Kingston KVR400X64C3AK2/1G

Kingston's second Value RAM was the most reasonable RAM in our roundup. We found KVR400X64C3AK2/1G available at several Internet dealers for around $100. While we were testing for this roundup, we also saw this Kingston CAS3 Value RAM on sale at one web retailer for $91 for a Gigabyte of memory. This is a high volume, readily available Kingston product that also performs much better than you might expect from the price and specifications.

Kingston KVR400X64C3AK2/1G is supplied as a 1GB kit consisting of 2 512MB double-sided DIMMs. It is designed as a low-cost dual-channel memory kit.

Like the Kingston CAS 2.5 Value RAM, there are no heatspreaders on the DIMM modules. The memory chips are Elpida, which we have seen used in a few other DDR400 memory products.

Specifications

The KVR400X64C3AK2/1G is rated by Kingston at CAS 3 and we found the automatic SPD timings to be 3-3-3-8 at stock voltage. These are not particularly exciting timings - even for a Value RAM.

 Kingston KVR400X64C3AK2/1G (DDR400) Memory Specifications
Number of DIMMs & Banks 2 DS
DIMM Size
Total Memory
512 MB
1GB
Rated Timings 3-3-3 at DDR400
SPD (Auto) Timings 3-3-3-8
Rated Voltage 2.6V

As you will see in our timings below, however, it is definitely worth your effort to set timings manually for this low-priced Kingston Value RAM, as it is capable of decent performance and overclocking, especially considering its value price.

Test Results

Kingston KVR400X64C3AK2/1G (DDR400) - 2 x 512Mb Double-Bank
CPU Ratio at 2.4GHz Memory
Speed
Memory Timings
& Voltage
Quake3
fps
Sandra UNBuffered Sandra Standard
Buffered
Super PI 2M places
(time in sec)
Wolfenstein - Radar - Enemy Territory fps
12x200 400 DDR 2.5-3-3-6
2.6V 1T
530.2 INT 2586
FLT 2748
INT 6057
FLT 6023
83 111.7
11x218 436 DDR 3-3-3-6
2.7V 1T
531.6 INT 2706
FLT 3927
INT 6425
FLT 6354
82 112.0
12x225
(2.83GHz)
Highest CPU/Mem Performance 3-3-3-7
2.9V 1T
580.8 INT 2831
FLT 3023
INT 6772
FLT 6719
74 124.0
To be considered stable for test purposes, Quake3 benchmark, UT2003 Demo, Super PI, Aquamark 3, and Comanche 4 had to complete without incident. Any of these, and in particular Super PI, will crash a less-than stable memory configuration.

The Kingston CAS 3 is significantly cheaper than the CAS 2.5, but it also performed fine at CAS 2.5 at the stock DDR400 at standard voltage. Even more important for some, the KVR400X64C3AK2/1G had excellent head room, as it was able to reach DDR450 at voltages available on many motherboards. At $91 to $100 for a matched pair of 512MB DIMMs, this Kingston kit is an outstanding value.

Aida 32 has been useful in the past in examining read/write performance and memory latency. Aida 32 is now available as Everest Home Edition, a free download from www.lavalys.com.

Kingston KVR400X64C25/512 (DDR400) 2x512Mb Double-Bank
Everest 1.51
CPU Ratio at 2.4GHz Memory Speed Memory Timings
& Voltage
Everest READ
MB/s
Everest WRITE
MB/s
Everest Latency
ns
12x200 400 DDR 2.5-3-3-6
2.6V 1T
5750 1872 47.2
11x218 436 DDR 3-3-3-6
2.7V 1T
6030 1974 48.7
12x225
(2.7GHz)
Highest CPU/Mem Performance 3-3-3-6
2.9V 1T
6370 2083 47.2

With the somewhat limited range of DDR400 to DDR450 you will not see the kinds of memory read and write increases that we see in top-end memory. However, DDR450 represents a CPU clock of 225, or 12.5% over the base 200 speed. This is often fast enough on the Athlon 64 to allow you to reach the highest speed that your A64 CPU might reach at stock multiplier. In this case, we were able to take our 4000+ from a stock 2.4GHz to 2.7GHz with the memory keeping up. If you need to go even higher, memory multipliers can be lowered, but there is a memory performance penalty when dropping from 1:1 to a lower base memory speed.

All-in-all, the Kingston KVR400X64C3AK2/1G is a surprisingly good performer for memory that you can buy for about $100 per Gigabyte. The timings are not the fastest, but gaming performance at DDR400 is just 8% faster with the fastest 2-2-2 that we have tested at DDR400 (Quake 3 at 530.2 to 572.8, RTCW at 111.7 to 120.2). The real difference between this Value RAM and the expensive memory is at the top, where OCZ VX at top memory speeds can outperform this Kingston at top speed by 10% to as much as 21% in Gaming frame rates.

