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Six Low-Voltage Dual-Channel 8 GB Memory Kits, Overclocked

Test Settings

Test System Configuration
CPUIntel Core i7-3770K (Ivy Bridge): 3.50 GHz, 4C/8T O/C to 4.00 GHz (40 x 100 MHz) at 1.25 V Core
CPU CoolerThermalright True Spirit 120M
MotherboardAsus Sabertooth Z77: LGA 1155, Intel Z77 Express, Firmware 1504 (08/03/2012)
GraphicsAMD Radeon HD 7970: 925 MHz GPU,  GDDR5-5500
Hard DrivesSamsung 840 Series MZ-7PD256, 256 GB SSD
SoundIntegrated HD Audio
NetworkIntegrated Gigabit Networking
PowerSeasonic X760 SS-760KM, ATX12V v2.3, EPS12V, 80 PLUS Gold
Software
Operating SystemMicrosoft Windows 8 Pro x64
GraphicsAMD Catalyst 13.1
ChipsetIntel INF 9.3.0.1026

Asus’ Sabertooth provided the highest DRAM overclock ever seen in a round-up, making it a great candidate for today’s memory testing.

Thermalright changed the name of its MUX-120 to True Spirit 120M, combining the installation brackets of sister brands into a single solution. We still have the same parts under their original names, and they continue to provide excellent cooling to Intel’s quad-core processors.

Today’s test includes games, so we tossed in a top gaming card. An Accelero Xtreme-equipped Radeon HD 7970 pushes pixels.

Samsung’s 840 Pro model MZ-7PD256 keeps data flowing fast enough to keep the CPU, graphics, and DRAM busy

Benchmark Configuration
Autodesk 3ds MaxVersion 14.0 x64: Space Flyby Mentalray, 248 Frames, 1440x1080
WinRARVersion 4.2: THG-Workload (1.3 GB) to RAR, command line switches "winrar a -r -m3"
F1 2012Version 1.2, Direct X 11, Built-in Benchmark High Quality, No AA, 1600x900 Resolution
Metro 2033Full Game, Built-In Benchmark, "Frontline" Scene DX 11, High, AAA, 4x AF, No PhysX, No DoF, 1600x900
SiSoftware Sandra 2012Version 2012.10.18.72, Memory Bandwidth Benchmark
  • excella1221
    Nice article.
    A bit surprised that Corsair Vengeance didn't make an appearance though.

    Been using G.Skill RAMs since I can remember, and they've never failed me!
    Reply
  • DarkSable
    Very interesting read, thanks Tom's! Guess we've been bothering you enough about, erm, "half-height" overclocker's ram enough for you to want to do an article on it. Shame that the mystery modules chose not to participate... perhaps I'll send you my 8 gigs. Want to swap? Ship me some ram to use in the mean-time and I'll ship you my sticks.
    Reply
  • rmpumper
    In other words, RAM speed is irrelevant if you are not using an APU.
    Reply
  • Haserath
    No power consumption numbers? :/
    Reply
  • cobra5000
    Good testing but at the start of the article, much emphasis was placed on the degradation of the cpu due to high memory voltage and then it just turns into a memory speed test. What about the cpu degradation?
    Reply
  • envy14tpe
    Good article. Still left wondering why anyone would choose low voltage RAM when costs do not outweigh the benefits.
    Reply
  • slomo4sho
    It is only worthwhile to pickup low voltage ram if you can obtain it at the same price as 1.5v ram. Then again, the Ballistix is around the same price point as other similar timing ram.
    Reply
  • allan_hm
    Pointless analysis for too little performance AND price difference...
    Would be a bit less irrelevant if more brands were tested.
    To be honest I was more interested on that "dirty little secret" details than the test itself.
    Also, an article named "who is who in the RAM marked" would be awesome, just like that one about Power Supplies...
    Reply
  • Crashman
    excella1221Nice article.A bit surprised that Corsair Vengeance didn't make an appearance though.Been using G.Skill RAMs since I can remember, and they've never failed me!Here's from the article:
    We invited every major manufacturer (including a crowd-favorite ODM) to this round-up, and a few (including that ODM) chose not to participate.
    Corsair said they had some new modules coming out and didn't want to focus on older models.cobra5000Good testing but at the start of the article, much emphasis was placed on the degradation of the cpu due to high memory voltage and then it just turns into a memory speed test. What about the cpu degradation?What about it? It's never been seen at 1.50V.
    Reply
  • Crashman
    allan_hmPointless analysis for too little performance AND price difference...Would be a bit less irrelevant if more brands were tested.To be honest I was more interested on that "dirty little secret" details than the test itself.Also, an article named "who is who in the RAM marked" would be awesome, just like that one about Power Supplies...Article intent was to find modules within Intel's 1.55V limit that pulled top numbers in frequency and/or latency. Some were found, article is a success.
    Reply