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Samsung has announced what it claims to be the world's highest density DRAM chip

The DRAM industry is having one of the worst years ever thanks to the global economy and an oversupply of DRAM on the market. The oversupply and low demand has pushed the price of DRAM below what it costs to build in some instances.

Despite the oversupply and low demand for DRAM that has resulted in Qimonda filing for insolvency, Samsung has announced a new DRAM chip built on the 50nm process that it claims is the world's highest density. The chips are 4Gb and offer significantly reduced energy consumption compared to other DRAM chips on the market.

Samsung says that its 4Gb DRAM chips need 1.35 volts to operate compared to 1.5 volts needed by older chips. The firm will use the new 4Gb chips in 16GB RDIMM modules, 8GB UDIMM modules, and 8GB SODIMM modules. That means the new DRAM chips will be used in servers, desktops and notebook computers.

Samsung also says it can use its dual-die package technology to package two of the 4Gb 16GB modules on a package for 32GB of memory, doubling the capacity the previous highest density chip was capable of.

Kevin Lee from Samsung said, "We have leveraged our strength in innovation to develop the first 4-Gb DDR3, in leading the industry to higher DRAM densities."

The maximum speed for the new DRAM chips is 1.6Gbps and using the new parts, a 16GB module will consume 40% less power than a 2Gb DDr3 module thanks to the higher density of the new chips.

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By Motoman on 1/30/2009 1:47:20 PM , Rating: 2 a couple years, it would seem, we'll be running Windows 7 machines with 32Gb of RAM in them and not even blinking an eye at the cost or the sheer amount of memory.

Makes you wonder how much more can be accomplished with video games, as an example, when there's such incredible computing resources available. Right now, I can't imagine what a game would do with 32Gb of RAM...but that's just because no one's done anything with it before.

RE: Impressive.
By Shig on 1/30/2009 1:57:45 PM , Rating: 5
Definately impressive. Right now the norm is 4GB (I feel kinda stupid for only having 2GB atm), even netbooks are coming with 3-4GB now.

Windows 7 runs fine with only 2 GB, software engineers have to figure out a way to make that whole mess of extra ram make a difference though. In most desktop scenarios having more / faster ram really doesn't help all that much, unless you're really a high end power user. There are also a lot of cases where things work worse with every DIMM slot in use.

I just want to see the added performance that ram gives servers / super computers brought to home use.

RE: Impressive.
By quiksilvr on 1/30/2009 2:24:32 PM , Rating: 2
You found a netbook that can have 4GB? I thought the current motherboard with Atom can only handle 2 GB of ram?

RE: Impressive.
By Natfly on 1/30/2009 3:52:07 PM , Rating: 2
Even if they have only one dimm slot, you can buy 4GB so-dimms, although expensive.

RE: Impressive.
By Cypherdude1 on 1/30/2009 5:29:49 PM , Rating: 3
I can't imagine what a game would do with 32Gb of RAM

Nearly all game programmers/companies won't write software intended for 32 GB. Game company executives want to maximize their profits so they write games intended for the average gaming computer currently being manufactured. Some might place options or subroutines which take advantage of that much RAM though.

With multiple 32 GB DIMM's installed, it should speed up the acceptance of Windows 7 64-bit. Although, most users won't really need it.

Now that users are installing large amounts of RAM, Microsoft needs to rewrite some of their Windows code to take advantage of it. With the max of 3.5 GB's RAM in XP and Vista 32-bit, Microsoft should change Windows so that it doesn't create its PageFile (or SwapFile). Recall that the purpose of the PageFile is to augment the amount of available RAM on a system:

With the maximum amount of 3.5 GB's of RAM installed on Windows XP & Vista 32-bit, unless you use a very RAM intensive program, the PageFile isn't used at all!

For example, on my XP Pro machine with "only" 1 GB installed, I have been able to completely disable the Windows PageFile with no ill effects at all. If someone has the full 3.5 GB's of RAM installed on their machine, they'll have a huge (3.5 GB * 1.5 =) 5.25 GB file in their base folder. What they don't know is that, while Windows must manage this huge file, it isn't being utilized at all!