Kingston KVR400X64C25/512 Mushkin EM Series PC3200
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  • 2cpuminimum - Wednesday, June 01, 2005 - link

    I have to agree that a value ram analysis would be more useful if it checked stability of less well known brands, such as memory pro. Also it would be useful to review sodimm ram 512MB modules, as many budget laptops come with scanty ram and it is usually cheaper to add it aftermarket than buy more from the manufacturer. Reply
  • Pjotr - Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - link

    Oh, I forgot, the package does say it has EVP! Reply
  • Pjotr - Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - link

    "If you are interested in the OCZ Value VX, note the differences in the two part numbers, one with a "W" and one without.
    Value VX = OCZ4001024WV3DC-K
    2.5-3-3-7 (picture) Supports EVP (Extended Voltage Protection)

    Value = OCZ4001024V3DC-K
    3-4-4-8 Does not Support EVP"

    I bought the OCZ Value 2x512 RAM with 3-4-4-8 timings for $115 at Fry's, so basically I got fooled at that price?

    I have this setup: DFI nF4 SLI-D, X800XL, Winchester 3000+.

    I've tried this RAM and it won't run at CAS2 at all, I think, I need to do some more work. I've tried 3.0 to 3.2 V in general. I do get it to run 2.5-3-3-8 up to about 240 MHz, from there I need to relax to 2.5-4-3-8 and I then hit 250 quite stable, 255 SuperPI stable but not 3DMark stable.

    I'm a bit disappointed now... any hints? Shouldn't I be able to get better timings at 240-250 MHz too? The memory chips are marked OCZ, not blank. Don't know exact markings right now.
    Reply
  • Baldeagle76 - Friday, April 29, 2005 - link

    Edit I am an idiot and don't know how to read page 2. Thanks for a good article. Do compliments from idiots count ? As far as the voltages go I was happy to see what it "could" handle if this is not anything that I would ever do in my motherboard, the curiousity inside me found this interesting. I thank you for pushing the ram to the limit because in the long run I think the ram that tolerates that type of voltage would have an advantage in OC'ing. I was very curious about the posts earlier saying that you can keep your Ram at ddr400 (effective) and increase your FSB and have no asynchronous lag. This probably isn't the place for that discussion but I nonetheless was very interested in this information. Maybe a review of that is in order for the next Ram test if you have the time ?
    Reply
  • Baldeagle76 - Friday, April 29, 2005 - link

    I have a question. After reading this article I went to NEW EGG to look up the current prices of RAM. Specifically I was looking for the prices on the Value VX ram. Sadly, I did not find anything that fit this description. I don't know if it because I don't know what I am looking for. In None of the titles of the RAM did they mention Value VX. Value was mentioned but how do I know if it is the VX or not? Also looked for the OCZ value BH5 and again I am not sure if I don't know what to look for or if they are out of stock because I didn't see any. It might be helpful for consumers making purchases based off of the articles on Anandtech to include the manufacturer part number so we know whether or not we are getting the same thing reviewed or not. Maybe you could help me out with this because I was looking at getting some of this 512x2 for a second machine i am building but would definetly want the stuff reviewed and not stuff I don't know how good it is. Just including the manufacturer part number would be very helpful in this regard, especially for ram.
    Reply
  • Baldeagle76 - Friday, April 29, 2005 - link

    Reply
  • alexXx - Tuesday, April 19, 2005 - link

    wow, honestly now. For a reputable website, why is it that the level of english used in this article could be bested by a 4th grader.
    YOU CANNOT pluralize 'memory' If you want to refer to more than one you use 'pieces of memory' or 'memory sticks'. Also when you say 'the memories' you can bloody just say 'the memory'. It is not a hard concept. Would you see this in a newspaper? NO. Same should go for online articles.
    Reply
  • wakeboarder3 - Tuesday, April 19, 2005 - link

    I just got some of this ram, 2 gigs after reading the review "0CZ4001024WV3DC-K" And all I can say is WOW!!!!! 2-2-2-11 @2.9 220 X 11 on my 2500m/ABIT
    And for $115 a gig. Runs better then my old bh-5
    Reply
  • CanadianDoc - Monday, April 18, 2005 - link

    #93 As Wesley said in the opening paragraph, the PURPOSE of this RAM review is to help the reader find the combination of components yielding the best overall "system performance" for the money.

    That's the Big Picture that you need to keep in mind.

    In that context, the combination of Crucial Ballistix RAM, a DFI nF4 mobo, and a Venice 3200+ CPU at 10 x 280 MHz is a very attractive one, in terms of system speed versus cost.

    Of course, "system performance" can include other things than just speed, such as fault tolerance, noise, heat, portability, availability, etc.

    I happen to value low noise as well as high speed, which is why I suggested the other components, too. I simply hope that my comments give other readers a few ideas of their own.

    And that's the point of these forums, isn't it?
    Reply
  • JoKeRr - Sunday, April 17, 2005 - link

    #92 this is a ram review.

    wesley: it's interesting to see that the new BH-5, tccd, Micron rev.g, and UTT chip, at 2-2-2-5 timing ddr400, they never reached over 3k on sandra unbuffered test. However, going back to the old P4 2.4C test bed, Mushkin and OCZ 3500 BH-5 running at ddr400 2-2-2-5 had over 3.1k each.

    Guess the old BH-5 is still faster than the new one.
    Reply

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