Corsair Vengeance Pro 1866MHz DDR3 DRAM Introduction

Corsair is a top dog in the memory market.  They’re the #1 most awarded manufacturer of high performance memory and have been making enthusiast-grade memory longer than anyone else. 

Today we’ll be looking at the 1866MHz 16GB (CMY16GX3M2A1866C9) DDR3 memory kit that was released by Corsair in the recent months.  These DRAM kits are designed specifically with Intel sockets LGA1150 and 1155 in mind, and also designed around overclocking.  The memory ICs are specially selected for performance and overclocking potential.  To unleash the 1866MHz speed with 9-10-9-27 timings, or whatever speed you decide to purchase, you will have to utilize the Intel Extreme Memory Profile (XMP) Profile 1.  Should you not enable this profile, these modules are JEDEC compliant and will run at 1333MHz with 9-9-9-24 timings.

Corsair Vengeance Pro 1866MHz DRAM

The Corsair Vengeance Pro memory kits come in either 8GB (2x 4GB), 16GB (2x 8GB), or 32GB (4x 8GB) kits, and in speeds from 1600MHz to 2400MHz.  If you’re looking for something faster than 2400MHz, you won’t find it in this line.  Corsair has the Dominator Platinum line for that, with speeds hitting 2800MHz.  The heat spreader is designed to look both aggressive and great inside your system, and even comes in several different accent colors to help you match up the memory with the rest of your system, or just give it a little pop of color.  These accent colors include a hint of:  gold, silver, blue, or red; all with black being the main color of the spreader.

Corsair Vengeance Pro 1866MHz DRAM

Should you want to pick up this particular kit, you can find it on Amazon for $148.45 shipped.  These modules are also backed by Corsair’s lifetime warranty.  This feels like a pretty good price and fits right in with kits of similar size and speed.

Kit Size

Modules

Speed

Timings

8GB

2

1600MHz

9-9-9-24 2T

1866MHz

9-10-9-27 2T

2133MHz

11-11-11-27 2T

2133MHz

9-11-11-31 2T

16GB

2

1600MHz

9-9-9-24 2T

1866MHz

9-10-9-27 2T

2133MHz

11-11-11-27 2T

2400MHz

10-12-12-31 2T

32GB

4

1600MHz

9-9-9-24 2T

1866MHz

9-10-9-27 2T

2133MHz

11-11-11-27 2T

2400MHz

10-12-12-31 2T

 

Let's move on take a better look at the Vengeance Pro modules themselves.

 

A Closer Look At Corsair’s Vengeance Pro

Corsair picked a nice and simple package.  It worked plenty well to keep the modules in place and protected.  The front end of this package basically tells you what size kit you purchased, has a product shot of the color kit, and that’s about it.

Corsair Vengeance Pro Box Front

Flip the package around, and Corsair has a little blurb about the Vengeance Pro kit in multiple languages.  You can also see the finer details of the memory as there is a cutout that shows the sticker on the RAM module.  This particular kit is the 16GB (2x 8GB) running at 1866MHz with 9-10-9-27 timings at 1.5v.

Corsair Vengeance Pro Box Rear

Opening up the package you see the two modules sandwiched between plastic.  Opening this up is a synch; you just have to separate the two halves and they come apart with little effort.  While you are opening it, you have to be careful or take note of what side the modules are molded into.  If you open it wrong, the modules will slide out of their slots and could inadvertently fall onto a hard surface.  Don’t say I didn't warn you!

Corsair Vengeance Pro Packaging

The modules in this kit came with the silver and black heat spreader.  This is a nice neutral color and should go with anything.  They look constructed quite nicely, too.  Corsair didn’t have the technical specifications listed, so my measurement from the bottom of the PCB to the very top of the heat spreader came in at 44.45mm.  This is somewhat tall, but it should not get in the way of most water cooling loops or large aftermarket air coolers.

Corsair Vengeance Pro 1866MHz DRAM

Looking closely at the side profile, you can take a look at the 8-layer PCB, which is black in color.  Who doesn't love black components?

