By – John Williamson

RAM Review He

Consumers have been inundated with a myriad of options when it comes to selecting the appropriate RAM for their system as memory varies in latency, clock speed and heatsink design.  Generally, the taller heatsinks are more for aesthetic purposes unless you are overvolting the sticks and trying to achieve a hefty overclock which requires a larger surface area to dissipate the heat.  Higher clock speeds haven’t been properly utilized by games and the performance difference between 1333MHz and 2400MHz is on average 1-2fps.

However, Battlefield 4 has signified a new shift in utilization and could instigate the start of higher memory bandwidth usage.  For example, Battlefield 4 on Ultra at 1920×1080 with an i7 4770k, 8GB 2400MHz and R9 290 achieves quite startling results depending on RAM speed.  Underclocking the RAM from 2400MHz to 1600MHz achieves an average fps of 59 whilst running at the native 2400MHz speed increases this figure to 65.  As a result, I would suggest you purchase the highest bandwidth RAM available within your price range.  Please note that higher bandwidth equates to greater latency so you must be careful about loose timings and find a balance between these two areas.  2400MHz CL10/11 is a good choice.  Speaking of 2400MHZ CL11 sets, Kingston have manufactured the HyperX Predator range designed for high capacities and efficient cooling.  Could this 8GB (4×2) set be the primary choice for gamers looking for exceptional performance and stability at an affordable price?

Kingston package the RAM kit using a traditional moulded plastic design and seal the corners with a thick, rugged adhesive sticker to prevent damage during transit.  There are products on the market where the mould is done too tightly and it becomes an absolute nightmare to get the RAM out of its protective packaging.  However, the HyperX Predator doesn’t suffer from this and is easily removed without the need to apply any sort of force.  This may seem like a trivial issue, but RAM like any other electrical component is extremely sensitive and you want to ensure that each customer unboxes it with as much care and attention as feasibly possible.  Included in the parcel is the RAM, and a case sticker.  The sticker is constructed from cheap paper and I still don’t understand why companies bundle RAM sets with these in this day and age.  Personally, I’m glad that Kingston didn’t spend part of it’s budget making a metal sticker because the majority of customers who take pride in their rig and its appearance will probably throw this accessory in the bin or leave it in the original packaging.

RAM Review 1

From an aesthetic standpoint, the HyperX Predator is stunning and up there with some of the most beautifully constructed RAM I’ve tested.  The bold, piercing blue colour is striking and adds a lot of character to your PC build. This vivid tone coalesces with the chunky, bold X logo and HyperX branding in a lovely silver finish.  This combination is magical and gives the RAM a signature look.  Despite this, there are no additional colour options meaning the blue accents may contrast with red/green focussed builds.  I would like Kingston to work on this in the future and produce colour variants.  The heatsinks connect via a solid joint to keep the two pieces of aluminum together through its robust mechanism.  This particular set adopts the HyperX Thermal Xchange technology to dissipate heat through the headspreader’s ergonomically designed fins.  I investigated the RAM to see if there was any indistinguishable marks outlining the memory’s provenance.  Unfortunately, there were no evidence to suggest that this particular unit uses Samsung Integrated Circuits (IC).  However, some users did report that the modules have been the lucrative and highly sought after Samsung memory sticks.

There are obviously going to be installation issues with larger coolers such as the NH-D14 because of the 54mm height.  As a result, you will need to purchase a AIO water cooling CPU unit such as the Corsair H105 or use a small air heatsink.  The revised Noctua NH-D15 is also a suitable choice because this new model supports taller RAM modules using the single fan mode.  The majority of RAM produced contains large, extravagant heatspreaders and I would always choose these over low profile options despite the lack of compatibility with huge coolers.  AIOS are becoming cheaper and more popular as they allow for easier system maintenance and a cleaner look.

