Crucial Ballistix Sport LT 2666MHz DDR4 Review

Test Setup and Benchmarks

ItemName
ProcessorIntel Core i7-7700K (Retail)
CPU Cooler
Noctua NH-U12S
Power Supply
Silverstone Strider 750W Platinum
Memory*see table below
StorageOCZ Vertex 4 256GB SSD (OS)
GraphicsIntegrated CPU Graphics, Gigabyte GTX 960 Windforce 3x OC
DriversIntel 10.1.1.7 (Z170), Intel 10.0.2.1 (Z97), NVIDIA 353.62 WHQL (Discrete)
Motherboard(s)Gigabyte Z270X-Gaming 5
Operating SystemWindows 10 Pro x64 (Creators Update)

DDR4 Memory Module Kits tested (Default):

ManufacturerNameMemory ICCapacity (per module)XMP Settings
Default XMP Timings
CrucialBallistix Sport LTMicron D9TGJ8GB266616-18-18-38 2T 1.20V
HyperX (Kingston)FuryHynix H5AN4G8NMFR8GB266615-17-17-35 2T 1.20V
PatriotViper EliteSamsung K4A8G085WB8GB320016-16-16-36 2T 1.35V
CorsairDominator PlatinumSamsung K4A8G085WE8GB320016-18-18-36 2T 1.35V
CorsairVengeance LPHynix H5AN8G8NAFR8GB300015-17-17-35 2T 1.35V
GEILEVO XSamsung K4A8G085WB8GB320016-18-18-36-2T 1.35V

 

  • The comparison RAM modules were clocked to match for apples-to-apples direct comparison  of 2666MHz CL15 in dual-channel mode.
  • The comparison modules include MFR and AFR Hynix modules, as well as Samsung B and E modules. The only Micron representative is the D9 from the Ballistix Sport LT.
  • CPU multiplier clock locked at 45, BCLK locked at 100 and cache frequency locked. Turbo boost disabled. The goal here to is to observe behaviour and get consistent result, not to shoot for high benchmark numbers for the sake of shooting for higher benchmark numbers.
  • Latest working BIOS and drivers were used at the time of the review. Each test was conducted at least three times for accuracy.
  • Each kits were run on HCIMemtest and AIDA64 stability prior to testing to ensure that they are in working order.

Benchmark Programs Used

  • AIDA64 Engineer Edition 5.90
  • Passmark Performance Test 8.0 (build 1051)
  • SiSoft Sandra
  • RoG RealBench 2.44
  • 7-Zip 16
  • 3DMark TimeSpy

AIDA64 Memory Benchmarks

AIDA64 is a very versatile program that we use here at Modders-Inc for our CPU cooler, storage as well as CPU reviews but it also has a built-in synthetic memory benchmark that measures the Copy, Read, and Write speeds of the DRAM installed in Megabytes-per-second (higher is better). It also measures total latency in nano-second (lower is better).

PassMark Performance Test Memory Benchmarks

Like AIDA64, Passmark’s Performance Test 8.0 suite is also a very versatile program with a different set of benchmarks per component and has a suite of memory tests of its own. The read, read uncached and write speeds are used (measured in synthetic scores, higher is better) as well as the built-in memory latency test in nano-seconds (lower is better).

SiSoft Sandra Memory Benchmarks

Sandra LITE is a free version of SiSoft’s Sandra testing suite. Similar to AIDA64 and PassMark Performance Test, Sandra Lite is a synthetic benchmark program that has its own set of system memory specific benchmarks. Aggregated scores of the Memory bandwidth performance in Gigabyte-per-second and Memory Transactional Throughput in total throughput-per-second are measured (higher is better). Memory latency is also measured in nano-second (lower is better).

ASUS RoG Realbench Image Editing Benchmark

ASUS Republic of Gamers’ RealBench is a semi-synthetic testing suite that collects four different programs and can perform controlled runs of each related to image editing (GIMP), video encoding (Handbrake H.264), OpenCL (Luxmark) and Heavy Multitasking (Combination of all three at the same time). Only the image editing part is used as GIMP uses up to SSE4.2 CPU extensions and focuses on single threaded CPU and memory performance that is frequency and timing sensitive. The controlled aspect of this otherwise “real-world” test makes it semi-synthetic.

7-Zip Compression Benchmark

For compression, 7-zip is used which is an open source (GNU) compression program utilizing LZMA method as the default. This is a real-world program with a built-in benchmark measuring compression, decompression and total speed in million instruction per second (MIPS).

3DMark Skydiver Benchmark

Futuremark’s 3DMark is a semi-synthetic gaming benchmark that calculates both graphics and CPU-bound physics in a controlled series of tests and provides scores that can be compared with other gaming platforms. The physics benchmark of the Skydiver suite for mainstream gaming PCs is used.

Final Thoughts

As far as mainstream DRAM modules go, the Crucial Ballistix Sport LT is an attractive option. Not just aesthetically with its digital camo and three-color option, but affordability as well. In terms of price, it is on the affordable end and competitive compared to others in a similar price range. Its closest rivals would be the HyperX Fury which is similarly priced and the Corsair Vengeance LP which is a bit more pricier for the same speed. They also all offer multi-color options, although the white Ballistix Sport LT is the only one that comes in a white PCB.

Crucial Ballistix Sport LT 4x8GB 2666MHz DDR4 Review

The heatspreader is functional with its passive design, and it is not unnecessarily tall like most other modules. The 2666MHz speed is just about right for most applications as well. It is offers quite a bit more than the 2133MHz standard on older DDR4 platforms and provides a balanced price-performance ratio compared to more expensive kits approaching 3000MHz or higher. The 2666MHz speed also makes it much more compatible on more platforms than higher-end kits so for those who are looking to just build without much hassle, the Crucial Ballistix Sport LT will do nicely.

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