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Mainstream-Ready? DDR3-1600 Shootout

Kingston HyperX KHX12800D3K2/4G

Better known for its value-oriented upgrade parts, Kingston has a long, but lesser-known history in the performance market under its HyperX brand. Its KHX12800D3K2/4G dual-channel kit offers many of the similar specifications as those of better-known competitors, but with less superficiality.

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Rated timings of 9-9-9-27 at DDR3-1600 and 1.70-1.90 volts sounds very familiar. The moderate timings and voltage levels once again hint at factory-overclocking of lesser-rated parts, but our own overclocking test is a more reliable way of defining quality.

The most troubling aspect of Kingston’s timing tables is that they don’t even go as high as DDR3-1333. Yet DDR3-1066 is a setting that Intel chipsets can use with FSB-1600, so at least the modules will be boot-stable prior to the mandated manual BIOS adjustment.

Kingston even prices its HyperX DDR3-1600 similarly to its competitors, and we found a familiar-looking Web price range starting at around $330. The lack of fancy fins and EPP 2.0 programming might turn a few buyers away, but we’re more interested in how these kits perform.