Microsoft must rewrite their Windows code to eliminate the PageFile, only creating it when needed, if 1 GB of RAM is installed in XP or 3 GB is installed in Vista.

RE: Impressive.
By BoemlauweBas on 1/31/2009 2:51:38 AM , Rating: 1
How long was it since you played Quake 3 Arena/Unreal Tournament ? FINALY you could crank it FULL on a shiny new P3 500, well IF you had (lucky me) A shiny new Nvidia TNT 4xAGP with 16Mb.

Why am I mentioning this ? Just stop for a moment and think about this right here....

In the early days when PC gaming took of (after the Cmd. Keen era etc.) the world was shocked by the gfx of doom. That game ran on a 486sx 50Mhz with 4mb's of ram ! To make that happen, one needs MAD programming skills, every kilobyte was accounted for. The designers tricked our eyes by keeping the levels in a certain shade to save the amount of colors they used in sprites. etcetcetc.

Thanks to those game console ports & the fact that people are still happy to pay 40 euro for a game that needs to work on 3 platforms, by a gamestudio you never heard of, that has about `5` months to make a game based on a shity superhero movie .... What do you expect ?

Yet I love GTA, so i'm buying the new 295 nvidia (EN8800 GTX Ultra is getting old anyway) I always looked up to Rockstar Studios myself, so yes i wasn't very pleased when they said they whould only focus on the console marked from now on. I buy the stuff I like. (about 2 / 3 games a year) The other 80-+ games.. they should be happy i'm even trying it. (DRM FREE!)

Take for example the Red Alert 3, that my friends is 'aids' on a disc. In RA2 `you had to snap out` of the story scenes. No skills ? YOU DIE! Make some. Nowdays you have a 5 day tutorial so that grandma can have a go on it. But worst of all... the cut scenes.... I've seen bad acting.... but RA3 lets Chuck Noris think he's Patchino ! All people here is EA, they don't make games. They sell/rape/patch them.

In short, the love is gone. How come GTA IV need 900mb of video memory @highest render settings ... yet the games only takes 1gb RAM @ 1920x1200 .... lets keep 1 for Vista... Thats 6gb to *waste* . (Or 2gb for the people with 4gb) It's wrong...

To play Grand Theft Auto IV @ 1920x1280 Highest Renders, one needs to
have at least 900MB on the video card. Thats wrong.,...

--> Patch 1 + 2 = v1.0.2

I just had to let it out guys, almost getting emotional here :=] (almost)

We need more farbrausch skills, less sponsor crap.
Their latest (music/gfx) demo is 177kb in size... See to believe.

RE: Impressive.
By mars777 on 1/31/2009 8:15:58 PM , Rating: 2
I've seen their 96kB 3D game before (quite a few years ago they already had HDR..) and it was wonderful.

This one astonished me for one other reason:

How the hell do all those thousands of boxes move or writings explode on my X2 3200+, when other games need Ageia to do that? :D

RE: Impressive.
By Aloonatic on 2/1/2009 4:19:31 AM , Rating: 2
You're going to spend that much money on a new graphics card so that you can play GTA IV?

Prepare for epic amounts of disappointment and buyers remorse in equal measure.

It's a fun game and all, but if you loved the other games then you've played it before. Save yourself a lot of time and money and don't bother, at least, not at this price.

RE: Impressive.
By Zoomer on 2/1/2009 4:34:31 PM , Rating: 2
I was reloading Crysis a lot for the final boss, and Windows decided to kill it after it sucked up 5+GB. Eh?

RE: Impressive.
By haukionkannel on 2/1/2009 7:37:34 AM , Rating: 2
Well actually game companies target average computer two years old or new low end... More potential buyers.

RE: Impressive.
By mikeblas on 2/1/2009 12:22:24 PM , Rating: 2
When you have some time, study how Windows works. Read Windows Internals, for example. You'll learn that the page file is necessary, and you're actually better off making sure one is available no matter how much memory you have.

RE: Impressive.
By BoemlauweBas on 1/31/2009 12:17:19 AM , Rating: 2
That's correct, (NO IT ISN'T!)

