This week we're reviewing a triple channel DDR3 memory kit from Team Group, which is a brand that is new to us so hopefully it's new to you too.
In appearance the Xtreem modules look rather understated with eight memory chips on one side of the green PCB, a black aluminium heat spreader glued on top and the whole thing topped off with a shiny X logo. Thankfully we're more interested in the specification of the hardware than we are with the styling and Team Group has scored heavily in this department.
This is a triple module kit made for use in Intel Core i7 systems. There's 1GB of memory on each module to give a total of 3GB. It would be rash to say that 3x1GB kits are heading for the endangered list but most of the good DDR3 that we have seen recently does come in 2GB modules. The point here is that you need to run a 64-bit Operating System if you want to get the benefit of more than 4GB of RAM so you need to make a fairly major decision if you fancy switching from 3GB of RAM to 6GB. We have no doubt that 64-bit is the way to go in the future but we're not convinced that it is a necessary choice today.
The other key features of the Xtreem memory include its low working voltage of 1.65V however this is a necessary feature of all Core i7 memory as the memory controller is in the processor core instead of the chipset. The default voltage setting for Core i7 is 1.5V with a maximum of 1.65V and if you go any higher your expensive Core i7 processor may vanish in a cloud of smoke so the range of operation is quite tight.
When it comes to clock speed, Team Xtreem is shooting for the stars as the maximum rated speed is 2,000MHz and in addition it also offers low latency. There is a fair selection of DDR3-2000 on the market but most of it has latencies of 9-9-9-30 or 10-10-10-30. Some models are a touch quicker at 9-9-9-24 and pretty much the best we can find on sale is G.Skill which runs at 8-8-8-21 so the 7-8-7-20 latencies offered by the Team Xtreem are impressively low.
We built a test system using an Asus P6T SE motherboard, a Core i7 965 Extreme processor that was lightly overclocked to 3.72GHz, a Radeon HD 4890 graphics card and an Intel X25-M SSD with Windows Vista Ultimate Edition loaded on it.