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Samsung Aims 20nm-Class DDR4 at the Data Center

By - Source: Samsung Press Release

Last week Samsung said it is now mass producing DDR4 memory based on 20nm-class process technology, meaning the process tech node is somewhere between 20 and 30nm. These high-density modules are targeting enterprise servers in next generation, large scale data centers and other applications, which rely on higher performance and reduced costs stemming from lower power consumption.

"The adoption of ultra-high-speed DDR4 in next-generation server systems this year will initiate a push toward advanced premium memory across the enterprise," said Young-Hyun Jun, executive vice president, memory sales & marketing, Samsung Electronics.

Samsung said early market availability of the 4 Gb (512 MB) DDR4 20 nm-class chips will facilitate demand for 16 GB and 32 GB memory modules/sticks. To put this in perspective, it should take 64 of these new 4 Gb chips to create a 32 GB stick of DDR4 RAM -- 32 chips for the 16 GB modules (sorry I previously had it doubled earlier for some reason).

The company claims its new 4 Gb chip is the smallest and highest performing device yet, providing transfer speeds up to 2,667 Mbps. That's a 25 percent increase over the top speed on an equivalent DDR3 model currently offered on the market.

The new DDR4 device also consumes 30 percent less power than DDR3, making it the ideal solution for the rapidly expanding data center sector. Thus, by adopting DDR4 memory technology early, OEMs can minimize operational costs and maximize performance to provide more favorable returns on investments, the company said.

The DDR4 standard, published in 2012, is different from DDR3 in that instead of using a multi-drop bus that allows multiple memory sticks to sit in the same memory channel, the new tech uses a point-to-point bus to the controller, limiting one stick to one RAM channel. That said, a dual-channel setup should only physically allow for two DDR4 modules, one in each channel.

"After providing cutting-edge performance with our timely supply of 16 GB DDR3 earlier this year, we are continuing to extend the premium server market in 2013 and will now focus on higher density and added performance with 32 GB DDR4, and contribute to even greater growth of the green IT market in 2014," Jun added.

Kevin Parrish is a contributing editor and writer for Tom's Hardware,Tom's Games and Tom's Guide. He's also a graphic artist, CAD operator and network administrator.

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