Memory manufacturer Crucial is celebrating its 10th anniversary after being founded in 1996 as a direct memory reseller for its parent company, Micron Technology. That same year id Software unleashed the first version of Quake, which began the 3d revolution in the PC. The Pentium processor hit 200MHz that same year, and Linux 2.0 was released. The Nintendo 64 also saw the light in 1996 and the first Pokemon video game was released, what a crazy year.
Back in 1996 when Crucial first came to be, EDO (Extended Data Out DRAM) was the mainstream standard, and memory was far from cheap at around $282 for two 16MB EDO Crucial modules, systems required matched pairs. In fact EDO memory held more weight than “gold” if you can believe that.
Over the years Crucial has built a strong reputation for delivering high quality, rock solid memory products. Today they offer a massive range of modules covering desktop, server, and even printer memory. Furthermore, Crucial also offers a very extensive range of flash memory products. Although initially Crucial had little to do with the enthusiast market they have slowly clawed their way into this segment as well.
Given Crucial has only become active in the performance market in the last two years I have not had the pleasure of testing many of their products. In fact, it has been almost six years since I last reviewed a Crucial product. Today we will be taking a look at their 10th anniversary edition DDR2-667 memory modules. Designed with the enthusiast in mind, this special edition memory comes in either 1GB or 2GB kits featuring the same specifications.
Now you will want to know that while the specs of these modules are quite good, they do not differ from those of the high performance Ballistix memory. The main difference between these two products then is aesthetical with the heat spreader on the 10th anniversary modules being blue and silver aluminum featuring the anniversary logo rather than the metallic yellow of the Ballistix memory. The model number of the 2GB kit is “TY2KIT12864AA663” and are designed to operate at CAS 3-3-3-12 using 2.2v. Crucial lists the recommended retail price at $340 which is very expensive. They also list the same memory from the Ballistix series for $350, though Newegg.com is selling this exact same memory for $280 which is much more realistic and competitive.
Therefore, I imagine once these 10th anniversary memory modules hit shelves they will be priced around the $280 mark. At this price point the Crucial 10th anniversary 2GB memory kit becomes a pretty good value, compared to say Corsair's Value Select memory which will set you back $230.
What will set this 10th anniversary memory apart from the cheaper kits should be its ability to operate at a wide range of frequencies (overclocking, anyone?). With that in mind let's move on to find out what exactly these memory modules are capable of.