Crucial Ballistix Tracer 6GB DDR3-1600
Tri-Channel and Specifications
Since the memory controller is now directly connected to the processor (and no FSB limits) on the Core i7 chips, bandwidth utilization will also take a huge leap as well. The memory controller can handle 64GB/s, though only 32GB/s bandwidth is being utilized at DDR3-1333 JEDEC standard. So while the bandwidth increase is already massive over the previous architectures, there’s obviously tonnes more left in the tank here. The last difference is more obvious; the memory controller can use three 64-bit channel for this increased bandwidth, thus resulting in six DIMM slots, so you see modules being currently sold in 3x1GB or 3x2GB configurations.
At this point in time, only Core i7 (Socket 1366, X58 chipset) will take tri-channel RAM. You must then obviously have an X58 motherboard that will have either three or six DIMM slots as mentioned. You do have the option of running dual-channel DDR3 in a tri-channel motherboard, but then you are running below spec and certainly not anywhere near the crazy bandwidth that tri-channel offers. So if you’re in a pinch, you can use your current DDR3 in an X58 motherboard….BUT……there is one significant caution: you absolutely MUST have DDR3 modules that can run at 1.65V or less. This is because Intel has set a maximum voltage limit of 1.65 volts on the memory modules. This is due to the Integrated Memory Controller which is now located on-die in the CPU itself, so if you exceed the 1.65 volts on the memory then you run the very real risk of damaging your lovely i7 CPU. So be forewarned.
Here’s what the sticks offer, from Crucial: "Crucial is a key brand in the Lexar Media family of products. As the Memory Experts™, there the only DRAM supplier that’s part of a major memory manufacturer. Lexar Media is a subsidiary of Micron Technology Inc. Crucial has been trying to win the hearts of computer enthusiast for the past 10 years by putting out product lines with good performance, a fair price, good warranties, and some of the best customer service. Not only are they looking out for enthusiast needs there looking out for the common computer user by producing quality OEM parts with the backing of a helpful customer service."
Here are the specifications of the Crucial Ballistix Tracer 6GB DDR3-1600 Tri-Channel:
- Model: Crucial BL3KIT25664TB1608
- Module Size: 6GB kit (2GB x 3)
- Specs: DDR3-1600 (PC3-12800)
- Low Latency 8-8-8-24 Timings
- XMP Ready for Core i7 Processors
It is worth noting that Crucial’s Tracer memory is covered under a lifetime warranty.
Let’s take a closer look at these Tracer modules.