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Bah - new Ballistix Tracer 2GB DDR kit has bad speeds

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October 21, 2006 1:57:15 PM

Hi,

I just got some Crucial Ballistix DDR pc4000 1GB sticks (2 of them). I plugs them in, having read the various review around the 'net about them reaching 290MHz easy-peasy, and after much frustration I find.... that Prime95 fails if the memory is run at anything more than around 250MHz. Even at 260MHz, WITH 2.96V, it STILL pukes in Prime95 (the sticks are rated at 2.8V)

ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The 'batch' number on them both is CL11172.BG

Do I have to set the command rate to 2T to go above 250MHz? Hope not.

I've got the following (relavent) hardware:

Opty 165
Diamond Flower International (snigger) LanParty UT nf4 Ultra-D
SeaSonic S12 430W power supply
Geforce 7600GT

I set the timings to: 3-4-4-8, with Trc to 12. Command rate is always 1. It even fails to boot into the OS at anything more thant 270! ARGH (times 2).

This is the review I'm taking as reference (http://www.legitreviews.com/article/262/1/), but I think they changed something with the new batch numbers. As I said, my ones are from batch CL11172.BG

ARGHHH (times 3). I could have got much cheaper memory at the price I got these (nearly 200 quid) that would run at similar or even greater speeds...

Hints? How do I get more out of them? I really wanted to run them at 1:1 CPU/MEM ratio (at 1T command rate), but it seems that plan's out of the window....

What else should I try?

As always, thanks
October 21, 2006 6:04:54 PM

The review you linked is about a year old, so the exact modules it tested have likely been unavailable for 10 months or so. A lot has changed in the RAM market since then.
October 21, 2006 6:36:32 PM

Quote:
Hi,

I just got some Crucial Ballistix DDR pc4000 1GB sticks (2 of them). I plugs them in, having read the various review around the 'net about them reaching 290MHz easy-peasy, and after much frustration I find.... that Prime95 fails if the memory is run at anything more than around 250MHz. Even at 260MHz, WITH 2.96V, it STILL pukes in Prime95 (the sticks are rated at 2.8V)

ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The 'batch' number on them both is CL11172.BG

Do I have to set the command rate to 2T to go above 250MHz? Hope not.

I've got the following (relavent) hardware:

Opty 165
Diamond Flower International (snigger) LanParty UT nf4 Ultra-D
SeaSonic S12 430W power supply
Geforce 7600GT

I set the timings to: 3-4-4-8, with Trc to 12. Command rate is always 1. It even fails to boot into the OS at anything more thant 270! ARGH (times 2).

This is the review I'm taking as reference (http://www.legitreviews.com/article/262/1/), but I think they changed something with the new batch numbers. As I said, my ones are from batch CL11172.BG

ARGHHH (times 3). I could have got much cheaper memory at the price I got these (nearly 200 quid) that would run at similar or even greater speeds...

Hints? How do I get more out of them? I really wanted to run them at 1:1 CPU/MEM ratio (at 1T command rate), but it seems that plan's out of the window....

What else should I try?

As always, thanks


Not all RAM modules are the same, all are different. You will reach better overclocks on some than others. If you wanted higher RAM speeds you should have bought some PC6400 or something similar.
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October 21, 2006 8:44:42 PM

Thanks for the replies so far, and I know the review I pointed out is a year old, and I know they are only legally obliged to make sure the RAM performs upto what it is advertised, but was hoping Crucial kept the same high standard that they had then (and for a long time after, as many more reviews I read pointed out). Obviously not. Anyway, just a warning to others: recent Ballistix DDR 2GB kits do NOT clock like the semi-legendary CL1115(N,K,...) ones - you won't go much over stock speeds with them at 1T command rate (I haven't tried OCing at 2T yet, 'cos I don't see the point of it).

I actually want the experiences of someone who has bought the 2GB DDR Tracer kit recently with a batch code similar to mine - does it do the same for you? If it isn't just bad luck on my part for getting a particularly underclockable set of RAM, and Crucial have actually stopped producing RAM that clocks higher than it is advertised to, that'll make me feel better.

Quote:
Not all RAM modules are the same, all are different. You will reach better overclocks on some than others. If you wanted higher RAM speeds you should have bought some PC6400 or something similar.

I'm not using DDR2 RAM, I'm using DDR, so I don't think PC6400 is available for it. Anyway, that kind of goes against the concept of overclocking, doesn't it? :wink:
October 21, 2006 9:09:17 PM

Quote:
Thanks for the replies so far, and I know the review I pointed out is a year old, and I know they are only legally obliged to make sure the RAM performs upto what it is advertised, but was hoping Crucial kept the same high standard that they had then (and for a long time after, as many more reviews I read pointed out). Obviously not. Anyway, just a warning to others: recent Ballistix DDR 2GB kits do NOT clock like the semi-legendary CL1115(N,K,...) ones - you won't go much over stock speeds with them at 1T command rate (I haven't tried OCing at 2T yet, 'cos I don't see the point of it).

