RGB + Samsung B-die A2 = Winning!?
Are you looking for performance? Are you possibly looking for style? Maybe both. GeIL looks to set some of the competition aside with a slightly less traditional look whilst still retaining that performance we all crave. I’ve been informed that there’s an added bonus to these Super Luce modules that’ll help with the performance aspect…
Let’s go over some of the basics before getting into the more technical side of things. The particular kit that we are working with is a 3200 MHz, 2x8GB setup. It features the very best ICs in the industry, courtesy of Samsung and their B-die modules. B-die is nothing new, I hear you say. Ah, very true, but there have been a few changes to the PCB design which bring it into a whole new ballpark. We’ve seen some very impressive results from overclocking wizards, like k|ngp|n, on the EVGA Z390 DARK using A2 B-die modules. I’m really hoping to be able to push these modules hard to see what they have to offer. Anyway… we will cross that bridge later on. Let’s check out the modules!
What do they look like…?
Not so hasty! We have to check out the packaging first. I know, I’m such a tease. I promise that we will get to the good stuff momentarily. The packaging is difficult to photograph as it is so shiny, but here you have it. We can see the front of the module, the branding, the AURA Sync compatibility, the whole shebang.
Flipping the box over reveals the specs of the modules. It gives the HQ address for GeIL, though I can’t imagine many of us using it. Perhaps it’s more of a formality kind of thing.
We are finally starting to get to the good stuff, ladies and gents – the modules! As you can see, they come encased in a plastic shell that provides some rigidity to the packaging.
The Glamour Shot!
GeIL built their modules on a black PCB with a black heat spreader. On top of that, you’ve got the Super Luce design and RGB goodness flowing. It’s a difficult shape to describe; the best I can come up with is that it is angular. Like I said, they’re different to the norm, and I appreciate the diversity.
Samsung B-die… isn’t it pretty? I mean, sure, it looks like any other IC. You got me there, but we have to get the nerd juices flowing over something, right? This die shot just proves that they are indeed built with Samsung ICs, just in case you were skeptical or something…
Also within shot is the RGB controller, and two of the five LEDs at the top of the PCB. There’s a total of eight 1GB ICs on this module, and it’s single sided.
I’m going to borrow a shot from the SilverStone LD01 review to show you what the modules look like behind some dark tempered glass. Ooooh, yeah baby! How awesome are they!?
The Testing Rig
These components are part of our standardized setup for memory reviews;
Motherboard: ASROCK Z170M OC Formula
CPU: Intel Core i7-6700K (de-lidded) @ 4.8 GHz (1.31v)
Cooler: Thermalright Venemous X w/ 1x Noctua Redux 1700RPM Fan
GPU: MSI GTX 580 Lightning
SSD: Intel 545s 128GB
PSU: EVGA SuperNOVA G3 850w 80+ GOLD
Memory tested thus far;
G.SKILL Trident Z RGB 2x8GB DDR4-3200 C14 (A1 B-die)
GeIL Super Luce RGB Sync 2x8GB DDR4-3200 C14 (A2 B-die)
What do we test?
When benchmarking memory, there’s a myriad of different things we can test. However, not all of it can be representative in a real-world application. For this very reason, we test the sheer throughput of the memory using AIDA64’s memory and cache benchmark. We also check Cinebench R15 as that relies heavily on fast, low latency RAM for better scores. Another on our test list is the Blender BMW test.
Note: the maximum overclock is not featured in the Blender runs as this requires an enormous amount of memory controller voltage to be stable.
How do we test?
There are three different stages that we put the modules through. They are as follows;
2) Overclocked frequency/tweaked timings on stock voltage, and;
3) Overclock at 1.5v with tweaked timings.
AIDA64 Memory Tests
From the charts below, we can deduce that there is extremely little difference between the A1 and A2 revision of Samsung’s B-die memory ICs. The difference comes in later at higher frequencies (not noted here) and extraordinarily high voltages.
Blender BMW Render
Similar to the previous AIDA64 results, the difference is within a margin of error – there’s no clear winner between the two.
Close results seem to be the theme of the day. There’s a small victory from the GeIL Super Luce memory, and that’s likely down to the fact that it was able to hit 133 MHz more in the test(s).
Final Thoughts & Conclusion
The general consensus is that RAM is RAM, and you either get the fast stuff or you don’t. Most of the time, and for most users, that’s strictly the case. Typically, the amount of RAM is more important than the speed. However, for those more enthusiast users among us, we crave every last bit of performance we can get. RAM speed is also particularly important in today’s world with AMD’s Ryzen CPUs, but that’s another story for another day.
Drawing any sort of sensible conclusion from their performance versus another Samsung B-die module is very difficult. They both perform superbly, and honestly, it’s hard to tell them apart. I know that this isn’t what you’d want to hear in a review… but that’s just the way it happened. Now, if we had more data points of comparison, it may present us with a different story altogether. However, looking on the more bright side of that cloud, there’s a silver lining after all. These modules perform brilliantly, are extremely stable and very easy to overclock as well. I was able to obtain these clock speeds with minimal effort. It goes without saying that YMMV (your mileage may vary)!
At the time of writing, these particular modules are in line with what I’d expect to pay for any Samsung B-die product. They are actually on the cheaper end of the spectrum when it comes to RGB RAM of this caliber. That’s by no means a bad thing, though. Competition means price wars, and price wars make customers happy. You can currently find the GeIL Super Luce DDR4-3200MHz C14 kit for approx. $189.99 on Newegg. The next closest comparison that I can think of, being the G.SKILL modules also in these tests, is about $20 more. Take your pick, ladies and gents. The difference is negligible at best, but for those wanting to save $20 to put towards storage or something else, these modules will not let you down.
How Low Can She Go?
Interesting question…? Although not portrayed in our charts due to the instability and possibly bad idea aspect of it all, I can tell you that the modules went far. I was able to obtain the magical 4000 MHz 12-11-11-28 (AKA ‘very tight’) dream from these modules at only 1.88v in BIOS (about 1.96v really) and run through a few benchmarks. The scores increased admirably, though for safety reasons, I did not include them. I believe that if I had a more capable CPU, I’d be able to push these modules to well north of 4500 MHz at CAS 14. Perhaps this is something to revisit in the future.
Do be aware that running these kinds of voltages opens you up to a world of failure, and is ill advised. I’m comfortable running my modules at 1.5v for daily operation, though.
The GeIL Super Luce modules were able to overclock easily, obtain some crazy levels of performance and look good whilst doing it. With all of the above in mind, with regards to its performance, price and overall looks, I feel that the Super Luce modules are worthy of an award or two. First and foremost, it ticks basically every single option there is for me in a 16GB kit of Samsung B-die. It has the performance, the looks, the style and the value when it comes to B-die. For that reason alone, I’m more than happy to announce the fact that the GeIL Super Luce modules will be receiving an editors choice award in the form of our ‘Must Have’ badge. ‘Must Have’ indicates that the component excelled in all four categories of performance, style, function and value. Definitely consider GeIL Super Luce if you’re in the market for RAM.
Special thanks to GeIL for providing us with a sample for today’s review. We look forward to reviewing more of their products in the future.