Monday, May 17th 2021

CORSAIR Teases DDR5-6400 Memory Coming Later This Year

The fifth iteration of DDR technology, called DDR5, is set to arrive later this year. Many makers of DDR4 technology are announcing their plans to switch to the new standard, and CORSAIR is no exception. Known as the maker of high-quality products, CORSAIR has today posted a blog post teasing company's upcoming DDR5 products, and what they will be bringing to the table. For starters, the company has posted data about DDR5 modules that run at 6400 MHz speed, which is assumed to be the speed of the CORSAIR DDR5 modules when they arrive. At such speed, the memory can achieve a bandwidth of 51 GB/s, which is almost double the 26 GB/s that DDR4-3200 MHz memory achieves.

Another point CORSAIR wrote about is the capacity of a single DIMM. With DDR4, the company has made DIMMs that are only up to 32 GB in capacity. However, with DDR5, CORSAIR plans to quadruple that and build a single DDR5 DIMM that has up to 128 GB of memory on it. Another big point was the power required to run the new technology. The DDR4 standard required 1.2 Volts for operation, while the JEDEC specification says that DDR5 needs just 1.1 Volts to run. This will result in a cooler operation of memory modules.
Of course, the DDR5 standard needs a new platform to run on. Currently, only Intel's Alder Lake-S platform will be DDR5-ready later this year, when the new standard becomes available for consumers. Additionally, CORSAIR has published more information about the benefits of the new standard, which you can see a part of below.
CORSAIRFURTHER REFINEMENTS
With DDR5, individual modules are split into two separate channels by design, allowing for shorter traces that contribute to less latency and higher speeds when it comes to communicating with individual memory ICs on a memory module. This also allows for what's referred to as command/address mirroring since the signal from the CPU has to travel a shorter overall path to access specific banks of memory whereas in DDR4 a command/address signal had to travel through all banks of memory in a longer chain.

On DDR4, when a single bank of memory needed to be refreshed, the CPU had to wait for all banks of memory on a module to refresh before doing another read or write. With DDR5, we've got double the bank groups and when a bank needs to be refreshed only the same bank of each group is refreshed, allowing for the other memory bank groups to be accessed without the CPU having to wait.

Overall single access latency with DDR5 is relatively unchanged, while CAS Latency has increased, the overall latency of a top-tier DDR5 kit will be similar to previous generations of DRAM clocking in at 14-15ns thanks to the improvements we previously mentioned.

ON-DIE ECC
Reliability goes down as process technologies shrink, resulting in higher latency and looser timings overall at higher speeds. DDR5 features on-die ECC as part of its spec, helping to reduce errors and allow for memory ICs to operate at higher frequencies. To be clear, this doesn't mean that mainstream DDR5 is using a full-fledged ECC implementation, there'll still be unregistered modules for typical consumer applications and ECC modules for enterprise/research applications.
DDR4 vs DDR5 differences:
Sources: CORSAIR Blog, CORSAIR DDR5 Primer (PDF), via VideoCardz
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27 Comments on CORSAIR Teases DDR5-6400 Memory Coming Later This Year

#1
Tomorrow
51 GB/s is not very impressive. Especially at CL46 best case. My DDR4 at 3733 can already do over 50GB/s at CL14.
My guess is that first gen DDR5 will not be very impressive. And due to the voltage regulation and ECC being onboard i expect DDR5 to be the most expensive main memory standard yet.

It wont be until DDR5-8000 speeds that it starts to overtake DDR4 in terms of performance and equals DDR4-3200 CL16 latency. But 8000+ speeds wont come until 2022 at the earliest. 2023 most likely.

Good article from Anandtech: www.anandtech.com/show/16143/insights-into-ddr5-subtimings-and-latencies
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#2
hellrazor
Tomorrow51 GB/s is not very impressive. Especially at CL46 best case. My DDR4 at 3733 can already do over 50GB/s at CL14.
My guess is that first gen DDR5 will not be very impressive. And due to the voltage regulation and ECC being onboard i expect DDR5 to be the most expensive main memory standard yet.

It wont be until DDR5-8000 speeds that it starts to overtake DDR4 in terms of performance and equals DDR4-3200 CL16 latency. But 8000+ speeds wont come until 2022 at the earliest. 2023 most likely.

