Over the years Corsair has become one of the leading memory manufacturers and has won over the hearts (and computers) of enthusiasts everywhere. With their groundbreaking XMS series and super low latency modules they have captured the market and refuse to give up their hold. Recently the market has become saturated with identically specified modules, so something must be done that sets a company?s memory above the rest. Hence Corsair leads the way again with their Xpert series of memory. Today we take a look at this extremely innovative (and blingin?), memory series.
Legit Reviews had the chance to review a single 512 MB module, unlike the typical TwinX 1 GB matched sets that are more common on the market currently, so expect differences from other reviews of the Xpert series as we are going single channel on a socket 754 test system.
At first look we are faced with the customary black aluminum heatsink that Corsair has begun to implement on their higher end memory modules. Rather then a heatspreader which has shown to not be very efficient, a heatsink generally is more helpful then harmful. The heatsink has a nice Xpert label on one side as well as a specification label on the other side. Each side of the aluminum heatsink has the Viking ship embossed into it for added appeal. This stick runs at hefty DDR400 speeds (400 mhz) at 2-2-2-5 timings and should yield excellent scores. As you may see, the module is quite a bit taller then other memory sticks, the reason behind this is the added circuitry required to interface with the Xpert module, which you will see soon.
The Xpert display is what puts this ram into a different category then the rest of what is on the market. With a 10 digit led display readout, LED bar activity lights, and Corsair sail logos on either end, you can?t go wrong. This display can display a variety of things, of which we will get into a little bit later.
What about the performance?
Performance wise, the modules seem identical to the normal Corsair XMS 3200XL Pro series, running at DDR400 and with 2-2-2-5 timings. These modules are using Samsung TCCD chips, so other than the heavily modified PCB the Xpert modules should be identical.
The Xpert module and the memory interface use a 34 pin design that can only interface one way, although as you can see in the image above, the module can be attached either at the front or back, allowing flexibility depending on your system. The memory and the module hold together very well and users do not need to worry about the module falling off at an inopportune time.