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Kingston ValueRAM question, again

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May 20, 2006 11:05:30 PM

I did a search about Kingston ValueRam and read most of the topics. Unless I missed something it seems that no consensus of opinion exists on whether it is superior or inferior in performance to say Samsung. I didn't find any definitive test results - just some anecdotal replies.

I called Kingston and they told me that it is exactly the same quality as their branded products used in machines like Dell etc. They also said the performance is the same. They said that the only difference is that the branded RAM has some tweaks in it for the brand manufacturer (presumably to keep it proprietary for the brand). Their ValueRam might therefore not run in branded machines since it was designed to be run on any generic board.

My questions are:
1. Is this true about quality and performance?
2. If 1. is true, then what would differentiate a Samsung stick versus a ValueRam stick both made for a generic board?

Thank you.
May 20, 2006 11:52:50 PM

Kingston Value Ram is High Quality ram for a good price. The next step up has closer timing for better performace. It is actually ram that fails to meet the ultra high speed requirements. So they just mark it slower. All mfg do it. It come with a Lifetime Warranty. So if you have any problems they will ship replacements to you and everything need to return the bad ram. AT NO COST TO YOU.
May 21, 2006 12:40:07 AM

Value ram, Select ram and generic rams are good quality rams. They can perform exceptionally well at normal operation. However when it comes to overclocking, they don't run stable or maintain tighter timings. I have used 2x1Gb value ram before and able to overclock it from 533 to 700, stable but it is not as good as the performance ram. As for the difference Kingston and Samsung, none really, generic rams and just that but make sure you get the one with a lifetime warranty for it can go bad. Bottom line generic rams are good rams and as well as affordable, pretty much you get what you paid.
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May 21, 2006 2:17:08 AM

Thank you for your input.

I called Kingston tech support again and they told me that they manufacture ONLY one type of ram. The term ValueRam is in essence a misnomer because it is not ‘value’ in the usual sense of the word. They said that if you want to buy ram from them and it isn’t for a branded machine e.g. Dell, then you can only get one product. I specifically asked him about Samsung and he said that based on what he knew, they only offer one tier as well. He said that it is manufactured exactly the same and in the same plants as the units they make for the brands. He said that the performance is exactly same if it is in a Dell, HP etc or in a whiteboard.

Blue68F100 – this seems to be at odds with what you are inferring if you meant that Kingston has two tiers of products i.e. a higher and lower speed. Or did you mean that the higher quality goods go to the brands and the whiteboard users e.g. Asus get the lesser units?

Chuckshissle – tech support seems to be agreeing with you regarding the fact that they, Samsung, Infineon etc are generic brands. I assume then that Kingston made a poor choice of marketing their product by calling it ValueRam since I think by your definition value and select ram are beneath generic which is what you called these manufacturers. Is this correct? Who then are at the next level of “performance” ram manufacturers? I was always under the impression that the likes of Infineon and Samsung were pretty much up there at the top.

Thank you for the help so far.
May 21, 2006 4:40:58 AM

Quote:
Thank you for your input.

I called Kingston tech support again and they told me that they manufacture ONLY one type of ram. The term ValueRam is in essence a misnomer because it is not ‘value’ in the usual sense of the word. They said that if you want to buy ram from them and it isn’t for a branded machine e.g. Dell, then you can only get one product. I specifically asked him about Samsung and he said that based on what he knew, they only offer one tier as well. He said that it is manufactured exactly the same and in the same plants as the units they make for the brands. He said that the performance is exactly same if it is in a Dell, HP etc or in a whiteboard.

Blue68F100 – this seems to be at odds with what you are inferring if you meant that Kingston has two tiers of products i.e. a higher and lower speed. Or did you mean that the higher quality goods go to the brands and the whiteboard users e.g. Asus get the lesser units?

Chuckshissle – tech support seems to be agreeing with you regarding the fact that they, Samsung, Infineon etc are generic brands. I assume then that Kingston made a poor choice of marketing their product by calling it ValueRam since I think by your definition value and select ram are beneath generic which is what you called these manufacturers. Is this correct? Who then are at the next level of “performance” ram manufacturers? I was always under the impression that the likes of Infineon and Samsung were pretty much up there at the top.