Good article from Anandtech: www.anandtech.com/show/16143/insights-into-ddr5-subtimings-and-latencies
It's brand new, it's not going to be faster when it just comes out. Wait a while.
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#3
AnarchoPrimitiv
hellrazorIt's brand new, it's not going to be faster when it just comes out. Wait a while.
I'm sure he knows that, but the real point is that Intel is going to make a dog and pony show out of Alderlake using DDR5 when for all intents and purposes, due to extremely high cost and low availability, it'll be vapor ware. I bet most motherboard manufacturers will go with DDR4 except for the $1000+ motherboards and Intel will make bold and ridiculous claims that they've "ushered in a new era".
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#4
lynx29
hellrazorIt's brand new, it's not going to be faster when it just comes out. Wait a while.
as much money as the ram makers make though... maybe they should instead wait until the new product line is faster than the old one before releasing. lol

I know I know. just saying. meh. I'm happy with my setup, I don't intend to upgrade for a few years.
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#5
TheLostSwede
Tomorrow51 GB/s is not very impressive. Especially at CL46 best case. My DDR4 at 3733 can already do over 50GB/s at CL14.
My guess is that first gen DDR5 will not be very impressive. And due to the voltage regulation and ECC being onboard i expect DDR5 to be the most expensive main memory standard yet.

It wont be until DDR5-8000 speeds that it starts to overtake DDR4 in terms of performance and equals DDR4-3200 CL16 latency. But 8000+ speeds wont come until 2022 at the earliest. 2023 most likely.

Good article from Anandtech: www.anandtech.com/show/16143/insights-into-ddr5-subtimings-and-latencies
It's not just about latency though, it's also on-dimm dual channel, which should at least in theory improve performance further.
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#6
50eurouser
Tomorrow51 GB/s is not very impressive. Especially at CL46 best case. My DDR4 at 3733 can already do over 50GB/s at CL14.
My guess is that first gen DDR5 will not be very impressive. And due to the voltage regulation and ECC being onboard i expect DDR5 to be the most expensive main memory standard yet.

It wont be until DDR5-8000 speeds that it starts to overtake DDR4 in terms of performance and equals DDR4-3200 CL16 latency. But 8000+ speeds wont come until 2022 at the earliest. 2023 most likely.

Good article from Anandtech: www.anandtech.com/show/16143/insights-into-ddr5-subtimings-and-latencies
51GB/sec for DDR5-6400 is with 64-bit bus (single channel). Your 3733 has max rated ~59GB/sec of bandwidth on "dual channel mode", 64-bit (single channel) DDR4-3733 is less than ~30GB/sec. APU's will get the most benefit, latency and timings will improve with time as with all new RAM technology that starts slow and them ramps up.
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#7
Punkenjoy
TheLostSwedeIt's not just about latency though, it's also on-dimm dual channel, which should at least in theory improve performance further.
Yes among many things. More channels will help slightly with latency by being able to spread write and read accross multiple channel instead of queuing them on fewer channel.

But they also add same bank refresh. unlike right now where all the memory is refreshed at the same time. This should also help to improve performance. The voltage regulator will also be on dimm so it should stabilize the voltage allowing better frequency or settings at lower voltage.

DDR5 is a big step forward versus previous DDR generation. It's not just a doubling the of the bus frequency vs the chip frequency.
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#8
Tomorrow
TheLostSwedeIt's not just about latency though, it's also on-dimm dual channel, which should at least in theory improve performance further.
Indeed but i foresee that being the greatest benefit in OEM machines that currently often cheap out by including only one stick and thus incurring performance penalty by running in single channel.
50eurouser51GB/sec for DDR5-6400 is with 64-bit bus (single channel). Your 3733 has max rated ~59GB/sec of bandwidth on "dual channel mode", 64-bit (single channel) DDR4-3733 is less than ~30GB/sec. APU's will get the most benefit, latency and timings will improve with time as with all new RAM technology that starts slow and them ramps up.
Wait a second. If all DDR5 sticks are essentially dual channel on a stick then how can someone get 51GB/s by running a single channel?
And if that's the case why would Corsair of all companies say the 51GB/s number in their press release? Would they not advertise the bigger 102GB/s number instead?

