PNY XLR8 RGB memory review

PNY XLR8 RGB memory review

There’s nothing quite as satisfying as buy parts for a new gaming PC, putting it all together into a nice case then powering it up and cheering when everything works just as it should. It’s a real sense of accomplishment of a “I made this” type.

I’ve build several PCs over the years but only one has had a tempered glass side panel: My current PC which is built into a Montech Air 900 mid-tower case that I won in an online competition earlier this year.

Cases only h ave tempered glass side panels for one reason: To show off the shiny, RGB-lit goodness that lives inside it.  I know RGB components aren’t for everyone but I guess it’s the PC gamer equivalent of a car enthusiast who mods and tweaks his car to show off to other enthusiasts.

The only RGB lighting in my PC when I built it came from my Sapphire RX580 graphics card – up until PNY Technologies sent across a 16Gb kit of dual channel XLR8 RGB RAM (3200Mhz) to put through its paces.

Rated at 3200MHz, the XLR8 RAM is backward compatible with 2133Mhz, 2400Mhz, 2666Mhz, 2800Mhz, 2933Mhz and 3000Mhz frequencies. It has a CAS latency of 16 [timings are 16-18-18] and it supports XMP 2.0.

EASY AS ONE, TWO, THREE …

As anyone who has built a PC will know, RAM is one of the easiest things to replace and installing the PNY RAM was straightforward enough, replacing the two 8Gb sticks of vanilla Team Group RAM (rated at 2400Mhz) that were currently in my PC.

However, I did have to remove my RX580 GPU and disconnect my case fans header to fit the sticks in as clearances on my PC’s Asus mATX B365M-K motherboard were pretty tight. It just meant I had to manage the cables a little better, too.

PNY’s RAM draws 1.35v of power and the RGB lighting is powered via the RAM slot on your motherboard so you don’t need an RGB header on the motherboard to connect it to, which is nice for those of us with motherboards like mine that don’t have the aforementioned header. The RGB lights – consisting of five LEDs within a frosted lens – sit on top of the two aluminum heat spreaders.

TRIPPING THE [RGB] LIGHT FANTASTIC …

The memory supports a number of lighting control software such as Asus’ Aura Sync, MSi’s  Mystic Light Sync and ASrock’s Polychrome sync but unfortunately, my Asus motherboard doesn’t support RGB control so I couldn’t control the light patterns, instead just letting it “do its own thing”, which still looked nice. My motherboard is also restricted to 2666Mhz frequency RAM, so that’s what I set the frequency to in my motherboard’s BIOS.

PNY’s XLR8 RAM does what it says on the tin: Lights up your windowed PC case with undulating displays of neon colours – and I quite like that.

Look, RGB inside your PC won’t make it run any faster: It’s purely for aesthetics and a nice addition to someone who has a case with a side window and wants to show off the PC they spent countless hours tinkering on and getting just right.

As I said earlier, RGB components aren’t for every PC owner but if it is, PNY’s RGB XLR8 RAM is a good starting point to begin that RGB journey.

PNY’s  XLR8 RAM is available from PB Tech in New Zealand and mWave in Australia and available as a 32GB kit (2x16GB) and 16Gb kit (2 x 8Gb) or a 16Gb single channel stick and an 8Gb single channel stick.