Corsair Dominator GTX2 PC3-18000 CL8 Memory Review

by 3oh6     |     January 31, 2010

Memory Specifications

We start with a quick look at the specifications. The Corsair Dominator GTX2 modules are the 'bigger little brother' to the Corsair Dominator GTX1 sticks. I say bigger little brother because it is a matter of opinion as to which kit you might want to call the top of the specifications sheet. We'll discuss this in a moment. First, have a look at the rap sheet that accompanies these Corsair flagship modules.

Corsair Dominator GTX2

First thing we have to discuss is the fact that these modules come in individual pieces. There are no kits, so you simply purchase however many modules you need; whether it is two for P55, or three for X58. This is a bit of a foreign concept as we have long been used to the idea of buying memory in kits. Selling the modules this way alleviates the need for different kits for each platform but we like the decision Corsair has gone with here since it just makes sense to us.

We just mentioned that there was some hierarchical confusion as to which Dominator GTX memory module is at the top of the Corsair pile. The reason we say this is because the GTX1 modules -while rated for much higher frequencies- have very loose timings and also don't have the flexible specifications of the GTX2 modules we are looking at here today. You can see in the specs above, these modules are rated for DDR3-2250 at 8-8-8-24 timings with 1.65v for the P55 and X58 platforms. They are also rated for a very lofty DDR3-1900 6-6-6-18 at 1.65v on the AMD 790FX platform. That makes these sticks a powerhouse on pretty much any modern platform.

The GTX1 modules on the other hand have ungodly high memory clock ratings of DDR3-2400, but only for P55 and with very lax 9-11-9-27 timings. The validity of memory clocks that high for daily use can also be questioned. While we are on the subject, justifying the need for even DDR3-2250 that these GTX2 modules are rated for can be a difficult argument. It is for this reason that we are stripping down our usual memory review for more of a report on overclocking from a benchmarking point of view here today. We will re-visit this concept in our methodology section shortly.

Corsair Dominator GTX2

Before we look at the CMXAF2 GTL, we offer a diagram from Corsair that outlines the DHX heat sinks on these modules. Nothing has changed in a while with these heat sinks so there is nothing new if you are already familiar with them. Another quick point we want to make is that despite not removing the heat sinks, we are fairly confident that the IC's in use on these modules are Elpida Hyper . Photos in the next section will confirm this but with specifications like these, it goes without saying that Elpida Hyper at the controls.

Corsair Dominator GTX2

This information about the CMXAF2 GTL fan is coming straight from the Corsair web site.

Product Description
The CMXAF2 GTL fan assembly is a fan kit made especially for the GTX 2 memory modules. It has extended legs to give you the necessary clearance to accommodate the high-performance DHX+ fins.

Key Features

  • Get the most out of your memory modules by keeping them cool
  • 2 x 60mm fans
  • Compatible with all Corsair Memory products

The one thing we will mention is that this fan comes with taller mounting tabs because of the taller heat sink fins on the GTX modules. Our earlier fan that came with a kit of Dominator GT's would not fit the new GTX modules as the mounting tabs were too short, so keep that in mind if upgrading. Now that we know exactly what we are working with today we can take a look at the modules themselves.


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