By John Beekley posted Aug 30th 2010
I often get asked why we go through the effort to certify our ultra-high-speed memory with Intel's XMP (Extreme Memory Profile) program. After all, the conventional wisdom states, most high end overclockers don't use XMP profiles to overclock, but head straight for every BIOS setting they can get their hands on.
True enough, I guess. However, the goals of the overclocker and the goals of Corsair are similar, but not exactly the same. The goal of the overclocker is to tweak his system up to the very level where fear of instability outweighs the thrill of competition. Indeed, I suspect that most overclockers tweak their system beyond that level, and then back off slightly.
Our goal as a high end memory manufacturer is just like that, but different. We love the thrill of hitting high speeds, but need to qualify our excitement a bit. Because for us, repeatability is even more important than performance. That is, we have to be able to produce, consistently, parts that our customers can count on to meet the requirements we guarantee they will meet. And this means more than guaranteeing a suicide CPU-Z screen shot; our customers expect our parts to be stable at their published specs, and we take that expectation very seriously. The challenge this presents us with is that we need to be very rigorous, without overdoing it and withholding exciting high speed modules that we know our customers would want.
Intel XMP certification has proven to be a big help here. The only way that a part, such as the brand new Dominator™ GTX1 DDR3 memory we announced yesterday, becomes XMP certified is if it can succesfully be run through an aggressive set of tests defined by Intel. And, it has to be run successfully both in our labs and up at Intel's. Trust me, I have worked with Intel long enough to know that they are the world champions at validation; having their stamp of approval on a high speed module gives us (and should give YOU) a lot of confidence that the certified module will meet its aggressive spec, time after time. And, that is what we all want!
You can find more information on XMP at http://www.intel.com/Consumer/Game/extreme-memory.htm