Crucial has made several DDR4-related announcements to coincide with the Computex trade show in Taiwan. The first is that the company is now shipping DDR4 server memory designed for Haswell-EP-based Xeons. The next-gen modules run at 2133 MT/s, yielding 17 GB/s of bandwith. They’re available in 4, 8, and 16GB capacities, and Crucial plans to scale up to 32, 64, and 128GB. Those higher-capacity modules won’t arrive until Crucial starts using 1GB DDR4 dies, though. The current modules are built with 512MB chips. Here’s what they look like:
In August, Crucial will start selling DDR4 meant for Haswell-E and its X99 sidekick. In addition to plain-Jane 2133-MT/s modules, Ballistix Elite-branded units will be available with 2600 MT/s and 3000 MT/s speeds. The fastest modules boast 24GB of bandwidth, and Crucial expects to hit even higher speeds "as the technology matures."
The Ballistix UDIMMs come with a reasonably-sized heat spreader that may or may not be necessary to keep the memory cool. You can test for yourself, because there’s an onboard temperature sensor that provides real-time monitoring via the accompanying utility software. The modules also support new XMP 2.0 profiles for easy configuration.
Crucial’s vanilla DDR4 for the desktop will come in a quad-channel, 32GB kit. The Ballistix stuff will be available in 4GB and 8GB sticks sold separately and in multi-channel kits. The modules all run at 1.2V and use memory built on a 25-nm process. They deliver "up to 40 percent more power efficiency" than DDR3 memory, in part because of the lower voltage, but also because the memory has transitioned from 30- to 25-nm fabrication technology.
Intel still hasn’t announced a precise launch date for Haswell-E, but if compatible DDR4 memory will be selling in August, odds are X99 motherboards won’t be far behind.