Author: Frank Stroupe
Intel i7 920
Gigabyte X58-UD4P X58 motherboard
Asus Matrix geForce GTX 260 video card
BFG EX-1200 1200 watt power supply
Ikonik Ra X10 Liquid watercooled aluminum full tower
Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit
Before installing any DDR3-2000 memory into your rig, you should flash your BIOS with the latest version from your motherboard manufacturer. As often as not, the BIOS updates add compatibility with more memory, and often new tweaks are added. The test motherboard was unable to run DDR3-2000 memory with the original BIOS, but an early update gave it much more overclocking flexibility and afterward I was easily able to get memory to DDR3-2000 and above.
Be aware that if you are using an i7 920 or i7 940, you may have to overclock your processor to achieve DDR3-2000. THIS IS NOT THE FAULT OF THE MEMORY! All BIOS are not created equal. The test motherboard automatically overclocks the CPU when Intel XMP is activated, though I did have to perform further tweaks to get the rig to POST at DDR3-2000. I have been told that the i7 920 retail is not locked at a 20x multiplier, but mine is for some reason. It will achieve 21x with Intel SpeedBoost, but that’s it.
Finally, all high performance memory requires the advertised settings to be set in the BIOS, the memory will default to a lower speed until settings are performed. This is necessary in case there are issues that will prevent the rig from POSTing. Note the above paragraph.I would not have been able to get the rig to POST if the memory had defaulted at DDR3-2000, probably would have scheduled at least one RMA, then probably would have given up and used the lower speed memory. I see constantly on forums and user reviews people beating up memory for this.
Every X58 motherboard I have seen so far has the primary memory slots starting at the second slot away from the CPU, unlike LGA 775 motherboards which started at the nearest slot. Some installation manuals are a little confusing on this, just remember the memory goes into the slots that you normally wouldn’t have used.
I removed the motherboard before installing the memory and cooler, I had removed the waterblock and used the opportunity to reinstall it. The Corsair Airflow fan should be no problem installing with the motherboard already in the case.
Place the memory modules into the proper slots. Secure the fan, clamps, and thumbscrews. Observe how the clamps fit to the fan.
Start the four thumbscrews, but do not tighten them yet. Center the clamps on the fan assembly. Place the fan assembly over the memory modules with the bottoms of the clamps resting on the memory slot module locks. Firmly tighten the thumbscrews. As the screws are tightened, the clamps close on the memory modules.
Looking at the assembly, it really doesn’t look like it is that secure. I shook the motherboard, slightly jarred it, swung it around some, and found the fan very secure, it isn’t going anywhere.