Mushkin Redline XP4000

Mushkin has been providing High Performance memory modules since 1994. While they earned their reputation as an on-line retailer, today, you can buy Mushkin memory from many well-known retailers such as NewEgg, NCIX, AxionTech and many other sources. You can also buy Mushkin memory at their web site, where you will also find a wealth of information about Mushkin memory products.

The Mushkin Redline XP4000 modules were supplied as a matched pair of 512MB DIMMs with red heatspreaders. In addition to the DDR500 speed (PC4000), Redline is available as DDR433 (PC3500) parts. Both memory speeds are available as single DIMMs or as a 1GB matched pair of 512MB DIMMs.

It appears that Mushkin uses Winbond CH-die for their Redline memory, the same as OCZ. We say "appears" because most manufacturers using the Winbond UTT chips buy them as blanks and bin them for their speed ratings, so it is very difficult to identify exactly the chips used for the finished product. You can also find BH blanks on the market as well, and the finished product in either CH or BH depends mostly on the "speed-binning" capabilities of the memory manufacturer.

There was some confusion when Mushkin first announced the Redline series regarding the warranty coverage that would be provided, but Mushkin now clearly stands behind their Redline products with the same Lifetime Warranty that they provide for other Mushkin memory. However, Mushkin states that Active Memory cooling must be used with Redline modules for overclocking, and we agree.

In our own test bed, we mount a 90mm fan over the DIMMs for extra cooling. With the extra voltage required for best performance with Mushkin Redline or OCZ VX, you will find the memory erroring after about 5 minutes unless you provide additional cooling.

Mushkin provides some very sane advice in their Warranty for would-be overclockers of Redline memory:

Active Cooling Required *----Due to the extreme speed of these modules along with the added voltages used, Mushkin requires end users to Actively cool their memory modules. Modules that are not properly cooled will/may not meet rated timings and speeds, and may become susceptible to premature failure. We generally recommend 15-25cfm of direct airflow over the ram modules which can be easily accomplished with one 60mm or 80mm low rpm fan. This will insure increased stability and lifespan of your Redline modules.

Recommended Platforms--- Mushkin tests all Redline memory modules on Athlon64 platforms. Furthermore, when running two modules, only Socket 939 platforms are validated to run at rated specifications/timings. We currently recommend and validate the Redline memory series on the DFI LanP arty UT NForce4 Ultra-D, DFI LanP arty UT NForce4 SLI-DR, and DFI LanP arty NForce4 SLI-DR boards as they provide the best combination of voltage options and compatibility for the Redline Series. Other motherboards may work, but may require modification for adequate voltages, and may not produce optimal results. Single Channel Athlon64 systems may have a hard time running 2x512mb dimms at rated speeds due to memory load on the single channel memory controller. Pentium4 and AthlonXP systems generally will not obtain rated specifications secondary to motherboard/memory controller limitations. These modules are compatible with most motherboards for Pentium4/AthlonXP CPUs, however end users are advised that lower frequencies achieved."

Mushkin Redline XP4000 Specifications

 Mushkin Redline XP4000 Memory Specifications
Number of DIMMs & Banks 2 DS
Total Memory
512 MB
Rated Timings 2-2-2-6 at DDR500 at 3.3-3.5V
SPD (Auto) Timings 3-3-3-8 (Default 2.6V)
Rated Voltage 3.3V to 3.5V

With Intel's introduction last summer of the 915/925X chipsets with support for DDR2 memory, the primary market for DDR memory has become the excellent AMD Athlon 64 platform. This has been reinforced with the recent 945/955x Intel chipsets, which also use DDR2 memory. It is true that some 915 boards also support DDR, and the continuing Intel Socket 478 also supports DDR memory, but the primary market for DDR memory is now the AMD Athlon 64 platform.