What is a Netbook ? It's a sales model . It even makes sense. Since about 85% of the people do nothing more then `Mailing & Surfing` One whould think they hit the Jackpot when they came with the 'netbook' costing -+ 1/4 of a (decent) laptop. That's like Ferrari starts selling $20.000 sportcars... suicide.

So... Intel took some insurance, it's limited not by tech. (hence the 1gb limit) To bad Via has found a away around this by using their own CPU... don't laugh until you have seen the benchmarks :D It's nice.
It costs an extra $ 100/200 Dollar (70 euro's heheh)
But then again, you can actualy 'work' on it.

RE: Impressive.
By diego10arg on 1/30/2009 2:30:56 PM , Rating: 3
...even netbooks are coming with 3-4GB now.

Not really, most of them support up to 2GB. Notebooks instead, are coming with 3-4Gb.

Would it be possible to boot the whole OS to RAM? I mean... If we can can afford 16Gb RAM it would be much faster than running the system from SSDs...

RE: Impressive.
By phaxmohdem on 1/30/2009 4:44:12 PM , Rating: 5
That is actually one of the reasons I think Vista is a tad under-appreciated. I have 8GB in my Vista desktop at home, and rather than let it all sit there and do nothing, Vista caches frequently used functions, and programs into memory to really speed things up and make the system really snappy. I applaud Microsoft for putting as many resources to use as possible, and hope Windows 7 further refines this feature. If your RAM is just sitting there doing nothing, to me that seems like a waste of money.

(I'll admit though my first reaction after booting Vista the first time (not knowing what was going on) was "Seriously... I just booted it up and it's using over 2GB of RAM?" But it does cough it back up if you're running an app that needs it.)

Seriously, though you can buy 8GB of good DDR2 memory for well under $100 now days. There is no reason not to give Vista the RAM it desires. Do you have any clue how much memory $100 would buy 10 or even 5 years ago? (hint: not very much) count your blessings people.

RE: Impressive.
By Zoomer on 1/30/2009 7:58:31 PM , Rating: 2
Yup, applaud them for finally getting off their asses and transplanting a feature other OSes had as standard for decades.

RE: Impressive.
By piroroadkill on 1/31/2009 4:11:42 PM , Rating: 2
Novell Netware led the way in aggressive file caching on servers - it was always key to throw as much RAM in a netware server as possible. With Windows Server, it's about aggressive as a bunny rabbit as far as I'm aware, because I've met server admins running large file servers for many users on boxes with 1GB, imagining a simple file server will never use much memory. How wrong they should be!

RE: Impressive.
By Chocobollz on 1/31/09, Rating: 0
RE: Impressive.
By icanhascpu on 1/30/2009 5:03:28 PM , Rating: 1
In most desktop scenarios having more / faster ram really doesn't help all that much, unless you're really a high end power user.

Who voted this to 3? You dont need to be a power user to get alot out of more/faster RAM. How ridiculous. Also, if you didn't notice, Windows 6 already utilized all the ram on a system, and you hear people complain about having no free RAM oin their system, because free ram, ie ram thats not doing anything, is apparently real useful.

RE: Impressive.
By spread on 1/30/2009 2:24:04 PM , Rating: 2
I wonder how long it will take to get all 32GB filled up.

The speed better increase with the new modules.

RE: Impressive.
By Mclendo06 on 1/30/09, Rating: -1
RE: Impressive.
By stirfry213 on 1/30/2009 4:57:14 PM , Rating: 2

Did something just fly over my head?

RE: Impressive.
By ElBrujo on 1/30/2009 6:26:55 PM , Rating: 5
No, he's just being a show-off.

Finite Element Analysis (FEA) is a method of breaking a physical model into small pieces and applying stressors (mechanical usually, but sometimes electrical, for example) on the model to see how it reacts. The theory is that the smaller the pieces, the closer the model follows reality; also, there is a practical lower limit on the number of pieces required for realistic simulation, so even relatively small models will have a significant resource requirement. Further, simulation is often done in the vicinity of catastrophic-level stressors due to the danger or cost involved in creating actual models and simply gathering real, empirical data: these simulations require higher detail than normal stress conditions (at least in the part of the model under consideration).

