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Review: Mushkin 1GByte (2x512MB) Level-II PC3200 RAM

by Tarinder Sandhu on 9 December 2004, 00:00

Tags: Mushkin

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Mushkin 1GByte (2x512MB) Level-II PC3200 RAM

Right now, performance memory can be split into two broad groups that are generally considered to be mutually exclusive. On the one hand, there's RAM that's designed to run at very high frequencies with modest memory timings. I'm thinking of DDR500+ speeds with, say, 3-4-4-8 timings. By their very nature, these modules are intended to be paired with motherboard/CPU combinations that also run at very high FSB speeds. An example would be a Pentium 4 2.8GHz CPU and Canterwood motherboard which, as a pair, should run flawlessly at 250MHz+ FSB. Running synchronous RAM (1:1) fits in perfectly with the MCH's architecture and performance is suitably impressive.

The other group of RAM that has seen a comeback in recent months is ultra-low-latency PC3200 memory. Running with Samsung-provided TCCD chips and usually on custom PCBs, these modules ship with 2-2-2-5/6 timings and operate, as the name suggest, at DDR400 speeds. The main advantage of reduced latency at any given speed is better performance. The classic combination is to pair this kind of RAM up with relatively high-speed CPUs for superb default performance.

I think it's fair to say that Mushkin RAM used to be the enthusiasts' choice up until a couple of years ago. However, in the interim time, the likes of Corsair and OCZ have considerably raised their respective profiles in the U.K. Think of performance RAM and I'll wager that Mushkin's name, although present, comes a little further down your list than the firm would like. Mushkin's still in the performance memory game, though, and I got a chance to check out its latest low-latency offerings. 1GByte (2x512) of Mushkin Hi-Performance LII V2 was put under HEXUS scrutiny. Read on to see how good Mushkin's best is.