By Jake Crimmins posted Aug 09th 2011
Towards the end of May this year we launched our Dominator® GT CMGTX7 DDR3 memory upgrade kit. This kit consists of two 4GB memory modules for a total of 8GB of memory. They are rated at 2400MHz 9-11-10-30, which make it the fastest 8GB production DDR3 memory kit available. The last time I overclocked high density modules was when I was testing the 16GB Vengeance kit, which overclocked to 1921.8MHz. You can read more about my earlier Vengeance overclocking run on the Corsair Blog. Since I love pushing components to their limits I wanted to see what the new Dominator GT kit could do.
I started off with one of my favorite motherboards for memory overclocking, the GIGABYTE™ GA-P55A-UD4P along with an Intel® Core™ i7-870 Processor. For the cooling I was using a single stage phase change unit to cool the CPU. This is very similar to your refrigerator however it cools only the CPU, it can get the processor as cold as -40°C. Later on in the testing I used a liquid nitrogen container by K|ngP|n Cooling to cool down the memory. This special container called the Dominance Memory Cooler was specifically designed to fit on top of the Corsair Dominator memory modules. The rig was powered by a single Professional Series™ Gold AX1200 power supply and for the SSD I used a 120GB Force Series™ drive.
I started off by testing the maximum frequency I could run at the stock timings. After about an hour of testing I was able to reach a frequency of 2508MHz. This was a 108MHz overclock that ran without any issues. After reaching 2500MHz I wanted to go even faster.
So I decided to test the modules with looser timings and go for the absolute maximum speed. I started out by going to 2550MHz, then to 2600MHz. I was shocked to see the GTX7 kit hitting these kinds of frequencies, especially because this was a high density kit running in dual channel mode. I wasn't about to stop there though, I kept on pushing and soon was breaking 2700MHz! I asked myself could it do 2800MHz? I kept on pushing and hit a wall at 2796.2MHz, less than 4MHz shy of 2800MHz.
Knowing that I was not going to be able to sleep unless I hit 2800MHz with this kit, I had to do something to get those last few MHz. I took the extended fins off the modules and mounted the Dominance Memory Cooler on top of the Dominator GT memory and filled it with liquid nitrogen. Cooling the memory helped the memory modules get that last little bit and I ended up with a frequency of 2819.8MHZ!
I was completely blown away by the results, considering reaching this frequency previously meant you had to use a single module! I not only achieved that result with two memory modules in dual channel, but I did it with a high density kit. To put this in perspective this is only 156MHz shy of what I had previously reached with a single Dominator GT CMGTX6 module. You can go back and read about that CMGTX6 overclock run to 2976MHz on the Corsair Blog too.