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Qimonda AG, one of the world’s largest products of dynamic random access (DRAM) memory, announced shipments of DDR3 chips capable of working at 1333MHz clock-speed. The move may let producers of pre-overclocked memory modules to introduce DDR3 modules at unprecedented frequencies later this year.

“Our DDR3-1333 devices deliver superior performance, bandwidth, and the modules show an extraordinary overclocking capability,” said Michael Buckermann, vice president of business unit computing at Qimonda.

Qimonda now offers 512Mb DDR3 chips and DDR3 unbuffered-DIMMs with 512MB and 1GB densities. These current devices support operating speeds of 800MHz, 1066MHz and 1333MHz and can even be overclocked to 1600MHz and beyond, according to the company. Currently Qimonda is shipping DDR3 components and modules to producers of high-speed memory modules as well as mainboard makers.

Intel’s first 3-series chipsets that support DDR3 are projected to emerge in less than a week. The company’s P35, G33 and some other core-logic sets, which are expected to be launched first, s will only support PC3-8500 (DDR3 1066MHz) memory, while more advanced X38 core-logic is set to support PC3-10600 (DDR3 1333MHz) memory speed in the third quarter of the year.

DDR3 memory is designed to increase performance and lower power consumption of DDR2 memory utilized today. The new memory standard features relatively low operating voltage of 1.5V, 8-bit pre-fetch architecture (compared to 4-bit pre-fetch buffer with DDR2), on-die termination (ODT), power-saving modes known as PASR (partial array self refresh) and ASR (auto self refresh) and some other capabilities.

The DDR3 memory will be able to operate at up to 1600MHz, but in the exchange for enhanced latencies of CAS (column address strobe) 5 to 10 (compared to CAS 3-6 on DDR2). Even though CL7 latency setting is considerably higher compared to CL5 of DDR2 at the same frequency, improved pre-fetch and other technical advantages of DDR3 versus DDR2 may help the new memory type to be as fast or even faster compared to the previous-gen one.

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