Patriot Introduces DDR2-1066

by Wesley Fink on October 30, 2006 12:05 AM EST
Patriot Introduces DDR2-1066

In the last couple of months, memory pricing has become a critical concern for many memory shoppers. 2GB of high-end memory, which was available for $300 to $500 in August, had escalated to $600, $700 or even more at many memory resellers. Buyers who wanted to buy the best DDR2 memory they could find have found themselves asking if cheaper memory would meet their needs.

There is some good news today, as memory prices appear to be coming down. This will impact system price for many buyers, and we can only hope that memory prices continue to drop and remain low through the holiday buying season and beyond. The price of memory has been a critical factor in today's review of Patriot DDR2-1066. Memory rated higher than DDR2-800 has been particularly hard hit by high prices. As the best of the lot, the high-end memory demanded the highest prices.

We don't normally quote prices in reviews, because the information is stale the moment it is published. However, memory price is such a big concern the point needs to be made that today you can find this top-of-the-line Patriot DDR2-1066 from online e-tailers for as little as $375 (after rebate) for the 2 GB kit. The 1GB kit is even less. Other high-end memory is also dropping in price, so it's a good idea to check the price of that high-end memory again before you settle for second or third choice in your system.

As we have stated in many recent reviews, DDR2-667 and DDR2-800 will certainly meet the needs of most system buyers. Both memories will normally perform at DDR2-800 in Intel and AM2 systems and overclock modestly beyond that point. However, we have also stated that we have never found a memory rated at DDR2-667 that could reach DDR2-1000 or a DDR2-800 that can reach DDR2-1066. On the other hand, every memory rated at DDR2-1000 or above has reached DDR2-1067, with most approaching DDR2-1100 or more at the top. We point this out because memory performance does continue to improve to DDR2-1066 at the timings these memory modules can achieve. Beyond 1066, timings deteriorate fast and are not so useful, but DDR2-1066 is a useful speed that performs better in most systems than slower speed memory. The performance difference is not earth-shaking, and frankly you get a better bang-for-your-buck spending more on an upgraded video card than faster memory in most systems. However, the fastest memory does perform better, and if you want the best you will be looking for the fastest memory you can afford.

Patriot is the brand name division of PDP, which is a huge memory manufacturer in Freemont, CA. We mention this only so you will understand that Patriot is likely already making some of the high-end memory names you know and trust. For that reason, the Patriot brand already comes with a built-in confidence and trust of specifications that are rarely warranted by little-known memory brands. Patriot may not be a brand that is widely recognized, but it is manufactured using similar testing procedures and controls of high-end memory brands you do know and trust.

With a speed rating of DDR2-1066 - one of the highest rated speeds we have seen - and a manufacturer well-known in the high-end OEM memory industry, expectations were high for Patriot DDDR2-1066. The current price of $375 for a 2GB kit of DDR2-1066 made it that much more attractive for buyers weary of super-high memory prices. The big question, then, is whether the Patriot PDC22G8500ELK lived up to those expectations?

Patriot DDR2-1066 Memory Specifications
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  • Centurin - Friday, November 3, 2006 - link

    Why does the Corsair CM2X1024-6400C3 perform so well, yet is only DDR2-800? I would think it would be better to save a hundred bucks with the Corsair if it performs better than 1066 modules.
  • bob661 - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I hope that when the new 600 comes out that AT will do some memory testing on that platform.
  • lopri - Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - link

    I had a couple more things that I originally wanted to ask, but decided to ask about only one for now. ;) That is, will Patriot guarantee 2.6V operation for these sticks? I mean, if I remember correctly that is a JEDEC's spec for DDR1. Considering that these high-speed DDR2 modules are out only as of late, I wonder how Patriot is able to guarantee long-term stability of 2.6V. I even thought Patriot might be banking on the fact that there is no (or one?) motherboard that'll supply that kind of VDIMM on the market currently. :D
  • yyrkoon - Monday, October 30, 2006 - link

    In the distant past, I really didnt care about what memory I used in my personal systems, but in the last 3-4 years, I've become fairly 'anal' when it comes to who I buy PSUs, motherboards, and lastly memory from.

    My last system I purchased a 2 GB Cosair XMS kit from newegg, for a much better price than they are charging now, but previous to this (again, for the last 3-4 years), I was quite religeous in using only Crucial sticks. Now, in this 3-4 years time, I did recieve one pair of flaky sticks from Crucial, and the RMA process was about as pleasant as it could have been. The persons I talked to on the phone were very knowlegable, The part turn around time was only 7 days (Crucial is based in Idaho I believe, I live in Nevada), and despite the fact that they tested the sticks fine, they didnt question the in-ability of these sticks to run on the system I had them in. LOng story short, the sticks worked fine to begin with, but after a few months, they started corrupting the data all over my HDDs, and in the end, would fail to let Windows XP install from scratch, but otherwise, *seemed* to work fine (MS', and memtest86 both tested the sticks fine). All this, and the fact they no longer manufactuered the sticks I purchased, so I recieved an upgrade from 2x 512 MB 3-3-3-6 Ballistix sticks, to a perfectly matched 2-2-2-6 Ballistix pair (DDR 400).

