AMD has slowly but surely been taking over the desktop computer. The AMD brand is slowly encompassing all of the components inside AMD powered computers. For the past few years, the company has been heavily investing in and marketing the idea of an all AMD powered computer filled with parts certified to work with each other and deliver a consistent platform (ie Spider, Fusion, and AMD Vision) experience by using an AMD CPU, motherboard, and graphics card together.
It seems as if AMD was not happy with the amount of case badge stickers from other companies for the remaining parts; however, as the company officially announced today that AMD is bringing to market is own AMD branded DDR3 memory modules with the assistance of experienced memory manufacturers Patriot and VisionTek. VisionTek will be making the modules available in the US through their distributor D&H, while the Patriot modules are generally available in the US already.
A close up shot of the Performance Edition provided by AMD.
The new AMD RAM will be controlled end-to-end on the design, oversight, and certification side by AMD while the physical processes of constructing and mass producing the modules will be in the hands of partners (currently Patriot and VisionTek). AMD will offer three speed tiers with capacities including 2 GB, 4 GB, and 8 GB (matched 4GB kits). Specifically, the three speed tiers will be labeled Entertainment Edition, Performance Edition, and Radeon Edition memory in order of slowest/cheapest to fastest (and most expensive). The Entertainment Edition should be shipping soon in the last quarter of 2011 and has at least a planned soft launch of November 2011. Entertainment Edition memory will be the slowest tier, weighing in at 1333 MHz or 1600 MHz and will be best suited for low power systems and HTPC applications. Performance Edition on the other hand will come only in 1600 MHz, low latency, and matched pair modules. This middle tier of AMD RAM is planned to launch in January of 2012. Last up is the Radeon Edition DDR3 which will come in 1866 MHz RAM that has been tuned, tested, and certified for certain system configurations.
To make things a bit more interesting, AMD will be allowing software overclocking of the DDR3 RAM via its AMD OverDrive application, along with planned support for Intel XMP memory overclocking profiles.
The company is claiming up to a 20 % platform performance increase in gaming, and in our own tests we did find a noticeable increase in performance with AMD’s Llano APUs when using higher clocked memory modules. For example, in Dirt 3 the system was able to hit a minimum of 31 FPS (frames per second) when using the A-3850 APU and 1866 MHz whereas with slower clocked modules, the system dipped under the ideal 30 FPS minimum that gamers like to see. Further, by using higher clocked RAM, we managed to get a 25 % increase in performance out of StarCraft II, so AMD’s claims aren’t too far off the mark.
I’ll admit that when rumors surfaced a few months ago that AMD might be entering the DRAM market, I was a bit worried. The company has only recently stopped seeing red on their profitability statements, and the DRAM market has notoriously thin margins. Especially after the lackluster Bulldozer launch and bout of layoffs, I really did not want to see AMD try to spread itself too thin. On the other hand, they are not doing the manufacturing themselves, opting to leave the physical processes up to other companies who are already in the business and know how to stay afloat in the crowded waters. The branding and ability for AMD to offer a platform consisting of an AMD CPU, graphics card, motherboard, and RAM is an advantage that their competition simply can’t match, and its good to see the company taking advantage of that. I don’t expect AMD to start making power supplies, hard drives (though I wouldn’t say no to a nice Radeon RAM Drive ;) ), and cases, but the core components are now all united under the AMD banner and the barrier to entry for new DIYers (do it yourself/self built computers) is now lower. As long as the company can make it work, I’m all for it. What do you guys think of the new AMD branded RAM, is it something you’d use?
Subject: Memory | November 28, 2011 - 01:17 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: ram, ddr3, gskill, corsair, commodity, ram drive, memory
Although hard drive prices are skyrocketing, the price of DDR3 RAM is continuing to fall such that it is now at an all time low, according to popular tech rumor site Fudzilla. Currently, value/budget RAM maker TeamGroup is selling a 8GB DDR3 1333 MHz kit for $32 USD, which marks an all time low for the speedy temporary storage. Its not only the super cheap and lesser known brands that are selling for such low prices, however.
