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The Truth About Hynix MFR-based Memory Kits - Overclockers.com's G.Skill TridentX 8GB DDR3-2933 Memory Kit Review

I must admit I have been getting increasingly annoyed with the noise regarding the Hynix MFR-based memory kits. As you know, the latest memory overclocking results - everything over DDR3-4000- were all achieved with a very specific memory IC: Hynix MFR. Now although I love seeing these insane memory frequencies, as an overclocker I do want people to understand that the highest clocks do not represent the highest level of performance. The highly clocked MFR-based kits are not slower because of the memory timings, but mainly because they are single sided. That means, only one side of the memory stick has ICs. So unlike with spending USD $1000 on a GTX Titan or a Core i7 3970X, spending money on the highest priced memory kit will not get you the best performance. Hynix MFR is for memory what the AMD FX-9590 is for processors. Have you seen any positive review, 90%+, or highly recommended award for that CPU?

Since Computex many reviews of Hynix MFR based memory appeared online. I must say most of them are very disappointing, as most kits get awards for these horribly priced underwhelming performance memory kits. The performance of MFR-based memory is very low. Have a look at this performance chart from TechpowerUP on the right.

As you can see, a DDR3-2933C11 MFR memory kit is slower than a DDR3-2400C11(!) kit. That is nothing short of sad.

That is the main reason why I would like to highlight the review over at Overclockers.com. They also reviewed an MFR-based memory kit, but did not give a review or any other "recommended,? "must have" or "this is amazing" award or paragraph. They said exactly how things are. To quote,

The 8 GB G.Skill TridentX DDR3-2600 kit used for comparison here is $139.99 on Newegg. That?s 37.8% of the price of this DDR3-2933 kit. Not nearly 40% less than the price of the kit being reviewed, it is under 40% of its price. Oh, and it performs better. So for anyone out there that wants memory currently on the market for performance, go for that kit. G.Skill will be happy; they?ll still be getting your money, just not as much of it.

That?s not the whole story though. For a subset of a subset of overclockers that really enjoy memory overclocking (of which yours truly is one), this kit is tailor made for you. If you find yourself in that subset that is willing to spend a good sum of money purely for the fun of overclocking your memory to DDR3-3000 and beyond ? well beyond ? this kit has your name written all over it. Believe me it is A. Lot. Of. Fun. Fun in spades. This is a memory geek?s dream at half the price of those DDR3-3000 kits. For the rest of you, those that value performance over frequency numbers, have a look at the frequencies this kit can achieve. Then say ?Ooohh? and ?Aaaahhh?. Then go buy a cheaper kit.

Because this kit does what it says it will do and it can overclock to the moon ? with regard to frequency only ? as designed, I will not give it a ?meh.? However, because it fails to do the one thing that higher-priced, higher-spec?ed memory should do ? out-perform its cheaper-by-a-long-shot little brother ? it doesn?t get to be Overclockers Approved either. Sorry G.Skill ? and all the other manufacturers putting out these crazy high frequency Hynix MFR kits like Corsair, Avexir, Adata, etc ? you?ve got to bring the performance to go with the MHz. Without it, your kit is dead in the water aside from those that are either really into memory overclocking (see: subset of a subset) or those that are compensating for something else.

... and I take my hat off. For your information, I did link our partner G.SKILL to this review and they were pleased to see a media outlet being honest and correct about the memory kit.

I realize I might not be making a lot of friends with this news post as it seems that most of the media, journalists and marketing teams would rather have people be quiet about the performance of MFR-based memory. However, right is right and wrong is wrong. Anyone can put Hynix MFR on a memory kit and get to DDR3-3400 with a slight voltage boost, the right timings, and a good CPU. In fact, creating a highly clocked memory kit is not rocket science, it is only a matter of binning as much ICs as possible. That is exactly why they are so pricey - it takes a lot of man-hours to go through 30,000 ICs to find those that can to DDR3-3000 at 1.65V.

Honestly speaking, there are only two things I find impressive about MFR-based kits. One, getting the highest frequency record, something mostly (only) extreme overclockers are interested in. Two, having the highest clocked mass-production memory kit available in the market. None of that exclusive one-kit press release or incredibly limited sample stuff. Looking at Newegg, I only see G.SKILL having DDR3-2800+ memory kits in stock. At the Geizhals price comparison site, I find one Avexir and a couple G.SKILL sticks in stock. Others are unlisted or unavailable. Great work, both companies deserve an award for the work.


