First up let's talk about the results concerning that of nVidia's new nForce4 Intel Edition chipset. Interestingly, it would seem that this particular platform desires low latency over high clock speeds, which is a direct contradiction over our claims earlier in the year that the Pentium 4 demanded high clock speed over low latency on the Intel 925XE chipset platform.
It would require further investigation (which we're preparing to do) but at this early stage we'd guess that since the nForce4 Intel Edition chipset uses a similar architecture to the AMD Athlon 64 platform in terms of the HyperTransport bus, the low latency is important. High memory clock speeds have always been important for the Pentium 4 architecture through the way it's designed and always will be but with the nForce4 Intel Edition platform, it seems we need a good mixture of both to really see some good figures produced.
Corsair has quite recently released 8000UL (1000MHz DDR) memory which would be a perfect companion for the nForce4 Intel Edition chipset especially when using a 1066 FSB processor, like the Pentium 4 3.46GHz EE which we used here. The timings of this memory isn't that great but with such a high memory clock speed which runs synchronous with the FSB, the performance potential could be quite impressive and it is something we will be looking into over the next couple of weeks.
Not to forget Corsair's 5400UL memory, it's a good product. Our benchmarks show it isn't really worth upgrading to Corsair 5400UL from older DDR-2 on an older motherboard unless you want to get into overclocking on one of the new Intel chipsets. If you own an 800MHz FSB Pentium 4 processor and are into overclocking, you'll likely see some great figures running the 5400UL in sync with your processor FSB. The 5400UL allows some headroom for overclocking above 800MHz FSB (on the right motherboard!) if you want to overclock your CPU past default speeds.
Theoretically and based on our results here today you could take a Pentium 4 640 (200MHz FSB x 16 = 3200MHz) and overclock it to 3400MHz (212.5MHz FSB x 16) by increasing the FSB to 212.5 (DDR 850 / 4 = 212.5) and still run the memory and FSB in a perfect performing 1:1 ratio - We'll also be looking more into these types of settings.
Corsair's 5400UL memory is quite quick and when you start to fine tune the memory on a motherboard which it is designed for, such as the Gigabyte 8N-SLI Royal, you do begin to see performance increases in games such as Half Life 2 and Doom 3. Even though the performance increases are small, every bit of performance counts.
In conclusion, if you're looking at buying a new Pentium 4 motherboard and it's looking like it will be one based on nVidia's new chipset and you have a good budget to work with, we'd easily recommend the Corsair 5400UL to you as it brings many possibilities to the platform and provides headroom for overclocking both CPU and memory even if you don't intend on running both at 1:1 for optimal performance. Corsair told us that the 5400UL has hit around 1000MHz DDR on certain motherboard but our best efforts yielded us around 860MHz on our Gigabyte motherboard.
Corsair just need to magically work out how to produce, say...2000MHz DDR memory at timings of 2-2-2-2 1T and we'll have a memory module which is not for the faint of heart! "Any idea when it will be ready guys? ;)"
Perfect companion for nVidia nForce4 Intel Edition motherboards
Impressive performance through tight timings
Great overclocking ability at 850MHz with loose timings
Hand tested before shipping
Corsair's 8000UL is looking like a better buy every minute for true enthusiast P4 users
Rating - 8.5 out of 10 and TweakTown's "MUST HAVE" Best Performance Award
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- Corsair 5400UL - Page 1 [Introduction]
- Corsair 5400UL - Page 2 [The Modules]
- Corsair 5400UL - Page 3 [Benchmarks - Test System Setup and Information]
- Corsair 5400UL - Page 4 [Benchmarks - SiSoft Sandra]
- Corsair 5400UL - Page 5 [Benchmarks - 3DMark05]
- Corsair 5400UL - Page 6 [Benchmarks - Half Life 2]
- Corsair 5400UL - Page 7 [Benchmarks - Doom 3]
- Corsair 5400UL - Page 8 [Benchmarks - PCMark05 Professional]
- Corsair 5400UL - Page 9 [Benchmarks - ScienceMark 2.0]
- Corsair 5400UL - Page 10 [Benchmarks - MP3 Encoding]
- Corsair 5400UL - Page 11 [Final Thoughts]