According to the fantastically useful ramlist
, Corsair uses handpicked
Micron D9GMH (B6-3) and (B6-25E) on the XMS2-9136 and XMS2-10000 respectively. These use the more recent 10x10mm BGA-60 ICs fabbed on an 80nm process. Micron D9s are an incredibly popular DDR2 memory chip, but specifically the D9GMH is used for the high value, high clocking or low latency memory you see in:
- Adata PC8500;
- Cell Shock PC8000;
- Corsair PC6400 Dominator (CAS-3), PC8500C5 and PC8888C4DF;
- Crucial PC5300 Tenth Anniversary (CAS-3); PC6400 Ultra Plus (CAS-3), PC8000 Ballistix;
- GSkill PC5400 GA (CAS-3), PC8000 HZ (CAS-4);
- Mushkin PC8000 XP2 Redline, PC8500 XP2 ;
- OCZ PC9200 FlexXLC Edition, PC8800 Gold XTC, PC8500 SLI-Ready Edition, PC7200 EL Platinum XTC (CAS-4);
- Patriot PC6400 Low Latency (CAS-4);
- Rhino PC6400F3M Savage H.X.E. (CAS-3 handpicked 2.45V), PC8000F4M Savage H.X.E. (CAS-4 handpicked 2.45V);
- SuperTalent PC6400 (CAS-4), PC8000;
The variety is huge, and despite being overvolted from JEDEC's 1.8V DDR2 voltage specification, in many cases the memory modules listed above have their voltages only moderately increased in order to minimise electro migration and subsequently, RMAs.
For example, the Crucial Tenth Anniversary might only be PC5300, but many people have just churned up the voltage and attained some super overclocks with it. Rhino also handpicks the best D9 moduels for its Savage series and rate the memory for an insane 2.45V. In comparison, even the Corsair Dominator PC10000 still runs CAS-5 but only at 2.4V, and even then, the lifetime at 2.4V won’t be what you'd expect a normal module to achieve -- this is why Corsair designed a new memory module cooler design that extracts heat from both the DRAM chips and the PCB.
The Corsair Dominator modules stand tall, only second to the OCZ FlexXLC. They are, however, the thinnest memory modules available.
Click to enlarge
As an extra peace of mind, Corsair covers the Dominator modules with a limited lifetime warranty, so you'll always be covered even if they do die from prolonged exposure to excessive voltage. Your £300-400 investment is more than adequately insured.
However, the premium Micron D9 modules aren’t cheap, and with Micron allowing the likes of Corsair and Rhino to handpick what they want means these speed binning costs are passed onto the consumer. This guarantee does mean that this memory is the absolute best you can buy: handpicking the best chips from the best DRAM range.
The suffix code provides the other clue to what each Corsair Dominator package contains, where the TWIN2X2048-10000C5DF
has a (C5): CAS-5 latency, (D): Dominator airflow and the additional tri-fan Dominator Airflow: (F). In comparison the TWIN2X2048-9136C5D
comes without the additional airflow module.
The tri-fan Dominator Airflow bracket that clips on to your DDR2 memory slots, and if you decide to buy it separately it’ll cost you an extra £12.50. Whether you need it depend on your case airflow. The same effect can be achieved with any fan placed over the modules, albeit with a less elegant effect. You don’t necessarily need to only apply the Dominator Airflow to only Dominator modules either. If you’re putting high voltages through your memory they will definitely benefit from being kept cool, although any amount of heat reduction still won’t cure electro migration from overvoltage.
The only other modules on the market with an equally serious heatspreader-come-heatsink design is OCZ's FlexXLC range. These modules are too tall to fit underneath the Dominator Airflow, but worry not because OCZ has it's own active memory cooling bracket that is specifically designed with the FlexXLC modules in mind.