Articles: Memory

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We checked out the manufacturer’s web-site to find out the complete official list of technical specifications for our today’s hero. To tell the truth, the corresponding document that we discovered on Corsair’s web-site surprised us with very strange errors, so that we got the impression that it was put together in a hurry, which is not typical of Corsair at all.

Luckily, the mismatch with the names seems to be the only grave error here. Here are the major specifications of the product we are reviewing today:

  • Frequency: 1,000MHz DDR;
  • Nominal timings: 5-4-4-9;
  • Organization: 64M x 8 DDR2;
  • Nominal voltage: 2.2V;
  • The kit includes two 240-pin unbuffered DDR2 SDRAM modules, each 512MB big, with no ECC support;
  • Memory modules are equipped with black heat-spreaders;
  • Modules have life warranty.

I would like to stress that all previously reviewed DDR2 SDRAM modules designed for 1,000MHz working frequency featured 5-5-5-15 nominal timing settings. Corsair wanted to prove once again their reputation of a successful DDR2 overclocker memory solutions developer, so they made their 1GHz memory support more aggressive timings. The nominal RAS# to CAS# Delay and RAS# Precharge parameters have been set one clock lower.

However, Corsair TWIN2X1024-8000UL is based on the same Micron D9DQT chips as many other DDR2 SDRAM modules out there. Micron made these chips capable of working at 667MHz with CAS# Latency set to 5, however, their potential grows up dramatically once the voltage is increased. This is exactly the peculiarity many overclocker DDR2 memory makers take advantage of. Namely, they set the nominal voltage for their DDR2 memory solutions to 2.1V-2.2V.

Thus the nominal voltage of Corsair TWIN2X1024-8000UL memory modules is 2.2V. It is 22% higher than the voltage set in the official DDR2 specification: 1.8V. By the way, if they had resorted to the same voltage increase for the DDR-I SDRAM overclocker memory solutions, these modules would have been running at 3.05V today. So, Micron D9DQT memory chips not only boast great overclocking potential, but also are extremely robust against long-term functioning at higher voltage rates. It is not for nothing that all overclocker DDR2 SDRAM DIMMs have life warranty.

The SPD of Corsair TWIN2X1024-8000UL memory modules reports the following:

The SPD of these memory modules contains two sets of parameters for work as DDR2-800 and as DDR2-540. There is a very serious reason behind this difference between the SPD specifications and the official spec. The thing is that when you install the memory modules into your system and boot it for the first time, the mainboard may very often try to set the SPD parameters for these memory modules. Of course, the voltage wouldn’t be increased in this case. Therefore, if there were overclocker settings already prerecorded in the memory modules SPD, they wouldn’t work with default settings at all in a number of mainboards. Corsair TWIN2X1024-8000UL doesn’t have any compatibility issues like that due to pretty loyal SPD settings. These settings prove operational without raising the voltage even a little bit. As for the performance of these memory modules during overclocking, you can adjust the settings yourself in the BIOS Setup, keeping in mind that you need to increase the memory voltage accordingly in order to achieve high performance results.

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