Crane designers, for example, can create a model of a crane with low detail, figure out where it will break under load, then increase level of detail in that area of the model to perform more extensive analysis.

On older machines the analyses took hours or days to complete, similar to how ray-traced movie special effects did (except ray-tracing reacts to the models instead of interacting like FEA, so is much more complex). With enough memory the cost of the computation, if not the modeling, being swapped to/from disk is reduced by several thousand.

In practical terms this means that cars (for example) can be modeled, crashed, and refined multiple times before the traditional crash testing is done. This saves time, money, and lives.

RE: Impressive.
By Chocobollz on 1/31/2009 2:03:43 AM , Rating: 2
This saves time, money, and lives.

Maybe you mean "This saves time, money, and mannequin "? :p

RE: Impressive.
By cosmotic on 1/30/2009 2:29:22 PM , Rating: 2
I can tell you what will be done with it. It will be filled with redundant textures, uncompressed textures, and unused textures. Just as hard disks are now filled with piles of useless data the game developers planned on using but didn't get around to implementing, and didn't bother removing from installation packages.

So instead of installing everything and selectively loading the needed items, Everything will be installed and then loaded, which will decrease the development time by .5%; and in the eye's of executives, THATS A HUGE SAVINGS OMG! Lets pass our hundred thousand dollar developement cost down to consumers to pay for millions of dollars in better hardware. I LOVE IT!

RE: Impressive.
By DeepBlue1975 on 1/30/2009 2:47:09 PM , Rating: 1
Win 7 x64 beta runs brilliantly with just 4gbs.

I tested Vista x64 ultimate with 6gbs vs 4, and at least in my pattern of usage (don't do photoshop and neither use cad software), I felt no difference, and so I ended up selling the extra 2 gbs.

I could spend about $30 to have 8gbs, but it'd be a waste of PSU power, extra heat, and things would be definitely a bit more cramped around the CPU slot.

RE: Impressive.
By icanhascpu on 1/30/2009 5:13:34 PM , Rating: 2
The biggest video games barely even utilize over 1GB worth of textures in a given environment. And those would be very high res textures.

I dont think you understand that the limitation for things like games is GPU and CPU based way more than it is RAM based. Sure, it would be nice to have all textures in RAM ready to go and only unloaded when you quit the game, but you still have to load them all off the hard drive in the first place.

Im not really sure there will be the sort of advantage youre thinking of.

RE: Impressive.
By ggordonliddy on 1/30/09, Rating: -1
RE: Impressive.
By Chocobollz on 1/31/2009 1:47:19 AM , Rating: 2
Right now, I can't imagine what a game would do with 32Gb of RAM...

I have that much RAM.. only 32 Gb (Gibibit) right? That is only 4 GB (Gibibyte) of RAM! I'm sure you already have that much too! ;-)

RE: Impressive.
By William Gaatjes on 1/31/2009 6:18:49 AM , Rating: 2
Then we will need a memory bandwidth increase too. Let's ignore the latency aspect for a moment. Latency is 1ns for the example i will give. The point is that when available memory increases, larger sets of data is shifted around because programmers want to take advantage of the increased amount of memory. Let's say for example we have memory that has a bandwidth of 1GB/sec. In the past data would be loaded in small chunks of 1MB/sec. That means that 1MB would be transferred in 1/1000 of a second or 1 millisecond.
Now that there is so much more memory, the memory is more used and more accessed. Let's say we have now chunks of 10MB/sec. The transferperiod is now 10milliseconds. When the available amount of memory get's to big, with the same style of programming, the memory bus becoms the bottle neck again. This is seen best when comparing the HDD with memory or comparing main memory with cache looking at sheer size and bandwitdh and assuming latency is non existent. In reality latency has to be taken into account too making matters worse.

When is it coming to market?
By Curelom on 1/30/2009 1:56:25 PM , Rating: 1
When is it coming to market? Should I wait to buy these, or buy something now?

