Thermaltake TOUGH Ram Review

Introduction

As companies grow and evolve we see them enter new markets to expand their offerings. Thermaltake did this January 8th, 2019 by launching its first memory product the WaterRam RGB Liquid Cooling Memory kit. Thermaltake is now expanding its memory line with its new memory kit the TOUGHRAM RGB. The TOUGHRAM RGB features an all-aluminum heat spreader for faster heat dissipation, tightly-screened memory ICs, RGB lightbar, and is compatible with various RGB software. The TOUGHRAM RGB kits are available in speeds ranging from 3000MHz up to 3600MHz with our review kit being the 3200MHz model that has an MSRP of $119.99.

We would like to thank Thermaltake for sending us the TOUGHRAM RGB kit to review!

Thermaltake Take on the TOUGHRAM RGB Memory

Built with the highest quality of components to the highest of standards, the TOUGHRAM RGB delivers outstanding gaming performance with stunning RGB lighting maximized for effortless sync with your RGB ecosystem.

Key Features

  • 8M RGB color across 10 super-bright addressable LEDs for stunning RGB illumination
  • TT RGB PLUS, TT AI Voice Control, Razer Chroma, and Amazon Alexa RGB sync compatible
  • 10-layer PCB construction for enhanced overclocking performance and stability
  • High-performance brushed aluminum heat spreader for optimal heat dissipation
  • Real-time temperature, frequency, and performance monitoring.
  • 5V Motherboard RGB sync ready
  • Intel XMP 2.0 ready
  • Limited lifetime warranty

 

 

Features and Specifications

 

Technical Specifications:

Module Type 288 Pin Unbuffered DIMM Non-ECC
Capacity 8GB x 2
Frequency 3200Mhz
Data Transfer Bandwidth 25,600 MB/s
Latency CL16-18-18-38
Voltage 1.35v
Dimensions 32(H) x 140(L) x 7(W)mm
Heat Spreader Aluminum heat spreader
Warranty Lifetime warranty

 

 

Packaging and Unboxing

The Thermaltake TOUGHRAM RGB arrives in an all-black packaging with a shot of the TOUGHRAM showcasing its RGB lightbar on the front. In the upper right corner we can see that our review kit is the 2 x 8GB 3200MHz model and has a limited lifetime warranty.

Flipping over to the back of the package, we find a list of features that include:

  • 10 high lumens individually addressable RGB LEDs
  • 8m colors with a nearly endless lighting effect
  • Exceptionally engineered TT Premium heat-spreader design
  • Intel XMP 2.0 Ready
  • Support for ASUS, GIGABYTE, and MSI 5V RGB Sync software

Opening the box, we find the TOUGHRAM RGB memory modules securely packed in a plastic blister pack.

Once the memory modules are free from the packaging we are ready to drop them into our test system.

A Closer Look

The TOUGHRAM RGB modules are quite stunning with its black aluminum heat spreader and two silver stripes on the left. We like that Thermaltake kept the module quite clean with only a little bit of branding to the right of the memory. At the top of the module is the TOUGHRAM’s lightbar which is broken up into 3 sections. This adds some uniqueness to the modules and is visually quite pleasing.

Moving to the back of the module, we find the same black aluminum heat spreader/silver stripes as seen on the front with an addition of a sticker in the lower-left corner. This sticker denotes the serial number of the unit as well as its rated speed and timings. For this kit each module is rated for 3200MHz with 16-18-18-38 timings at 1.35V.

Looking at the top of the TOUGHRAM RGB module, we can see that the silver stripe is continuous and the lightbar is kept clean except for the TT logo in the right corner.

Once we place the TOUGHRAM into our testbench it defaults to a rainbow-like profile, which matched the other RGB hardware perfectly. The RGB LEDs themselves had a nice brightness to them and the broken up lightbar gave the modules a nice unique look.

 

Software

Now that we have the TOUGHRAM RGB kit install in our test system it’s time to see how we can customize their lighting profile. You can find the TOUGHRAM Software by downloading the latest version here: https://www.thermaltake.com/downloads. Once downloaded/installed and upon booting the application, this should bring you to the “Information” tab, which displays system information of the installed kit.

Moving to the “Lighting” tab you can select one of the many predefined profiles. Some of our favorite profiles include:

  • Flow – Cycles through all colors changing one LED at a time
  • RGB Spectrum – Cycles through all colors changing all LEDs at the same time
  • Radar – One color goes up/down the modules
  • Blink – LEDs blink on/off
  • Pulse – LEDs pulse on/off
  • Wave – Colors wave up/down the LEDs
  • Static – Static colors on each LED
  • Temp – Changes color based on temperature
  • Shooting Star – LEDs turn on/off to give the illusion of a soaring star moving across the modules
  • Blackhole – Opposite of shooting star where only 1 LED is off moving across the modules
  • Aurora – Similar to Wave with a different LED offset for colors

Once you have selected your preferred color profile, you can change various attributes such as:

  • Color Mode
  • Light Speed
  • Individual LED Colors

On the “Notifications” tab you can configure some events to do certain actions based on memory load, memory temperature, and CPU temperature.

On the last tab “Settings” you can set the language, set the application to minimize on startup, turn on local weather updates, and view the current version of the software.

