How We Tested
We included in our comparison modules from other DDR2 speed grades, namely DDR2-533, DDR2-667 and DDR2-800 – all from Corsair – for you to have an idea what is the advantage of using the reviewed DDR2-1066 memory kit against regular DDR2 memory modules. The memory modules we included were: 2x CM2X512-4200 (512 MB, 4-4-4-12 timings), 2x CM2X512A-5400UL (512 MB, 4-4-4-15) and 2x CM2X1024-6400C3 (1 GB, 5-5-5-18). The listed timings were the timings programmed on the memory module and used by our motherboard since it was configured at “auto” (our motherboard didn’t provide any timings adjustment), not the lowest timings the memory module could use.
We decided to configure the reviewed kit as DDR2-533, DDR2-667 and DDR2-800 in order to simulate a memory kit from these speed grades. This module, however, uses different auto timings for speed grades lower than 800 MHz. When we configured it as DDR2-533, timings lowered down to 4-4-4-11 automatically. For DDR2-667 timings were 5-5-5-13 and for DDR2-800 timings were the same as DDR2-1066, 5-5-5-16.
During our benchmarking sessions, we used the configuration listed below. Between our benchmarking sessions the only variable was the memory module being tested.
- Motherboard: ASUS P5B
- BIOS version: 0211, July 14th, 2006.
- Processor: Core 2 Xtreme X6800 (Dual-Core, 2.93 GHz, 1,066 MHz FSB, 4 MB L2 memory cache)
- Cooler: Gigabyte Neon 775.
- Hard Disk Drive: Maxtor DiamondMax 9 Plus (40 GB, ATA-133).
- Video Card: XFX GeForce 7800 GTX.
- Video resolution: 1024x768x32@85Hz.
- Power Supply: Antec Neo HE 550.
- Windows XP Professional installed using NTFS
- Service Pack 2
- DirectX 9.0c
- NVIDIA video driver version: 91.29
- Intel Inf chipset driver version: 126.96.36.1992
- All motherboard drivers
We adopted a 3% error margin; thus, differences below 3% cannot be considered relevant. In other words, products with a performance difference below 3% should be considered as having similar performance.