RE: When is it coming to market?
By amanojaku on 1/30/2009 2:04:48 PM , Rating: 2
The general rule of thumb is anything new is expensive. So even if you could get it today you'd be paying a pretty penny. Buy something now and upgrade to a whole new platform in 2-3 years. If Samsung applies this tech to DDR4 things could get REAL interesting.

RE: When is it coming to market?
By Curelom on 1/30/2009 2:08:27 PM , Rating: 2
I've also heard that since that they are able to get more chips off of a die, thus decreasing the cost from the larger memory used today. Now whether they pass that savings on to the customer may be a different story.

RE: When is it coming to market?
By amanojaku on 1/30/2009 2:27:22 PM , Rating: 2
I wouldn't put too much faith it that. With profits in the toilet no one is cutting anyone a break. FYI, if you don't have a DDR3-capable system this memory is not for you. That means you need to have a specific Core2 setup.

RE: When is it coming to market?
By Curelom on 1/30/2009 2:39:44 PM , Rating: 2
I was planning on getting an i7 system

RE: When is it coming to market?
By teldar on 1/30/2009 5:21:44 PM , Rating: 2
That's not acutally true. Apparently the new AMD quadcores have been listed. The socket AM3 ones. So.....

RE: When is it coming to market?
By amanojaku on 1/30/2009 6:03:08 PM , Rating: 2
I was pointing out that if the OP was looking to replace existing memory he has to have a Core2 setup as the AMD's just came out. If the OP meant he/she was buying a new PC and was going to initiate an upgrade that would be... ill advised.

RE: When is it coming to market?
By Curelom on 1/30/2009 6:12:09 PM , Rating: 2
Thank you. My bigger question was when it's coming to market. From what I've read elsewhere it seems that these won't be coming to market for a few months.

RE: When is it coming to market?
By teldar on 1/30/2009 9:24:24 PM , Rating: 2
It seems there is always quite a lag between product announcements and availability in these cases.
It's the finished hardware that seems to be announced at release, not the components or the technology announcements that those pieces are based on.

RE: When is it coming to market?
By Umbongo on 1/31/2009 4:50:32 PM , Rating: 2
They won't be comming to market for a few months at least because there is no platform for them. It is unlikely 16GB or 32GB DIMMs are going to work in an i7 board because even those that do support ECC only appear to support unbuffered memory. It is unlikely these sizes of DIMM will be available in anything but Registered ECC.

You would need to wait for the Xeon 3500s to begin shipping and see if boards come out supporting registered ECC then. Dual and multiple socket boards will support it. Also be aware that 16GB and 32GB DIMMs probably aren't going to go that much under $100/GB in the near future and may be alot more than that at launch. They are really for servers (and to a lesser extent workstations) needing more than 72GB per processor.

By Doormat on 1/30/2009 2:28:43 PM , Rating: 2
So a triple channel i7 could have 24GB of RAM. A laptop could end up with 16GB of RAM. What would apps do with all that memory?

By GaryJohnson on 1/30/2009 2:58:04 PM , Rating: 2
a triple channel i7 could have 24GB of RAM

48GB, most X58 boards have 6 slots.

By teldar on 1/30/2009 5:23:15 PM , Rating: 2
They're talking about 16 GB dimms, yes? So that would be 96 GB even. Amazing. It just depends on what the board (memory controller) can actually support.

By amanojaku on 1/30/2009 3:24:00 PM , Rating: 2
Hog it?

By ceefka on 1/30/2009 4:54:44 PM , Rating: 2
Apps that work with sound samples (VST drums, piano etc.) could greatly benefit from such amounts of RAM. They are usually streamed from disk now, having having the first miliseconds loaded into RAM. It would of course be much faster (less latency) if you could just load all the needed samples into RAM. To my knowledge the currente apps are not aware of the amount of RAM installed, just assume you have the required minimum and work with that. So a bit of reprogramming has to be done to take full advantage.

how power does memory use?
By Souka on 1/30/2009 1:55:30 PM , Rating: 2
"signifigant power savings"

Ok... like what...3w per module? I really don't have a clue.

Also, I'm sure most people reading this article would be content with a few more watt load on their system for reduced latency and more bandwidth? (assuming better effeciency has negative tradeoffs...but I know that's not always true).

