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Micron Technology, a maker of dynamic random access memory (DRAM), announced this week its first chips officially rated to run at 1066MHz. The move not only allows DDR2 technology to live on for another year or so, but will also encourage makers of pre-overclocked memory modules to introduce even faster products.

Micron produces its 1Gb 1066MHz DDR2 memory devices using 78nm process technology and those chips may be used to create 512MB, 1GB and 2GB memory modules that operate at 1.8V voltage supply, which is standard for DDR2 memory type.

Previously all the company’s DRAM devices were intended for use at 800MHz clock-speed and while a lot of memory module producers overclocked them to 1066MHz, they needed to increase voltages towards 2.1V – 2.2V levels, which is a threat for reliability and may not be supported by certain motherboards. The formal launch of 1066MHz integrated circuits (ICs) can allow numerous makers of memory modules reveal PC2-8500 with standard voltages. At the same time, makers of pre-overclocked memory modules will be able to push their products even further.

Currently only Nvidia Corp. formally supports PC2-8500 memory with several of its chipsets for Intel processors. However, the launch of memory devices that are officially rated to run at 1066MHz means much broader support for this memory speed-bin: Advanced Micro Devices, Silicon Integrated Systems and Via Technologies have announced support of PC2-8500 with their future chipsets or microprocessors. It is unclear whether Intel Corp., the world’s largest maker of chips, also plans to support the emerging standard.

Samples of Micron’s 1Gb DDR2 1066MHz components are now available for select customers and volume production is expected in the third quarter of 2007.

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