Crucial Ballistix Tracer DDR3-1600 6GB Kit - Benchmarking the DDR3-1600 Kit

Article Index
Crucial Ballistix Tracer DDR3-1600 6GB Kit
Test Setup and Core i7 Benchmarking Info
Benchmarking the DDR3-1600 Kit

Benchmarking - Everest:

Because there is a lot of system tweaking that goes along with clocking up memory to non-standard speeds, we haven't included any "real-world" benchmarks.  In order to get the memory to run at speeds other than 1066MHz, 1333MHz, 1600MHz or 1866MHz the motherboard bus and CPU must be clocked up in order to achieve these speeds.  As we've shown before the CPU plays a huge roll in benchmark performance and so it's not fair to compare WinRAR compression when the CPU is clocked up 400MHz faster.  Of course the "RAM" will look faster, but in reality the CPU is the one doing the work.  For this reason we use two simply synthetic benchmarks to show memory performance.  How it affects performance in the real-world will depend largely on CPU, motherboard and other hardware bottlenecks so we have to be content with synthetic benchmarks to gain our number metric.  First up is Everest.

Everest
(click for larger chart)

 

While it should be no surprise that CL7 performance at 1626MHz is faster than CL8 performance at 1600MHz, the results aren't quite as impressive as we hoped due to the poorer command rate of 2T.  This is effectively twice as long as the 1T command rate at CL8.  Regardless, when the CPU is overclocked a bit and the memory is running at its fastest stable speed of 1808MHz the performance numbers in Everest are pretty impressive.  Latency measures under 28ns and copy speed is well over 20GB/sec.  Even write speed measures an incredible 15037MB/sec.

 

Benchmarking - SiSoft Sandra:

If you want to compare your triple-channel DDR3 performance, you can head on over and grab SiSoft Sandra here and compare away.  Please keep in mind that if you are using a dual-channel kit, your performance numbers will look dismal.

SiSoft Bandwidth
SiSoft Latency

 

SiSoft shows that there is little to no difference in performance at CL7 or CL8 when running right around 1600MHz.  One test shows 0.05GB/sec less performance and the other shows 0.04GB/sec better performance.  I think it's safe to say, it's pretty much a draw.  What does take the lead and the cake is the performance over 1808MHz CL8.  We reach over the magical 30GB/sec performance with this memory according to SiSoft.  In terms of latency, we use SiSoft Sandra to measure linear and random latency and while linear latency remains static at 6ns, we do gain a whole 1ns of latency when moving from DDR3-1600 CL8 to DDR3-1808 CL8.  Tighter timings doing seem to help here as the Command Rate of 2T seems to negate performance when running at CL7.

 

Final Thoughts:

RAM Glam This is our first official Triple-Channel kit of DDR3 to hit the bench here at BCCHardware and as such we don't have any other numbers to compare it too.  That being said, the performance of this kit seems to be very solid and we actually managed to hit higher frequencies at tighter timings than many other sites that have reviewed the same kit.  That just shows that even though you purchase good DDR3, there is still some "luck of the draw" involved in getting a kit that overclocks well.  It's not the most expensive kit of DDR3 on the planet, but it certainly isn't the cheapest PC3-12800 CL8 kit around either.  This makes it score only average in terms of value, but when it comes to "bling factor" it scores pretty high.  Overall, this is a great kit and if you are building a system to show off, this kit deserves a spot in your 240-pin DIMM slots.

 

Pros:

  • DDR3-1600 at CL8 Kit
  • Looks good and offers equally good performance
  • Multiple XMP profiles
  • Runs at 8-8-8-24 1T up to 1808MHz

 

Cons:

  • A bit expensive for a 6GB DDR3-1600 kit

BCCRating
 
 Editors Choice

 

I'd like to thank Crucial for sending out this 6GB kit of DDR3-1600 for us to review. If you have any comments or questions, please head on over and post those in the forum at the "Comments" link below.