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Crucial Ballistix BL2KIT25664FN1608 Memory Review



Testing of the Crucial Ballistix will include all the standard OCC tests with the addition of the thermal monitoring test already performed on page two of this review. We will run this memory at the rated frequency and timings specified by Crucial, make sure that the XMP profile works as expected and finally, push the RAM to see what headroom is available for the overclockers out there.


Testing Setup:

  • CPU: Intel core i7 860
  • Motherboard: Gigabyte P55UD4P
  • Memory: Crucial Ballistix DDR3 1600 CAS 8 4GB Kit
  • Video Card: Gigabyte HD 5870
  • Power Supply: Enermax Modu-82+ 625W
  • HDD: Patriot Torqx 128 GB, Seagate 640 GB 7200.11
  • Optical Drive: Samsung DVD-R
  • OS: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

Comparison Modules:


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.




Overclocked Settings:

  • Processor: Intel core i7 860 at 180 X 17
  • Memory: Crucial Ballistix at 1800 MHz 8-8-8-24


The overclocking of the Crucial Ballistix memory was a little disappointing, to say the least. I was able to bring the memory up to 1800 MHz @ 8-8-8-24 rather easily, but then things got really frustrating. Trying to go any further resulted in a whole lot of window load errors and stability problems, even with looser timings and voltage increases. Not being able to raise the memory to 1840 MHz with 9-9-9 or 9-10-9 timings left me a little puzzled and a little disappointed. That being said, you do get an extra 200 MHz worth of performance out of this RAM, so you do have a little headroom to play with.

One other thing that surprised me with this RAM was that it will not run at 1T command rate at all. Even at the stock rated speed of 1600 MHz @ 8-8-8-24, setting 1T it will be completely unstable. There isn't a big performance gain going from 2T to 1T, but it did surprise me that it completely refused to run at all with the 1T setting.

The XMP profile worked just as it should, by bringing the memory up to the 1600 MHz rated frequency and timings.


The maximum memory speed for each set of modules when overclocked is a measure of how well the modules ran on these particular modules and test system. As such, your results may differ in either a positive or negative way based on the capabilities of your hardware. That said, your mileage may vary!

The benchmarks used in this review include the following:


  • CPU-Z Version 1.52
  • Windows Task Manager
  • PCMark Vantage
  • Geekbench 2.1
  • Super Pi 1.5
  • SiSoft Sandra 2010
  • Batman Arkham Asylum

  1. Introduction & Closer Look
  2. Closer Look: Thermal Monitoring
  3. Specifications & Features
  4. Testing: Setup & Overclocking
  5. Testing: PCMark Vantage, Si Soft Sandra 2010
  6. Testing: Geekbench 2.1, Super PI 1.5
  7. Testing: Batman Arkham Asylum
  8. Conclusion
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