Wham, Bam, Thanks, RDRAM? . . .

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There Is No Getting Around Rambus????

I don’t know why Tom Pabst lets these guys write articles for his site.

The article essentially says that RDRAM is likely to make a comeback since DDR can’t quite keep up.

At the moment, for most things, this is dubious. To the extent that it’s true (and it’s only makes a sizable difference in the case of a relatively few bandwidth-intensive applications/games), the real advantage will emerge only when Rambus introduces PC1066 and Intel (or overclockers) approach 3GHz.

Now if there were nothing on the DDR side to counter that, the authors might have a good point in a few months.

Unfortunately for the authors, there will be something to counter that: dual-channel DDR.

Via is supposed to come out with the P4X600A, which is supposed to include it, as early as next quarter. Intel is certainly thinking along the same lines with the Granite Bay chipset to be introduced a quarter or so later.

This is part of the reason I’m not getting all wound up about PIVs quite yet. If you have to make your purchase count for a while, you probably want to wait until that milestone is reached.

On paper, dual-channel DDR266 provides exactly the same theoretical bandwidth as dual-channel PC1066, so unless implementation is poor, looks like a Column A or Column B choice to me. If DDR333 gets worked out, the paper advantage shifts to dual-channel DDR.

Of course, we haven’t seen any of this, but then again, we haven’t seen PC1066 either.

Poor Work

It is never a good idea to express an opinion and then put in the facts that fit and leave out the ones that don’t. That is what this article looks like.

There are some good reasons to be at least somewhat skeptical about dual-channel DDR. Via and Intel could be delayed. There could be technical difficulties, especially with getting two sticks of DDR333 to play together.

But there are no good reasons not to mention dual-channel DDR at all.

All that does is make the informed reader ask “Why not?” Ignorance is not bliss here, and those inclined to think the worst will.

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