Corsair Vengeance Pro Close-up

On the rear of the RAM module is where you can find the sticker with the specifications.  It tells you the initial memory kit size (2x 8GB in this case), XMP frequency, timings, voltage, and more.

Corsair Vengeance Pro Label

Next up let’s take a quick peek at the test system, then get on to the benchmarking!

The Test System

Before we take a look at the performance numbers, let’s take a brief look at the test system that was used.  All testing was done using a fresh install of Windows 7 Professional 64-bit and benchmarks were completed on the desktop with no other software programs running.

 Corsair Vengeance Pro Installed

 Intel Z87/LGA1150 Platform

The Intel Z87 platform that we used to test these memory modules was running the GIGABYTE Z87X-UD4H motherboard with BIOS version F7 that came out on 08/05/2013.  The processor used, the Intel Core i7 4770k, was just using the stock frequency of 3.5GHz with turbo boost enabled, which can boost it up to 3.9GHz.

Corsair Vengeance Pro CPU-Z

Up next I will run a couple benchmarks against these modules to see how well they perform!

Corsair Vengeance Pro Benchmarking

I started off benchmarking with the stock Extreme Memory Profile (XMP), which was 1866MHz at 9-10-9-27 2T timings running at 1.5v.  I then ran the same benchmarks to the highest frequency I was comfortable with obtaining on the GIGABYTE Z87X-UD4H, which came to 2200MHz with 9-12-11-32 2T timings at 1.58v.  I also did find a nice improvement by bumping to 2000MHz with 9-9-9-27 1T timings while still running at 1.5v.  Ideally I’d like to not have to increase the voltage, which is why I ended up finding this simple speed increase.

Also, I did try jacking the voltage all the way up to 1.65v to see if I could hit 2400MHz, but I was unable to get my system to POST.

 

SiSoftware Sandra 2013 SP4

Sandra needs no introduction as it is the most popular memory performance benchmark available.

Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB (2x 8GB) Memory at 1866MHz 9-10-9-27 2T

Corsair Vengeance Pro Sandra 1866MHz

Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB (2x 8GB) Memory at 2000MHz 9-9-9-27  1T

Corsair Vengeance Pro Sandra 2000MHz

Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB (2x 8GB) Memory at 2200MHz 9-12-11-32 2T

Corsair Vengeance Pro Sandra 2200MHz

Benchmark Results:  Running the XMP Profile #1 at 1866MHz, we saw an aggregate memory performance of 23.81 GB/s.  When utilizing the voltage increase free overclock of 2000MHz and tighter timings, we saw this same number jump up to 26.28 GB/s.  That's almost a 2.5 GB/s increase by doing only a little tweaking.  Overclocking further to 2200MHz, but increasing the voltage to 1.58v, we jumped up another 2.12 GB/s, to 28.4 GB/s!

 

AIDA64 Extreme Edition 3.0 Beta

AIDA64 Extreme Edition 3.0 software is an excellent benchmarking tool for looking at memory performance on any desktop PC.

Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB (2x 8GB) Memory at 1866MHz 9-10-9-27 2T

Corsair Vengeance Pro AIDA64 1866MHz

Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB (2x 8GB) Memory at 2000MHz 9-9-9-27 1T

Corsair Vengeance Pro AIDA64 2000MHz

Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB (2x 8GB) Memory at 2200MHz 9-12-11-32 2T

Corsair Vengeance Pro AIDA64 2200MHz

Benchmark Results:  Running AIDA64 Extreme Edition, we found the read and write scores to be 27872 MB/s and 28686 MB/s at 1866MHz with CL9 timings.  Jumping the clock up to the no voltage increase speed of 2000MHz with slightly tighter timings, we saw these rear and write scores jump up to 30163 MB/s and 31399 MB/s.  That's a pretty good jump!  Pushing the frequency more, up to 2200MHz, these  numbers hit 32866 MB/s read and 34167 MB/s write, which is another nice bump, yet.

