With DDR3 steaming towards becoming a legacy generation of memory, there is not much action to be observed in this declining part of the market. Before we finally put this technology to rest, we are going to give it one last shot by revisiting one of the makers who came really late into play.
If you have not yet heard of Essencore, you might want to learn the correct way to spell this name as it seems that this Korean memory manufacturer is here to say. The focus of this new company are the upper mainstream and the enthusiast segments, which it tries to conquer with three lineups of Klevv-branded memory: the Neo, the Urbane and the Genuine. A representative of the former series has already visited our test lab and left an overwhelmingly positive impression. A reasonable question is: will its sister models do the same? Well, let us find out.
8GB (2 x 4GB)
1200 MHz (DDR3-2400)
(Limited to 10 years in Austria and Germany)
To clearly oversee the difference between seemingly similar lineups, we have ordered a pair of 8GB dual channel kits rated at DDR3-2400 CL11 each. Such a configuration is present in every manufacturer's enthusiast-oriented arsenal, which makes for a perfect setup for a new memory player to try and separate themselves from the rest of the pack.
Our adventures begin by opening the packaging. Similar to the cheaper Neo series, the Urbane and the Genuine have at least two layers of protection on their way to a potential customer. This gives the kits a head start against similarly-priced competition.
Essencore's approach to styling puts the Klevv further in front. The lack of bright colours, sharp edges and eye-catching design features looks very mature, and we like this a lot.
All of the currently available Klevv kits have similar heatsinks cast from aluminium. Once again, Essencore's solution turns out superior to the thin stamped sheets that we are used to be seeing.
The top Genuine lineup has a further ace up its sleeve. Namely, the modules are equipped with white LED bars, which generate constant illumination across the top of the modules. The amount of emitted light is just right: it is not painful to the eye and yet you can still clearly see all the beautiful details.
The heatsinks attach to the modules by a thin layer of thermal tape on the side with eight memory chips, and a thicker layer of thermal tape on the opposite side, which is left unpopulated. The labels on the memory chips allow to clearly identify them as Hynix (aka Hyundai Electronics) H5TQ4G83MFR, commonly known as 4Gbit MFR.
Given Essencore's tight relations with Hynix, we did not expect to see chips of any other maker. However, seeing the older MFR model is actually a good sign as suggests that Essencore like to give overclocking headroom to their customers, which might not be present on newer Hynix DDR3 chip revisions.
All memory modules carry a small SPD chip, which contains information on their manufacturer, internal part number, serial number and production date. The SPD also features several JEDEC setting presets, the sole purpose of which is making sure that the memory will boot no matter what platform you insert it in. Booting is one thing, but getting DDR3-2400 is slightly more technical. In order to make the memory run at its designated spec, you can either dial all the memory-related settings in the BIOS yourself, or just load the XMP and let the platform take care of them for you.
Using the latter option in our test platform has resulted in the following settings for both memory kits.