Japanese subsidiary of Buffalo Technology Inc., a leading maker of advanced memory modules and other electronics, has announced the world's first memory modules based on DDR3 chips. While there are several months to go till the first DDR3-supporting platforms will emerge on the market, Buffalo wants to sell them now, but at a price that will allow only a few enthusiasts to get them. Buffalo will shortly start to ship PC3-8500 memory modules with 1066MHz clock-speed, CL7 latency setting and 1.5V voltage settings. Even though CL7 latency setting is considerably higher compared to CL5 of DDR2 at the same frequency, improved pre-fetch and other technical advantages of DDR3 versus DDR2 may help the new memory type to be as fast or even faster compared to the previous-gen one.
DDR3 memory is designed to increase performance and lower power consumption of DDR2 memory utilized today. The new memory standard features relatively low operating voltage of 1.5V, 8-bit pre-fetch architecture (compared to 4-bit pre-fetch buffer with DDR2), on-die termination (ODT), power-saving modes known as PASR (partial array self refresh) and ASR (auto self refresh) and some other capabilities. The memory will be able to operate at up to 1600MHz, but in the exchange for enhanced latencies of CAS (column address strobe) 5 to 10 (compared to CAS 3-6 on DDR2).