Patriot Viper Steel RGB DDR4-3200 2x16GB Review (Page 2 of 10)

Page 2 - A Closer Look, Test System

The Patriot Viper Steel RGB DDR4-3200 2x16GB, being a part of the latest performance DDR4 line from the company, utilizes a set of medium profile heatspreaders. The black heatspreaders do not call too much attention to itself nowadays, but the flashy five-zone RGB LEDs certainly do. The rest of the design is very similar to the Viper LED series. The Viper Steel RGB's aluminum pieces are distinctively shaped and molded with sharp lines to give it quite a bit of visual flare and complexity. Aluminum is lightweight and serves as a decent heat conductor, while the ventilated heatsink design is not for heat dissipation, but rather for the LEDs to shine through. The Viper Steel RGB is just over a centimeter taller than modules with no heatspreaders at all. This is useful for systems equipped with side mounted CPU heatsink fans adjacent to the memory slots, as it can piggy-back off the generated airflow. Since the heatspreader height is moderate, it is hard to imagine the Viper Steel RGB will interfere with any modern processor cooler. Whether you like to call it marketing gimmick or whatnot, it is impossible nowadays to find performance memory without any form of a heatspreader attached. They do undeniably serve a purpose in dissipating heat, but for most memory modules, unless run at a voltage significantly over designed voltages -- which you will not, special thanks to integrated memory controller voltage limits on Intel and AMD CPUs -- this feature is certainly not a requirement. But I will admit they look pretty cool in any windowed chassis.

The heatspreader design of the Patriot Viper Steel RGB modules is asymmetrical when looked at straight on, but symmetrical between sides, which is logical, because memory can be installed in different directions depending on your motherboard manufacturer and design. Besides functional purposes, it also improves the look. The Viper logo in gold is printed dead center with nothing else next to it. Patriot's logo is not permanently etched anywhere at all like many of their latest products. A specification label is found on the other side. It lists the model number (PVSR432G320C8K), bandwidth, CAS latency, voltage, and the kit's memory capacity. The Patriot Viper Steel RGB DDR4-3200 2x16GB's manufacturing location is not listed.

As you can see more clearly in our photo above, the Patriot Viper Steel RGB DDR4-3200 2x16GB has a very nice black PCB. The LEDs are placed on the main PCB itself, and you can control them using your motherboard's included software. Meanwhile, its heatspreader on top is composed of two separate pieces. The heatspreaders are held to the module itself by a strip of thermally conductive adhesive and are not physically locked together. The adhesive force between the two heatspreaders and memory ICs is pretty strong as always from the company, so if you ever do take them off, keep your hair dryer around.

From our above photo, it should also be clearer on how the heatspreaders are designed. After removing the strip at the top, the heatspreaders are bent along the edge at the top and are mirror images of each other. The plastic lighting diffuser clips in between. Since the pieces are made from thin aluminum -- but thick enough to resist easy bending, so it feels solid in the hand -- it does not hold a lot of heat, therefore dissipating the heat energy relatively quickly into the surrounding environment. Either way, you will probably never remove them, since the main selling point of Patriot's Viper Steel RGB are the RGB LED lights. If it does not clear your processor heatsink, then you might as well not buy this kit, haha.

A closer look at the memory chips on the Patriot Viper Steel RGB DDR4-3200 2x16GB dual channel memory kit. The photo above should be quite clear -- it says "PP059-062E" on each IC. These are SpecTek-manufactured chips, a company wholly owned by memory giant Micron, identified as PRN2G8Z32DD8JC-062E, with eight 2GB chips on one side only for a total of 16GB on each DIMM. As mentioned on the previous page, these RAM modules run at a frequency of DDR4-3200 with 18-22-22-42 latencies. These latencies are a bit higher than the competition, but we will see how they perform in just a moment. These modules operate at a stock voltage of 1.35V, which is right at the Intel maximum safe limit and AMD recommendation of 1.35V. Here are the listed features for the ICs, as obtained from SpecTek's website:

• VDD = VDDQ = 1.2V ±60mV•VPP = 2.5V, –125mV/+250mV
• On-die, internal, adjustable VREFDQ generation
• 1.2V pseudo open-drain I/O
• TC of 0°C to 95°C
– 64ms, 8192-cycle refresh up to 85°C
– 32ms, 8192-cycle refresh at >85°C to 95°C
• 16 internal banks (x4, x8): 4 groups of 4 banks each
• 8 internal banks (x16): 2 groups of 4 banks each
• 8n-bit prefetch architecture
• Programmable data strobe preambles
• Data strobe preamble training
• Command/Address latency (CAL)
• Multipurpose register READ and WRITE capability
• Write and read leveling
• Self refresh mode
• Low-power auto self refresh (LPASR)
• Temperature controlled refresh (TCR)
• Fine granularity refresh
• Self refresh abort
• Maximum power saving
• Output driver calibration
• Nominal, park, and dynamic on-die termination (ODT)
• Data bus inversion (DBI) for data bus
• Command/Address (CA) parity
• Databus write cyclic redundancy check (CRC)
• Per-DRAM addressability
• Connectivity test
• sPPR and hPPR modes
• JEDEC JESD-79-4 compliant

Our test configuration is as follows:

CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 3700X @ 3.6GHz
CPU Cooling: be quiet! Pure Loop 240mm
Motherboard: ASUS Prime X470-Pro
Graphics: MSI GeForce GTX 1070Ti Titanium
Chassis: Fractal Design Define S2
Storage: Western Digital Blue SN500 NVMe SSD 500GB, OCZ ARC 100 240GB, Patriot P200 512GB
Power: Seasonic FOCUS Plus 850 Gold 850W
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro

Compared Hardware:
- Patriot Viper Steel RGB DDR4-3200 2x16GB @ DDR4-3200 18-22-22-42
- Crucial Ballistix DDR4-3600 2x32GB @ DDR4-3600 16-18-18-38
- Ballistix Elite DDR4-4000 2x8GB @ DDR4-4000 18-19-19-39
- Ballistix Elite DDR4-4000 2x8GB @ DDR4-3600 16-16-16-38
- Gigabyte AORUS RGB Memory DDR4-3200 2x8GB @ DDR4-3200 16-18-18-38
- Patriot Viper Elite PC4-24000 2x8GB @ DDR4-3000 16-16-16-36
- Patriot Viper RGB DDR4-3600 2x16GB @ DDR4-3600 17-19-19-39
- Patriot Viper 4 Blackout DDR4-3600 2x8GB @ DDR4-3600 17-19-19-39

Page Index
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. A Closer Look, Test System
3. Benchmark: AIDA64 CPU
4. Benchmark: AIDA64 FPU
5. Benchmark: AIDA64 Memory
6. Benchmark: PCMark 10
7. Benchmark: 3DMark
8. Benchmark: PassMark PerformanceTest 10
9. Benchmark: SuperPI 1M, Cinebench R20
10. Overclocking and Conclusion