Memory Guide

The Great DDR3 1600MHz Memory Showdown

The Great DDR3 1600MHz Memory Showdown



Triple-Channel Memory Kits

Triple-Channel Memory Kits

While we saw a mix of memory timings and voltages for the dual-channel kits, the triple-channel kits are almost identical in their specifications. All are rated for 1.65V operation and have memory timings of 8-8-8. They also come with Intel XMP (Extreme Memory Profile) support so users can set the profile to get the rated 1600MHz timings easily in the BIOS.

Of course, the thermal solutions for the five models here differ from each other, though they are similar to the ones we have seen from the dual-channel memory kits. Again in this segment, we called for the best each vendor had to offer with triple-channel kits consisting of three 1GB memory modules rated at DDR3 1600MHz. They will be tested accordingly on our Core i7 platform. The specifications for them are as follows:

Specifications of the Triple-Channel DDR3 1600MHz Memory Kit
Model Name Part Number Latency Timings Voltage
G.SKILL PI DDR3 PC3-12800 CL8 3GB Kit F3-12800CL8T-3GBPI 8-8-8-21 1.6 ~ 1.65V
Kingston HyperX DDR3 1600MHz Low Latency XMP Ready 3GB Kit KHX12800D3LLK3/3GX 8-8-8-24 1.65V
OCZ DDR3 PC3-12800 Intel i7 Triple Channel Kit OCZ3X1600LV3GK 8-8-8-24 1.65V
Patriot Extreme Performance Viper Series DDR3 3GB PC3-12800 Low Latency DIMM Kit PVT33G1600LLK 8-8-8-24 1.65V
Team Group Xtreem Dark DDR3 PC3-12800 1600MHz CL8 Kit TXD31024M1600HC8-D 8-8-8-24 1.65V


G.SKILL PI With an interlocking 'fin' design, G.SKILL certainly has no lack of ideas when it comes to memory thermal solutions. This 'weave' like design appears to have more than adequate heat dissipation surface area and we are looking forward to find out how it performs in a practical scenario.

Kingston HyperX

Next up is the triple-channel kit from Kingston, from its HyperX series. The exterior appears identical to the dual-channel kit we received but the memory voltage and timings are improved on the triple-channel version, with a lower 1.65V rating (compared to 1.7 ~ 1.9V) and tighter timings of 8-8-8-24 that's on par with the competition here. However, a glance under the heat spreaders showed that it's actually using the same brand and type of memory chip from Elpida (J1108BBSE-DJ-F). You can refer to the previous page for the image.

OCZ Intel Edition

Again, it's the honeycomb heat spreader design from OCZ for this special Intel triple-channel edition that states its support for Intel XMP clearly on its label.

Patriot Viper

The latest incarnation of Patriot's Viper series of enthusiast memory now comes with blue heat spreaders that will go well with the dark blue or black PCBs favored by some motherboard vendors. The heat spreader design itself is fairly typical and simple (they are however not to be mixed with Corsair's DHX design which is more advanced). As we mentioned earlier, the memory chip used is the same as the Patriot Gamer series (dual-channel kit).

Team Xtreem Dark

Finally, our last trio of memory modules are from Team Group, which is clad in black heat spreaders to fit its "Xtreem Dark" moniker. The heat spreaders here are a straightforward, classic design of two pieces of aluminum attached to the memory chips.