RE: how power does memory use?
By Shig on 1/30/2009 1:59:43 PM , Rating: 2
Souka you are right that memory power savings are pretty negligible at the home user level. It makes a large difference when you get into servers using 32GB and more per rack, and super computers using even more.

RE: how power does memory use?
By KernD on 1/30/2009 2:31:28 PM , Rating: 3
You forgot to mention that it makes a difference for laptop.

When you look at the power consumption of netbook with atom processor, you realize that the chipset is less efficient than the processor. Intel neglected it for the first generation, and it cost them allot in battery life, so why neglect ram consumption?
Ram consumes constantly when powered on, maybe not allot, but every bit is important to get great battery life.

RE: how power does memory use?
By teldar on 1/30/2009 5:25:38 PM , Rating: 2
I think the last paragraph addressed this. It said something about comparing a 16GB to 2Gb. I wonder if that was backwards and it should have been 16Gb as compared to 2GB. And that there is approximately 40% power savings.

And I can tell you my ddr2 gets pretty warm and a 40% cut in power consumption is never anything to sneeze at.


8GB impressions
By Stan11003 on 1/30/2009 2:01:31 PM , Rating: 2
Well I'm currently running 8GB DDR2 ram with Vista x64. The ram cost me $73 from New egg. Honestly one of my best computer upgrades. The systems is really good now coming from 2GB. Can't imagine what 32GB would be like. The two apps that push my system are Photoshop CS4 and lightroom both 64 bit apps that have used 5GB and 2GB of ram respectively.

RE: 8GB impressions
By CommodoreVic20 on 1/30/2009 2:24:02 PM , Rating: 2
Using 3DMax 64bit on Vista I have exceeded my 8gigs of ram on intensive ray traced scenes especially with radiosity rendering, wish I had 32gigs of ram.

RE: 8GB impressions
By Jimbo1234 on 1/30/2009 7:31:27 PM , Rating: 2
Another app that eats memory like there's no tomorrow is Autodesk Inventor. Waaaaaaaaaaay too much RAM is just enough. The same goes for running virtual machines.

Rip a Bluray to RAM Disk
By ralith on 1/30/2009 3:57:14 PM , Rating: 2
Yes! I will finally be able to rip a Blueray to a ram disk. Of course I have no idea why I'd want to do this, but by god I can now if I want to! :)

RE: Rip a Bluray to RAM Disk
By chizow on 1/30/2009 4:30:47 PM , Rating: 2
I do want a RAM Disk, but there's no need just for Blu-Ray as you don't gain anything from the increased speed after the initial load.

For games though, now that they're easily 10-20GB in size, that'd mean virtually no load times and much less need to stream textures as you play. SSDs are getting there, but a RAM disk would still be superior in every way except for cost and capacity.

Unfortunately, I can see mobo makers preventing capacity upgrades through the BIOS forcing you to buy new boards for more RAM support. For example, current X58 boards only support 12GB RAM, but iirc Nehalem's IMC can address up to 128GB.

RE: Rip a Bluray to RAM Disk
By icanhascpu on 1/30/2009 5:05:46 PM , Rating: 1
You could do this useless act years ago.

By FaceMaster on 1/31/2009 10:15:04 AM , Rating: 1
Is dead? I search for anything and it says the website is infected with malware- including itself!


By FaceMaster on 1/31/2009 12:22:24 PM , Rating: 2
Bah, it's working again now. For a second I was very nearly very scared.

Not for Performance Users
By Reclaimer77 on 1/31/2009 2:27:04 PM , Rating: 2
Since nobody is bringing this up, I thought I should make this clear.

If you overclock or prefer ram with good CAS4 or CAS5 timings, this Ram isn't for you. Larger modules are slower and less stable.

By mxnerd on 2/2/2009 1:49:52 AM , Rating: 2
With 32GB of RAM, you can create a huge RAM disk and put a really big SQL server in it and the performance will double or triple.

"It seems as though my state-funded math degree has failed me. Let the lashings commence." -- DailyTech Editor-in-Chief Kristopher Kubicki
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