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Appeared on: Thursday, February 18, 2010
OCZ DDR3 PC3-12800 Platinum Triple Channel


1. OCZ DDR3 PC3-12800 Platinum Low-Voltage Triple Channel

OCZ Technology has developed the new PC3-12800 Platinum Edition to offer enthusiasts a memory solution that takes full advantage of all the capabilities of the Intel X58 chipset. At 1600MHz, the OCZ PC3-12800 Platinum is rated to run CL7-7-7 promising to take these next generation platforms to new heights.

The OCZ PC3-12800 triple-channel memory kits are designed specifically for the Intel Core i7 processor / Intel X58 Express Chipset. Optimized for the Core i7’s triple channel mode, these new 3GB, 6GB, and 12GB kits are designed to offer optimal performance via a combination of low voltage requirements, speed, and latency.

Developed for enthusiasts and early-adopters, the low voltage OCZ Triple Channel solutions are the choice counterparts for high performance that won’t inhibit the functionality of Core i7 CPUs. In addition, modules are tested in matched triplets ensuring compatibility.

OCZ’s Triple Channel kits are 100% hand-tested for quality assurance and compatibility and feature propriety XTC (Xtreme Thermal Convection) heat spreaders for effective heat dissipation. Furthermore, each OCZ memory module is backed by the OCZ's Lifetime Warranty and technical support.

- Main features

Special Features

* XTC (Xtreme Thermal Convection) heat spreaders optimize the thermal management of memory modules by promoting greater airflow by means of micro-convection throughout what is usually the dead air space inside conventional heat spreader designs. In this manner, build-up of heat is avoided and thermal dissipation of the memory components is offloaded more efficiently through the honeycomb design. At the same time, mechanical stability is maintained.

- Retail package

OCZ provided us with the retail package of 3x2048MB memory modules (OCZ3P1600LV6GK). The retail price of the kit is around $200. The memory modules come packaged in a hard plastic shell:

A sticker at the side of each module includes a small logo, the memory's part number, rating and of course its optimal cache latency. The modules are equipped with OCZ's platinum heat-spreader:

A big 'Z3 ' product logo is also embossed on both sides of the heat spreader:

We installed the modules and fired up the CPU-Z v1.52.2 utility in order to show you more information about the memory. The OCZ OCZ3P1600LV6GK  supports the standard JEDEC timings for various frequencies, 380/457/533 and 609MHz. On the other hand Intel's XMP profiles are not supported:


2. Testing the memory

For our tests, we used the following PC set up:

In order to keep enjoy stable operation under all conditions we suggest using the following BIOS settings for the DRAM and the QPI/DRAM voltage. Both values should be set at 1.66V/1.35V, respectively:

According to our tests, the memory is able to handle 1333 MHz memory divider at CL6-6-6-12-1N without any problems. The stability was tested using the Linx v0.6.4 for at least one hour:

In order to achieve the 800MHz, you should push the CAS up to CL7-7-7-20-2N. We also tried to set the command rate at 1N but the system couldn't operate for more than two minutes using the Linux software.

What about overclocking? We saw the memory maxing out at around 1768MHz, aka 882MHz, with CL 8-8-8-24-2N. The memory refused to operate at any higher frequency even at CL9.

Let's see some performance numbers. We got a rather impressive 23.39MB/sec for the DDR3-1333 setting and 26.61MB/sec at DDR3-1600, a performance that really accelerates a system:

Memory Frequency/Timings
Real Frequency
Voltage
Sisoft Sandra 2009 Memory bandwidth
DDR3 1333 CL6-6-6-12
668,20
1.65
23.39MB/sec
DDR3 1600 CL7-7-7-20
801,09
1,65
26.61 MB/sec

3. Final thoughts

OCZ Technology is very popular for mainly for its quality and reasonably priced products. Intel's Core i7 platform has increased the need for triple memory setups so testing the new OCZ3P1600LV6GK memory modules was a good idea, especially due to its impressive specs of DDR3-1600MHz at CL7 and 1.65V.

The truth is that the memory kit gave us what we expected without any issues, while it would give you an additional 82MHz in case you need to overclock your system. Overclocking required some fine-tuning under the BIOS, mainly the QPI/DRAM set to 1.35 and the command rate to 2N. Of course this applies to our Asus P6T Deluxe motherboard (test system) only and that motherboards may need some different tuning.

The OCZ DDR3-1600 (3x2048MB) Kit ( P/N OCZ3P1600LV6GK) costs around $200, which isn't a high price at all considering the performance levels you would get with DDR3-1600 and the CL7. The kit isn’t an overclocking champion however the results were respectable given the low voltage limitation. This memory solution really deserves your attention and its offers a great value for your money.



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