8GB G-Skill RipjawsX F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL Review
G-Skill, founded in 1989 are a memory manufacturer catering to just about every memory related need you may have focusing on solutions for PC gamers, Enthusiasts, and workstations. Wanting to set themselves apart from the rest G-Skill are a company who consistently want to offer the very best in memory technology available while offering unrivalled reliability with excellent performance and compatibility. Today we will be looking at the 8GB kit of F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL. Priced at just £33.60 can the kit bring anything different to the playing field? Let’s have a look.
Packaging & Modules
Nothing out of the ordinary in regards to the packaging, your simple easy-open blister type packing. While I have no complaints about it the packaging certainly doesn’t offer much in way of protection to the product within which is of some concern as items such as this are usually only put into jiffy bags for posting which in themselves don’t offer a whole lot of protection.
Here we have the modules themselves. At first glance they don’t appear all that different to any other memory kit you might pick up, but it has to be said the heatspreaders on these modules don’t just look gorgeous but actually look like they are designed to be effective and not just “bling” although I still think honeycomb design heatspreaders offer the best functionality as the design not only allows for heat to spread out more evenly but also allows for maximum airflow. A touch which is bound to be welcomed is the black PCB of the modules, granted you can’t really see the PCB under the heatspreaders but the black PCB makes the overall appearance so much nicer to look at compared to a nasty ugly green PCB.
You should all know the standard test setup by now;
Asrock Z68 Extreme4, UEFI 1.7
2x4GB PC12800 G-Skill RipjawsX CL9
GTX 460 1GB 900 / 4300
640GB Western Digital Caviar Black
Xonar DX 7.1 PCI-E
Corsair 850w HX PSU
It is well worth noting that upon installing these modules the system booted right up with the memory running @ 1600, although timings still had to be adjusted from 11-11-11-28 to their stock timings of 9-9-9-24.
Firing up Aida64, here are the sorts of numbers you can expect with stock 9-9-9-24 timings;
Everything is as to be expected here with nothing out of the ordinary, moving on.
Nothing out of the ordinary here either.
So, how well do these sticks overclock I hear you all asking. To test that out we will compare the G-Skill F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL kit against the Corsair Vengeance (Rev 8.16) 8GB 1866C9 kit in a “apples to apples” comparison to start with and all tests will be done using 1.6v vDIMM. Anywhere results show “0” on the below chart signifies the kit failed and the system would not POST.
Note these results are with JUST the memory overclocked and not the entire system.
This is certainly disappointing and makes for one very empty chart. I had hoped the G-Skill kit would be capable of 8-8-8-25 @ 1600 but it wasn’t meant to be. The G-Skill kit did manage 9-8-8-25 though, perhaps some UEFI refinement for high capacity modules from Asrock would help in this regard.
Now the "apples to apples" test is done, lets experiment with the G-Skill kit properly.
For these G-Skill specific tests we will use a vDIMM of 1.6v as well. I did try 1.65v but it made no difference to Overclocking. Once again ONLY the memory was overclocked for these results, not the whole system.
As can be seen from these results, with a small bump to vDIMM the kit of 1600MHz G-Skill Ripjaws are happy to run the same speed as the Vengeance 1866 kit albeit with slightly different timings. These results were verified stable by running 4hrs of HCI Memtest. I have a sneaky suspicion if I had more time for testing these results would of even proved to be stable with less than 1.6v.
Ok, so we have looked at another kit of memory for budget minded enthusiasts and I would think its fair to say in terms of price, looks and Overclocking the G-Skill kit has those in the bag considering the stupidly cheap price of £33.60. 1866MHz @ 1.6v is certainly nothing to sniff at for that money. On the downside the G-Skill kit couldn’t handle 1600 8-8-8-25 at stock settings which is disappointing. Perhaps some UEFI refinement from Asrock for high capacity modules could improve this though. Overall the G-Skill kit does a good job of making a standing for itself, cheap, pleasing to the eye, and can actually overclock unlike the Vengeance memory kit. If you are looking for a cheap 8GB kit of memory that looks great and has decent headroom in the Overclocking department the G-Skill Ripjaws are worth considering.
+ 2x4GB for £33!
+ Great Looks
+ Overclocks well for such cheap memory
+ Fairly efficient heatspreaders
- Can’t do 8-8-8 @ 1600
- Trying any Overclocking with a CAS latency lower than 9 is a fruitless endeavour.
- G-Skill packaging does not do a good job of protecting the product within
Stay tuned readers for the next instalment of memory being put through its paces, the G-Skill F3-12800CL8D-8GBXM!