DPMan - your first choice is not a brand, but the specs you need. It doesn't matter if DDR3-1600 is the most common (it isn't) because if your computer won't support it, it's a poor choice. Check out the specs on your computer, what speed it supports and what voltage it will deliver to RAM and then shop based upon those specs. Look at the Latency (CL) of the choices - lower is better. If you then find RAM by your "favorite" maker - buy it!
(Cross-posted) The reason that scientists only respect double-blind testing is that if you know the brand of a product than you either arrive with or gain personal feeling about certain brands. If 1 in 10,000 Crucial modules fails and that person who owned it knew it was a Crucial, he will believe that brand will fail again. That doesn't change the reality that it may have much better reliabilty than another brand.
Do you think that a pill will really lose you 5 lbs a week if 20 people say it will on a TV commercial? Do you believe the makers of herbal erection creme when they trot out the personal experiences of their users?
Eyewitness testimony is the worst type.
If you had substituted OCZ or G.Skill or Corsair in the title of this thread, then you would have heard from folks who didn't like those brands.
That doesn't mean that the information here is useless. But look more closely at the info that includes reasons - poor latency maybe - higher voltage requirements that another brand. But "I had one of these fail on me one time" isn't good information.
BTW, I personally have Crucial RAM in my computer and it works great!!! LOL!