Recently we had a look at a PC3-12800 kit from Patriot that sat in the company's G Series lineup. Today we're kicking it up a notch; not only are we looking at the PC3-16000 kit from the company, but also checking out what's going on in the top of the line Viper II series.
Priced at $264.99 U.S. over at Newegg, the kit we have with us today is far from cheap, but hopefully it's able to stand out from the pack. The Viper series has always been the pinnacle of performance for Patriot and today we intend to find out if that goal continues to hold true with the latest memory we've got from the company.
What Viper means is good performance and good quality at a price that represents that. Before we find out more about the modules and their performance, we'll check out the package to see what's going on there first.
The Package and Modules
As you would expect, the Viper II series has a little bit fancier packaging than the G series kit we looked at the other day. Instead of just the plastic shroud covering the modules we have a nice sleek looking package. Across the top of the package we can see the Patriot Memory logo and below that we have mention of DDR3 along with the series name, which as we've mentioned already is the Viper II.
Moving down a little more, we have a picture of the modules. Finishing off the package across the bottom we have mention that the kit includes XMP settings for Core i7 users along with some of the specifications of the modules on the other side.
Turning to the back, there isn't much going on at all. We again see the series along with mention of where the modules are made. Across the bottom we have the addresses of the company's offices with the model being seen in the bottom right corner.
While not pictured here due to the kit being an early sample, Patriot offer a key to 3DMark Vantage. And while that may be something that's better suited to a graphics card, there's no doubt any extras are appreciated, especially when spending this kind of money.
Having a look at the modules for the first time, we can see that there's quite a traditional heatsink being used. Across the top we can see a number of fins that help draw the heat away from the chips themselves.
Both sides of the modules have the Viper II logo on the right side. The left side has the P from the Patriot logo on one side while the other has a sticker that gives us a run down on some of the specifications of the modules.
That sticker gives us all the details we need. As we mentioned before, this kit is a PC3-16000 one, which means the default clocks are a massive 2000MHz. We can also see the timings of 8-8-8-24; while not the most aggressive we've seen, they are not the most relaxed either. These timings are achieved with the help of 1.65v which is pretty standard for overclocked modules.
As we tend to find with all our 2000MHz kits, there's very little wiggle room when it comes to extra MHz. While we could squeeze an extra few MHz out of the Patriot kit, it wasn't anything that would result in any kind of performance increase.
The most important thing for 2000MHz kits is to make sure that they run at their stock clocks, which are already very high. Moving into the BIOS and setting the modules to 2000MHz and the correct timings resulted in the system booting straight away. We couldn't ask for much more and as you can see above they got into Windows Vista with no problems and managed to complete our benchmarks without a single hiccup.
Important Editor Note: Our maximum overclocking result is the best result we managed in our limited time of testing the memory. Due to time constraints we weren't able to tweak the motherboard to the absolute maximum and find the highest possible FSB, as this could take days to find properly. We do however spend at least a few hours overclocking every motherboard to try and find the highest possible overclock in that time frame. You may or may not be able to overclock higher if you spend more time tweaking, or as new BIOS updates are released. "Burn-in" time might also come into play if you believe in that.
Test System Setup and wPrime
Test System Setup
Processor(s): Intel i7 920 @ 4GHz (200MHz x 20)
Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P (Supplied by Noctua)
Motherboard(s): GIGABYTE EX58-UD5 (Supplied by GIGABYTE)
Graphics Card(s): ASUS GTX 285 (Supplied by ASUS)
Hard Disk(s): Western Digital 300GB Velicorapter (Supplied by Western Digital)
Operating System: Windows Vista SP1 64-Bit
Drivers: ForceWare 185.65
Today we'll see how the Patriot Viper II series PC3-16000 kit goes against a number of other modules. We've included two other PC3-16000 kits, the G.Skill Trident Series 6GB kit that comes in with slightly more relaxed 9-9-9-24 timings and the Dominator GT kit from Corsair which carries with it the same 8-8-8-24 setup.
We've also included the PC3-12800 kit that we looked at from Patriot the other day which uses a lower clock speed and more relaxed timings. This will let us find out just what kind of extra performance you would get by buying the higher clocked Viper II set verse the lower clocked G Series one.
