Separating The Wheat from the Chaff: The Latest DDR2 Modules Tested

PDP Patriot PDC22G4200 XBLK

Many users are unfamiliar with the Patriot DIMMs from PDP. Yet the manufacturer tacks quite a boastful label on its latest DDR2 modules: CL3-2-2-5 at DDR2-533 and CL4-3-3-12 at DDR2-700 - big promises that we simply had to investigate.

And lo and behold: the DIMMs did indeed operate with CL3-2-2-4 timings at DDR2-533 without any grumbling. There is a catch, however. While nearly all mainboards enable faster timings to be selected, they have to be selected manually. Despite a correctly programmed SPD, the Patriot modules only booted up at CL4-2-2-4. Nonetheless, those settings, too, are best in class.

Things get really interesting at DDR2-667 and DDR2-710. Not only did the memory pair handle these two settings with no problems; they could also run at those speeds with CL4-3-3-10 and CL4-3-3-12 timings, respectively - a feat that is thus far unparalleled.

Unlike the other DIMMs in this comparison test, the Patriot modules are not 512 MB sticks, but rather 1 GB per module. The dual-channel kit is therefore not just fast, but also features enough memory for both enthusiasts and professional users.