choose. This keeps DDR3 on the backburners, but with Core i7 this has changed. Thanks to the on-chip memory controller, Intel is limited to a single type of memory and this is where Intel is pushing DDR3. If you want to use any of the current Core i7's or the upcoming LGA-1156 processors due next year, it's DDR3 or nothing. And with the LGA-1366 supporting three memory channels, we are seeing triple channel kits coming out for Core i7.
We have already tested the Corsair memory which was our memory of choice for our Core i7 CPU review. Today we look at A-DATA's Vitesta Triple Channel kit, rated for 1333MHz. How does it stack up? Let's find out.