In one of our recent memory articles we have taken a peek in the world of high-end DDR4 and discovered that the expensive high-rated models have little practical relevance in launch day conditions. To see if things are any different at the other end of DDR4 spectrum, we thought it would be a good idea to consider a kit whose main selling point is low price. It did not take us long to discover that Crucial's offers are currently the cheapest DDR4 around so this is what we'll be looking at in today's article.
|Capacity||32 GB (4 x 8 GB)|
|Frequency||1066 MHz (DDR4-2133)|
|Cooling||Passive cooling, no heatsink|
|Package Type||Plastic packaging|
Crucial's entry-level DDR4 lineup currently consists of 4GB and 8GB modules that are sold individually, in pairs or in quad-channel kits. As higher memory capacity should become more relevant in the future, we've gone for the 32GB version, also because such configurations are usually harder to overclock thus our results should represent a worst-case scenario.
In terms of specification, these modules are as basic as it gets with all the numbers coming straight from JEDEC's DDR4 specification. Without any factory overclocking taking place, Crucial have also kept the original chip manufacturer labels intact for OEM system builders.
Crucial's quad channel DDR4 kits are shipped in a compact plastic box that hosts two trays with two modules each.
Along with the specification, the appearance of the modules did not change ever since they left Micron factory. Not making any changes is surely good for keeping the price down, but using a black PCB wouldn't have added much to the cost and made the modules look much more discrete.
As is normal on entry-level memory modules, no heatsinks are present. One might think that they are not necessary given that DDR4 is designed to operate at low voltage, but under a continuous load with no airflow around the memory area the modules can still get relatively hot.
A good thing about having no heatspreaders is that memory chips are very easy to identify. In case with our modules, they are Micron D9RGQ of 4Gbit density. As far as we know, Crucial are the only DDR4 maker who base their products on Micron chips, with competition using either Hynix or Samsung instead.
Each of the modules contains an SPD chip, which is flashed with basic information on its manufacturer, model and production date. SPD also features nice JEDEC profiles which are intended to make platform recognize the type of memory in use and set the settings accordingly.