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DDR4 Memory Prototypes Demostrated at ISSCC

By - Source: XbitLabs | B 62 comments

Two DDR4 memory modules were shown off at this years ISSCC.

With DDR4 DRAM set to hit the market in 2013, two manufactures took the opportunity at this years International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) to demonstrate their DDR4 DRAM. It is expected that DDR4 will represent 50 percent of the market by mid-2015, after its initial launch on the server side in 2013.

DDR4 is set to have a data transfer rates of 2133 MT/s to 4266 MT/s compared to 800 MT/s to 2133 MT/s of DDR3. DDR4 is also expected to have significantly lower voltage requirements than DDR3. It will require between 1.05 V to 1.2 V to operate, whereas DDR3 requires between 1.2 V to 1.5 V. The lower voltage requirement is expected to reduces power consumption by 40 percent compared to a 1.5 V DDR3 module. DDR4 will not be pin compatible with DDR3, which means they will not be backwards compatible.   

Image Credit: XbitLabsImage Credit: XbitLabs

Samsung's DDR4 DRAM module can achieve data transfer rates of 2133 Gb/s at 1.2V, compared to 1.35V and 1.5V DDR3 DRAM at an equivalent 30nm-class process technology, with speeds of up to 1.6 Gb/s. Hynix's DDR4 device works at 2400MHz (2400 Mb/s) at 1.2V and processes up to 19.2 GB/s of data per second with a 64-bit I/O. Hynix used its 38nm manufacturing process technology, while Samsung employed the 30nm node instead.

Other manufacturers such as, Elpida, Micron and Nanya, didn't show off their DDR4 prototypes but are expected to by end 2012. With DDR4 set to hit the PC enthusiast market in 2014, are you going to make the jump to DDR4 or wait until it becomes mainstream much like many users did with the switch from DDR2 to DDR3?

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Top Comments
  • 28 Hide
    supall , March 1, 2012 12:17 PM
    So we're to expect DDR4 between 2-3 years? Please, if you're holding out for DDR4, do yourself a favor and build the machine now. You'll be building another machine 2-4 years from now anyhow, if you're reading Tom's.
  • 27 Hide
    afrobacon , March 1, 2012 12:17 PM
    I have yet to make the jump to DDR3. I really need to upgrade :/ 
  • 21 Hide
    bawchicawawa , March 1, 2012 12:24 PM
    Fully matured APU's in 2014 + ddr4, I smell something beautiful.
Other Comments
    Display all 62 comments.
  • -9 Hide
    garyshome , March 1, 2012 12:13 PM
    If the old stuff holds out, seems like I just might wait. Supposed to get a new laptop from cyberpower today for the DJ business[for a great price].
  • 12 Hide
    de5_Roy , March 1, 2012 12:14 PM
    p.e.g. will hugely benefit from lower voltage, higher bw ddr4. biggest boost will be in mobile pcs.
    i guess haswell-successor and amd piledriver's successors might support ddr4.
  • 28 Hide
    supall , March 1, 2012 12:17 PM
    So we're to expect DDR4 between 2-3 years? Please, if you're holding out for DDR4, do yourself a favor and build the machine now. You'll be building another machine 2-4 years from now anyhow, if you're reading Tom's.
  • 27 Hide
    afrobacon , March 1, 2012 12:17 PM
    I have yet to make the jump to DDR3. I really need to upgrade :/ 
  • -5 Hide
    wishmaster12 , March 1, 2012 12:18 PM
    I was hopeing for the push of XDR
  • 15 Hide
    rangas , March 1, 2012 12:19 PM
    ive just built my PC this year, seems like my next will be in 2015 after ddr4 is going more mainstream
  • 18 Hide
    Yuka , March 1, 2012 12:23 PM
    "are you going to make the jump to DDR4 or wait until it becomes mainstream much like many users did with the switch from DDR2 to DDR3?"

    Well, it's pretty much up to the price TBH... Unless they prove to be a major performance booster, I'd say most people can wait. Maybe AMD's APUs might/should speed up their adoption.

    Cheers!
  • 21 Hide
    bawchicawawa , March 1, 2012 12:24 PM
    Fully matured APU's in 2014 + ddr4, I smell something beautiful.
  • 5 Hide
    drwho1 , March 1, 2012 12:30 PM
    I will wait, my PC's I just built them just about a year ago...
    I know that I will still upgrade them both at some point with both more RAM and SSD's,
    and that should be enough for them for another 4-5 years.

    By then DDR4 will be mainstream anyway, and prices would have come down from their initial price.

    The only question is: How much DDR4 RAM to buy when the time is right?
    Like I mentioned, I will upgrade my ram, on my main PC it will go from 4GB (what it has now) to 16GB
    (my motherboard limit) since I have always at least double the amount of RAM on each PC...

    Then I can safely guess that I will "need" or get a minimum of 32GB but expandable to 64GB or 128GB.
    Then again the motherboards that will be compatible with this memory will also include other features... and we need to know more about them.