Makes no sense for manufacturers to quote only single channel numbers at this stage.
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#9
TheinsanegamerN
TomorrowIndeed but i foresee that being the greatest benefit in OEM machines that currently often cheap out by including only one stick and thus incurring performance penalty by running in single channel.
You'll still get half the bandwidth you should have, the base line for what is acceptable will simply rise with it.
TomorrowWait a second. If all DDR5 sticks are essentially dual channel on a stick then how can someone get 51GB/s by running a single channel?
And if that's the case why would Corsair of all companies say the 51GB/s number in their press release? Would they not advertise the bigger 102GB/s number instead?
Because they are getting 51GB/s from a single stick running two 32 bit channels instead of a single 64 bit channel. All this single Vs dual is confusing people.

DDR5 uses 4x32 bit channels instead of 2x64 bit channels. Two sticks still give you a 128 bit data bus. The 51GB/s is not from each stick beign dual channel and is rather from the 6400 mhz clock speed.
TomorrowMakes no sense for manufacturers to quote only single channel numbers at this stage.
Manufacturers have been quoting single stick memory speeds since forever. It's still a valid comparison, just multiply the number by 2 for your dual stick config. The DDR4 number quoted is also a single stick speed.
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#10
Tomorrow
TheinsanegamerNYou'll still get half the bandwidth you should have, the base line for what is acceptable will simply rise with it.

Because they are getting 51GB/s from a single stick running two 32 bit channels instead of a single 64 bit channel. All this single Vs dual is confusing people.

DDR5 uses 4x32 bit channels instead of 2x64 bit channels. Two sticks still give you a 128 bit data bus. The 51GB/s is not from each stick beign dual channel and is rather from the 6400 mhz clock speed.

Manufacturers have been quoting single stick memory speeds since forever. It's still a valid comparison, just multiply the number by 2 for your dual stick config. The DDR4 number quoted is also a single stick speed.
Makes no sense for manufacturers to quote the lower number. They always go for the highest even if it may not be completely truthful or realistic. The same way SSD manufacturers advertise peaks sequential at qd64 or higher instead of random 4k at qd1. Besides what you say conflicts with what 50eurouser said about single channel DDR4 being less than 30GB/s. I very much doubt that manufacturers who thus far have advertised DDR4 dual channel speeds now suddnly only quote DDR5 single channel speeds. I think hoping for those numbers to be single channel only is wishful thinking.
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#11
dicobalt
All those people waiting on DDR5 are going to be super disappointed at the astronomical CL times.
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#12
Chrispy_
I can't say I'm too excited; Corsair's SPD timings and XMP timings have always been so catastrophically awful for AMD users that you might as well ignore them (and the speed rating on the packaging) altogether.

Yes, with custom timings and very different primary timings to the XMP spec, it's usually possible to get Corsair RAM to run at it's rated speed but it's certainly not a set-and-forget one-click job!
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#13
Punkenjoy
TomorrowMakes no sense for manufacturers to quote the lower number. They always go for the highest even if it may not be completely truthful or realistic. The same way SSD manufacturers advertise peaks sequential at qd64 or higher instead of random 4k at qd1. Besides what you say conflicts with what 50eurouser said about single channel DDR4 being less than 30GB/s. I very much doubt that manufacturers who thus far have advertised DDR4 dual channel speeds now suddnly only quote DDR5 single channel speeds. I think hoping for those numbers to be single channel only is wishful thinking.
Can you link one of these speeds claim on DDR4 that aren't on a dual channel modules ?
dicobaltAll those people waiting on DDR5 are going to be super disappointed at the astronomical CL times.
If people only jerk off on the CL timming, indeed... But there is far more than that.
Posted on Reply
#14
dragontamer5788
Tomorrow51 GB/s is not very impressive. Especially at CL46 best case. My DDR4 at 3733 can already do over 50GB/s at CL14.
You're comparing two sticks of DDR4 with one stick of DDR5.

DDR4 at 3733 has a channel-bandwidth of 29 GB/s, and that includes CAS / RAS messages (which are important to make the RAM work, but do NOT contribute to application-level bandwidth). Two sticks of DDR4 going 29GB/s will be a little bit over 50GB/s in practice.

