The Bottom Line
- + Affordable
- + Easy to install and compact size
- + Tight Timings
- + Performance
- + Overclockability
- - No RGB or lighting
- - Subdued aesthetic
Should you buy it?AvoidConsiderShortlistBuy
Introduction, Specifications, and Pricing
Back in the days of DDR4 B-die, when the best of the ICs were around, there were a select few companies you knew you could turn to with the guarantee of getting those chips. One of them that came up regularly was TEAM or TEAM GROUP which gained quite the following for being a standup company that offered the best of the best. As things switched to DDR5, we find that even when ICs were limited in choice of the manufacturer and the amount of them in the wild, TEAM did not stoop to pushing lower-grade kits to fill the market.
They may have had less to choose from, but they made the right call and delivered acceptable performance for the market value at the time, yet at the same time, allowed us to have fun tinkering with the headroom left behind in their binning processes.
While we had seen the thicker and much wilder Delta RGB kit before this, which took their DDR4 styling we loved right on into DDR5 and, while keeping us feeling nostalgic, took us into a new age of performance and features, almost lulling us into a comfortable situation. We have a similar story for you now, where this new line of products follows from the Vulcan Z DDR4 kits. Again, the major change is pretty obvious that we are now dealing with higher density chips, more channels, PMICs, and the like, but again there is an old-school vibe that we dig.
Allow us to bring forth the TEAM T-Force Vulcan DDR5 and show you what it is all about and what it can do. There are two flavors to choose from, but sadly for some, there is no lighting in the Vulcan series currently. However, you will get a bold-looking kit of DDR5 with the performance one expects for the speed. On top of that, you will also be pleased at the cost, as TEAM seems to hit on all three of the major factors that take RAM into a tight nit group where visual appeal takes a back seat to the reason to buy faster RAM in the first place.
The Vulcan DDR5, in our version, is also known as the FLBD532G5600HC32DC01. However, kits start at 4800 MHz and top out at the same speed as our set. However, there are multiple versions of 5600 MHz kits with different timings, of which we got the set with the tightest timings. Another bonus to these Vulcan sticks is that you can get them with the aluminum heat spreaders anodized black, or if you want them to stand out, opt for red.
Our RAM came with 32GB of density over two modules, and the black PCBs are combined with SK Hynix ICs, which were binned to run at 5600 MHz. Rather than the standard 40-40-40-76 timings we see everywhere else, TEAM tightened things down to an impressive 32-36-36-76 2T and is as easy as enabling the XMP 3.0 profile in the UEFI. Another bonus is that we only need 1.2V VDIMM to obtain the performance offered in these black Vulcan DDR5 we are about to show. Dimensions are not an issue; the kit stands just 32.7mm tall, weighing 34.5 grams each. Lastly, TEAM backs the T-Force Vulcan DDR5 with a lifetime warranty.
At this point, we have a compact kit of DDR5 that has some visual appeal, and judging by the specs; it should be able to perform. However, we mentioned that TEAM hit all the three biggest parts of what makes for a great kit of RAM. In our minds, it has to look decent, and it has to be performance-oriented. Otherwise, there is no point. Cost, which keeps the customers happy, well, we found the red and black version of these sticks listed on Amazon and Newegg, so they are also easily obtainable.
The better part of the find is that the TEAM T-Force Vulcan DDR5 will set you back just $162.99. In the current market, it's on the cusp of the most affordable option out there at 5600 MHz, but it stands alone because the Vulcan DDR5 has the CAS 32 option that other manufacturers do not.
Packaging and TEAM T-Force Vulcan
With matte black as the backdrop, TEAm PACKAGES THE Vulcan vertically, at the top of which we see the T-Force moniker, and next to that is a sticker boasting the density and speed of the Vulcan DDR5 inside it. The images of the sticks show off both color options, while at the bottom is a notation to the lifetime warranty.
On the back of the box, we are initially told that these are DDR5 desktop memory, and we then run into a list of features that covers the aesthetic, cooling, XMP support, use of PMICs, PMIC cooling, ECC, and high-quality IC usage. Through the windows, we can see the product stickers on the sticks, whereas at the bottom, we see a code to get to the product page with the TEAM information, and to the right is a designation of color, where black is marked, as the white sticker houses the part number.
