Patriot Sandy Bridge Optimized Memory

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Product(s): Patriot G2 DDR3-1600 CL9 4GB Kit
                 Patriot Viper Extreme Div.2 DDR3-1866 CL9 4GB Kit

Provided By: Patriot Memory

Price: Find Lowest Price on Patriot Memory

 

Introduction:

Today we are looking at a couple sets of memory from Patriot that are designed and "optimized" for the Sandy Bridge platform from Intel.  This platform has recently be under scrutiny as there was an issue discovered in regards to the storage controller.  Patriot released us from our obligation to review this memory, but we feel that the storage issues won't have a negative effect on this memory.  We will be reviewing the G2 DDR3-1600 CL9 kit right alongside the Viper Extreme Division 2 DDR3-1866 CL9 kit.  Also thrown into the mix is the OCZ PC3-17000 DDR3-2133 Kit we've looked at recently.  It should be an interesting comparison.

G2 Box
G2 Box
Viper Box
Viper Extreme Box

 

Both kits come in attractive boxes that show the memory speed and a few vital specifications.  Inside the box is a plastic clamshell package that shows the memory clearly.  One thing I noticed is that the package is designed to hold dual and triple-channel kits.  This saves a lot of package costs down the road.

G2 Clamshell
G2 Clamshell
Viper Clamshell
Viper Extreme Clamshell

 

First Impressions:

It has been a while since we've looked at some Patriot Memory and I was quite happy to see how this would perform on our new 2500K CPU from Intel.  Once I discovered that the G2 kit had timings of 9-9-9-24, I honestly wasn't quite as excited.  Most DDR3-1600 memory runs a little tighter and we'll have to see how stock performance compares.  The Viper Extreme Division 2 memory is a little faster but still has CL9 timings.  It clocks in at 1866MHz with 9-11-9-27 timings and really doesn't come across as all that exciting.  Still, we'll find out how these kits perform a little later on.


Overall, the fit and finish of these kits are pretty decent.  The Viper Extreme kit doesn't cost much more than the G2 kit and it feels much more solid.  The reality is that you're mostly paying extra money for a heatspreader - at least is you keep this kits at stock speeds.  Again, we'll find out more in a few minutes.

G2 Profile
G2 Profile

 

Viper Front & Back
Viper Extreme Profile

 

On the next page, we'll briefly cover the specifications of these kits before we jump into testing.


 

4GB PC3-12800 Information & Specs:

The following information has been pulled from the Patriot Memory product page for this kit.  For up to date information and all the details, please check out their site.  For your convenience, some of the information has been posted below.

G2 Image The Patriot G2 Series, Division 2 Edition DDR3 memory kits are specifically designed for the 2nd Generation Intel® Core™ processors; Intel's® 6 Series platform. The G2 Series delivers the high-performance PC gamers demand at price tags that are easy on the wallet. The low-profile Patriot G2 series sport sleek air-craft grade extruded aluminium heat-spreaders for enhanced cooling performance that delivers superior stability during long hours of gaming, and adds a touch of style to your 2nd Generation Intel® Core™ powered system. Built using high-quality pre-screened IC's and vigorously tested these G2 Series modules are available in 4GB and 8GB kits at 1600MHz with 9-9-9-24 timings. Each kit is 100% hand tested for quality assurance and is back by a lifetime warranty and industry leading customer support. The Patriot G2 series memory modules are the best value for PC gamers seeking maximum performance from their 2nd Generation Intel® Core™ processor powered system.

 

Specifications:

  • Extreme Performance PC3-12800 (1600MHz)
  • Enhanced Latency (9-9-9-24)
  • Voltage: 1.65V
  • XMP Ready
  • Equipped with an extruded aluminum shield to provide improved cooling
  • 100% Tested and Verified
  • RoHS Compliant
  • Tested on Intel® P67 platform

 

There really isn't anything that stands out as far in terms of features or performance on this kit, but that doesn't mean it won't deliver.  Now, on to the 1866MHz kit.

 

4GB PC3-15000 Information & Specs: 

The following information has been pulled from the Patriot Memory product page for this kit.  For up to date information and all the details, please check out their site.  For your convenience, some of the information has been posted below.

Viper ProfilePatriot's Viper Xtreme Series, Division 2 Edition memory kits are designed for Intel's® 2nd Generation Core™ processors. Engineered for PC Gamers and enthusiasts the Viper Xtreme Division 2's utilize a custom designed heatshield solution with an outer shield built around a copper core to provide enhanced cooling. Each module has 6 grams of copper at its core paired with extruded aircraft-grade aluminum outer shield. Built from only using the highest quality pre-sorted IC's available, they are rigorously tested and validated on the Intel® 6 Series platform to achieve maximum performance and stability. These modules are engineered to reach PC3-15000 (1866MHz) at 9-11-9-27 timings and are available 4GB kits (2 x 2GB) and 8GB kits (2 x 4GB). Each module is 100% hand-tested to quality assurance and is backed by a full-lifetime warranty and industry leading customer service. 

 

Specifications:

  • Extreme Performance PC3-15000 (1866MHz)
  • Enhanced Latency (9-11-9-27)
  • Voltage: 1.65V
  • XMP Ready
  • Equipped with an extruded aluminum shield build around a copper core to provide improved cooling
  • 100% Tested and Verified
  • RoHS Compliant
  • Tested on Intel® P67 platform

 

On the next page we'll take a look at our new test setup for high-speed DDR3 memory before we jump into testing.


