Testbed and Methods
The second group of tests we carried out for this review was meant to reveal the influence of memory subsystem parameters, namely timings and frequency, on performance of Core 2 Duo platforms. The testbed was based around an ASUS P5W DH Deluxe mainboard which features the i975X chipset and is capable of clocking memory not only as DDR2-533, DDR2-667 and DDR2-800 but also as DDR2-1067 at a FSB frequency of 266MHz. Not all i975X-based mainboards allow selecting 1067MHz memory frequency at a 266MHz FSB because that frequency is not ratified by JEDEC and is ignored by some manufacturers. The ASUS mainboard is free from prejudices and allows using any memory frequency devisor available in the chipset from its BIOS Setup.
The testbed was assembled out of the following components:
- Intel Core 2 Extreme X6800 CPU (LGA775, 2.93GHz, 4MB L2 cache)
- ASUS P5W DH Deluxe mainboard (LGA775, Intel 975X Express)
- Corsair TWIN2X2048-8500C5 (DDR2-1067, 2 x 1024MB, 5-5-5-15)
- Corsair TWIN2X2048-6400C4 (DDR2-800, 2 x 1024MB, 4-4-4-12)
- PowerColor X1900 XTX 512MB graphics card (PCI Express x16)
- Maxtor MaXLine III 250GB hard disk drive (SATA-150)
- Microsoft Windows XP SP2 with DirectX 9.0c
Max performance settings were selected in the mainboard's BIOS.