8 GB of DDR3 Memory is now a very inexpensive endeavor
G-Skill is offering a value DDR3 kit for $36 USD and Crucial sells their own value RAM for $34.99 over at Newegg. Considering a bit more than 3 years ago (Aprill 22, 2008 via the Way Back Machine's snapshot of Newegg), a 4GB (2x2GB) kit of G-Skill DDR3 RAM went for $279.99, or about $560 for an equivalent amount of RAM today (8 GB 2x4 GB for $36 versus two 4 GB 2x2 GB kits for $560)!
It is pretty crazy to think that DDR3 RAM has dropped so much in price. Even just a few months ago, I upgraded my system to a total of 8 GB of G-Skill 1600 (two 2x2GB kits) by adding a second set of 4 GB DDR3 for less than $50 when I spent twice that on the first 4 GB set (same model and speed) just last year.! With the rise in hard drive prices and fall in RAM prices, I really want to test out a nice 16 or even 32 GB RAM drive; if only I could pry some of that Corsair RAM out of Ryan’s Sandy Bride-E test system! ;) heh. Have you upgraded your RAM recently due to the stuff being so cheap?
My old RAM drive, aren’t they fun!? ;)
Single malt, second opinion, triple checked and quad channel; one of these things is not like the other
Subject: Memory | November 21, 2011 - 06:02 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: quad channel, x79, Intel DX79SI, corsair CMGTX8, ddr3-1333
If one wanted to explore the actual benefit of the new quad channel memory feature on the X79 motherboard, the most logical way would be to use the same RAM and test it in single, dual, triple and quad channel. That is exactly what Legit Reviews did using a quad channel kit of DDR3-1333 from Corsair and the Intel SX79SI motherboard, moving from single up to quad channel as well as upping the speed of the DIMMs. As most may already know, on synthetic benchmarks you do see a relatively linear progression in theoretical bandwidth however the same cannot be said when looking at actual tasks like encoding. Head on over to see the results.
"We started out running a single module at 1333MHz and then another module at a time to test dual channel, triple channel and finally quad channel. The Intel X79 chipet on the Intel SX79SI motherboard was able to properly run each memory configuration. The benchmark results in Sandra 2012 were very impressive in the sense that the benchmark results were nearly linear when moving from single channel to triple channel memory. Adding the fourth module for quad channel performance showed..."
Here are some more Memory articles from around the web:
- Patriot Viper Xtreme Series Division 4 Edition 32GB 1600MHz Quad Channel Memory Review @Hi Tech Legion
- G.Skill RipjawsZ PC3-17000 16GB @ Tweaktown
- GeIL EVO Corsa DIMM Kit 8GB PC3-14900U @ Hardwareoverclock
- Intel X79 Quad Channel and Z68 Dual Channel Memory Performance Analysis @ Tweaktown
- GeIL Enhance Corsa DDR3 1333MHz 16GB Quad Channel Memory Kit Review @ eTeknix
- Corsair Dominator GTX8 PC3-19200 Quad Channel 8GB Kit @ Tweaktown
- Apacer ARES PC3-17066 8GB Kit @ Tweaktown
Subject: Processors, Chipsets, Memory | November 7, 2011 - 03:07 PM | Ryan Shrout
Tagged: corsair, vengeance, sandy bridge-e, just delivered
Just Delivered is a new section of PC Perspective where we share some of the goodies that pass through our labs that may or may not see a review, but are pretty cool none the less.
Sometimes we receive interesting packages in the mail and when we get things from Corsair, we tend to pay attention. Oddly, I had not seen a box quite this size before. What comes from Corsair in the shape of a cube?
As it turns out, it was four 16GB DDR3 memory kits, preparing our team for the upcoming Sandy Bridge-E platform reviews!
Each kit includes 4 modules, getting us ready for the quad-channel memory controller on the upcoming Intel CPU. Corsair included both Vengeance and Vengeance LP kits for us, offering an option is lower profile for potentially larger heatsinks.
