Triple-Channel DDR3: 6GB Kit Roundup

Conclusion

This would be a good time to remind everyone that today’s competition targets the high-end market, where speed is more important than cost and the best product wins. From that, we can easily choose the winner, since Kingston was the only brand able to deliver DDR3-2000 before our deadline and no other modules could even reach Kingston’s rated speed, let alone its overclocked speed.

Yet no product comparison is complete without a price comparison. Prices shown in green are estimates.

Unfortunately, Kingston failed to inform us of a model-number change that occurred between pre-launch and post-launch parts until after this article was written. The chart below lists the original name. While the chart above shows the original estimated price, Kingston's KHX16000D3ULT1K3/6GX are now available for pre-order from the manufacturer for $469, with an estimated shipping date of January 22, 2009.

The slowest-rated memory in today’s comparison, Super Talent’s DDR3-1333 is also the cheapest. The second-highest overclocking set, Crucial’s Ballistix DDR3-1600 6 GB kit is the third most expensive.

Because the Kingston modules we received were improperly documented, a lack of availability under the original name lead us towards second-place overclocker Crucial Ballistix.  While Ballistix DDR3-1600 remains an excellent option for those who need their order to ship today, near-term availability makes Kingston HyperX DDR3-2000 CAS 8 our choice for system overclocking articles.  It's also a great option for high-market buyers who want the best of everything.

Two more products deserve honorable mention as high-end value parts. At 59% the price of Crucial Ballistix, Mushkin Enhanced model 9998679 came up only a few megahertz shy of it in overclockability and beat Ballistix at DDR3-1600 speed in our low-latency competition.

The second honorable mention goes to Patriot’s Viper PVT36G1600LLK. Our samples finished the overclocking test at the same DDR3-1909 speed that Corsair’s Dominator 1866 reached, yet it’s 57% cheaper. While the emphasis of today’s review was on absolute capability, we’re sure that good value won’t go unnoticed by readers.

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  • arkadi
    Grate article!
    What was always bothering me about ram reviews is how much memory speed/timing will really impact on system performance. I it is a lot of work I know, but it was never covered.
    1
  • neiroatopelcc
    From ArticleOf course, we needed a Core i7 processor, but not just any processor would do. While most reviewers are stuck with engineering samples that only support DDR2-800 and DDR2-1066 ratios (3x and 4x base clock, times two), our retail sample supports data rates all the way up to 2,133 MHz (8x base clock, times two).


    I could be wrong, but shouldn't it be ddr3 ? I'm not aware of i7 supporting ddr2?
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  • Crashman
    neiroatopelccI could be wrong, but shouldn't it be ddr3 ? I'm not aware of i7 supporting ddr2?


    Heheh, looks like it's been edited.
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  • azone
    I wounder if amd will do quad channel with its am3 motherboards or even dual 128 bit channels. that would be cool. Just something to beats intels triple 64bit channels.
    0
  • Proximon
    Good info. Would have been nice to see at least one real world benchmark.
    1
  • goryachev
    Great article. Thanks.
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  • Gian124
    Anyone know the difference between the following
    Kingston HyperX T1 Series Kits:
    KHX16000D3T1K3/6GX
    KHX16000D3ULT1K3/6GX

    What does the UL signify?... would it benchmark the same as the former (which was tested in this article)?
    -1
  • Anonymous
    'The current problem is one of voltage.'
    I loled at that.. maybe it's too early in the morning for me :D
    -1
  • hexploit
    Interesting just how few people give a damn about DDR3 at this point.
    I guess many are a: Not wowed by i7 like they were core2 and b: Laugh and the prices of DDR3 at a time when DDR2 is not only still very fast relative to the software/games on the market but is dirt cheap.
    3
  • Crashman
    Gian124Anyone know the difference between the following Kingston HyperX T1 Series Kits:KHX16000D3T1K3/6GXKHX16000D3ULT1K3/6GXWhat does the UL signify?... would it benchmark the same as the former (which was tested in this article)?


    They may have changed the name.
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  • Gian124
    The response I got from Kingston:
    =======================================================================
    Kingston part number KHX16000D3ULT1K3/6GX is a DDR3 PC3-16000 memory module running at 2000MHz.

    Kingston part number KHX16000D3T1K3/6GX is not a valid Kingston part number. Did you mean to ask about Kingston part number KHX16000D3T1K3/3GX?
    =======================================================================

    Either Tom's had a typo, and this is really only a 3GB (1GBx3) kit, or it is not released for resale yet (e.g. the sales reps don't have that part number available to them). The *only* 6GB kit I saw had the UL designation.
    1
  • Crashman
    Gian124The response I got from Kingston:=======================================================================Kingston part number KHX16000D3ULT1K3/6GX is a DDR3 PC3-16000 memory module running at 2000MHz. Kingston part number KHX16000D3T1K3/6GX is not a valid Kingston part number. Did you mean to ask about Kingston part number KHX16000D3T1K3/3GX? =======================================================================Either Tom's had a typo, and this is really only a 3GB (1GBx3) kit, or it is not released for resale yet (e.g. the sales reps don't have that part number available to them). The *only* 6GB kit I saw had the UL designation.


    I guess now you want a copy of the invoice? Tom's didn't make a mistake, but it's possible Kingston might have changed the part number after sending the kit.
    0
  • epsiloneri
    In CPU reviews it is often pointed out that the overclockability of any particular CPU depends on the particular CPU sample, and that results may differ strongly between CPUs of the same model. Why does this not apply to memory modules?
    1
  • Gian124
    nah, not harping on mistakes or anything, just that Kingston is saying they do not have a 2GBx3 kit with those series available.

    Reason I'm asking: Building a new system this week and looking to purchase THIS ram (the Benchmark champion, Kingston HyperX T1 series 6GB kit per this article).

    I know the article said you can't find this anywhere, I was merely asking Kingston for when this ram might become available.
    0
  • mdma35
    mushkin FTW again great price/performance value as always
    2
  • billiardicus
    Tom's,

    But what about performance in areas that count? I want to know if DDR3 2000 gives me more FPS than DDR3 1066 in games (Crysis, COD: WaW, FC2, etc). Because what I've seen so far, the answer is no or very very little.
    2
  • Crashman
    epsiloneriIn CPU reviews it is often pointed out that the overclockability of any particular CPU depends on the particular CPU sample, and that results may differ strongly between CPUs of the same model. Why does this not apply to memory modules?


    It does apply to memory modules, but to a lesser extent. If you overclock six sets of modules with identical specs, you usually get a varience of around 20MHz.

    Gian124Building a new system this week and looking to purchase THIS ram (the Benchmark champion, Kingston HyperX T1 series 6GB kit per this article).I know the article said you can't find this anywhere, I was merely asking Kingston for when this ram might become available.


    Because both are rated at 2000 MHz CAS 8-8-8 1.65V, the most likely scenario is that Kingston sent its test module set to THG first, then altered the model number BEFORE making them available. That would mean the original model number never even made it into the stocking system. Since that's the most likely scenario, I wouldn't have any problem buying the parts with the UL designation.
    2
  • Gian124
    coolio! Thanks Crashman!!!
    1
  • marraco
    Wonderful. Nice Article.
    I are preparing a XY chart with Price-Performance based on that data, to post here soon.

    Now, This article need a second part, Real world benchmarck, and bus overclocking limits on the wonderful P6T Deluxe.
    1
  • Lurker87
    Guys, seriously, thank you for this article. I was talking about how I really wanted a good test between all the top ddr3 6gb sticks. But most of all, I wanted to see if those Mushkins were as good as I was hoping they were. This has made my decision so much easier. Thanks everyone!
    1