---------

The 51GB/s quoted here is a single-stick DDR5 channel bandwidth
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#15
Prima.Vera
So basically, overall, those are the same speed as DDR4-3200, right? But probably double the price and capacity?
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#16
Punkenjoy
Prima.VeraSo basically, overall, those are the same speed as DDR4-3200, right? But probably double the price and capacity?
at DDR5-6400, the chips on the board will run at the same speed than DDR4-3200, but it will have twice the bus Bandwidth to transfert the data. That decoupling happened with all of the DDR generation.


the memory timing are tied to the bus speed. so at DDR5-6400, a CL of 32 is the equivalent of a DDR4-3200 CL16. The memory will response as fast with both settings but the DDR5 will have twice the bus bandwidth.

So for people that are maniac of timing, they think that DDR5 will be slower because of that. But overall, DDR5 will deliver twice the bandwidth with similar timings and we will see faster memory down the road. The fact that each DIMM have it's own voltage controller will probably even help memory overclocker and stuff.
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#17
Chrispy_
dicobaltAll those people waiting on DDR5 are going to be super disappointed at the astronomical CL times.
IGPs are going to get so much better with DDR5 but I'm unsure how much the bandwidth gains will be eroded by increased latency.

If I understand correctly, GDDR5/6 is already very high latency so perhaps graphics cores really don't care and the three things they need most are bandwidth, more bandwidth, and even more bandwidth....
PunkenjoySo for people that are maniac of timing, they think that DDR5 will be slower because of that. But overall, DDR5 will deliver twice the bandwidth with similar timings and we will see faster memory down the road. The fact that each DIMM have it's own voltage controller will probably even help memory overclocker and stuff.
Anand has a pretty good deep-dive on DDR5 and at 6400 the JEDEC specs aren't anwhere near absolute latencies of DDR4.

For single-rank, single bank, DDR5-6400, CL46 is the fastest it gets and those will be only small capacities, likely up to 8GB DIMMs. If you want more than 32GB RAM on a consumer platform you're going to be dropping to CL56.

The good news is that JEDEC spec for DDR4-3200 is CL22 and yet common retail kits were CL16 within a year or so of DDR4's launch. By that same standard, we should be seeing relatively affordable DDR5-6400 selling with CL34 or so by the time the first DDR5 platforms have matured.
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#18
dragontamer5788
Chrispy_If I understand correctly, GDDR5/6 is already very high latency so perhaps graphics cores really don't care and the three things they need most are bandwidth, more bandwidth, and even more bandwidth....
My understanding is that GDDR5/6 is the same latency as DDR4 or whatever. Its that graphics-cores are very high latency. Why? Because they can be. Their workloads are such that high-latency isn't a big deal at all.

I mean, it kinda-sorta matters. RDNA2 has something like 1/3rd the latency of Vega. (Vega being 300+ns to read/write to RAM, while RDNA2 has 100+ns or so). AMD clearly aimed at making their GPUs have lower latency in this latest generation. But still, they decided to have 300+ns latency originally (and Vega64 still shows how "high latency" reads/writes can be worked around by the hardware scheduler: higher occupancy or other such software+hardware tricks can mitigate that latency)
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#19
Minus Infinity
Well while Alder Lake might be getting first gen DDR5, by the the time Zen4 ships in late 2022 we should be seeing pretty good improvements in DDR5 and real performance benefits, greater availability and hopefully more competitive pricing with DDR4. It's no use saying oh they shouldn't release the product until it hits some arbitrary performance threshold. The sooner it's released and they are earning revenue the better for R&D for future improvements. I want it to be highly polished by the time Zen4 hits, not still in infancy.
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#20
RealKGB
2 channels per RAM DIMM?
Interesting.

Also, voltage regulation is done on the DIMM instead of on the motherboard now?
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#21
Punkenjoy
Chrispy_Anand has a pretty good deep-dive on DDR5 and at 6400 the JEDEC specs aren't anwhere near absolute latencies of DDR4.

For single-rank, single bank, DDR5-6400, CL46 is the fastest it gets and those will be only small capacities, likely up to 8GB DIMMs. If you want more than 32GB RAM on a consumer platform you're going to be dropping to CL56.

