In this review we looked at the Crucial Ballistix Tactical Tracer RGB DDR4 2666Mhz Quad Channel memory kit. These are a new series of high-performance memory designed for modern DDR4 systems including the Intel 100/200/300 series chipsets and AMD 300 series motherboards. Not only do the modules look good but are currently available in two speeds starting at 2666Mhz and 3000Mhz with module densities of either 8GB or 16GB and timings of CL16.
The benchmarks this time were all about dual and quad channel performance using the same Ballistix Tactical Tracer memory modules. In terms of speed 2666Mhz is not going to win any races and for once this review wasn’t all about performance advantage but rather showcasing some really cool memory. Crucial has never been a performance winner and the Ballistix line is not about the bare minimum either. 2666Mhz and 3000Mhz occupy the “sweet spot” when it comes to performance memory. They are several multiplier settings above JEDEC and still slow enough to work with any processor supporting DDR4. Skylake-X struggles with memory speeds above 3200Mhz and Ryzen enjoys life at 2966Mhz. Any faster than that and the quality of your processor factors into performance and compatibility.
System speed is not determined by memory modules alone and as my benchmarks showed there are some instances where 3000Mhz isn't much faster than 2666Mhz. Now, I'm all for running the fastest module and Hardware Asylum is dedicated to it. However, unless you are running competitive benchmarks or must maintain a specific system spec it is often best to side with what is compatible over what is fastest.
A key feature of the Ballistix Tracer memory is the RGB LED lights across the top of the modules. These consist of 16 individual LEDs that are addressable 8 LED pairs. Pairing the LEDs allows them to have a wider brightness range which can be helpful when you consider the second feature. Each light bar on the Tactical Tracer is removable to accept custom 3d printed parts. These can be individual bars for each module or solid blocks that span across multiple modules. As they say the sky is the limit when it comes to 3d printing.
We printed up a sample from the Crucial website and while the part is made from white filament it still glowed. Of course if you plan to print your own light bars the trick is to use the least amount of material to promote better light transmission.
Now we just need to print up a Hardware Asylum version for our next modding project.
Great Heatspreader Design
Available in speeds up to 3000Mhz
Removable Light Bar
Compatible with Motherboard RGB Systems
3d Printing Options
Single XMP profile
Limited module speeds