Print 27 comment(s) - last by Exodite.. on Feb 3 at 3:54 PM

Modules using Samsung's latest 3Xnm process are expected later this year
Lower power due to smaller process

DDR3 DRAM has just overtaken DDR2 as the predominant memory technology used in today's new computers. Newer RAM has traditionally been more expensive than previous generations, but DDR3 pricing has gone down over the last few years due to mass production and die shrinks to smaller process nodes. Not only does this result in price cuts, but also lower power consumption and higher possible speeds.

Samsung just started producing DDR3 on its 40nm process last year, but is already working on its newest generational node. The company describes it as being 30nm-class, but is generally acknowledged as being around 32nm. The process size refers to the average half-pitch of a memory cell. A smaller die size means that more dies can fit on a silicon wafer, reducing production costs. The company estimates the new chips will increase its cost-efficiency per wafer by sixty percent.
The new 2Gb chip can be used to create power-efficient 4GB modules operating at 1.35 volts. Samsung expects power savings of 30 percent compared to a similar chip produced on a 50nm process, with a 4GB module consuming only three watts per hour when used in a newer-generation notebook.

“Our accelerated development of next generation 30nm-class DRAM should keep us in the most competitive position in the memory market,” said Soo-In Cho, President of Samsung Electronics' Memory Division.

Mass production of the new chips is expected to start in the second half of the year, with volume ramping up for the busy holiday shopping season.

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I swear...
By HotFoot on 2/1/2010 2:15:41 PM , Rating: 5
When I see 'Green' in the marketing or packaging of a computer product, I'm going to turn around and buy whatever the competition is selling instead. Seriously... tell me it'll lower my electricity bill. Tell me it'll let my battery last longer. Tell me it's made RoHS compliant so I'm not toxifying the dumpsite or manufacturing plant workers.

Don't tell me I'm saving the planet by buying a friggin' stick of RAM.

RE: I swear...
By therealnickdanger on 2/1/2010 2:23:41 PM , Rating: 4
Let's face it, the only "green" here is the extra cash Samsung will rake in by selling cheaper memory for the same (or higher) price.

RE: I swear...
By Etern205 on 2/1/2010 2:59:30 PM , Rating: 3
Is the ram "green"? Yes, very green. :P

RE: I swear...
By dajeepster on 2/2/2010 6:13:56 AM , Rating: 2
no... just the PCB :D

RE: I swear...
By AnnihilatorX on 2/1/2010 2:57:53 PM , Rating: 5
As you mentioned, green can mean anything ranging from

lower electricity bill
RoHS compliant
Longer battery
Less waste heat in the PC so it runs cooler, etc.

Whether that helps the environment is your opinion, but I don't get why you are so hyped up for the word 'green' there. They may be greenwashing but I don't see any wrong if it really does reduce electricity use for example.

RE: I swear...
By someguy123 on 2/2/2010 1:06:51 AM , Rating: 2
Well, the problem is that there's no real standardization for "green".

Technically you could just stamp green on something and, unless someone decided to do an investigation on your production line for that specific product, you could sell a regular product as "green", which is pretty much what everyone is doing now (regular lower clocked versions of ram are now "green" etc).

RE: I swear...
By TheDigitalDiamond on 2/2/2010 3:50:26 AM , Rating: 2
Energy Saver, LEED, standards for "green" advancements, just to name a couple.

RE: I swear...
By someguy123 on 2/2/2010 10:51:34 AM , Rating: 2
These are standards that can be followed, but you can vaguely refer to your product as "green" without following any of those standards.

RE: I swear...
By Laereom on 2/2/2010 9:12:37 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, and? People know that. If they have a product for which there aren't well-formed standards, but does cost less to produce (thereby consuming less resources), consume less power, produce less waste, or whatever else, it behooves them to communicate that to us, as consumer, one way or another.

You are, of course, free to choose to be annoyed by it because of all the associated cultural BS attached to the term, hey, feel free to. It really doesn't hurt me. It does, however, prevent you from benefiting from what may be a superior product.

RE: I swear...
By someguy123 on 2/2/2010 10:03:15 PM , Rating: 2
That's not what I'm saying at all. I'm saying you can put "green" on anything, without it actually being "green" (energy efficient, less waste etc) because "green" is not a standard. Things like energystar are standards.

What's wrong with this picture....?
By porkpie on 2/1/2010 2:48:18 PM , Rating: 3
"with a 4GB module consuming only three watts per hour "

Watts are a RATE, not a unit of energy. That statement makes about as much sense as saying "my car will go 50 miles per hour per day".

RE: What's wrong with this picture....?
By ironbyron on 2/1/2010 7:24:21 PM , Rating: 3
Electronic devices DO consume Watts per hour. THAT is common knowledge. They don't consume Watts, that is only a measurement of how quickly they consume Joules. How many Watts (or more specifically kW) they consume in an hour (i.e. per hour) is a quantity of energy COMMONLY used by energy companies.

