2. Test System - Configuration
We used an ASUS A8N-SLI Premium and an ASUS A8N-SLI Deluxe motherboard. Both motherboards performed the same, since they use exactly the same ICs (except for the SLI ICs that don't interfere with the RAM modules in any way). After installing the memory in our system, we left the RAM setting to AUTO and we saw that the memory could only operate at 400MHz (2.5-3-3-6).
Of course, the tests could not give us the a true indication if we were to leave the timings as is. As you can see for yourselves, the SPD timings showed that the default operating frequency was 500MHz. So, we had to make some BIOS changes manually, to achieve this frequency.
All we had to do, was to change the CPU Multiplier setting to increase the HTT (thus the RAM frequency), but remain at the default core speed. We also had to manually set the timings, since the system was unstable running at 2.5-3-3-6. Below you can see the true operating frequency and the timings we used for these tests.
The CPU we used was our usual AMD Athlon64 3500+, running at 2200MHz. Using the same processor that we used in all our former reviews will give us the opportunity to compare test results.
However, you should always remember that all other tests we have carried out in the past, were with 1GB memory modules (usually 2x512MB), whereas this time, we will be testing 2GB paired modules (2x1024MB). In this review, we will be comparing the Apacer Real500 Ram Modules with the Corsair XMS TwinX 1024-3200XL. Below you can see the SPD Timings for the Corsair XMS memory modules, according to CPU-Z.
Here's a rundown of our testbed:
CPU: AMD Athlon 64 3500+ CPU (Newcastle)
Motherboard: ASUS A8N-SLI Deluxe/Premium
Power supply: CoolerMaster 450W
Memory: Corsair TwinX2048-400PT (2x1024MB)
VGA: ASUS 6800GT PCI-E (driver version: 81.95)
Hard Disk Drive: WD800JD 80GB 7200RPM
OS: Windows XP Pro SP2
Benchmarks & Applications used
- Sisoft Sandra 2005
- Performance Test V5.0 ( PassMark)
- Half Life 2 - VST
- CPU-Z v1.30