    Anyhow, the question I have for you guys: How would Patriot compare to my only RMA experience with Crucial ?

    Secondly, when you guys say benchmarked *stable*, does this mean I could expect these sticks to run in a system for months on end (Win XP Pro), and If a problem does arise, I could rest assured, the memory is going to have nothing to do with it ?

    If Partiot could atleast meet these two *standards*, I would not mind giving them a shot, and as I already buy top notch memory, I dont mind spending the extra cash involved with such a purchase.
  • Wesley Fink - Monday, October 30, 2006 - link

    My own RMA experience with Patriot was very positive, but that is a sample of one. Patriot is not a small company and they already make memory you likely have used and trusted. So they know how to do it right.

    We share your concern with buying name brand high-end memory for the consisitent performance and support you expect to receive. No one can assure you a memory will overclock to the limit for years with no issues, but we can talk about the financial resources and likely support you would receive based on the company. Patriot is a solid player in the memory market, as we have stated several times in the review.
  • yyrkoon - Monday, October 30, 2006 - link

    Err, when I saidi managed to push my memory in the Asrock board to 990MHZ DDR with no memory adjustment, I ment no memory VOLTAGE adjustment ;)
  • yyrkoon - Monday, October 30, 2006 - link

    Yeah, sorry, I didnt mention that stability is paramount in my book (I tend to over compensate for not wanting to write a book of a comment . . .), and as long as the product is stable for long periods of time at the advertised speeds, I do not care about its OC capabilities.

    However, I do play games on the PCs I own, and I wouldnt mind OC'n a system IF it ran stable, but its been my experience, that the usual 10%-20% OC, doesnt really translate into usable real world performance, and I'm not really into pushing my systems to the edge, and potentialy reduce the systems lifetime.

    Basicly, what I would be wanting this memory for, is the potential stock speed, married with a 1:1 memory ratio (I could OC the system here, and leave the memory stock ? Forgive me for my ignorance here, but I havent OC'd an Intel CPU since I owned a P55 223 mmx, on an ABIT super7 board). Right now, I'm debating between an E6300, or a E6600 (4MB shared L2 is looking better, and better each day I think about it).

    My current system, is an AMD AM2 3800+ single core, and the memory is 5-5-5-18 (I think) DDR2 6400 Cosair XMS memory (2GB kit). In this system, I've managed to push the memory to around 990 MHZ DDR, on a cheap Asrock board with no memory adjustment (CPU multiplier knocked down one notch). At stock speeds, the systems I've had this memory in have regularly detected these sticks at 4-4-4-12 DDR 800.

    Anyhow, like I said above, my only real concerns are will my soon to be system run stable at stock speeds (for long periods of time), with these sticks at a 1:1 ratio, or am I in fact OC'n the memory by doing so ? DO I even need these sticks to run a 1:1 ratio ?

    On a side note, your comments section here seems to time out regularly when I'm making long posts, and is a minor inconvience, would be nice if this was fixed :)
  • n7 - Sunday, October 29, 2006 - link

    Nice review as usual :)

    The rated vdimm of 2.6V is rather scarey though, since many mobos don't even go that high, not to mention that seems like an excessive amount of vdimm.
    I'd love to believe all of the kits will achieve the same nice tight timings you did with lower vdimm, but i seriously doubt everyone will have the same luck.

    Can you clarify something though?

    You mention the timings as 4-3-4-11 (all of them in that format)
    I assume you mean CAS-TRP-TRC-TRAS right?

    It's just that most bioses & CPU-Z read it in the following order:
    CAS-TRC-TRP-TRAS, & seeing the review refer to it in a different order is a little confusing for some i imagine.
  • Wesley Fink - Monday, October 30, 2006 - link

    Some of the literature we received left the wrong impression that the rated voltage for DDR2-1066 was 2.6V. This is the maximum voltage, and the correct specification is 2.3V, which is quite comparable to other top Micron D9 memory and completely in-line with our actual test results. We have corrected the specifications and comments about rated voltage in the review. Patriot will also clarify their PC2-8500 specifications on their website.
  • Wesley Fink - Monday, October 30, 2006 - link

    Yes, the 2nd 4 is Ras-to-Cas delay in 4-3-4-11. That is the order in the Asus BIOS in our memory test bed and it is a shorthand habit I have developed.

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