G.Skill Trident Extreme Performance F3-16000CL9 DDR3 Kit

Packaging & Appearance

Packaging & Appearance
 
The package is presented in blister style packaging but rather than have the edges heat sealed, the product can be opened using the two knobs at the top of the pack instead of having to demolish the packaging to get to the ram inside. The back card is holographic in design and apart from the product title which lays claim to being extreme performance ram designed for Nehalem, no other information is available. It isn't until we flip the package over that G.Skill give an inkling of the DDR3's performance, specifically the heatsinks cooling properties with a thermal image of their heat dissipation. A small sticker in the bottom quarter of the pack gives the prospective buyer the information they will be looking for with timings, voltage and frequency displayed.
 
trident back
 
The modules themselves are heavy in comparison but that's no bad things as anyone who has seen the movie 'Snatch' will tell you 'Heavy is good. Heavy is reliable!' - who am I to argue. The reason for this weight is the mass of thick set fins each heatsinks has. Couple this with the Matt black surface and it becomes clear G.Skill have done their homework regarding heat dissipation. A sticker reaches across the front of the ram stick displaying the company and Trident logos, which will match any number of black/red themed set-ups very nicely. My only concern is the use of a green PCB for the sticks themselves which just looks odd considering the effort G.Skill have put into designing the heatsinks and spoils the overall aesthetics. 
 
3 memory
 
The timings of the GSkill Trident are akin to most other kits which run at 2000MHz being 9-9-9-24. While CAS9 may seem a little slack, previous reviews have shown that latency is not the be all and end all of DDR3 performance. More important is the frequency of the modules and as these sticks run at a blistering 2000MHz you are going to be hard pushed to find a faster kit at the same price point. Because Intel CPU's are prone to suffer irreversible damage at anything over 1.65v, this is the maximum voltage GSkill recommend however if you are feeling brave this can be increased a few notches and we will see later in the review if this makes a difference to the speed of the kit.
 
rear trident emblem
 
The modules are just short of being double the height of the PCB and as such care should be taken to ensure these modules will fit in your motherboard should you make use of an oversized CPU cooler. The modules can be taken apart using 2 screws which are hidden beneath the SPD and warranty VOID sticker, however I found that, even with my best efforts, the modules refused to budge and not wanting to risk damaging the integrated chips I thought better of forcing the issue.
 
memory top mem side
 
While I appreciate that memory these days can run very hot, heatsinks are becoming so extravagant that the price of DDR3 kits are being artificially increased to off-set this extra manufacturing cost. No doubt the heatsinks will increase the lifespan of memory by keeping them cooler but I have yet to notice any significant increase in overclocks or stability by using them. However, with memory prices as inflated as they are, it's no bad thing to protect your investment with the extra cooling these heatsinks supply. They also look the business which is always a plus point for anyone wishing to show the ram off through a case window.
 
perspective timings
 
Apart from the Green PCB, GSkill have created a DDR3 kit that looks very menacing.  The fins give the impression that the modules could easily be at home on a medieval battlefield as much as an i7 setup. The blood red logo only adds to this and one can only imagine what this kit would look like in a motherboard with a complementing colour scheme such as Foxconn's Bloodrage or EVGA's Classified.
 
Looks however are not everything so it's time to put this kit to the test....
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Most Recent Comments

03-08-2009, 15:22:01

JN
"2000MHz kits are becoming more and more popular now that memory prices are dropping. Does the G.Skill Trident kit have what it takes to find it's way onto your i7 setup? Find out inside..." - by w3bbo

http://www.overclock3d.net/gfx/artic...110136963s.jpg

G.Skill Trident Extreme Performance F3-16000CL9 DDR3 Kit

03-08-2009, 15:25:16

FarFarAway
Hmm not much of an overclocker, but green PCB aside they look lush. Great price too

03-08-2009, 15:29:21

Rastalovich
Quick reaction, but this seems a pretty damn good 2nd to the OCZ Blades and I'd have to check the prices but it's a load cheaper aint it ?

03-08-2009, 15:49:21

tinytomlogan
Nice review, Id consider them tbh.

03-08-2009, 16:08:50

VonBlade
Amazing performance for the price. Word I'm not allowed to use ridiculously good.

03-08-2009, 16:39:25

w3bbo
To be fair to the OCZ, the Blade have dropped too although nowhere near the level of the GSKill. Price is very much based on latency these days and the OCZ is CAS7 vs the CAS9 of the GSkill so the chips used on the OCZ are alot more expensive.

Hard to justify the cost though when the benchmarks don't show such a big difference in performance.

Thanks for the kind comments as always guys.

06-08-2009, 18:04:46

Bungral
Very good value that there... I just wish manufacturers would make some black memory with electric blue or something rather than the red that seems to turning up all over the place.

Nice review Rich... With all this Asus hunting going on, I realised you've been writing reviews for a little over a year now! How time flies!

09-08-2009, 15:51:36

w3bbo
Cheers m8. Jim got me a nice bottle of Glenmorangie which wasn't expected but very welcome! Whatta guy

10-08-2009, 17:31:21

Bungral
Well ya deserve it... To regularly keep churning out reviews of a high standard and keep them interesting is quality. Also to keep motivated yourself is quite impressive... So yeah anyway... well done that man!

11-08-2009, 08:16:10

mayhem
well done and a nice tipple to supp on the long nights of hammering out over clock's and testing equipment .

11-08-2009, 12:46:19

w3bbo
Sadly the Glen was been drunk dry some time ago. Got a nice 12yr old malt here though so here's to another year!

Edit: Dammit - now everyone knows where the spelling mistakes come from - Pished while writing reviews!

11-08-2009, 13:51:36

mayhem
Lol ...

16-09-2009, 04:24:17

Johnbear
Quick reaction, but this seems a pretty damn good 2nd to the OCZ Blades...

-

16-09-2009, 07:43:10

w3bbo
...and so they are. If the latencies were tightened then the kit could well be better if priced lower than the Blades.

17-09-2009, 10:14:02

Freak
From the testing that you have done you think that the larger heatsinks dont yield much of an improvement on overclocking, compared to those that are smaller?

17-09-2009, 12:24:21

w3bbo
I wouldn't say they gave much gain at all tbh. They perhaps prevent errors through overheating when pushed to the limit. What the sinks most likely do is lengthen the lifespan of modules.
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