3 Watts in one hour = .003 x Price you pay per kW-hr

RE: What's wrong with this picture....?
By dflynchimp on 2/1/2010 9:04:40 PM , Rating: 2
One of those moments where one thing is not necessarily incorrect, but doesn't need all the wording.

Watts is Joules/seconds, which is already a energy/time scale.

We say our computers use 200/300/400 Watts, not Watts per hour, because in the end we're multiplying Watts by the hour itself to get total Joule (energy) usage.

Utility charges by the kW-hr because that term figures out into raw Joule usage, but when we talk consumption we just talk rates, in which case Joules/Seconds, or Watt (by itself) is more tha sufficient.

RE: What's wrong with this picture....?
By Wr on 2/2/2010 3:06:25 AM , Rating: 2
3 watts for the stick alone? In a notebook? Why, an 8-hour runtime would demand 24 W-hr from the battery just to feed the mem. Doesn't sound right.

By mikeyD95125 on 2/2/2010 3:17:42 PM , Rating: 2
My battery does 85W-hr. 3 watts of that an hour is a pretty small percentage of total capacity.

By sld on 2/2/2010 9:26:06 AM , Rating: 2
Applying some dimensional analysis here (fancy term for making sure that the units being compared are relevant):

The unit called "Watt" is equivalent to Joule per second. To find out how much energy (in Joules) is being consumed for a given period of time, we convert that period into a quantity of seconds, and multiply it by the power rating (which is in Watts).

The unit called "Kilowatt-hour" is equivalent to "1000 * Watt * 3600 * seconds", since 1 KW = 1000 W and 1 hour = 60 mins = 3600 seconds. Therefore, 1 KWh is equivalent to 3,600,000 Joules, or simply 3.6 MJ. The point is that KWh and J are the same object expressed differently.

The reason why utilities like to use KWh instead of J is because J is a pretty small quantity. Since humans in this post-modern age guzzle electricity like Europeans guzzle beer and Americans guzzle debts, using KWh makes counting numbers easier for everyone.

I hope I've made things clear for the layman. Good day!

By Entropy42 on 2/2/2010 10:45:06 AM , Rating: 2
I think this is what you were saying, but I found this post very confusing at first.

Its not a kW/hr, its a kW*hr. Its not a kW per hour, its a way for the power company to tell you you have used 1000 W for 3600 s, or 3.6 MJ of energy. So a 100 W light bulb, run for 10 hours, will consume a kW-hr of energy. Power is Watts, Energy is Joules. Power = Energy / Time.

By semo on 2/2/2010 6:30:07 AM , Rating: 2
You are completely right. I cringed when I read that in the article. Such idiocy has no place on a techy site/blog.

Getting back on topic... how do you find out when these make it to retail. It can be hard finding what chips are used memory sticks these days

By Drag0nFire on 2/1/2010 1:25:35 PM , Rating: 2
The G.Skill ECO series has been out for a while. It's DDR3 that runs at 1.35V. I bought 2 modules last month and they've been great.

Makes me wonder what memory modules G.Skill is using, and how novel Samsung's accomplishment really is.

RE: hmm
By DanNeely on 2/1/2010 1:41:46 PM , Rating: 3
Is that a mainstream line from G.Skill, or one they're making by aggressive binning? The same small fraction of chips that will go into the ultra high speed dimms also will generally operate at significantly lower than normal power levels at low speeds.

The Samsung announcement sounds like they're aiming to get the bulk of their product line able to run at lower power levels.

RE: hmm
By Drag0nFire on 2/1/2010 3:26:24 PM , Rating: 2
There's a whole product line available at Newegg, so I assumed it's a mainstream product. What surprised me is that they run with 1.35V at aggressive timings/speeds.

Newegg product line:

Forum discussing people's experience with these DIMMs.

RE: hmm
By dajeepster on 2/2/2010 6:18:48 AM , Rating: 2
ok.. now i'm drooling

By Taft12 on 2/1/2010 3:18:06 PM , Rating: 3
The company describes it as being 30nm-class, but is generally acknowledged as being around 32nm

I see the dipshits from Samsung's marketing department responsible for their LCD contrast ratios have found a new measure to fudge!

RE: "30nm-class"
By blowfish on 2/1/2010 3:43:43 PM , Rating: 2
So what if they are describing it in a slightly different way than you would choose! It's obviously going to be good news for DDR3 buyers, since it will lead to lower prices, with the bonus of slightly lower power consumption. What's not to like?

RE: "30nm-class"
By diego10arg on 2/1/2010 11:01:21 PM , Rating: 2
What's not to like?

Marketing bullsh*t?

watts per hour
By 53mi on 2/1/2010 2:25:21 PM , Rating: 4
Had to make an account for this: The unit of power is watt. The module consumes three watts, not "three watts per hour". This is common knowledge.

RE: watts per hour
By Exodite on 2/3/2010 3:54:07 PM , Rating: 2
Isn't it far more likely that these sticks are supposed to consume 3 Joule per hour?

That's sound quite low to me but I very much doubt they use 3 Watts, that's more than some processors alone would use.

From the way the text is worded I'd expect that's what they're trying to say. *shrug*

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