Jul 20, 2013 - article - overclockers.com
  #1  
Old 07-20-2013, 11:42
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Probably the longest newspost on the frontpage. Sorry, had to let it aaaall out. Can't stand how review sites would give average marks for the AMD FX-9590 and be very positive for MFR-based kits. Just so it's clear to everyone, congrats to all the folks involved with hitting over DDR3-4200 (incl; memory vendors, mainboard vendors and overclockers). Congrats to the memory vendors getting those highly clocked kits in mass-production. Congrats to media that don't recommend these kits to their audience for anything but high frequency memory.
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Old 07-20-2013, 12:11
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I understand your frustration but please be aware that 4GB high-rated modules is not the only place where MFR is used, as the newspost seems to claim.

If you're talking high-end memory (from daily user's perspective) then you can't ignore 8Gb modules. Obviously, those will always be dual-sided regardless of which ICs you use, hence the "single-sided argument" will not hold. At DDR3-2133+ there are only two choices for ICs - Samsung revision B and Hynix MFR. With Samsung not being capable of consistently doing above 1200 10-10-12, MFR is actually a better choice.

Now let's go to sub-100Euro 2x4Gb kits. You say (in the other thread) that 2400C9 kits will run circles around MFR, but have you actually had a retail set yourself? I've had and seen quite a few of those being so bad that I believe those wouldn't be able to beat decent MFR (that are "guaranteed" by Team on 2666C11 for same sub-100Euro) in a 32M low-clock competition.

Bottom line is that MFR don't make sense on high-rated 4Gb modules, but as you said - it's a subset of a subset and doesn't mean that ICs are bad in general.
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Old 07-20-2013, 12:26
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You are right, Sam. I'm probably focusing too much on this high-end part of the scope. I understand your point of view and I agree for the most part. I would want to make a sidenote that the market for high-density configurations that absolutely require 8GB memory sticks for, I assume, 32GB or more, is pretty small as well. For most users, you're fine with 2x4GB or cheap(er) 4x4GB if you need more.

The point of the news post is more to highlight the somewhat odd conclusions of a lot of the single-sided MFR reviews, not to dismiss Hynix MFR as a complete failure alltogether. MFR has its place in the market, especially considering Samsung and others are shifting production focus to mobile, leaving not too much options for high-end memory. It's becoming almost exclusively the only option for manufacturing high-end memory at the moment.

Bottom line, the general lack of outrage about the high-dollar low-performance kits leaves me with a very bad taste in my mouth. The GTX Titan comes at a USD $1000 price-point, but for that you actually get the highest performance. The same goes for the Core i7 3970X - if you talk about out-of-the-box specs. Across the web there are many negative comments on the USD $800 FX-9590 as the performance you get for 5GHz turbo (the highest stock clock for CPU) is well below that of a mainstream CPU. I don't understand why there's so few negative comments about high-clock MFR.
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Old 07-20-2013, 12:46
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Kinda off-topic....are all these extra symbols:

Quote:
. That‚€™s 37.8% of they‚€™ll still

That‚€™s n beyond ‚€“ well beyond ‚€“ this geek‚€™s dr say ‚€œOoohh‚€Ě and ‚€œAaaahhh‚€Ě.

moon ‚€“ only ‚€“ a ‚€œmeh.‚€Ě higher-spec‚€™ed memory should do ‚€“ brother ‚€“ it doesn‚€™t get G.Skill ‚€“ etc ‚€“ you‚€™
A result from copy-pasting from a different forum code to HWBots?


Back on-topic. ok.... so 2x4GB is a writeoff at high speed and 2x8GB won't hit the frequencies and/or timings. We gotta pick carefully The next generation of memory will (theoretically) contain everything needed for SPi32M in ONE memory chip. Terrifying!