I actually want the experiences of someone who has bought the 2GB DDR Tracer kit recently with a batch code similar to mine - does it do the same for you? If it isn't just bad luck on my part for getting a particularly underclockable set of RAM, and Crucial have actually stopped producing RAM that clocks higher than it is advertised to, that'll make me feel better.

Not all RAM modules are the same, all are different. You will reach better overclocks on some than others. If you wanted higher RAM speeds you should have bought some PC6400 or something similar.

I'm not using DDR2 RAM, I'm using DDR, so I don't think PC6400 is available for it. Anyway, that kind of goes against the concept of overclocking, doesn't it? :wink:


Oops! My mistake! lol! I have to agree, it does sorta go against the overclocking "grain".
October 21, 2006 10:51:33 PM

Ah thanks mate - made my night! As soon as I get a fan blowing straight onto them I'll jack up the voltage permanently, but for now I'll perform some tests at high voltage for (very) short intervals!

Luckily the case has a hole right above them - supposedly for Intel mobos so that the cpu fan expels air out of the case. I'll just take the retractable tube thats screwed onto the hole, put a fan blowing air into the case and (hopefully) that should be it.

I'm a bit confused tho - all the reviews I've read say "they do 290FSB @ 3-x-x-x at 2.9V" etc. Were those older ones? I've read all these threads (after I bought them too... pfff...) saying, "Don't give them more than 2.8V! High failure rates! Test them one at a time and RMA them within 30 days!" etc. etc. E.g. the most recent one I could find (January this year): http://www.nvnews.net/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=63989

I suppose they must have made some changes - as the other bloke said (sorry mate I forget your name) the reviews I've been reading are very very old.

Let's see how it goes! It's only 200 quid!
October 21, 2006 11:31:41 PM

I often hear about these "-5B G" numbers - exactly what do they mean?

My ones batch number is "CL11172.BG" - the batch numbers for the ones I've read about is CL1115N or CL115K - so obviously mine is a -7B G I'm guessing? 'cos all the reviews I've read for the CL1115(whatever)s say "it does 280MHz at 2.8V" - my ones hardly post at 260MHz@2.8V and still puke errors in Prime95/MPrime

I think they are different - but perhaps they made them more resilient, and the failure problems that have plagued others don't exist any more (in which case that's a good thing)

(update): however, I've found a review (March this year) whose numbers seem to match mine: http://hardwarelogic.com/news/60/ARTICLE/1128/5/2006-03...

His experience with 260MHz is still better than mine, but at least it's very similar - phew I can sleep easy! More voltage coming right up.

(update 2): Right - At 3.2V (yes that high) I got Prime95 to pass 1 test. Since I've got a dual-core CPU (Opty 165), I'm running 2 instances of it concurrently. Unfortunately, Test 2 failed. Up until now, Test 1 would fail - at 3.2V, test 2 now fails.

(update 3): I turned around the case fan at the back of the case to blow air onto the space above the 2 DIMM sticks. This passes some air (not as much as I'd like, but hopefully enough from what I can feel with my fingers) over them. Then I moved the jumpers on the DFI mobo to give more voltage (above 3.2V). Then I set the voltage to 3.4V. FINALLY the blasted memory runs at 260MHz without bombing out with errors in prime95 (after 5 tests anyway).

I hope somebody somewhere will one day find this info useful, that's the only reason I'm posting it - that and I need somewhere to vent my frustration :-)
October 22, 2006 1:46:19 AM

Quote:
That's the name of the IC used, zero relation to the batch number.
The magic timing for those 1GB moduled -5B G is 3-3-3-7 1T when used on A64. With that it reache about 230Mhz which is all A64s need.
HTT doesn't benefit from higher RAM clock, only tight timing. Use dividers to keep it close to 200Mhz with the above timing.

Yeah, but it's for the sport of it man! The sport!
Seriously, I'll bench with 3-3-3-7 to see what it gives me (I can get those easy at 237MHz which is the best I can do with the Opty maxed out at 2610MHz). If it gives me better SuperPi scores than my old 2x512MB 2.5-4.4.8 @218MHz DIMMs, I'll be happy

(update, again for those thinking of buying this RAM): It runs at 3-3-3-6@237MHz (Opty 165 running @ 2610MHz, using RAM divider of 11) which is now my daily use setting. I tried testing it @200MHz using 2-2-2-6 timings - it wouldn't even post! I don't know what happened, but I had to take out the battery to get the mobo to boot up again. This latest incarnation is not the best RAM available for extreme OCers, I'm afraid. I don't know what they changed, but it doesn't do what all the reviews for its older versions say it can. My recommendation is to go with some OCZ.
!