updated 03:35 pm EDT, Wed April 9, 2008
Crucial DDR3 Notebook RAM
Crucial has announced itself as the first major memory producer to offer DDR3 RAM for notebook computers, opening the door to systems based on Intel's upcoming Centrino 2 platform. The 204-pin memory holds its advantage over DDR2 by running both at a higher clock speed and offering more overall bandwidth. Its 1,066MHz rate matches the system bus of faster upcoming Core 2 Duo and Extreme processors while also offering 10.6GB per second of headroom through improvements made to DDR3 itself. The combination doubles the practical data rate of 800MHz DDR2 memory, Crucial estimates.
The memory simultaneously improves battery life on notebooks through lower voltage. At 1.5 volts, DDR3 memory consumes about 30 percent less power than a 1.8-volt DDR2 stick.
Crucial brands the memory as PC3-8500 and currently sells it in 1GB and 2GB individual modules at $135 and $370 respectively, along with matching pairs at $270 (2x1GB) and $740 (2x2GB). All are available today and should ultimately be followed by 4GB sticks, which are made possible in part by Centrino 2 and allow notebooks with up to 8GB of memory. Systems based on the Intel technology should ship in June.