Patriot Intel Extreme Masters PC3-17000 2x4GB Review (Page 2 of 10)

Page 2 - A Closer Look, Installation, Test System

The Patriot Intel Extreme Masters PC3-17000 2x4GB's distinctive appearance is made possible by its heatspreaders. The blue aluminum pieces are especially attractive in my opinion; covering over a slick black printed circuit board behind. Aluminum is lightweight, and serves as a decent heat conductor, while the ventilated design at the top is made to improve air ventilation for faster heat dissipation. Generally speaking, the medium to high-medium profile heatspreaders are about a centimeter taller than modules with no heatspreaders at all. This may be useful for systems equipped with side mounted CPU heatsink fans adjacent to the memory slots, as the Patriot Intel Extreme Masters can piggy-back off the generated airflow. Unfortunately, the said heatspreaders may interfere with tower heatsinks without modification. Whether you like to call it marketing gimmick or whatnot, it is almost impossible nowadays to find performance memory without any form of a heatspreader attached, haha. 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 won't, special thanks to integrated memory controllers on Intel processors -- 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 Intel Extreme Masters memory modules is symmetrical, which is fairly logical, because memory ICs reside on both sides of the PCB. Besides functional purposes, it also improves the look. A large label is applied over the center of one sides of the heatspreader; the Intel Extreme Masterss logo front and center to indicate Patriot's sponsorship relationship with the games, and the fact that this product is a "limited edition". The company's logo can be found on the heatsink itself on top. Meanwhile, a specification label covers over the branding label on the other side. It lists the model number (PVI38G213C1K), frequency, latencies, bandwidth, voltage, and the module's memory capacity.

As you can see more clearly in our photo above, the Patriot Intel Extreme Masters PC3-17000 2x4GB has a very nice black PCB. Meanwhile, its heatspreader on top is composed of two separate pieces, which are not interlinked together directly. The heatspreader is held to the module itself by a strip of thermally conductive adhesive, and each half part of the heatsink is aligned by an overlapping edge. The adhesive force between the two heatspreader 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. The Intel Extreme Masterss limited edition heatspreaders are extend a bit through the top for a relatively high profile, and meets its corresponding piece from the other half piece at the top for a complete symmetrical design. Since the custom shaped heatspreaders are made out of thin aluminum, it does not hold a lot of heat, therefore dissipates heat energy relatively quickly into the surrounding environment. Despite using aluminum that is relatively thin, the heatspreaders are reinforced well, so they are not likely to be bent accidentally. In the end, if you are going to be pushing your system to the limits with high memory voltages, the heatspreaders may be beneficial to improve system stability and overclocking potential (But you probably won't, thanks to Intel as aforementioned). On the other hand, you may need to remove them if it does not clear your processor heatsink, the fact that the RAM will function just fine without the heatspreaders is something to keep in mind.

A closer look at the memory chips on the Patriot Intel Extreme Masters PC3-17000 2x4GB dual channel memory kit. The photo above should be quite clear -- it says "H5TQ2G83CFR-PBC" on each IC. These are Hynix manufactured chips, with eight 256MB chips on each side for a total of 4GB on each DIMM. As mentioned on the previous page, these RAM modules run at a frequency of DDR3-2133 with 11-11-11-27 latencies at 2T command rate. They operate at a stock voltage of 1.5V, which is a bit lower than the Core i3/i5/i7 maximum safe limit of 1.65V. Here is a table of specifications for the ICs, as obtained from Hynix's website:

• VDD=VDDQ=1.5V +/- 0.075V
• Fully differential clock inputs (CK, CK) operation
• Differential Data Strobe (DQS, DQS)
• On chip DLL align DQ, DQS and DQS transition with CK transition
• DM masks write data-in at the both rising and falling edges of the data strobe
• All addresses and control inputs except data, data strobes and data masks latched on the rising edges of the clock
• Programmable CAS latency 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13 supported
• Programmable additive latency 0, CL-1, and CL-2 supported
• Programmable CAS Write latency (CWL) = 5, 6, 7, 8
• Programmable burst length 4/8 with both nibble sequential and interleave mode
• BL switch on the fly
• 8banks
• Average Refresh Cycle (Tcase of 0 oC~ 95 oC)
- 7.8 μs at 0oC ~ 85 oC
- 3.9 μs at 85oC ~ 95 oC
• Auto Self Refresh supported
• JEDEC standard 78ball FBGA(x4/x8)
• Driver strength selected by EMRS
• Dynamic On Die Termination supported
• Asynchronous RESET pin supported
• ZQ calibration supported
• TDQS (Termination Data Strobe) supported (x8 only)
• Write Levelization supported
• 8 bit pre-fetch

Our test configuration as follows:

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770K @ 4.6GHz
CPU Cooling: Cooler Master TPC 812 (Noctua NF-F12 PWM and Noctua NF-P12 PWM)
Motherboard: Intel Desktop Board DZ77GA-70K
Graphics: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 570 1280MB SOC
Chassis: SilverStone Temjin TJ04-E (Noctua NF-P12 PWM)
Storage OCZ Vertex 4 256GB; OCZ Octane 512GB; OCZ Agility 3 240GB
Power: Seasonic Platinum 1000W
Sound: Auzentech X-Fi HomeTheater HD
Optical Drive: LiteOn iHAS224-06 24X DVD Writer
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8 Professional

Compared Hardware:
- Patriot Intel Extreme Masters PC3-17000 2x4GB @ DDR3-2133 11-11-11-27
- G.Skill TridentX F3-2400C10D-8GTX 2x4GB @ DDR3-2400 10-12-12-31
- Kingston HyperX Predator KHX18C9T2K2/16X 2x8GB @ DDR3-1866 9-10-9-27

Page Index
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. A Closer Look, Installation, Test System
3. Benchmark: AIDA64 CPU
4. Benchmark: AIDA64 FPU
5. Benchmark: AIDA64 Memory
6. Benchmark: PCMark 7
7. Benchmark: 3DMark 11
8. Benchmark: PassMark PerformanceTest 7.0
9. Benchmark: SuperPI 1M, Cinebench R11.5
10. Overclocking and Conclusion