DDR3 to DDR4: Adding Speed to Modern Systems

By WPG AmericasApril 21, 2016

Modern enterprises are increasingly moving towards greater memory footprints, improved speed and enhanced system stability. Consequently, suitable upgrade in the SDRAM capacities is being viewed as the ideal step towards gaining competitive advantage in the Industry. The launch of Micron’s feature rich DDR4 SDRAM is therefore making sense in the cloud computing markets as large number of enterprises are upgrading to it from the existing DDR3 or DDR3L. Let us take a look at some of the feature benefits that this upgrade offers.

With a 1.2 voltage core and I/O power, DDR 4 ensures a significantly reduced demand for memory power. This almost adds up to saving 35% more power than the DDR3 did while sitting pretty in most systems with the 1.5 volts it offered. The DDR4 has not been designed to offer any specific standards in low voltage. However, it is not expected to go below 1.05 V depending on the manufacturer and RAM quantity.

The significantly low voltage that DDR 4 offers ensures that it is capable of delivering faster data transfer rates. Micron’s claim of 667MHz to 1.6 GHz is further proof of the fact. Moreover, it also ensures higher system stability with time.

DDR4 displays no ceiling on the clock speed it displays. Clock speed refers to the ability to read and write data. Moreover, Micron’s brand of DDR4 is known to retrieve data at varied rates of 1600, 1866, 2133, 2400, 2666, and 3200 mb/s compared to the 800, 1066, 1333, 1600, 1866, 2133 mb/s data rate displayed by DDR3 . This ensures migration to high speed on successfully implementing the system upgrade. DDR4 provides a chip density capacity ranging from 2GB-16 GB. This ensures a larger capacity for hosting memory subsystems. This is a huge change from the 512Mb–8 Gb chip density that was offered in the DDR3 systems.

DDR4 achieves a significantly high percentage of data efficiency with the introduction of the bank group technology. There are around four bank groups in Micron’s DDR4 providing a faster burst access than its predecessor, the DDR3. The innovative bank group technology has also helped in eliminating any possible misalignment between the cache line size and burst length that often negatively impacts the performance in embedded applications.

The Micron DDR4 is embedded with POD 12 to minimize and eradicate I/O noise and power. This ensures a seamless and efficient data display as compared to the DDR3.

While DDR4 has its definite advantages, enterprises cannot completely disregard the benefits it has garnered from the DDR3 over the years. Moreover, considering the high cost factor associated with this transition, most organizations are devising innovative ways to continue enjoying the best of both worlds. Intel, for example, will be introducing the UniDIMM, a memory module form-factor that can accommodate both the DDR3 class and DDR4 class DRAM chips. This will help system manufacturers to continue utilizing the DDR 3 DRAM chips till they remain in the market and subsequently upgrade to the DDR4 Dram chips when the need arises. Moreover, as requirement increases, DDR4 Dram chips are expected to become more affordable, thereby mitigating their last hurdle towards increased adoption

Download the DDR3 to DDR4 White Paper now