RAM timings are listed in the product descriptions when you purchase it, such as CL16-18-18-38 or CL14-14-14-34 or CL 16-18-18-36. The number following the “CL” reflects the CAS latency of the RAM kit, which is also referred to as CL. CAS latency, on the other hand, is not always clear. And what impact does the CAS latency of a RAM kit have on the performance of the module?
RAM speed versus RAM latency is a trade-off
As well as telling you how many mega transfers (1,000,000 data transfers) a RAM can produce in one second (a DDR4-3200 RAM can execute 3,200 mega transfers in one second), a RAM’s CAS latency is critical for understanding RAM performance.
CAS latency provides you the total number of cycles it takes for the RAM to deliver data, but you should also take into account the duration of each cycle to obtain a more accurate picture of the RAM’s overall latency performance.
Even while DDR4 RAM is newer and offers more storage density and power efficiency than DDR3 RAM, it has a larger CAS delay than the latter. In most cases, DDR3 RAM has a CAS latency of 9 or 10, however DDR4 RAM will often have a CAS delay of at least 15. Although the newer standard offers greater overall performance than the older one, this is due to the faster clock speeds.
Remember that two distinct RAM kits with the same data transfer rate, for example, DDR4-3200, can have two completely different clock speeds (known as CAS timings). Consider the Team Group Delta Tuf Gaming RGB DDR4-3200 and the G. Skill Trident Z Royal DDR4-3200 as examples of high-end gaming memory. They both have a transfer rate of DDR4-3200 MHz Their CAS timings, on the other hand, are different: CL16-18-18-38 (CAS 16) and CL14-14-14-34 (CAS 14) for the former and for the latter.
When low latencies are combined with large bandwidth, optimal memory performance is achieved; this is why memory kits with tight CL timings are highly sought after by PC enthusiasts.
- SKILL has officially unveiled their fastest DDR5 memory kit, which features DDR5-6600 speeds with CL36-36-36-76 timings, making it the fastest available. These kits will be supplied with two 16GB modules that will be powered by Samsung DDR5 memory integrated circuits.
This high-speed kit, when compared to G. SKILL’s previously disclosed Trident Z5 DDR5 memory kits, provides PC builders with a 200 MT/s performance jump over their previously announced DDR5-6400 kits while keeping the same precise CL36-36-36-76 timings as their top 6400MT/s kits. Lower latencies are achieved by running at faster rates while maintaining the same CL timings, which is excellent news for gamers.
Given the likelihood that CL40 timings would be prevalent for many early DDR5 memory kits, G. SKILL’s CL36 timings will appeal to gamers, hardware enthusiasts, and overlockers in particular.
DDR5-6600 CL36-36-36-76 DDR5 modules from G. SKILL have been dubbed the “world’s fastest,” which indicates that these memory modules are the best that we can expect from early DDR5 memory modules, according to G.SKILL. Having said that, as the DDR5 memory environment matures, these speeds and latencies will almost certainly be surpassed.
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