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Testing Participants

Corsair Dominator TWIN2X2048-9136C5D

Like all high-speed overclockers memory modules, the Corsair solution designed to work at 1150MHz belongs to the Dominator series. We have already reviewed some products from the same family in our article called DDR2 SDRAM to Hit 1.1GHz: Corsair Dominator vs. OCZ PC2-8800 Gold Edition, so we know that the major distinguishing feature of Corsair Dominator memory modules is their original cooling system.

Each memory module from this series is equipped with aluminum heat-spreaders 51mm tall with not very deep ribbing on the front side and comb-shaped top edge. These heats-spreaders feature much greater surface area than the traditional stamped plate heat-spreaders, therefore they ensure efficient heat dissipation from the memory chips working at much higher voltage than the common 1.8V. Moreover, Dominator modules use special PCB with an additional pair of comb-shaped heat-spreaders fastened to its upper side. Corsair engineers introduced this solution to provide proper dissipation of the heat that the BGA memory chips transfer to the PCB through contact surfaces. This way each Dominator memory module features four heat-spreaders at the same time: Corsair calls this feature DHX (Dual Heat Exchange).

The Corsair Dominator TWIN2X2048-9136C5D kit that we are look at today contains two identical Corsair CM2X1024-9136C5D memory modules, each with 1GB capacity. The kit is intended to work in dual-channel mode at 1142MHz with 5-5-5-15 timing settings (at 2T Command Rate). The default voltage for this memory module kit is 2.1V.

Corsair specifically points out that all their memory modules have been tested in an Nvidia nForce 680i SLI based reference mainboard from eVGA. So, Corsair Dominator TWIN2X2048-9136C5D shouldn’t experience any operational problems with similar mainboards from BFG, XFX, ECS and Biostar. I would like to draw your attention to this fact specifically, because the mainboards built around nForce 680i SLI chipset but featuring non-reference design may not support this memory at its default frequencies. For example, Asus Striker Extreme and abit IN9 32X-MAX Wi-Fi mainboards that we have recently written about couldn’t work stably with the memory running at speeds beyond 1100MHz. therefore, you should pay special attention to compatibility matters when buying Corsair Dominator TWIN2X2048-9136C5D memory. At this time we can confirm that this DDR2 SDRAM kit is fully compatible only with standard (reference) mainboards on Nvidia nForce 680i SLI and Asus P5B Premium.

Each of the memory modules from the Corsair Dominator TWIN2X2048-9136C5D kit features its own sticker with the product part number, working frequency, capacity and timings. The marking reads no information on the voltage.

The SPD of these memory modules contains the parameters that ensure the best compatibility. The actual working frequencies, timings and voltages are provided in the EPP (Enhanced Performance Profile) used exclusively by Nvidia chipsets. Note that the screenshot reads memory module frequency as 1100MHz. It is a mistake in the Everest 4.00.976 utility. If the EPP is activated, the BIOS Setup detects the claimed 1142MHz frequency alongside with all default timings without any problems.

In conclusion I would like to say that Corsair Dominator TWIN2X2048-9136C5D is built using hand-picked Micron D9GMH (B6-3) chips.

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