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The Most Common DDR DRAM Myths Debunked

1.65 Volt DRAM Will Damage Your Intel CPU

Intel recommends 1.50V for DRAM at the CPU’s specified data rate. On Haswell, that’s DDR3-1600 DRAM. But even that is a bit misleading, as Intel certifies DRAM (even DDR3-1600) that runs at 1.60 and 1.65 volts. Keep in mind that 1.60 to 1.65 volts is considered the norm for DRAM at 2133 MT/s and higher data rates.

The majority of the DRAM available in lower data rates (like DDR3-1333 and 1600) is 1.50V or less. I suggest people stay away from those data rates when voltages are 1.65, as this can mean the manufacturer used marginal memory chips. Why would DRAM with decent chips even need 1.60 to 1.65V? I generally take it a step further and stay away from 1866 MT/s DRAM that exceeds 1.50V, unless it is higher-performance (CL7 or CL8).