Lexar is one of those companies that has been around long enough to become a common brand you will find in every electronics store. In the early days of home PCs, the company was a pioneer in flash memory. Later bought by Micron Technology, the company again went up for sale in 2017. Longsys became the new owner and quickly expanded sales globally with numerous new product launches by rebranding some of the company's prior best sellers.
DDR4 has gone through a few rough patches, including a few stagnant years, but the overall trend since its debut in 2014 has only been pointing in one direction, that of increasingly higher memory frequencies, which in turn resulted in annual updates to the Joint Electron Device Engineering Council (JEDEC) standard as each generational IC revision from the big three DRAM makers—SK Hynix, Micron and Samsung—made headway with technological advancements. Currently, AMD Ryzen Zen 3 (5000 series) and Intel 11th Gen processors both support the latest DDR4 JEDEC Standard of DDR4-3200, which will be the last major DDR4 update before DDR5 arrives on the scene.
Many computer-tech savvy individuals have been using upwards of DDR4-4800 without questioning whether it is supported by CPU manufactures in the first place. With every new CPU generation, that ceiling of maximum operational speeds continues to increase, but it is still not officially supported. When these high-frequency memory kits fail to boot, the user thinks it is a bad product, the manufacturer's tech support blames the motherboard makers, and they in turn pass the blame on to either Intel or AMD despite both AMD and Intel clearly listing the maximum supported values in their specifications. This is a common mistake in user reviews across e-tailers, and it just adds to the confusion of which product to buy.
The question that comes up a lot is related to why the JEDEC standard exists if no one is following it. Well, the simple answer is that a large portion of computers in use today are actually following this standard, especially pre-built OEM products and servers. That is because the JEDEC standard is designed so that soft-faults potentially caused by system memory errors are kept at a minimum. Technically speaking, anything above the supported memory frequency by CPU manufacturers is considered an overclock and out of specification. The risk is often too great for companies to sell computers running performance-grade system memory on a large scale, and most pre-built systems thus come with average memory and are often not even configured optimally.
What does any of what I wrote above have to do with a high-performance, high-octane memory kit aiming to show off the best of what DDR4 has to offer? Not a lot is the answer, which is the underlying point of said question and prompts the next one. What happens when a company sends you memory that is not the hottest thing on the market? Well, Lexar Desktop Memory rated at DDR4-3200 is just that: basic system memory for the average PC user, the users who bought an OEM computer that only came with 8 GB of system memory on a single DIMM. Those who have a workstation that is in need of a memory upgrade and not a full replacement. Lexar sending in such a basic memory kit knowing that most reviewers would laugh them out the door surprised me. At first, I couldn't think of who I would recommend the kit to. But it had me think about what market Lexar is trying to tap into. I myself had a narrow-minded view on the possibilities this could offer at first because I haven't had to rely on others for "101" information on how computers work in many years.
That having been said, without any RGB lighting or extra flare to speak of, this will be quite a boring read for the dedicated hardware enthusiast. However, those thinking there is nothing to learn from this review might still be interested in how this memory kit stacks up against the many available—you may be surprised by the results. Not much more to say here, so let's jump right in!