Memory DDR3March 25, 2010
DDR3 SDRAM is an improvement over its predecessor, DDR2 SDRAM, and the two are not compatible. The primary benefit of DDR3 is the ability to transfer at twice the data rate of DDR2 (I/O at 8× the data rate of the memory cells it contains), thus enabling higher bus rates and higher peak rates than earlier memory technologies. In addition, the DDR3 standard allows for chip capacities of 512 megabits to 8 gigabits, effectively enabling a maximum memory module size of 16 gigabytes.
With data being transferred 64 bits at a time per memory module, DDR3 SDRAM gives a transfer rate of (memory clock rate) × 4 (for bus clock multiplier) × 2 (for data rate) × 64 (number of bits transferred) / 8 (number of bits/byte). Thus with a memory clock frequency of 100 MHz, DDR3 SDRAM gives a maximum transfer rate of 6400 MB/s.
DDR3 is a DRAM interface specification; the actual DRAM arrays that store the data are the same as in any other type of DRAM, and have similar performance.