Thank you for the help so far.



RAM just like CPUs and GPUs are bin'ed based on how well they perform and how many tests they fail.

This is for illustration only

For example say you have 6 bins:

bin 0 top quality part failed 0-1 tests ( Opty 885, 7900GTX GPU, DDR550 3-4-4-8 )

bin 1 high quality part failed 1-2 tests ( Opty 880, 7900GT GPU, DDR500 3-4-4-8 )

bin 2 quality part failed 2-3 tests ( Opty 875, ...., DDR466 3-3-2-8, DDR433 2-3-2-6, DDR400 2-3-2-6 )

bin 3 average part failed 3-4 tests ( DDR400 3-3-3-8 )

bin 4 below average part failed 4-5 tests

bin 5 poor quality part failed 5-6 or more tests

This is for illustration only

This is not a perfect example, take with a very large grain of salt

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAM

http://www.corsairmemory.com/memory_basics/153707/index...
May 21, 2006 2:56:05 PM

Thank you for your illustration.

In the context of Kingston, who doesn't sell various grades of ram, am I therefore to assume that all of their products are of the "top or high" quality variety pursuant to your hypothetical example? Could the same be said of likes of Infineon, Samsung etc? i.e. are these manufacturers "performance" manufacturers and not "generic" manufacturers following chuckshissle's definitions? Or, alternatively, are you saying that the "top and high" quality goes to the brands with the rest of it going out to the whiteboard owners?

Either statement seems to be at odds with Kingston’s representations but of course they would tend to be biased? It appears to be clear that they do indeed only sell parts to the two groups which makes me think they don’t sell anything sub-top or sub-high particularly if they are competing against all the other so-called quality vendors like Infineon, Samsung etc.
May 21, 2006 3:51:37 PM

I can't speak for Samsung ram but I've got 1 gig of double sided DDR400 Kingston value ram in my computer right now. It's just a stick of Hynix ram with a Kingston sticker on it and a life time warranty. I could've bought the exact same RAM with a Hynix sticker on it for $40 less but my computer store didn't have any at the time so I paid the extra.

As far as the performance goes it's pretty bad. Default voltage is 2.65v, timings 3-3-3-8. The best overclocking it can do is either 2.5-3-3-8@400Mhz or 3-3-3-8@416Mhz. Extra voltage does nothing for performance.

My motherboard can overclock quite well with other ram so I'd have to give kingston value ram a thumbs down for performance potential.
May 21, 2006 3:55:34 PM

Quote:
Thank you for your illustration.

In the context of Kingston, who doesn't sell various grades of ram, am I therefore to assume that all of their products are of the "top or high" quality variety pursuant to your hypothetical example?


Kingston do sell various grades; valueram for a generic computer and hyperx ram for an enthusiast computer.
May 21, 2006 6:42:08 PM

jajig - If I understand what they told me, they are saying that there isn't different grades but rather different target markets, but all the same grade quality and performance. I didn't ask specifically about HyperX but based on their literature I see where I would agree with your assessment.

Ok, based on this, and also quickly looking at Samsung's website, it seems that Samsung only has generic ram and no "performance" ram. So would it be correct to assume that ValueRam is equivalent to Samsung and Infineon as Chuckshissle stated? Further, if this is the case, then what companies does HyperX compete against?
May 21, 2006 10:56:27 PM

Quote:
Thank you for your illustration.

In the context of Kingston, who doesn't sell various grades of ram, am I therefore to assume that all of their products are of the "top or high" quality variety pursuant to your hypothetical example? Could the same be said of likes of Infineon, Samsung etc? i.e. are these manufacturers "performance" manufacturers and not "generic" manufacturers following chuckshissle's definitions? Or, alternatively, are you saying that the "top and high" quality goes to the brands with the rest of it going out to the whiteboard owners?

Either statement seems to be at odds with Kingston’s representations but of course they would tend to be biased? It appears to be clear that they do indeed only sell parts to the two groups which makes me think they don’t sell anything sub-top or sub-high particularly if they are competing against all the other so-called quality vendors like Infineon, Samsung etc.