    Anyways, this are exciting news indeed.
  • -7 Hide
    demonhorde665 , March 1, 2012 12:37 PM
    they quote a lot of figures while saying nothing about expected latency . keep in mind ddr3 was slow to adopt for several reasons

    1. many peopel had jsut shelled out money of ddr2 based systems before ddr3 was annouced or available .

    2. DRR3 did and still does cost drastically more than ddr 2

    3. ddr3 has drastically higher latency compared to ddr 2 , if you take a lower speed ddr 3 module and match it to the same speed ddr2 the ddr 2 will perform better because it has lower latency


    number 3 being the Biggest reasons budget minded enthusiast were not enthusiastic about ddr3.

    we need latency figures along side the speed figures .
  • 1 Hide
    drwho1 , March 1, 2012 12:41 PM
    john_4
    drwho1 Then I can safely guess that I will "need" or get a minimum of 32GB but expandable to 64GB or 128GB.Not so sure about that. Windows 8 is to have lower overhead than 7 does. Then you have all the the tools out there happy playing Farmvile or some other lame game on their phones, then you have the kiddie consoles.



    "farmville" or any other "make believe I"m a game" has not infested my computer.

    As for windows 8... same as "farmville" ... or vista, windows Me...

    Plus we all know that the "minimum requirements" are never the optimal specs.
  • -5 Hide
    demonhorde665 , March 1, 2012 12:43 PM
    bawchicawawaFully matured APU's in 2014 + ddr4, I smell something beautiful.



    i wouldnt hold my breath , at most i expect matured apu's to provide mid end performance in gaming task at most , current apu's only throw up entry level power and the cpu power has been less than entry level really because amd is using weak cores to accomadate the gpu being higher end.

    though the thought of a single chip runing xbox 720 (or what ever it will be called ) level graphics at 60 fps is a sweet idea , i just don't see it happening atleast not cheaply.

    at most i'd expect xbox 360 level graphics with 4x AA running 60 fps.
  • 9 Hide
    nocteratus , March 1, 2012 12:45 PM
    I still have a Q6600 + 8GB DDR2, it's working great and when I'll be ready to upgrade my PC I'll see if DDR4 is available. But for now I think I can wait for DDR4. My current rig do the job and I'm low on $$$ so the next PC will have to wait a few years.
  • 1 Hide
    Dead Pixel , March 1, 2012 12:49 PM
    ddr4 i just got ddr3! in my new build!!
  • 3 Hide
    alidan , March 1, 2012 12:56 PM
    supallSo we're to expect DDR4 between 2-3 years? Please, if you're holding out for DDR4, do yourself a favor and build the machine now. You'll be building another machine 2-4 years from now anyhow, if you're reading Tom's.


    lol, i have a quad core, granted its on ddr2, but its still a quad core, it can handle damn near everything i throw at it, so yea, why build a new system now, even if its a bit over 2 years old,

    by the time ddr4 hits the 16gb for 80$ range id defiantly consider a new pc possible.
  • 3 Hide
    TeraMedia , March 1, 2012 12:58 PM
    I think one of the problems causing AMD's CPUs and APUs to be slower than Intel's is memory bandwidth. If you look at some of the recent articles, you can see that AMD's bandwidth tends to be lower for same-class chips. Furthermore, Intel appears to be less impacted by slower RAM either because of their prefetch technology or cache size.

    If AMD can take advantage of the throughput benefits of DDR4, this could help level the playing fields a bit.
  • 9 Hide
    alidan , March 1, 2012 1:01 PM
    demonhorde665they quote a lot of figures while saying nothing about expected latency . keep in mind ddr3 was slow to adopt for several reasons 1. many peopel had jsut shelled out money of ddr2 based systems before ddr3 was annouced or available . 2. DRR3 did and still does cost drastically more than ddr 23. ddr3 has drastically higher latency compared to ddr 2 , if you take a lower speed ddr 3 module and match it to the same speed ddr2 the ddr 2 will perform better because it has lower latency number 3 being the Biggest reasons budget minded enthusiast were not enthusiastic about ddr3. we need latency figures along side the speed figures .


    16gb ddr2 would cost me 2-400$
    16gb ddr3 would cost me 80 at most

  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , March 1, 2012 1:03 PM
    No way in hell Haswell supports this. They will start volumne production at the end of the year of Haswell. That means DDR4 would have to have been ready by LAST year. Remember, the memory controller is in the CPU die now. I don't know what is after Haswell, but it is likely that Intel has already designed that one as well. I doubt it has been taped out yet so there is still time to put DDR4 on it since that chip is at 14nm and likely won't be taped out until some time in 2013 or late 2012. DDR4 will have to be ready to roll by the beginning of next year for Intel to put it in their 2014 products 14nm products.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , March 1, 2012 1:06 PM
    Whatever benefits AMD would get from DDR4 Intel would get also so nothing changes on the bandwidth front. Not sure why someone would think this only helps AMD. Bandwidth isn't the only thing slowing down AMD CPUs by the way. In fact, it is probably last on their list of things to fix as it has the least amount of impact. Intel's SandyBridge-E has twice the bandwidth of the regular i7 2600/2700, yet the 2600/2700 beats it on several benchmarks. Only specific apps will benefit from the increased bandwidth.
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