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DDR5 Random Access Memory (RAM) is the next generation of PC memory. Following on from its predecessor, DDR4 RAM, this standard allows for the performance of the memory to be scaled in both density and bandwidth whilst lowering power consumption. The new architecture also offers greater function efficiency as well as improving the clock speeds and signal integrity. DDR5 eliminates the issue of lower noise margins that comes from lowering the voltage, thanks to these improvements. In addition to this, DDR5 quadruples the maximum capacity of the previous generation. This means that instead of maxing out at 32GB, each module can hold up to 128GB – with this number only improving as the technology develops. It’s forecasted that DDR5 modules could have a maximum capacity of 1TB in server RAM! This next-gen tech is available from brands such as Kingston Fury, TeamGroup, and Crucial, up to 64GB in capacity. Currently, DDR5 can be used with select Z690 Intel motherboards and Intel’s 12th Gen Alder Lake CPUs.
DDR5 is the next generation of Random Access Memory and replaces DDR4 which has been the standard for the last 7 years. DDR5 made its debut on consumer hardware with Intel’s Alder Lake 12th generation CPUs being the first to support DDR5. Whilst DDR4 RAM is supplied with the correct power from the motherboard, DDR5 modules have an in-built voltage regulator which handles stepping down the power to 1.1v.
Using around 10% less power than DDR4 RAM, DDR5 almost doubles the memory clock of the previous generation. DDR5 latencies whilst higher than the last generation are negated thanks to the increased memory clock, meaning the bandwidth remains comparable or even faster than DDR4 RAM modules:
For performance, the two most important factors are the clock frequency (MHz, the higher, the faster) and the latency (CL the lower, the faster). The clock frequency or MHz denotes the number of commands the RAM module can handle per second. Whereas, latency or CL is how many clock cycles it takes for a RAM module to access data in one of its columns.
Greatly improving memory access efficiency, DDR5 DIMM has a new, two channel architecture. Instead of a single, 72-bit bus, they are made up of two 40-bit buses which are comprised of 32 data bits and eight EEC bits. In total, this makes an 80-bit bus. In addition to increased efficiency, this dual channel architecture also helps to boost speeds, too.
By virtue of being dual-channel, DDR5 supplies independent 40-bit channels whilst still sharing the residual current device (RCD). The RCD provides the output clocks, with there being four for DDR5. This means that with the highest density DIMMS and x4 DRAMs, each group of single-rank and half-channels recieves its own independent clock. Thus improving signal integrity, which in turn eliminates issues of lower noise margins from the decreased voltage.
Every generation, we want bigger and better. Single-die packages can have DRAM up to 64Gbit dense, thanks to innovative buffer chips. DDR4 only goes up to 16Gbit DRAM. As a result of this increase, DDR5 memory modules can support up to 128GB per bar – four times more than the maximum for DDR4. With DDR5 being in the early stages, it is entirely possible that the technology will develop to the point where each module could hold an entire terabyte.
Did you know we run our very own Overclockers UK blog? Recently, we have taken a deep dive into the differences between DDR4 and DDR5 – click the button to learn more!
DDR5 is short for (DDR5 SDRAM) which stands for Double Data Rate 5 Synchronous Dynamic Random-Access Memory.
The simple answer is no. Whilst some DDR5 compatible CPUs can work with both DDR4 and DDR5 RAM, the slot for memory on motherboards are different.
Both DDR4 and DDR5 RAM modules have 288 pins. However, they do not share the same pin layout meaning DDR5 required a dedicated slot and a new motherboard.
DDR5 is great for gaming. Not only do the modules allow for quadruple the amount of memory per stick than DDR4, but they use less power whilst clocking in at higher frequencies.
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