The good news is that JEDEC spec for DDR4-3200 is CL22 and yet common retail kits were CL16 within a year or so of DDR4's launch. By that same standard, we should be seeing relatively affordable DDR5-6400 selling with CL34 or so by the time the first DDR5 platforms have matured.
If you look at the JEDEC spec (They are just that), at DDR4-3200 and DDR5-6400, the actual latency (not the CAS) is very similar. If you look at their chart, no matter the memory speed, the latency remain in the same ballpark because the chip itself can't respond faster.

The CL is just one of the various timing affecting the latency. We do not know what the other one will look like. Also, Like usual, there will be chip binning and the actual final latency at each DDR spec will probably be very similar as what is currently possible with DDR4. Even Anandtech recognize that having the voltage regulator onboard will help to get higher memory overclocking.
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#22
Adam Krazispeed
can these RAM manufacturers stop making DDR4/ and next gen DDR5 Modules with ridiculously High/ Very Tall Heat spreaders, My ddr4 4000 ram never even get warm @ a 4266 CL 20 OVERCLOCK tight timings? so HEY DDRxxxx manufacturers, STOP WITHTE REDICULOUS TALL HEAT SPREADERS DAM*IT
PunkenjoyCan you link one of these speeds claim on DDR4 that aren't on a dual channel modules ?


If people only jerk off on the CL timming, indeed... But there is far more than that.
exactly , i get the ram with high MHz low "CL" OR Cas-Latency, but then tighten up all the other sub timings, and poof, better performance (sometimes)
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#23
TheinsanegamerN
TomorrowMakes no sense for manufacturers to quote the lower number.
Well feel free to tell the industry they've been doing it wrong since, what, 1982?
TomorrowThey always go for the highest even if it may not be completely truthful or realistic. The same way SSD manufacturers advertise peaks sequential at qd64 or higher instead of random 4k at qd1.
They ARE quoting the highest number. Compared to last gen their DDR5 number is a major improvement. Running multiple sticks as a single memory channel is not a feature of memory. That would be like if a motherboard manufacturer talked about how great their OC capabilities are thanks to a certian cooler, thats got nothing to do with your motherboard. Memory makers will always quote the bandwidth of a single DIMM when discussing a new generation of memory, because quoting dual channel numbers wouldnt be accurate if the end user had, say, a HDET platform with quad channel memory.
TomorrowBesides what you say conflicts with what 50eurouser said about single channel DDR4 being less than 30GB/s. I very much doubt that manufacturers who thus far have advertised DDR4 dual channel speeds now suddnly only quote DDR5 single channel speeds. I think hoping for those numbers to be single channel only is wishful thinking.
You know DRAM calculators are available online, right? DDR4 is less then 30GB/s per DIMM. This is not new information. For instance, we can look at the company Transcend:

www.transcend-info.com/Support/FAQ-292

They list their DDR4 memory bandwidth per dimm, just like the corsair press release. And:
DDR4 data transfer rates:
DDR4 2133:17 GB/s
DDR4 2400:19.2 GB/s
DDR4 2666:21.3 GB/s
DDR4 3200:25.6 GB/s

So take that 3200mhz memory speed, double it to 6400, which this DDR5 claims to run at, and you get 51.2GB/s, the claimed speed form corsair.
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#24
my_name_is_earl
Early adopter get pegged. But it's a fun experience /lol
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#25
Prima.Vera
Punkenjoyat DDR5-6400, the chips on the board will run at the same speed than DDR4-3200, but it will have twice the bus Bandwidth to transfert the data. That decoupling happened with all of the DDR generation.


the memory timing are tied to the bus speed. so at DDR5-6400, a CL of 32 is the equivalent of a DDR4-3200 CL16. The memory will response as fast with both settings but the DDR5 will have twice the bus bandwidth.

So for people that are maniac of timing, they think that DDR5 will be slower because of that. But overall, DDR5 will deliver twice the bandwidth with similar timings and we will see faster memory down the road. The fact that each DIMM have it's own voltage controller will probably even help memory overclocker and stuff.
Isn't the bandwidth of DDR4-3200 already large enough to feed a GPU raw data on a 4K game, for example? I'm just curious how will DDR5 will improve gaming performance, and not just server and database apps...
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