Mushkin XP2-9200 DDR2 1150 Mhz (2 x 1GB) Ram

ccokeman - 2007-04-09 18:36:59 in Memory
Category: Memory
Reviewed by: ccokeman   
Reviewed on: April 12, 2007
Mushkin
Mushkin
Price: $424.99 USD

Introduction:

    You know the drill: countless hours spent in front of the magic box, doing research trying to get the most performance for your hard earned dollars. You have the latest and greatest of everything and now the one piece of the puzzle that is missing is your system memory. Well look no further, as we have a winner! Mushkin has just released their highest speed rated modules in the form of the XP2-9200. This set of 2 X 1 Gigabyte modules are specified to run at 1150 mhz (575 fsb), with 5-5-4-12 latencies. Recently Mushkin has been shipping all of their HP and XP series modules with EPP programming as an added feature. EPP, or Enhanced Performance Profiles, is an added bit of programming included on the SPD chip of the memory, to improve compatibility as well as allowing for one setting to control memory timings, overclocking and performance.

Mushkin was founded in 1994 and have headquarters in Denver, Colorado. Mushkin is known as one of the top-tier suppliers for performance enhanced computer products. Mushkin has a a memory module to suit just about everyone, from the basic desktop system upgrade, to the all-out performance of the Redline series. Included in the product line-up is a series of performance enhanced power supplies. The list of customers that rely on Mushkins products range from Joe six pack, all the way up to Apple, NASA and everywhere between.


Closer Look:

    This set of modules come in a flip-open clamshell type enclosure. The modules are held in place well enough to prevent damage to them in transit. Included with the modules is a card that features the Mushkin logo on the front and detailed installation and troubleshooting tips on the back.


These modules feature EPP programming, Enhanced latencies and are rated at 5-5-4-12 at 1150 mhz.


Mushkin uses heat spreaders that feature Frostbyte technology. Unlike some brands of memory, the heat spreaders are attached to the thermal tape securely.


Now that we see the how they look, I am anxious to see how they work once I have them installed!

Installation:

    To install these modules, the first item of business to take care of, is to make sure your computer is powered down and unplugged. Remove your old modules by moving the retaining clip outwards and away from the modules to release them. Insert the new modules so that they are properly indexed into the DIMM slot, and push them in until the retaining clips pull back into position. Verify the modules are locked in by checking the retaining clips. Reconnect your interactive devices and power back up. Now you are ready to play with fire.



If you have a motherboard that supports EPP, then you should see that the memory is detected as SLI ready memory.


Specifications:

Brand
Mushkin
 
Series
XP2
Model
996560
Type
240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM
Capacity
2GB (2 x 1GB)
Speed
DDR2 1150 (PC2 9200)
Cas Latency
5
Timing
5-5-4-12
Voltage
2.3
Modules
128m x64

Features


Testing:

    Today we will be testing this memory to gauge its performance through a series of benchmarks. Included are system, as well as memory benchmarks. As a comparison, I will benchmark the current system memory I am using against the XP2-9200. The list of applications and benchmarks are listed below. Due to the way memory dividers are calculated on my board, I will be limited in the frequencies that I can run. Current testing will allow 576, 585 and 600 FSB. The first set of benchmarks will be run at the default clock speeds. With the EPP specification Mushkin, the settings used were expert with all memory settings set to auto.



Testing Setup

Let's see what this memory can do.


CPU-Z - an application to show you the system settings that you chose while in BIOS. This can verify your settings, should any problems show up.


Task Manager is a utility to show physical memory, kernel memory, page file usage and processor usage (%).

Testing:

    With PcMark 05, we will be running the system suite as well as the memory test to gauge performance. The measure for PcMark05 will be total scores. The measure for memory performance is total memory score.



Higher is Better

Higher is Better


With Sisoft Sandra we run a series of benchmarks including cache and memory subsystem, memory bandwidth and memory latency.

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Lower is Better

Testing:

    Cachemem is another tool for checking memory Read-Write capabilities.




Higher is Better

Higher is Better


Next in our testing is Far Cry. For this game test, we will use the following settings and run the Hardware OC 1.7 benchmark utility.


Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better


After the completion of stock speed benchmarking session, the results are a mixed bag. Neither set wanted to step ahead and crush the performance of the other. The EPP profiles set the timings a little loose to be competitive at 5-6-5-13.

Overclocking:

    Now we will see how these modules perform when overclocked. The testing will be done at the rated timings 5-5-4-12 and voltage of 2.3v to see how they scale. The motherboard I am using creates some odd dividers in the unlinked mode. This results in FSB gaps of 15 to 20MHZ, so testing will be limited to those ratios that are available. The speeds tested will be 585 and 600 FSB. You will notice a performance decrease compared with the results at 575 FSB. There appears to be a strap change on the chipset around 580 FSB, Similar to the strap change seen on the Intel 965 chipset around 400 FSB. With that being said, let's see what we get.


Cpu-Z - Here we can see the difference in the timings between manual adjustment and EPP adjusted. This is at 585 FSB.



CPU-Z at 600 FSB.

Overclocking:

    PcMark05

 



Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better


While the Buffalo holds a slight advantage at 585 FSB, it was a no-show at 600 FSB. The EPP setting takes a hit in performance at the 585 FSB mark, due to the relaxed primary timings. It starts to show its true colors as the clocks rise.

Overclocking:

    SiSoft Sandra.

 

 


Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Lower is Better

Lower is Better


Both sets of modules are pretty well matched, with each taking a category. Again, the Buffalo falls short after 600 FSB.

Overclocking:

    CacheMem.





Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Overclocking:

    Far Cry


Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better

Higher is Better


At 600 mhz, the EPP profile starts to come into its own.

Conclusion:

    After spending some time with these modules, I have come to enjoy the performance they bring. With the ability to run 1:1 with pretty much any processor out right now, you should not have any memory issues. The one thing I found I did not like, was that the EPP profile was a bit conservative when it came to how it set the timings. 5-6-5 timings just could not keep up at the lower end of the spectrum. Now, when you start ramping it up and get up and over 600 FSB, they start to come into their own and even the field up. The modules were easy to get clocked to 600 mhz, but after that they really start screaming for voltage. With the large gap from 600 to 632 FSB on my board, 2.4v was not enough to bridge that gap. It doesn't mean I won't stop trying though. Another great set of memory modules from Mushkin.

So you like what you have seen of these modules but the price for that kind of performance is a little steep for you? Well take a look over HERE for your chance at winning a set of these Extreme Performance modules so you to can play with the big dogs. And as Alex Trebek says each night on Jeopardy: Good Luck!


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