We need to keep in mind the list of memory that is dual-sided at 4GB per stick
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Old 07-20-2013, 12:54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Massman View Post
I don't understand why there's so few negative comments about high-clock MFR.
I guess the main reason is that not enough 'decent' people can actually get a hold of a kit. Corsair didn't send out any 3000C12 press samples, G.Skill seem to be very careful with 2933C12/3000C12 as well (I asked for some mid-end stuff and a 2933C12 a month ago, mid-end stuff arrived in two days and had consecutive serial numbers meaning that G.Skill "cared", 2933C12 - no reply). There are some Adata 2800C12 samples floating around but I guess all reviews will mark those kits down for redonkeyless pricing before they even get to performance evaluations.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Massman View Post
The GTX Titan comes at a USD $1000 price-point, but for that you actually get the highest performance. The same goes for the Core i7 3970X - if you talk about out-of-the-box specs. Across the web there are many negative comments on the USD $800 FX-9590 as the performance you get for 5GHz turbo (the highest stock clock for CPU) is well below that of a mainstream CPU. I don't understand why there's so few negative comments about high-clock MFR.
The most expensive 4x8Gb 3000C12 set also features the best possible combination of density and performance, so?
High-rated 2x4Gb MFR sets can be compared to low-end VGAs with huge amounts of slow VRAM, i.e. not a high-end branch that has gone pointless beyond some point in its evolution.

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Old 07-20-2013, 13:15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam OCX View Post
I've had and seen quite a few of those being so bad that I believe those wouldn't be able to beat decent MFR (that are "guaranteed" by Team on 2666C11 for same sub-100Euro) in a 32M low-clock competition.

Excuse me?Single-sided MFR are miles behind double-sided Samsung(2400 cas9).Also there is potential for overclock,don't tell me that with a 2400 9-11-11 rated kit you can't reach 2500 9-11-11 or 2600+ 10-12-12 with 1.8V+ cause i have a very hard time believing that
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Old 07-20-2013, 13:30
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Originally Posted by Alex@ro View Post
Excuse me?Single-sided MFR are miles behind double-sided Samsung(2400 cas9).Also there is potential for overclock,don't tell me that with a 2400 9-11-11 rated kit you can't reach 2500 9-11-11 or 2600+ 10-12-12 with 1.8V+ cause i have a very hard time believing that
I've had three mid-2013-made GSKill 2400C9/2600C10 sets, neither of which could do 1333 CL9 or 1350+ CL10 with any voltage. websmile has had a recent 2600C10 set that, by his words, wouldn't run 1333 CL10. Such kits might have a hard time doing sub 6min05 at 5GHz.
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Old 07-20-2013, 13:31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam OCX View Post
I've had three mid-2013-made GSKill 2400C9/2600C10 sets, neither of which could do 1333 CL9 or 1350+ CL10 with any voltage. websmile has had a recent 2600C10 set that, by his words, wouldn't run 1333 CL10. Such kits might have a hard time doing sub 6min05 at 5GHz.
Ah, now you understand more of what I was saying last week
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Old 07-20-2013, 14:22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam OCX View Post
I've had three mid-2013-made GSKill 2400C9/2600C10 sets, neither of which could do 1333 CL9 or 1350+ CL10 with any voltage. websmile has had a recent 2600C10 set that, by his words, wouldn't run 1333 CL10. Such kits might have a hard time doing sub 6min05 at 5GHz.
Even at 2666 C10 sub 6.05 is doable,a optimized result with 2860 9-12-12 scores 5.58.2-5,so you can add even 5 seconds and you still get 6.03.~5.

In my experience every 50 mhz counts as 0.5 sec to 32M,so make 2700 9-12-12 even let's say 2 sec slower that 2860,add another 0.5-0.6(which C-N proved on xs that is the diff from C10 to C9) ,make it round even 3 seconds and you get 6.01.5xx.Still let's say you run looser tertiary and secondaries,even 2666 c10,hell even 2600 c10 and it is still faster than fastest Hynix MFR run(dumo's 6.03.750 at almost 3100 11-14-13 which is faaar more than team 2666c11 MFR kit's will ever do).

All in all,single-sided memory sucks for 32M so bad it is not even funny....
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Old 07-22-2013, 03:53
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Thanks Massman, I'm flattered to have been mentioned on the bot's homepage.

FWIW, ADATA now has their 2800 single-sided MFR kit in stock at Newegg in addition to G.Skill. I'm working to wrap up this review shortly. Hopefully ADATA takes the conclusion as well as G.Skill did, because results are exactly the same - high clocks, but no performance increase.
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