Why the big difference between the AIDA64 and Sandra memory bandwidth scores? The higher scores are due to the fact that AIDA64 uses extreme optimizations in all its cache, memory, CPU and FPU benchmarks.

 

MaxxMEM² v1.99

MaxxMEM is another memory benchmarking tool that is starting to become quite popular as of late.

Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB (2x 8GB) Memory at 1866MHz 9-10-9-27 2T

Corsair Vengeance Pro MaxxMem2 1866MHz

Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB (2x 8GB) Memory at 2000MHz 9-9-9-27 1T

Corsair Vengeance Pro MaxxMem2 2000MHz

Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB (2x 8GB) Memory at 2200MHz 9-12-11-32 2T

Corsair Vengeance Pro MaxxMem2 2200MHz

Benchmark Results:  Following a similar trend with the previous two benchmarks, we saw increases with each frequency bump.  The bump up to 2000MHz with no voltage increase was the biggest jump here.

 

Metro Last Light Benchmark

Metro Last Light Benchmark Settings

Metro: Last Light is a first-person shooter video game developed by Ukrainian studio 4A Games and published by Deep Silver. The game is set in a post-apocalyptic world and features action-oriented game play with a combination of survival horror elements. It uses the 4A Game engine and was released in May 2013.

I ran Metro at settings that aren't GPU intensive to help show a better impact of the memory.

Corsair Vengeance Pro Metro Benchmark

Benchmark Results:  Coming in with a stock FPS of 113.33 and jumping up to 114 FPS with the first overclock was nice, but it is absolutely nothing to write home about.  I didn't see any gains with the 2200MHz clock.

Corsair Vengeance Pro 1866MHz Final Thoughts & Conclusion

So, was the Corsair Vengeance Pro 1866MHz DRAM kit pretty sweet?  I must say it absolutely met my expectations, and this includes everything from appearance to performance.

Corsair Vengeance Pro 1866MHz DRAM

Starting with appearance, the Vengeance Pro modules look really nice.  The ones that I reviewed today were silver and black in color, which is a choice that will go with just about anyone’s setup.  I think I would really dig the red or blue to go with my GIGABYTE Z87X-UD4H, too.

While the heat spreaders are tall, measuring approximately 44.45mm, I would have to say they should not get in the way of most aftermarket air coolers or water cooling loops.  They are actually quite slick and Corsair did a great job designing them.  Corsair’s goal was to make them look aggressive, and I think they did a nice job with that.

Corsair Vengeance Pro 1866MHz DRAM

To achieve the 1866MHz speed, you will have to utilize the XMP Profile 1, otherwise the modules will sit at JEDEC standard of 1333MHz with 9-9-9-24 timings.  Now overclocking these beyond the XMP profile is where I was pretty happy. I was able to overclock these modules from 1866MHz with 9-10-9-27 2T timings to 2000MHz with 9-9-9-27 1T timings with the same 1.5 volts.  I also managed to bump the modules up to 2200MHz with 9-12-11-32 2T timings, but had to bump the voltage to 1.58v.  I did also bump the voltage to 1.65v to see if I could get 2400MHz out of this kit, but unfortunately I couldn't get my system to POST.  The free speed increase with tighter timings and no voltage increase was a very nice bonus.

Corsair Vengeance Pro Installed

These modules do come in speeds up to 2400MHz and kits in 8GB, 16GB, and 32GB in size, but the ones we reviewed today were clocked at 1866MHz and were a 16GB kit (2x 8GB).  You can pick this same 1866MHz 16GB kit up on Amazon for $148.45 shipped, which is a competitive price with kits of the same speed and size.  These modules are also backed by Corsair’s lifetime warranty.

LR Recommended Award

Legit Bottom Line:  Corsair’s Vengeance Pro has a fairly aggressive heat spreader that comes in multiple colors that look great.  Overclocking on these modules was pretty good and the free speed increase and tighter timings, without bumping voltage, was a nice plus to the already great performance the Vengeance Pro delivers.