The setup process couldn’t be simpler thanks to Intel’s Extreme Memory Performance technology.  All you have to do is insert the RAM into your motherboard’s memory slot and slowly push down without applying too much force. The XMP setting allows your motherboard to pre-configure the voltage and individual timings of your RAM automatically by reading the SPD profiles on the actual memory sticks.  The HyperX Predator memory has two SPD profiles which either run at 2133MHz and 2400MHz. I cannot reiterate enough that you must set this up in the BIOS and enable the XMP profile or the sticks with run at 1333mhz.  The industry standard of overclocked RAM is 1.65V but Intel defaults the memory to 1.5V as a matter of precaution.  However, 1.65V is perfectly safe to run 24/7.  I congratulate Kingston for including 2 basic profiles running at different core speeds which provides enough options for basic users to easily select the RAM clock they want to implement.  The 2133MHz setting runs cooler as the voltage required is 1.6V instead of 1.65v for 2400MHz. This will appease users who are concerned about system temperatures and overheating.

Kingston HyperX Predator 8GB 2400MHz Review

Test System:

  • Intel i7 4770K @4.4GHz (1.254v)
  • Noctua NH-D15 CPU Cooler
  • 8GB Kingston HyperX Predator 2400MHz CL11 RAM
  • Sapphire AMD R9 290 4GB Tri-X OC
  • Gigabyte Z87X-OC
  • Seagate 480GB SSD
  • Western Digital 3TB RED NAS HDD
  • Corsair Air 540 Case

There are a wide array of benchmarking tools on the market but I’ve always considered AIDA64 Extreme’s Memory Benchmark to be reliable.  The HyperX Predator was configured to 2400MHz at 1.65v using 11-13-13-30-2T timings. The modules attained an uncached read speed of 20978MB/s and a write speed of 19021MB/s.  There was a memory copy speed of 22941MB/s and the latency figure was 35 ns. Overall, these results are very impressive as the HyperX Predator outperforms a number of its competitors but still falls behind the G.Skill TridentX 2400MHZ kit.  It’s difficult to put these numbers into real world performance terms but I can safely say this is a fantastic set of read/write speeds whilst maintaining a remarkably low latency.

Overclocking the modules yield minute performance gains because there isn’t a lot of headroom for additional clock speed.  Despite my best efforts, I could only improve the base speed by 102MHz with the timings 12-14-14-32-2T.  This was a little disappointing as I hoping to get an overclock around the 2666mhz range with CL12 settings.  While the overclocking options are fairly meagre, this isn’t a huge issue considering the stock performance is so strong.

RAM Review 3

Conclusion – Is It Worth Your Money?

The Kingston HyperX Predator 2400MHz CL11 RAM is an exemplary choice for users who demand impeccable performance at a reasonable price point.  Kingston are masters of this particular field and have a wide range of memory products which have been slowly perfected by their years of expertise.  Overall, I highly recommend the Kingston HyperX Predator memory because of its spectacular styling, rock solid performance and excellent stability.

Kingston HyperX Predator 2x4GB 2400MHz CL11 Ram Summary:

  • Time Used – 12 Days
  • Software Used – AIDA64, CPU-Z, HWMonitor, Cinebench
  • Games Used – Tomb Raider, Metro 2033, Battlefield 4, Sleeping Dogs
  • System Specs – Intel i7 4770K, 16GB RAM, Sapphire R9 290 4GB OC
  • Acquisition Method – Review Unit
  • Availability – Newegg, TigerDirect, Amazon
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  • stika

    Makes me wish I hadn’t bought new RAM just two months ago. Should’ve waited for this one >.>

    • AdamAmes

      It always happens like that, right? You are building a new rig, get all the parts, fire it up, works perfectly. Two days later, all of the components you bought go on sale.

    • John Williamson

      It’s a fantastic package given the stability and stunning looks from a reputable brand you can rely on.

  • Shawn

    Is Battlefield the only game showing performance gains with faster RAM? For a long time I have always put in about the cheapest RAM I could because research and testing showed that investing in RAM really didn’t make that much difference in performance.

    • John Williamson

      Pretty much as the increased RAM clock speeds haven’t made a notable difference. Other factors come into play before the RAM such as GPU and CPU speeds. Usually the performance gains from faster RAM are due to CPU heavy games as the additional clock speed add some bandwidth. It will be interesting to see if future games utilize these greater speeds but I’m not hopeful.