Overall the Crucial Ballistix Elite 8GB 1600MHz DDR3 Memory Kit tested as-good or better than a competitive reference memory kit. Beyond the stock settings, the Ballistix Elite kit was capable of running default timings (8-8-8-24) all the way up to an overclocked frequency of 1866MHz at 1.65v.
SiSoft Sandra and AIDA64 results revealed no performance gains between the as-tested Crucial Ballistix Elite kit and the G.SKILL 1600MHz Ripjaws kit. Once overclocked the Ballistix Elite did give an average performance gain of 13%. Performance Test 7.0 was not as favorable towards the Crucial Ballistix Elite kit, giving a marginal lead to the G.SKILL Ripjaws memory kit in some tests and up to a 12% gain in other tests. Overclocking performance was not rewarded in AIDA64 either, posting insignificant gains in performance at the higher 1866MHz clock speed.
At $68 shipped (according to the Bigbruin.com Shopping Pages
), this kit is a pretty good value. While you can find 8GB kits cheaper from other manufacturers, they tend to have CAS 9 timings and can likely only run at rated speeds (1600MHz). Sure, you can consider alternative kits already rated at 1866MHz, but they tend to be rated from the factory at CL9 timings. Buying memory that's guaranteed to hit 1866MHz with CL8 will cost you around $75 shipped as of the time this review was completed.
As a result of its ability to run at 1866MHz and remain at default timings, the Crucial Ballistix Elite 8GB DDR-1600MHz memory kit receives the Bigbruin.com "Highly Recommended" and "Good Value" awards.
» XMP support, for easier setup
» Capable of running at 1866MHz, at rated timings and 1.65v
» Ballistix MOD Utility allows you to monitor and record memory temperatures
» Heatspreaders may interfere with some CPU heatsinks, roughly 7/8 the height of a dollar bill from top to bottom
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