Kingston launches FB-DIMM memory modules

Fountain Valley (CA) - Kingston today announced availability of FB-DIMM memory, which will first be used in Intel's upcoming "Bensley" server platform. Based on DDR2 memory, the technology offers increased bus speed and bumps the maximum memory capacity in servers to 192 GB.

Following Samsung, Kingston is the second major memory supplier to announce shipments of Fully Buffered DIMM memory modules (FB-DIMM) to support the introduction of Intel's upcoming server platform. The company claims that its devices "resolve the DDR2 memory speed vs. capacity bottleneck and comply with JEDEC standards." According to Kingston, FB-DIMMs provide four times the bandwidth of regular DDR2 memory.

Besides gaining more speed, the new technology also allows users to equip their servers with substantially more memory. The architecture allows up to six memory channels with each channel supporting up to eight dual-rank memory modules and allows for two channels to simultaneously read and write in concurrent transactions. Kingston offers the devices with up to 4 GB in size, which enables a capacity of up to 192 GB. Samsung already offers 8 GB modules which double that number to 384 GB.

Not surprisingly, the new memory hits the market with premium pricing. 512 MB DDR2-533 versions are offered for $122, 1 GB modules go for $238 and 2 GB devices can be purchased for $468. Pricing for 4 GB modules was not released.

The first - and so far only - platform to support FB-DIMMs will be Intel's upcoming Xeon DP platform. Code-named "Bensley," the platform is scheduled for launch this quarter and will be based on Intel's last Netburst processor "Dempsey" and the i5000P ("Blackford") chipset. Dempsey will carry the Xeon DP 50xx sequence number and will be offered in six variants with clock speeds ranging from 2.66 GHz (FSB667) to 3.73 GHz (FSB1066).

Bensley will also be the home for Intel's next-generation "Woodcrest" processor (Xeon DP 51xx sequence), which is scheduled to launch in the third quarter of this year, as well as the firm's first quad-core processor "Clovertown."