Version and / or Patch Used: 1.62
Developer Homepage: http://www.wprime.net/
Product Homepage: http://www.wprime.net/
wPrime uses a recursive call of Newton's method for estimating functions, with f(x)=x2-k, where k is the number we're sqrting, until Sgn(f(x)/f'(x)) does not equal that of the previous iteration, starting with an estimation of k/2. It then uses an iterative calling of the estimation method a set amount of times to increase the accuracy of the results. It then confirms that n(k)2=k to ensure the calculation was correct. It repeats this for all numbers from 1 to the requested maximum.
We find as usual that performance between all modules is quite similar. The Patriot kit did manage to throw us our quickest 1024M wPrime score, though.
Benchmarks - EVEREST Ultimate Edition
Version and / or Patch Used: Ultimate Edition
Developer Homepage: http://www.lavalys.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.lavalys.com/products/overview.php?pid=3&ps=UE&lang=en
Buy It Here
EVEREST Ultimate Edition is an industry leading system diagnostics and benchmarking solution for enthusiasts PC users, based on the award-winning EVEREST Technology. During system optimizations and tweaking it provides essential system and overclock information, advanced hardware monitoring and diagnostics capabilities to check the effects of the applied settings. CPU, FPU and memory benchmarks are available to measure the actual system performance and compare it to previous states or other systems. Furthermore, complete software, operating system and security information makes EVEREST Ultimate Edition a comprehensive system diagnostics tool that offers a total of 100 pages of information about your PC.
With the same timings as the Corsair kit, we expected the Patriots to score similar. And just as we thought, they did; although the Patriot modules managed to get an extra few MB/s on the Corsairs.
Benchmarks - SiSoft Sandra
Version and / or Patch Used: Professional Home
Developer Homepage: http://www.sisoftware.co.uk
Product Homepage: http://sisoftware.jaggedonline.com/index.php?location=home&a=TTA&lang=en
Buy It Here
SiSoft Sandra (System ANalyser, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant) is a synthetic Windows benchmark that features different tests used to evaluate different PC subsystems.
Like EVEREST, the performance between the two 8-8-8-24 kits is very similar. We can see the performance offered here when compared to the G Series kit is significantly higher.
Benchmarks - Sciencemark
ScienceMark 2.0 is a mathematical program designed to stress the memory subsystems of both desktop/workstation and server environments to determine the read/write latency as well as the overall memory bandwidth available between the CPU and the memory controller.
While all the kits score very similar, we do see that the Patriot kit manages to score the lowest scores in both our tests with the Molecular one coming even with the G.Skill Trident modules.
Benchmarks - Far Cry 2
Far Cry 2
Version and / or Patch Used: 1.01
Timedemo or Level Used: Ranch Long
Developer Homepage: http://www.ubi.com/
Product Homepage: http://www.farcry2.com/
Buy It Here
The Dunia Engine was built specifically for Far Cry 2 by the award-winning Ubisoft Montreal development team. It delivers the most realistic destructible environments, amazing special effects such as dynamic fire propagation and storm effects, real-time night-and-day cycle, dynamic music system, non-scripted enemy A.I. and so much more.
As we've come to expect with most kits of memory. when it comes to real world performance there is little difference seen under our Far Cry 2 benchmark.
We wanted the Patriot Viper II PC3-16000 kit to perform well and it didn't disappoint. It sat up there with the Dominator GT kit from Corsair which uses the same speed and timings. What we did find, though, is that in all our tests the Patriot kit managed to edge out the Corsair one with an extra few MB/s here and there.
While that is already a good feat in itself, Patriot manage to do this at a lower price point which is no doubt going to be appreciated by many people. One aspect that helps keep the price down is the lack of active cooling being included in the kit and while there's no doubt that active cooling does give a cooler look to the modules, it's clear that it isn't needed.
The Viper II kit from Patriot here is really a no frills PC3-16000 kit. While more expensive than 9-9-9-24 kits, it manages to offer a nice performance jump in the synthetic world and while this doesn't matter to some, for people who are into their benchmarking these higher numbers will be appreciated.
We've got a good quality 2000MHz kit here that carries with it some good timings and isn't quite as painful on the bank account as other kits using the same timings. If you don't want the active cooling, want to save a few dollars yet have all the performance that a $300+ kit offers, this $264.99 kit from Patriot is a real winner. If that wasn't enough in itself, you also get a key to make your 3DMark Vantage copy a full version which is a nice little bonus.
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