Mushkin PC3200 2-2-2 Special

Mushkin has had PC3200 Level II in their product line for some time, but these are no longer available. So, how do the 2-2-2 Special differ from Level II?

Mushkin tells us that the Black High Performance Level II used the Winbond BH5 chips, which are no longer in production. This new 222 Special uses Winbond BH6 chips selected for 2-2-2 performance at DDR 400. They are said to perform just as well as the BH5 at 3200 speed, but may not be as overclockable. Our reference PC3500 memory from both Mushkin and OCZ have also been based on the now discontinued BH5.

It should also be pointed out that BH6 has also been discontinued, but Mushkin has managed to secure enough chips to introduce this new memory with availability for another 2 to 3 months. However, when these are gone, this appears to be the end of DDR400 2-2-2 DIMMs unless another chip manufacturer is able to bring a similar product to market.

The Mushkin PC3200 2-2-2 was supplied with the black 6-layer PCB that is Mushkin's trademark for their highest-performing memory. The review samples also had black heatspreaders, though Mushkin of late has been using heatspreaders of many different colors with their black PCB high-performance memory.

Mushkin PC3200 2-2-2 Special Specifications

 Mushkin PC3200 2-2-2 Special Memory Specifications
Number of DIMMs & Banks 2 DS
Total Memory
512Mb (available in 256MB or 512Mb DIMMs)
1 GB
Rated Timings 2-2-2
Rated Voltage 2.5V - 2.8V

We confirmed the SPD timings to be set at 2-2-2. While the SPD cycle time (tras) is at a higher SPD for compatibility with both Intel and AMD boards, we found that 2-2-2-5 worked fine on our Intel testbed. nForce chipset boards normally perform best with a higher cycle time (tras) in the 8 to 11 range.

Index Performance Test Configuration
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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.
  • 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!
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.

  • Pumpkinierre - Monday, April 5, 2004 - link

    I thought they were producing BH5s again.
  • 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.
  • 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?

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