DDR4: Fourth Generation RAM module is set to arrive in 2014

RAM ("random access memory") has a long history. It is virtually short-term memory of a computer, smartphone or tablet. Reason: It stores data, allowing fast work. However, the contents of RAM are lost if the power is turned off. New generations usually bring higher capacities and faster clock rates. Let’s find out about some of the exiting new features in DDR4 RAM.

First of all: DDR stands for "double data rate". Behind it is a memory technology that processes two data words per clock cycle. While this does not double the performance, but still provides a measurable boost. "GDR" has similar competing and working techniques such as "SD" ("single date") or "Rambus" out of the market and dominate for over a decade. Processor manufacturer Intel has unintentionally contributed to success: After a chip set glitch-sponsored by Intel, Rambus technology fell short of expectations - and was also expensive. The industry developed the SD-RAM further and DDR1 was born. To meet the growing demands for more capacity and speed, adopted the new organization responsible JEDEC specifications - for DDR2, DDR3 and DDR4.

DDR4: The specification: DDR4 desktop PC still has the form of a bar ("DIMM"), corresponding modules for notebooks ("SO-DIMM") are more compact to fit into the folding machine. The number of contacts increases to 284 (DDR3: 240 contacts), and consequently the transfer performance increases. According to JEDEC capacities are from four gigabyte (GB) is provided; upwards the limit currently stands at 128 GB per module. The "slowest" modules work at 1,600 megahertz (MHz) clock, while the expensive versions later reach 2,133 MHz 3,200 MHz. DDR3 and DDR4 memory types require 1.2 volts with less voltage than its predecessor (1.5 volts).

Another characteristic of the so-called timing as "CAS Latency" and "RAS-to-CAS delay": You determine how fast the memory performs a number of operations such as read and write requests. Smaller values are generally better. The manufacturers accept the settings that are stored in the "EEPROM" and can be changed if necessary ("overclocking"). Currently, there are signs that the timings of DDR3 to DDR4 remain same.

The DDR4 specifications are indeed fixed since September, 2012, for the average Joe but appropriate modules are not yet available. One reason: neither AMD nor Intel support with their current platforms DDR4. Intel brings the technology well initially for its server platform Haswell EP, which already on the IDF in 2013. DDR4 RAM is expected to arrive on the market in 2014. Meanwhile memory manufacturer Samsung already confirmed mass production of DDR4 memory modules.