We’ve been big fans of OCZ products for a while now, my colleague and friend Allan “Zardon” Campbell swears by it for Intel systems and has achieved some excellent performance results both at stock and when overclocking. Today I’m taking a look at the OCZ memory aimed at the Athlon FX and Opteron Socket 940 based systems. The product is OCZ PC-3200 ECC Registered Dual Channel DDR and for this review it will be in 2x512mb configuration.
Here’s what OCZ have to say about the product:
“OCZ PC-3200 ECC Registered Dual Channel memory has been designed and engineered to take full advantage of the AMD Athlon64 FX platform.
OCZ fully validates each Dual Channel ECC Registered memory kit on the Asus SK8N mainboard to ensure maximum stability and performance.
If you own an AMD Athlon64 FX system and want the absolute best in performance and stability, look no further than OCZ PC-3200 ECC Registered memory.
The first thing that jumped out at me from this info (which is taken from the OCZ website) is that there is some very useful information rather than normal PR rubbish you get on most sites. Not only do OCZ state clearly who the ram is aimed at (so you don’t buy the wrong product) they also give you the exact motherboard used for validation which could come in handy when building a system. You then know all you need to do is pick up that motherboard and your guaranteed compatibility.
From a specifications point of view, here are the details on the memory:
As always its good to check the above with CPU-Z and we see that the timings are confirmed. Its worth noting also that the DIMMS are SPD programmed to set to 2-3-2-6 when you boot with memory timings set to auto in the bios. No need to mess about in bios to get top performance, just plug n play.
Aesthetically the OCZ PC3200 looks gorgeous, the highly polished copper heatspreaders just ooze quality. The copper spreaders also add some decent weight to the product and give it a very solid feel. My own opinion still continues to be that expensive memory (any memory actually) should be packaged in something more sturdy than the flexible packaging, however its just a minor issue really and many more manufacturers other than OCZ are guilty of this too.
The test system was built from scratch, a format of the hard drive was performed (NTFS) and then Windows XP was installed. Following the completion of the install the only updates applied were SP1a and Direct X 9.0b and Windows Media Player/Encoder 9. Next the N-force drivers were installed and following a reboot the Catalyst drivers were installed. The benchmarking tools were then installed and finally the hard drive was de-fragmented. For all tests the display drivers were set to best image quality.
Next: Test Results