You should not believe everything the MFG tells you.

Many MFGs do not even make their own RAM but rather purchase it from the real RAM MFGs like Samsung, Micron ( Crucial ), Infineon, etc

The memory that performs very well becomes HyperX and the memory that fails the most tests becomes ValueRAM.

So they didn't exactly tell you the whole truth.

Naturally some RAM module manufacturers have better quality control than others.

In my opinion the best are:

Corsair, OCZ, Crucial in that order.

Followed by Kingston, Mushkin and a few others

Followed by the mid-range group

and finally the cheap group
May 21, 2006 11:41:46 PM

linux_0 - this certainly seems to make sense.

My problem is that because I'm looking for the obsolete RDRAM I can't choose any of the manufacturers you mention sinc they don't make it. I'm essentially stuck with a limited universe being ValueRam, Samsung, Infineon and Elpida.

Further, I can't overclock it since it is in a Dell but I do need a fairly high performance and stable memory since the application I'm using it for sucks hard on 2G of memory.

Therefore in your (or anyone's please) opinion which of the aforementioned manufacturers would be best or are they all about the same being generic producers?
May 22, 2006 12:19:10 AM

If you're not going to do any kind of overclocking I would suggest getting Kingston valueram simply because it comes with a lifetime warranty. At default speeds just about anything would be fine.
May 22, 2006 12:27:09 AM

Quote:
If you're not going to do any kind of overclocking I would suggest getting Kingston valueram simply because it comes with a lifetime warranty. At default speeds just about anything would be fine.



This is true, just be sure to memtest it to death when you get it.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.asp?Submit=EN...

For the price of a 2 sticks of CORSAIR 512MB 184-Pin RDRAM (16bit) PC 800 ECC Unbuffered System Memory Model CMSS512MBRB72-800 - Retail

@ 2 x $329.99 you can buy a new computer.

Have you considered that?
May 22, 2006 1:32:38 AM

Yes the price of new rdram is prohibitive. You can pick it up on eBay for a fraction of new. I usually memtest86 it to overkill as well as prime95.

So then in everyone's opinion, there is no tangible difference between Infineon, Samsung and ValueRam for non-overclockers?
May 22, 2006 2:03:25 AM

Quote:
Yes the price of new rdram is prohibitive. You can pick it up on eBay for a fraction of new. I usually memtest86 it to overkill as well as prime95.

So then in everyone's opinion, there is no tangible difference between Infineon, Samsung and ValueRam for non-overclockers?



Have you considered upgrading to a new system?

What are your full specs? You may be able to salvage some of what you have?

What are you using that needs 2GB?
May 22, 2006 2:32:18 AM

Dell 8200, Northwood P4 3.06Ghz 533Mhz FSB, , 1.5G RDRam, 80G WD HD. Its all old world stuff - AGP, IDE etc

Dell has pretty much replaced everything including the 21in monitors over the last year under warranty so I'm reluctant to bothter buying or building for a while. I have some happy motoring left in this rig. I also thought I would wait until Vista SP1 comes out.

TradeStation regularly uses 2G and most serious users are running with 4G. Mine is alright at 1.5 but its getting pretty thin on each new release. This application is more of a RAM hog than a CPU hog.
May 22, 2006 3:13:12 AM

Quote:
Dell 8200, Northwood P4 3.06Ghz 533Mhz FSB, , 1.5G RDRam, 80G WD HD. Its all old world stuff - AGP, IDE etc

Dell has pretty much replaced everything including the 21in monitors over the last year under warranty so I'm reluctant to bothter buying or building for a while. I have some happy motoring left in this rig. I also thought I would wait until Vista SP1 comes out.

TradeStation regularly uses 2G and most serious users are running with 4G. Mine is alright at 1.5 but its getting pretty thin on each new release. This application is more of a RAM hog than a CPU hog.



For about $420 USD delivered you can upgrade to a new system which is capable of upgrading to AM2 and can use AGP or PCI-E VGA cards and has 2GB of RAM :-D

https://secure.newegg.com/NewVersion/Wishlist/PublicWis...

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/ASRock/939Dual-SATA2

http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=355&...

:-D
!