In brief: Samsung's A-die memory has surfaced at UK-based retailer, MemoryCow, and signals that Samsung is looking to offer 32GB DIMMs for consumers in the near term. While the initial spec for A-die memory isn't exactly exciting, they aren't surprising either. Samsung will have its hands full if the company is to groom the A-dies to replace the popular B-dies in terms of overclocking, lest it cede the memory overclocking crown to SK Hynix or Micron.
Samsung's B-die memory ICs came to be the gold standard for memory overclocking, but were unceremoniously discontinued a few months ago, much to the lament of the hardware community. At that time, we speculated Samsung was grooming its A-die memory as a successor of sorts and that may still hold true.
Samsung produced the celebrated B-die memory on a 20nm process node, but A-die memory will see a migration to 10nm -- presumably the 1z-nm class, which is Samsung's 3rd-generation 10nm process. While devices with A-die memory in the wild seem to be few and far between, Hardwareluxx has spotted a DDR4 module using A-die ICs.
The headlining advantage of A-die memory is chip density, promising an increased memory density per module and bringing 32GB consumer DIMMs with it. The DDR4 module spotted -- carrying the part number M378A4G43AB2-CVF -- seems to do exactly that. It's a dual rank DIMM with a capacity of 32GB. It also runs at a frequency of 2,933 MHz, with timings of CL21-21-21 and operates at 1.2V.
Those numbers aren't particularity impressive, especially given how loose the timings are. But this is new memory on a new manufacturing process. It needs time to mature. Samsung's B-die memory didn't start off setting overclocking world records either. Both frequency and timings are likely to improve in the future. Whether or not the A-dies will match or exceed their predecessors is another matter.
The Samsung M378A4G43AB2-CVF modules are listed over at MemoryCow, with a list price of £128.33, excluding VAT. That works out to roughly $158, which would be competitive with current prices for 32GB kits.
Masthead image: Random Access Memory by 7heaven