Performance Test Configuration

The Memory testbed for evaluating the Mushkin PC3200 2-2-2 Special is the same used in our earlier reviews of DDR400 and faster Memory.

PMI DDR533: A New Name in High-Performance Memory
Samsung PC3700: DDR466 Memory for the Masses
Kingmax Hardcore Memory: Tiny BGA Reaches For Top Speed
New Memory Highs: Corsair and OCZ Introduce DDR550
OCZ PC3700 Gold Rev. 2: The Universal Soldier
OCZ 4200EL: Tops in Memory Performance
Mushkin PC4000 High Performance: DDR500 PLUS
Corsair TwinX1024-4000 PRO: Improving DDR500 Performance
Mushkin & Adata: 2 for the Fast-Timings Lane
Searching for the Memory Holy Grail - Part 2

All test conditions were as close as possible to those used in our earlier memory reviews.

 INTEL 875P Performance Test Configuration
Processor(s): Intel Pentium 4 2.4GHz (800MHz FSB)
RAM: 2 x 512MB Mushkin 2-2-2 Special (DS)
2 x 512MB PMI4200 Gold (DDR533 DS)
4 x 256MB Samsung PC3700 (DDR466 SS)
2 x 512MB Kingmax DDR500 Hardcore Series (DS)
2 x 512MB Kingmax DDR466 Hardcore Series (DS)
2 x 512MB Corsair XMS4400v1.1 TwinX (DS)
2 x 512MB OCZ PC4400 DC Kit (DS)
2 x 512MB OCZ PC3700 Gold Rev. 2 (DS)
2 x 512MB OCZ 4200EL(DS)
2 x 512MB Mushkin PC4000 High Performance (DS)
2 x 512MB Corsair TwinX4000 PRO (DS)
2 x 512MB Mushkin Level II PC3500 (DS)
2 x 256MB Adata DDR450 (SS)
2 x 512MB Adata PC4000 (DS)
2 x 512MB Corsair PC4000 (DS)
2 x 512MB Geil PC4000 (DS)
4 x 256MB Kingston PC4000 (SS)
2 x 256MB Kingston PC4000 (SS)
2 x 512MB OCZ PC4000 (DS)
4 x 256MB OCZ PC3700 GOLD (DS)
Hard Drives 2 Western Digital Raptor Serial ATA 36.7GB 10,000 rpm drives in an Intel ICH5R RAID configuration
PCI/AGP Speed Fixed at 33/66
Bus Master Drivers: 875P Intel INF Update v5.00.1012, SATA RAID drivers installed, but IAA not installed
Video Card(s): ATI 9800 PRO 128MB, 128MB aperture, 1024x768x32
Video Drivers: ATI Catalyst 4.1
Power Supply: Vantec Stealth 470Watt Aluminum
Operating System(s): Windows XP Professional SP1
Motherboards: Asus P4C800-E (875) with 1015 Release BIOS

We only tested the Mushkin memory in our Intel testbed, but Mushkin tests for 2-2-2 compatibility on nForce2, Intel 865/875, and VIA KT400 chipsets. Winbond BH6 is a familiar product, so we were interested mainly to test whether these last of the BH chips were comparable to BH memory that we have tested in the past. While we have found the fastest performance on Intel 865/875 to be achieved at 2-2-2-5 timings, we have found that the best performance on nForce family chipsets is often achieved at 2-2-2-8 timings, or even as high as 2-2-2-11, if the nForce board allows a Cycle Time (tras) setting as high as 11.

Test Settings

For the sake of clarity in this comparison, we have only included memory performance comparisons at DDR400, DDR433, and the fastest memory speed that we could achieve with each memory. Buyers looking for DDR400 2-2-2 memory likely won't much care how it compares to DDR500 or DDR550 memory, but they are probably very interested in how the DDR400 2-2-2 Special might compare to other memory performance in the DDR400 to DDR466 range. The following settings were tested with Mushkin PC3200 2-2-2 Special:
  1. 800FSB/DDR400 - the specified rating of the DDR400 modules. Also the highest stock speed supported on 875/865 and K8T800/nF3/SiS755 motherboards.
  2. 866FSB/DDR433 - a common overclock with DDR400 memory.
  3. Highest Stable Overclock - the highest settings we could achieve with this memory and other memory that we have tested.
These are the same general settings used in benchmarking other memory in the above list of memory tests. DDR400 and Highest Memory Speed have been used for all benchmarking. DDR433 has only been tested in the past for modules with this speed rating.

Mushkin PC3200 2-2-2 Special Test Results: Mushkin PC3200 2-2-2 Special
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  • MIDIman - Thursday, April 8, 2004 - link

    Confused about the last chart concerning highest speeds. Anandtech mentions that the Mushkin did extremely well, but its pretty much the lowest of the group on all of the charts.

    I've been looking at costs via pricewatch, and something in the middle, like Geil's 4000, is looking very attractive when you put cost into the table.
    Reply
  • Praeludium - Tuesday, April 6, 2004 - link

    The only reason you're going to be paying attention to the 'last chance!' warnings is if you're planning on building a Nostalgia System from the year 2004. Maybe put this special RAM in with that Voodoo 6 that sold on Ebay a few months back, and it'll be a great hodgepodge of anachronisms and sought-after parts! Reply
  • pgx - Tuesday, April 6, 2004 - link

    "it is your last chance to buy them", "Mushkin Special is your last opportunity", etc seemed stressed enough(how many times were thoughts like that mentioned?)... i mean if mushkin has a stash of old winbond chips who's to say no one else does? this review just gave me a weird vibe. sure the performance is great but the cost is really high and with ddr2 right around the corner who knows what is going to happen. Reply
  • retrospooty - Monday, April 5, 2004 - link

    IF Twinmos is getting out of the DRAM business, why did they just release a bunch of new DDR2 chips including DDR2 667 ?

    They stopped the bh-5's because it was expensive as hell to produce, not enough profit margin.
    Reply
  • TrogdorJW - Monday, April 5, 2004 - link

    I think you showed a performance comparison once using 5:4 ratio for overclocking, and the performance was actually quite high. Can you do a roundup at some point showing highest overclocks using 1:1 *or* 5:4 - basically show a breakdown of how the two options end up performing with a variety of memory? Also, is that sort of overclocking (5:4 ratio) an option with Athlon 64 systems at all? Is it even beneficial in the Athlon 64 world? I'm guessing no, but would like your input on the matter. Reply
  • KristopherKubicki - Monday, April 5, 2004 - link

    Winbond is getting out of DRAM. There will be no more BH5s all though there are some reservesof them here and there. Mushkin had one of the larger reserves if i remember.

    Kristopher
    Reply
  • Pumpkinierre - Monday, April 5, 2004 - link

    I thought they were producing BH5s again.
    Reply
  • Wesley Fink - Sunday, April 4, 2004 - link

    #1 -
    I haven't a clue how it happened, but the chart is now fixed. The extra line is removed.
    Reply
  • l3ored - Sunday, April 4, 2004 - link

    i think your numbers are screwed up for the 2-2-2 special overclocking, you have 400ddr speeds at 2-3-3-6 or something and 500 ddr at 2-2-2-5

    an unrelated question: why did they discontinue the bh-5 and 6 chips?
    Reply

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