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Interesting results. We've often said that "faster" memory doesn't mean a whole lot on a PC (unless your using integrated graphics). Anand just published their memory speed benchmarks with a Ivy Bridge CPU (in what was basically a big advertisement for G.Skill). I have to admit, it did surprise me some.
This type of test has been done a lot in the past, and usually we see it crop up when shifting memory types (like from DDR2 to DDR3). Almost always, the difference in memory-specific benchmarks is amazing, but the real-world difference is negligible.
Well, I have to say that this article pretty well sums up what we have held as common wisdom. I would have liked to see similar benchmarks with an AMD CPU as well, but maybe we'll get that in another article. The author does a very good job of talking about timing versus clock, and how it all affects performance.
Integrapted graphics get a nice boost by memory speed - no surprises there. Even the sub-par Intel Integrated get a nice lil boost by upping the clock speed (the sweet spot for price at the moment seems to be 1866, there is a steep diminishing return past 2133). Graphic boosts of upwards of 20% were seen when using integrated graphics.
On the general computing side - most tests were around 5% going from 1333 to 2400. A few tests saw some surprising gains (Maya rendering, WinRAR), but just as many didn't see any measurable change at all.
Anand ends up recommending 1866 9-10-9 for general purpose (a 4x4Gb kit at $95). For $20 over the standard 1333, I can't see really arguing against that except for extreme budget builds - $5 a DIMM isn't really a premium, there are some measurable gains to be had, they just aren't very big. Jumping up to 2133 adds an additional $35, and 2400 $50 over the price of the 1866 kit - those just don't seem to really add much to the party *unless you plan on running IGP*, with the 2400 kit showing very small gains over the 2133 kit in almost every test.