For motherboards that will ship with 8 DIMM slots, this allows us to test configurations as high as 32GB!! We are going to be covering all of these bases for you in the coming weeks before launch but don't worry - we are going test the standard 4 x 2GB configurations as well. :)
Subject: Memory | November 3, 2011 - 06:35 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: VisionTek, Ultimate Performance PC3-12800 CL9 1600EX, ddr3-1600, dual channel
Perhaps the first thing you should notice about Visiontek's Ultimate Performance PC3-12800 CL9 1600EX is that it sports a lifetime warranty if you register it within 30 days of purchasing it. After that the specs naturally follow, DDR3-1600 @ 9-9-9-24 or if you drop to 10-10-10-24 you may be able to hit 1900MHz as Red & Blackness Mods did. Part of that overclock is probably due to the large heatspreaders on the RAM which are effective but could interfere with the installation of a CPU heatsink in some configurations. There is one small problem with this kit, it is priced over $60 which might seem like a good deal for 8GB of RAM ... if you haven't shopped around and noticed that many equivalent DIMMs are available for 20% less.
"Today we are taking a look at a brand new product from Visiontek, the videocard manufacturer has turned their heads on to the memory market. We recieved a sample of their performance ram named “Visiontek Ultimate Performance Pc3-12800 CL9 1600EX”. So how can this brand new ram from Visiontek perform? Lets not waste any time and figure out what kind of performance that we can expect!"
Here are some more Memory articles from around the web:
- GeIL DDR3 Memory Round-up | Enhance Corsa | Evo Corsa Review @ XSReviews
- Avexir Standard Series DDR3 1600MHz 4GB Memory Kit Review @ eTeknix
- Corsair Vengeance PC3-14900 8GB 1866MHz Memory Kit Review @ eTeknix
- Everything You Need to Know About the Dual-, Triple-, and Quad-Channel Memory Architectures @ Hardware Secrets
Subject: Memory | October 18, 2011 - 12:27 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: corsair, Vengeance 8GB DDR3-1600, dual channel
If you liked Sonic the Hedgehog you'll love Corsair's new Vengeance 8GB DDR3-1600 kit, which is every bit as blue and spiky as the games star. It might even be faster, with timings of 9-9-9-24 @ 2T by default at 1.5V. Legit Reviews spent some time trying to get these DIMMs to overclock and found that while they could not tighten the timings they were able to drop the command rate to 1T, or loosen the timings and run the DIMMs at 1866MHz. It is currently available for about $50 if you shop around, not a bad deal for 8GB of speedy DDR3.
"The Corsair Vengeance 8GB DDR3 1600 CL9 memory kit comes in what Corsair calls "Cerulean Blue", which Corsair claims is designed to match the color found on motherboards supporting 2nd Generation Intel Core Sandy Bridge processors. To our eyes, this particular shade of blue is only found on ASUS motherboards, although other manufacturers such as Gigabyte and MSI do offer motherboards with blue accents..."
Here are some more Memory articles from around the web:
- Crucial Ballistix 8GB DDR3 2000MHz CL9 Memory Kit Review @ Legit Reviews
- Crucial Ballistix Elite PC3-14900 8GB @ Tweaktown
- Patriot G2 AMD Black Edition DDR3-1600 8GB Memory Kit Review @Hi Tech Legion
- G.Skill RipjawsX DDR3 1866MHz 8GB Memory Kit Review @ eTeknix
- G.Skill RipjawsX 8GB F3-17000CL9D-8GBXM Memory Kit @ Bjorn3D
Subject: Memory | October 13, 2011 - 10:56 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: ram, memory, corsair, sandy bridge-e
Sandy Bridge-E and its quad channel memory is nearly upon us. Corsair is gearing up with a new 32 GB DDR3 memory kit. The Dominator GT memory kit is comprised of four 8 GB DDR3 DIMMs (Dual In-Line Memory Module) that the company claims are from strenuously tested and highly binned chips. Specifically, the DDR3 kit has a part number of CMT32GX3M4X1866C9.
The new modules feature Corsair’s removable red and black DHX heatsinks and a RAM fan. The quad channel kit is rated to run at 2400 Mhz with CAS latencies of 9-10-9-27, and all while running at a mere 1.5 volts. Further, the memory is also rated to run with CAS latencies of 9-9-9-24 at 1300 Mhz; however, having the higher latencies and corresponding higher speed of 2400 Mhz will result in better overall performance versus the lower latency settings.