 

Test Setup:

In this section we will show the setup of the test system for our memory testing.  The G2 memory comes with SPD timings of 1218MHz at CL8, 1370Mhz at CL9 and 1522MHz at CL10 - all at 1.5v.  The XMP profile is locked down at 1600MHz at 9-9-9-24-38 2T.  This is not very aggressive and it caused me some concern as to how much overclocking headroom this kit actually has.  In the end we benchmarked the kit at three different settings: Stock, Stock speed with CL8 timings and Stock timings at 1866Mhz.

The Viper Extreme kit comes with SPD timings of 1066MHz at CL7, 1218MHz at CL8 and 1370Mhz at CL9 - again, all at 1.5v.  The XMP profile on this memory is locked in at 1866MHz at 9-11-9-27-50 1T.  This should give better performance than the other kit as the Command Rate of 1T is twice as fast as the DDR3-1600 G2 kit mentioned above.  With that being said, we still hit a wall right around 1950MHz on this kit so we tested at two speeds: Stock and Stock timing at 1953MHz.  In order to achieve the 1953MHz speed, we had to overclock the CPU slightly and ran the system at 33x104.8MHz = 3.46Ghz - up from the stock 3.3GHz.



Test System:


Sandy Bridge
CPU
Intel Core i5-2500K @ 3.30GHz
Motherboard
Gigabyte P67A-UD3 Motherboard
Memory
4GB Patriot G2 1600MHz Kit
4GB Patriot Viper Extreme Division 2 1866MHz Kit

Graphics
1x Radeon HD 5870
Cooling
Stock Intel Cooler
Hard Drives
Operating System
Windows 7 Ultimate x64
ATI Drivers
10.12 Drivers

 

 

 

DDR3-1600 CL8
DDR3-1600 CL8
DDR3-1866 CL9
DDR3-1866 CL9

 

On the next page we fire up the system and put this memory to the test at stock CPU speeds - except for the DDR31953Mhz settings - so you can see just how much actually memory speed affects performance. 


Benchmarking - AIDA64:

Because there is a lot of system tweaking that goes along with clocking up memory to non-standard speeds, we haven't included a lot of "real world" benchmarks.  Often, in order to get the memory to run at speeds other than 1066MHz, 1333MHz, or 1600MHz, 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.

With that being said, the new Sandy Bridge Core i5/i7 platform has a native 1333MHz memory controller and many motherboards have options that allow you to change the memory multiplier to achieve fast memory speeds (up to 2133MHz on the P67A-UD3 from Gigabyte) without overclocking the CPU or bus.  This will allow us to show how simple memory speed improvements affect total system performance...or how little the affect performance.  The results are below.  First up is AIDA64 (formerly known as Everest).

AIDA64

 

 

When it comes to memory performance in AIDA64 - the higher number the better in terms of read/write/copy and lower latency numbers are better.  You can see that the stock clock speeds at CL9 lag behind other memory settings with tighter timings, but in the end, the Viper Extreme Division 2 kit certainly edges on the G2 kit in most of the tests - except for the AIDA copy test.  The G2 memory seems to edge out the Viper Extreme - probably because the G2 timings of 9-9-9-24 trump the 9-11-9-27 of the Viper Extreme in this situation.  Ultimately, the OCZ kit clocked in at 2133 CL10 takes the cake in almost everything.

 

The other two tests are Cinebench and SuperPi.  We used SuperPi to calculate Pi to 1 Million decimal places using different memory speeds to see if memory speed affects programs that are largely CPU dependent.  The results pretty much speak for themselves.   Cinebench 11.5 was used in both CPU rendering as well as GPU / OpenGL modes to see how memory speed affects workstation performance.  I was surprised to see CPU scores stagnate while OpenGL score improved as the memory became faster. 

Cinebench
SuperPi

 

SuperPi scores stayed pretty consistent regardless of the speed.  It is interesting that the Patriot memory at overclocked speeds showed better performance than the OCZ kit we reviewed recently.  Still, the times ranged from 10.597 seconds to 11.138 seconds at the other end of the spectrum.  There was just over half a second to be gained across these tests with equates to about 5% performance difference from the best to the worst.  Combined with margin of error around 3-5% - there is nothing much to be gained.

Cinebench told a slightly different story.  In this test, the Viper Extreme Division 2 kit end up winning in both CPU and OpenGL tests.  Even with other kits clocked faster, the timings and settings of the kit running at 1953MHz won out over the OCZ kit as well as everything else.

 

Final Thoughts:

While the Patriot P67 Optimized kits don't appear on the shelves with stellar specifications, the truth is - they are pretty solid kits.  The CL9 timings on a DDR3-1600 kit will probably make a few enthusiasts choose something else, but from what we've seen, it performs like a trooper in our test suite of both synthetic and real-world performance.  The DDR3-1866 Viper Extreme Division 2 kit also has some pretty relaxed timings, but it manages to out-perform other faster memory in the same tests.  It seems that the timings chosen by Patriot work well on the Sandy Bridge platform.  My only complaint was the poor overclocking performance of these kits.  Tighter timings on the Viper Extreme kit were not possible at all, while we only managed a 266Mhz increase in clock speed on the DDR3-1600 kit.  Traditionally, DDR3-1600 kits offer a lot of overclocking headroom; the Patriot kit was mediocre at best.

Pros:

  • Competitive pricing on both of these kits
  • XMP profiles that run at 1.65v
  • Run rock stable - even with mild overclocks

 

Cons:

  • Mediocre overclocking potential
  • DDR3-1866 kit could not run at CL8

 

BCCRating 

Silver

 

I'd like to thank Patriot for sending us a couple sets of "Sandy Bridge" optimized memory for us to check out.  It performed better than I thought, but there is always room for improvement.  Still, it's a pretty solid bunch of memory.  If you have any questions or comments, please post them at the "Comments" link below.