A Closer Look
The OCZ XMP Ready DDR3-1600 triple channel sports a shiny black XTC (eXtreme Thermal Convection) heatspreader over a green PCB. OCZ has done it to me again, they have placed a very cool badge on the heatspreader that will be totally hidden from view when the memory is installed. On both sides of the module, there is a badge that exclaims to the world that this memory supports Intel Core i7. I’m sorry, I think these badges look so sharp, the last had an nVidia SLI badge.
I have found it very difficult to successfully photograph these badges, so I borrowed a photo from OCZ’s website.
The memory is rated at DDR3-1600 8-8-8-24, running at Intel’s required VDIMM of 1.65v. Intel highly recommends against running memory on an X58 motherboard at more than 1.65v, due to the possibility of damaging the memory controller in the i7 processor.
Designed to significantly increase performance levels of the entire platform, these modules feature Intel Extreme Memory Profiles (XMP), a proprietary extension of SPD (Serial Presence Detect) settings that act as an integrated “plug and play” overclocking tool. The new Extreme Memory Profile options on the new OCZ DDR3 modules allow the end user to select ultimate performance through a framework of predefined and validated optimizations of individual settings without the hassle of manually adjusting each parameter, so the timings, voltage, and speed boot automatically for maximum performance.
Be aware that all current high performance memory boots at lower than advertised speed, and you must go into the BIOS and set speeds and timings for the memory, often also having to overclock the CPU in the case of speeds over DDR3-1600. XMP allows for all of this to be done automatically, though you do usually have to enable XMP in the BIOS.
Normally, there are two XMP profiles, one for the advertised speed, and one that is slightly lower. This memory is different in that XMP Profile 1 is at the advertised DDR3-1600 8-8-8-24, and XMP Profile 2 is actually an overclocked setting, at DDR3-1800 9-9-9-28.