 

System Installation & Performance Testing

The test system we are using to benchmark our 2 x 8GB TOUGHRAM RGB Ram is:

  • Open Test Bench
  • Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Pro Motherboard
  • Intel 9900K Processor at Stock
  • Corsair H115i Platinum AIO
  • MSI GTX 1660 Super Gaming X GPU
  • Corsair HX750 PSU
  • Microsoft Windows 10 Professional

For testing, we benchmarked with the following pieces of software:

  • CPU-Z
  • AIDA64 Extreme Edition
  • Passmark Performance Test
  • SiSoft Sandra
  • 7-Zip
  • Super Pi Modded 1.5

 

7-Zip

“This form allows you to measure the performance of your computer. The benchmark shows a rating of MIPS (million instructions per second). The rating value is calculated from the measured speed, and it is normalized with the results of Intel Core 2 CPU with multi-threading option switched off. So if you have modern CPU from Intel or AMD, rating values in single-thread mode must be close to real CPU frequency. There are two tests: compression with LZMA method and decompression with LZMA method. Once the total passes reach 100, the score is taken.”  – 7-Zip

In 7-Zip we see the TOUGHRAM RGB showed great results just besting the other 3200MHz kit we benched on the 9900K.

 

AIDA64 Engineer Edition

“AIDA64 Engineer has a hardware detection engine unrivaled in its class. It provides detailed information about installed software and offers diagnostic functions and support for overclocking. As it is monitoring sensors in real-time, it can gather accurate voltage, temperature, and fan speed readings, while its diagnostic functions help detect and prevent hardware issues. It also offers a couple of benchmarks for measuring the performance of individual hardware components or the whole system. It is compatible with all 32-bit and 64-bit Windows editions, including Windows 10 and Windows Server 2016.” – AIDA64 Engineer

In AIDA64’s bandwidth test, we see the TOUGHRAM RGB pretty much in a dead heat with other 3000MHz/3200MHz kits.

In the latency benchmark Thermaltake’s TOUGHRAM takes the second spot with an extremely fast 46.7ns.

 

Passmark Performance Test – Memory Mark – Threaded

“Fast, easy to use, PC speed testing, and benchmarking. PassMark PerformanceTest ™ allows you to objectively benchmark a PC using a variety of different speed tests and compare the results to other computers.” – PassMark PerformanceTest ™

TOUGHRAM didn’t care for the Passmark benchmark, finding themselves at the bottom of the chart with a score of 31553. This isn’t very out of the ordinary for this benchmark, as several other kits have seen similar results.

 

SiSoft Sandra

“SiSoftware Sandra provides a robust package of diagnostic tools for testing your system and teasing out its problems–or potential headaches.” – SiSoftware Sandra

We see similar results in the SiSoft memory bandwidth test as we did in Passmark, with the TOUGHRAM trending toward the bottom of the graph with a score of around 28.9 GBs.

 

Super Pi Modded 1.5

“On August 1995, the calculation of pi up to 4,294,960,000 decimal digits was succeeded by using a supercomputer at the University of Tokyo. The program was written by D.Takahashi in collaboration with Dr.Y.Kanada at the computer center. This record should be the current world record. (Details are shown in the windows help.) This record-breaking program was ported to personal computer environments such as Windows NT and Windows 95. In order to calculate 33.55 million digits, it takes 3 days with a Pentium 90 MHz, 40 MB main memory, and 340 MB available storage.” – Super Pi Modded 1.5

In the SuperPI benchmark, the TOUGHRAM RGB kit takes 3rd spot with an extremely fast time of 7 minutes and 6 seconds.

 

Overclocking

Now that all of our stock benchmarks have been completed, let’s see how much overclocking headroom this kit has. At stock, this kit runs at a speed of 3200MHz at a voltage of 1.35v with CL16-18-18-38 timings.

I went through my common overclocking process and I left the voltage at stock and slowly increased the speed until the system refused to boot. At stock voltage the TOUGHRAM kit managed to boot with a 400MHz overclock, giving us a final speed of 3600MHz. With the overclock applied I tested the stability of the kit running some consecutive runs of Cinebench R15. I did try increasing the voltage of the kit up to 1.5v too for a greater overclock, but the system still wouldn’t post past 3600MHz.

Now that we have successfully overclocked the TOUGHTRAM RGB to 3600MHz, let’s see our improvements in our read/write/copy speeds. Using the AIDA Cache & Memory Benchmark, we found improvements across the board with the stock Read/Write/Copy being 46.0/45.7/41.4 GBs, and with the overclock applied, we were able to hit 49.1/51.1/45.4 GBs. That’s an increase in performance of approximately 6.7% in read, 11.8% in write, and 9.6% in copy with no change to the kit’s voltage.

 

Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Seeing that Thermaltake has just recently entered the memory market last year, we’re thoroughly impressed with their new TOUGHRAM RGB kit. In both look and performance, the TOUGHRAM RGB’s didn’t disappoint and they even had more performance in the tank when we overclocked them to 3600MHz. The kit itself was very well built and I loved the black/silver aesthetic. The lightbar was also done tastefully adding just the right amount of light to satisfy your RGB needs.

Even though out of the box our kit was only rated for 3200MHz, we had no issues getting a little bit extra performance with a few tweaks. In the end without applying any more voltage we successfully overclocked the TOUCHRAM RGB kit to 3600MHz. This improved our read/write/copy speed across the board averaging at about 8% increase in performance.

Overall, the Thermaltake’s TOUGHRAM RGB memory looks great and does everything you would expect in a high-end kit. If you’re in the market for some new RGB memory, take a look at the TOUGHRAM RGB kit from Thermaltake.

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