The inner packaging is made of clear plastic, which envelops the RAM sticks but also is built to take blunt force and save the RAM inside. Along with the kit, we see literature that shows how to install the modules and then moves into warranty terms. TEAM also sends a case badge with a T-Force logo to show off.
While keeping to a lower profile, the T-Force Vulcan delivers the winged look of the heat spreader design. With slight angles at the ends and the angular design pressed into the blackened aluminum, it helps to carry that theme. We like the use of black on the PCB and the heat spreaders, allowing the T-Force name and logo, along with the Vulcan DDR5, to pop quite well against it.
On the reverse, we get a long skinny sticker to view rather than T-Force and the logo. The stick part number, density, speed, timings with XMP 3.0, and the required voltage are on it. It is also where the serial numbers are located; as always, you void your warranty if these are removed.
As we swing around to a view that shows the tops and sides at once, even though we lack any lighting, we can appreciate the look of this TEAM RAM. Oddly, the Vulcan has an old-school vibe, yet the shapes and the white contrast with the black has upped the game for us visually.
As we examine the tops of the sticks, we can see where the two aluminum halves are joined with tabs, and the body line runs through the center of each module. There are gaps near the center, which has to be part of the PMIC cooling mentioned earlier. However, even if it is part of something else, it made a damn fine place to paint the T-Force name boldly.
As TEAM has used previously, under the hood of the Vulcans are these SK Hynix H5CG48MEB0X014 ICs, which seem to have done well for most companies using them. While we expect a fair bit of flexibility in these ICs, with the timings being what they are with this set of Vulcan RAM, it will limit what we do.
The PMIC used within the Vulcan is this 0D=9A chip, but sadly, we cannot make out the rest of the part number. We know this is unlocked, and those who overclock the snot out of them will not find the PMIC to limit your quest.
Installed and ready for testing, the TEAM T-Force Vulcan DDR5 blend into the build with a sea of black components intermixing. However, due to the bold choice of color used, we have no issues seeing the T-Force logo staring back at us or telling anyone who peers into your case, for that matter, who made them.
Test System Details
To obtain the AMD CPU-Z screenshots, you will see directly following this image, and this is the system we used to do it, as well as in attaining the results seen in the following pages. Thanks go out to be quiet, ASUS, and NVIDIA, for supporting this venture. Detailed specifications of the system can be found below.
After initially clearing CMOS, we stopped at the UEFI to enable the XMP 3.0 option and see what shakes. As the stickers foretold, the Vulcan modules run at 5600 MHz with 32-36-36-76 2T timings out of the box. We already know that the VDIMM is 1.20V, but on our system, we also saw that the System Agent is at only 0.897V while the Memory Controller uses 1.101V.
We then attempt to reduce the timings from the XMP option to the point of a BSOD or instability. We ended up at 28-33-33-76 2T, still at 5600 MHz, which is quite good in our minds. We increased the VDIMM to 1.30V for this and set the VDDQ and Tx to 1.30V. The System Agen is now using 1.137V, and the Memory Controller used 1.20V.
We knew we would not get much speed from the kit with the timings set to 32-36-36-76, but we were pleasantly gifted another 600 MHz free by trying a few things. At 6200MHz now, using the same voltages as what we described when the timings were reduced, we got more than expected.
Chad's AMD DDR5 Dual-Channel Test System Specifications
- Motherboard: ASUS Maximus Z690 APEX - Buy from Amazon
- CPU: Intel Core i9 12900K - Buy from Amazon
- Cooler: be quiet! PURE LOOP 360mm - Buy from Amazon
- Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Founders Edition - Buy from Amazon
- Storage: Phison B47R Fortis 1600 2TB M.2
- Case: Thermaltake Core P3 TG - Buy from Amazon
- Power Supply: be quiet! DARK POWER PRO 12 1200W - Buy from Amazon
- OS: Microsoft Windows 11 Home - Buy from Amazon
XMP performance is quite good in the CPU-Z single-core benchmark. Surpassing faster kits with less is always a good thing, but sadly, our overclocking attempts only hurt this metric's performance.
The Vulcans read performance is where we expected it to land, scaling as it should. Reducing timings caused us to drop almost 100 MB/s, but by increasing the speed, we went from 86,744 MB/s to 97,048, a jump of 10,304 MB/s from adjusting a few things in the UEFI.
