Mushkin HP3 10666 2x2GB Reviewccokeman - November 10, 2008
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When it comes time to purchase your new memory modules, most people look to review sites to get a good idea on the performance capabilities of the memory they want to buy. Why, you ask? So they don't have to go through the endless buy it and return or sell it routine to find the set of their dreams. Hey we do it for you! How? By testing the memory with a series of benchmarks that show some of the capabilities of the system memory. Synthetic benchmarks as well as real gameplay are used to show the capabilities. Also, there are comparisons to other performance modules just so that this is not a one-sided affair. That just would not do and offers up only the knowledge of what the featured product can do.
- CPU:Intel Core 2 Quad Q9450 333 x 8
- Motherboard:Asus Striker II Extreme
- Memory: Mushkin HP3 10666 2x2GB 7-7-7-20 1333MHz
- Video Card(s): Palit HD4850
- Power Supply: Mushkin 800watt Modular Power supply
- Hard Drive: Seagate 1 TB 7200.11 SATA
- Opticals:Sony DVD-ROM
- O/S: Windows Vista Ultimate
- Comparison Module #1: Mushkin XP3 Ascent PC3 16000 6-6-6-16 1333 MHz
- Comparison Module #2: OCZ Reaper X HPC DDR3 10666 2 x 1GB 6-5-5-20 1333MHz
- Comparison Module #3: Patriot Viper Fin PC3 12800 2 x 1GB 7-7-7-18 1333MHz
- Comparison Module #4: CSX Diablo PC3 16000 6-5-5-15 2x1GB 1333MHz
CPU-Z: This application shows us the settings that we have chosen in the BIOS. Items shown in this application include CPU speed and bus settings, motherboard manufacturer, BIOS revisions, memory timings, and SPD chip information.
Task Manager: We use this utility to show physical memory, kernel memory, page file, and processor usage.
- Processor: Intel Q9450 420 x 8 1.375 volts
- Memory: Mushkin HP3 10666 2x2GB 787 MHz 9-8-8-20 1.85 volts, 867MHz 9-9-9-28 1.55 volts
Trying to get the most from these modules was an interesting experience. First off, the modules require 1.7 and 1.8 volts to work at the factory specified timings and clock speed of 1333MHz. Fair enough, decent timings at the baseline voltage threshold. But OCC is not about the baseline number it's a starting point. The memory chips on these modules carry a specification of 9-9-9 at 1333MHz 1.5 volts. Of course its going to take some more juice to get the tighter timings. When running memory benchmarks on an Nforce motherboard allows a couple of things you cant do with an Intel based board such as running the memory unlinked from the CPU allowing for really nice screen shots, but at the cost of reduced or no increase in performance. The best performance is gained by running linked and synced with the CPU FSB. That's what I have done here. Running at 9-8-8-20 unlinked I was able to push only to 787MHz (1574Mhz) at 1.85 volts. Not really the kind of overclock I was looking for especially running unlinked. So back to the drawing board. I reduced the timings to 9-9-9-24 P1 and P2 enabled and started from scratch. Higher volts on the northbridge, lower volts on the northbridge it all was for naught. Finally I went the clean slate approach and again started working my way up. 1400Mhz , no problem, 1500MHz, no problem, 1600MHz, a small hiccup, 1700 getting close after so more tweaking and finally the point I could go no further 867MHz 9-9-9-28 at 1.55 volts. Yes 1.55 volts! It shocked me to to see where I had to go to get the modules to overclock.
The benchmarks used in this review include the following:
- CPU-Z Version 1.47
- Windows Task Manager
- PCMark Vantage
- SiSoft Sandra XII
- Company of Heroes