Ballistix Tactical 16GB DDR4 2666MHz


Introduction

Micron Technology, Inc. is an American company headquartered in Boise, Idaho, founded on October 5th 1978.
The Micron products are marketed and sold under the Crucial and Ballistix brands, these products include: SDRAM type memory, DDR/2/3/4 RAM and NAND & Flash type storage chips.
In 2009, Micron was the first company to announce an SSD equipped with a SATA interface capable of 6 Gbit/s speeds. At the present time, Micron is involved in the manufacture and sale of memory chips for countless brands and product types.

Official product link:

http://www.crucial.com/usa/en/blt2k8g4d26afta#productDetails

 

Packaging and accessories

The memory kit is packaged in a standard box made out of semitransparent plastic. The front side of the packaging is half covered by an aluminum pattern, on the upper right corner there is a label with a couple of the kit’s specifications such as the memory capacity, frecuency and the type.

 

On the back side the three main Crucial lines of memory are described in detail in three different languages, these are the Elite, Tactical and the Sport. On the lower side there is a label with the serial number of the kit alongside the Ballistix brand logo.

The two RAM modules of the Kit are packaged in a clear plastic tray.

 

Specifications

Series: Ballistix Tactical
Model: BLT2K8G4D26AFTA
Capacity: 16GB kit (8GB x 2)
Color: Gunmetal gray
Memory Type: DDR4
Memory Speed: 2666MHz
DRAM Memory Timings: 16-17-17-36
Form Factor: UDIMM
Voltage: 1.2V
Memory Configuration: Dual Channel Kit
Registered/Unbuffered: Unbuffered
Error Checking: Non-ECC
Warranty: Limited Lifetime

Features:

– Speeds start at 2666 MT/s
– Faster speeds and timings than Ballistix Sport DDR4
– Four channel memory architecture maximizes data rates
– Gunmetal gray heat spreader with black PCB
– Certified Intel® XMP 2.0 profiles for easy setup
– Optimized for the latest Intel X99 platforms
– Limited lifetime warranty

 

Visual inspection

The new Ballistix Tactical DDR4 series is completely different from the DDR3 line of memory, using a gunmetal gray heatsink with indents on the sides, the only element that is reminiscent of the previous series is the perforation on the top of the heatsink. In addition, the PCB that hold the memory chips is completely black.

 

On the back side there is are two labels which contain the model, capacity & frequency of the Kit alongside the serial number of the RAM modules.

 

The upper heatsink is perforated and shaped towards the inside of the memory PCB, this small feature reduces the overall footprint of the RAM once they are installed on the motherboard.

 

The only graphical elements present on the heatsink are the Ballistix and Micron brands logos, on the upper left corner there is the Tactical series logo.

 

The heatsink is attached to the memory chips using a self-adhesive thermal pad, the pad itself is applied on the entire length of the module.

 

Testing

The following system was used to test the memory kit:
– Processor: AMD 1700X @ 3.9 GHz
– Motherboard: ASRock X370 Gaming ITX/AC
– GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Founder’s Edition
– SSD: Samsung 840 EVO 120GB
– HDD: WD 1TB Blue
– PSU: FSP Dagger 600W
– CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-L9x65 SE-AM4
– Case: ASRock M8
– OS: Windows 10 64-Bit (After April Update)

 

The RAM was tested using the CPU at its turbo frequency of 3.9 GHz. The RAM was firstly tested using the standard X.M.P frequency while the second test was done with the memory at the maximum frequency reached in Overclock. Each test was done three times.

 

Software used for testing the RAM Kit:
– CineBench R15
– Rise of the Tomb Raider
– SuperPi 1.55 Mod
– AIDA64 Extreme Version: 5.97.4600 (Mar 28, 2018)

 

Rise of the Tomb Raider

AIDA64 Read-Write

 

AIDA64 Latency

CineBench R15 (Ryzen 7)

SuperPi 1.55 Mod (Ryzen 1700X)

 

6. Final thoughts

The new Ballistix line from Crucial is keeping the tradition of good price to performance ration and good overclocking headroom. In the case of the Ballistix Tactical 16GB DDR4 2666MHz, this kit was easily able to reach 3000MHz without changing the voltage or timings. In fact, with more time I was able to get this particular kit from timings: 17-17-36 to 14-14-35 at the standard frequency of 2666MHz, lower timings mean better performance overall.
The design of the Ballistix Tactical is simple with minimal graphics and some shapes embossed into the heatsisk, there are no RGB LEDs or software for this kit, and in this combination, it will match with every motherboard available n the market right now.

In conclusion, the Crucial Ballistix Tactical 16GB DDR4 2666MHz are a good choice from a performance and price ration, and also when looking at the current availability of DDR4 memory. The design is minimalist and will blend with any system, in addition, due to the shape and height of the heatsinks, this kit will not pose an impedance when a large CPU air cooler is used.
The performance is good in both gaming and synthetic benchmarks, keep in mind that the performance difference between memory frequency will not show in all games, however in the Rise of the Tomb Raider there was a notable difference in the gameplay.

 

 

 

 

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