It is worth noting that Mushkin warrants Redline performance only for AMD Athlon 64 socket 939 motherboards. Mushkin tells us that the Redline memory may work fine in Intel motherboards at lower voltages, but it is not tested or specified for Intel DDR platforms. In addition, the only unmodified motherboard that can supply the voltages required for top Redline performance is the DFI nForce4 motherboard. For these reasons, Mushkin Redline memory was only tested on the DFI LANParty nF4 SLI-DR Athlon 64 Socket 939 test bed.

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  • jmke - Monday, May 16, 2005 - link

    I agree with you completely Zebo; is an increase of 2-5FPS in an already OLD game like Wolfenstein worth $300 (memory + ddr booster/new motherboard)?

    I don't think so
  • Zebo - Monday, May 16, 2005 - link

    My above comments excludes cyber-athletes participating in cyber olympics. Mainly geared twards average enthusiast at AT.
  • Zebo - Monday, May 16, 2005 - link

    As usual almost no difference with increased bandwidth:

    At 2400Mhz same timings:
    DDR400 though DDR533 are virtually identical, less than 5% within one another on the largest game, wolf.

    It is'nt until you bump processor speeds (which I never liked this testing method for memory) do the numbers begin to change signifigantly with added bandwidth. Due to bandwitdh? nope, due to running 2.72Ghz A64 instead of 2400Mhz.

    Anyway I think these sticks are a waste of $ for the most part. Primarly due to the fact you must push signifigant volts though them and fan them and maybe destory them if not well learned. Noise and only DFI can provide this voltage eliminates lots of people. One is much better off IMO with low volts TCCD or some crucial 8T running 2-2-2 ~200Mhz at low volts all day without the noise of additional ram cooling.

    thumbs down to extreme modules.
  • cryptonomicon - Monday, May 16, 2005 - link

    VX/REDLINE/UTT is nice and everything, but I don't get why people will buy it since BH and CH based models are much cheaper and perform very similarly with a bit less voltage, and can also run stock at 2.6v-- which makes them incredibly flexible. best ram ever.
  • bersl2 - Monday, May 16, 2005 - link


    The point of that thread is to show that in *real-world* situations, the measurable effect of 2T over 1T seems to be no more than 3%. Also keep in mind that at 2T, you can OC the RAM higher and tighten your other timings, and thus you can OC well with 4 sticks or more than 1G of RAM.
  • flatblastard - Monday, May 16, 2005 - link

    Nice review....I couldn't help but notice that in most of the benchies that mattered, hi-po ddr400 2-2-2 was at the top of the charts. Especially OCZ Plat Rev 2 and Crucial Ballistix....kinda makes me wonder if DFI mobo with high voltage ram is just a big waste of time and money.
  • Shinei - Monday, May 16, 2005 - link

    Which thread? As far as all AT benches have shown, 2T cripples performance on Athlon 64 testbeds...

    Anyway, great review, but I gotta wonder just what we're going to be doing to cool our cases in a few years--active cooling for the RAM, northbridge, CPU, and video card (the latter two of which account for 150+W)... Why do I get the feeling that I'm going to turn on my computer one day, and there'll just be a tiny mushroom cloud where the case used to be?
  • Lonyo - Monday, May 16, 2005 - link

    Any hopes of some 2T command rate testing/overclocking potential-ing?
    A thread has shown 2T makes very little difference to performance, but may help overclocking a bit, so mabye we could see if this stuff can be pushed even further?
  • JustAnAverageGuy - Monday, May 16, 2005 - link

    P1: "OCZ st arted it all with their VX series memory."

    P2: Redline is available as DDR433 (PC3500) p arts.

    For these reasons, Mushkin Redline memory was only tested on the DFI LANP arty nF4 SLI-DR Athlon 64 Socket 939 test bed.

    P3: The Mushkin Redline XP4000 was tested with the DFI LANP arty nF4 SLI-DR Athlon 64 Socket 939 motherboard.

    We have found the 6800 Ultra to be a p articularly good performance match to NVIDIA motherboards

    Don't worry though, all those macros are spelling error free ;)
  • classy - Monday, May 16, 2005 - link

    Great performance, but the price is really high. Especially considering the fact the OCZ 3200 Gold is not far behind and is almost $100 cheaper.

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