The 32 GB quad channel memory kit is available now with an MSRP of $999.99 USD. How much RAM do you currently use in your systems?
Subject: Memory | October 7, 2011 - 01:13 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: VisionTek, Ultimate Performance EX
The VisionTek Ultimate Performance PC3-12800 EX line up of RAM comes in a variety of sizes and includes both dual and triple channel versions. They all sport timings of 10-10-10-24 and run at 1600MHz, the differences are only in the size and number of DIMMs which could be handy for those thinking of picking up some RAM now and more in the future. Neoseeker tried pushing these kits to the limit and received impressive results from the triple channel kit, hitting 1806MHz @ 9-9-9-24 and an even more impressive 2133MHz on the dual channel rig, though the timings were loosened to 10-12-11-28. Drop by to see how these kits stack up to the competition.
"VisionTek enters the high performance memory market with their Ultimate Performance EX kits. Neoseeker puts both the 8GB dual channel and 12GB Ultimate Performance EX triple channel memory kits to the test to see if they live up to their lofty product names, and if they can stand against more established competitors in the field."
Here are some more Memory articles from around the web:
- VisionTek Ultimate Performance 1866Mhz DDR3 @ Benchmark Reviews
- Mushkin Blackline PC3-16000 3x4GB Review @ OCC
- GeIL Evo Corsa DDR3 2133MHz 8GB Memory Kit Review @ eTeknix
- Patriot G2 Series PC3-10666 32GB @ Tweaktown
Subject: Memory | October 7, 2011 - 08:52 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: memory, hybrid memory cube, HMC, micron, Intel, Samsung, ram, DDR, DRAM
Micron Technology and Samsung Electronics, in cooperation with Intel, Altera Corporation, Open Silicon, and Xilinx among others have formed the “Hybrid Memory Cube Consortium” to develop and encourage adoption of a new storage interface specification. This new storage technology is based on Hybrid Memory Cube (HMC) technology, which is comprised of PCB, a thin logic layer, and stacks of DRAM chips. These memory chips are stacked vertically on top of one another and connected via TSV.
A mock up of a HMC (Source: CNET)
According to Tech Connect Magazine, Micron’s Vice President for DRAM Marketing is quoted in stating “HMC brings a new level of capability to memory that provides exponential performance and efficiency gains.” Hybrid Memory Cube technology is claimed to be capable of using 70% less power than current DDR3 memory modules (DIMMs) while being up to 15 times faster.
Reinforcing Micron’s position is Intel’s CTO Justin Rattner who talked very highly of the technology and it’s massive bandwidth and I/O improvements versus traditional DDR style memory designs. The Hybrid Memory Cube is capable of sustained transfer rates of 1 terabit per second, and is “the most energy efficient DRAM ever built” by a bits transferred per amount of energy consumed.
Both Intel and Micron have expressed that the HMC technology will be a boon for data centers and high performance computing that demands low power and high bandwidth memory storage. Assuming the numbers pan out, the Hybrid Memory Cube will be quite a leap in memory efficiency and will further accelerate adoption rates of so called “cloud” applications as well as more efficient high performance servers used in scientific research endeavors. All in all, the idea of the Hybrid Memory Cube is cool stuff, and it will be interesting to see if the actual memory will live up to its grandeur name.
If you have been visiting PC Perspective at all over the last week there is no doubt you have seen a lot of discussion about the currently running Battlefield 3 beta. We posted an article looking at performance of several different GPUs in the game and then followed it up with a look at older cards like the GeForce 9800 GT. We did a live stream of some PC Perspective staff playing BF3 with readers and fans, showed off and tested the locked Caspian Border map and even looked at multi-GPU scaling performance. It was a lot of testing and a lot of time, but now that we have completed it, we are ready to summarize our findings in a piece that many have been clamoring for - a Battlefield 3 system build guide.
The purpose of this article is simple: gather our many hours or testing and research and present the results in a way that simply says "here is the hardware we recommend." It is a the exact same philosophy that makes our PC Perspective Hardware Leaderboard so successful as it gives the reader all the information they need, all in one place.