The write performance may not seem great, but it aligns with all the other kits by speed. Opting to lower the timings gains us a minimal advantage, but at 6200 MHz, the Vulcans top the chart at 87,717 MB/s, some 8402 MB/s over the XMP setting.
Again, the copy performance shows us that TEAM falls into line with the Vulcan DDR5. Starting off with XMP results at 78,006 MB/s isn't bad for a kit of this speed. We got a marked advantage in dropping the timings to the tune of 940 MB/s extra. However, running this kit at 6200 MHz with the XMP timings again tops the chart, leaving an additional 9102 MB/s potential on the table.
Latency is fair for the XMP 3.0 profile, as it is better than the XPG Lancer, which is faster, and not too far behind the 6400 MHz Deltas. In reducing timings, we did lower the latency a bit, but not enough to do much, as the previous results alluded to. However, we are impressed with the latency we got using the XMP timings at 6200 MHz.
Super Pi 32M results are not great for the Vulcans while under XMP control, resulting in a 6-minute and five-second run. By lowering the timings, we gained nearly six seconds and got another three and a half seconds more from opting for 6200 MHz at CAS 32.
The Vulcan physics scores in 3DMark Fire Strike are not amazing, with the XMP score third from the bottom of the chart. Changing the timings did nothing to help here; it only hurt results, but with more speed comes better things, with the results landing third from the top of the chart.
The results we got in PCMark 10 shook us a bit, enough to retest to ensure what we saw was not a fluke. The T-Force Vulcan DDR5, with its XMP enabled, takes top honors over all other kits tested. While the increases were minimal, both OC options show an advantage, although lower timings won out over raw speed this time.
File compression is something many of us do regularly, and in that vein, TEAM does fairly well, considering the lower speed of the Vulcan DDR5. Overclocking helps a bit, but there are only ten seconds from XMP to the 6200 MHz CAS 32 option.
These results were also shocking, so we reran to find these scores were correct. Cinebench R23 loved the Vulcan XMP settings and let it take the top of the chart. Sadly, overclocking options hurt results in this test, but reducing timings hurt the most.
Handbrake is a beast of a test and leaves no rhyme or reason as to why it likes the kits it does, but falling into third place is not a bad start for the XMP settings. Minimal gains were made in attempting to overclock, a tenth of a second gained from lowering the timings, and more than four seconds using the Vulcan at 6200 MHz at CAS 32.
When we sit back and think it through, nothing stands out as a deal-killer regarding what these TEAM T-Force Vulcan DDR5 have to offer. Yeah, they may not provide lighting in any form, but they are here for one thing, performance, not looks. Although, on the appearance front, TEAM does not fail you. The aluminum is shaped stylishly and kept more compact than many other TEAM offerings. Whether you opt for the black version we showed off, or if bright red is your thing, the bright white lettering pops off the backdrop and clearly shows who you went to for RAM at a glance inside the case.
Beyond aesthetics, on a basic level, you need the right components to get things off on the right foot. Using SK Hynix ICs, we knew what our system would do with them under normal circumstances, like CAS 40. However, this is one of, if not the tightest timed kit we have yet to receive. With us starting at CAS 32, we were unsure if there was room for improvement. TEAM keeps to that history regarding overclocking, where customers are led to them by word of mouth of previous users.
Users of the Vulcan DDR5 will find more of the same. Performance is where it should be in more instances than not, and TEAM was able to top the Cinebench R23 chart using the XMP profile. We topped the charts a few times with the overclocked results, and we could never say that the Vulcan DDR5 failed to perform.
Looking into what 32 GB kits of 5600 MHz memory is selling for these days, we see pricing starts at around $160 for something similar to the TEAM T-Force Vulcan DDR5, but only four kits deliver that speed at CAS 32, and they are all from TEAM, in either Vulcan or Delta flavors. That said, finding these sticks on Amazon for $162.99 is a great deal in the current market. A nice addition to the pricing is that the cost is identical whether you want the black ones or the red ones.
For what they are, TEAM delivers on performance and value with the Vulcan DDR5, a series we recommend for anyone without the need for lighting and who are more interested in getting the most from their RAM.
The Bottom Line
TEAM's T-Force Vulcan DDR5 offers the best bang for the buck in its class, yet stands alone due to the XMP timings. Performance is what we expected, sometimes more, and you will not have to worry about CPU cooler clearance.