Topower Black-X DDR3 1600Mhz Memory Review

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As the demand for enthusiast level computing products continues to grow it seems everyone is jumping in to the game. Topower is no exception with their recent addition of enthusiast level memory and power supply products. Today we will be looking at a DDR3 1600Mhz 2X4Gb kit from their Black-X series of memory (Part#BD316008GK16). Touted by Topower as being suitable for the gaming market, the budding enthusiasts, and multimedia graphic industries we will take it for a spin and see if it lives up to it’s billing.

About Topower

“Topower Products are dedicated to bringing you the latest technology in power supplies and hardwares as it becomes available and to offer a variety of solutions to combat the growing concern of energy efficiency and system stability.

At Topower we continually strive for success and quality products. To improve and develop a wide range of computer products, we have invested heavily in our quality manufacturing process and Research & Development.

Our objective is to provide top quality products for national distributors as well as for ODM and OEM clients. Our focus is to build on the current success of Topower brand so that our brand is recognized world wide as a provider of top quality computing solutions. We will continue to work to maintain the satisfaction of our customers and share the knowledge of our experts – Topower “Dare to be different”


The Topower Black-X memory comes packaged in a black and amber colored box with the company name and very few details about the product inside. There are no specifications printed on the box in regards to voltage requirements, timings or even the speed of the memory. The sticker attached to the memory is visible through the two window cut outs and does give mention to it being an 8Gb kit and 1600Mhz. It would be nice to see a little more detail on the memory specifications either on the box or the applied sticker, or better yet on both.

The back of the box makes mention of the lifetime warranty, a support e-mail address and the physical company location address in Taiwan. Even though on Topower’s web site they call this memory “Black-X”, that name is nowhere to be found on the packaging or the memory itself, they simply call it “Black”.

Removing the product from the box finds the memory securely packaged in a plastic holder, thus ensuring the product will arrive to the end user in good condition,

The next few pictures are of the modules up close showing the black and gold themed heat spreaders applied to the memory. The heat spreaders have no fins and are no taller than the memory itself. The low profile of the heat spreaders should allow for easy installation and clearance regardless of the CPU cooler used. The stickers applied to the modules have the model number and reference to being DDR3 1600 but as mentioned above there is no mention of voltage values or rated timings.


Without much in the way of specifications provided with the product, we fired off an e-mail to Topower support to get what we could from them. Topower’s support was very timely in their response which was nice to see, we had a response within a few hours of the inquiry. From the information we received from Topower support and anything else we could drudge up, we compiled the following:

Topower BD316008GK16 Black DDR3-1600 Specifications

Timings at 1600Mhz 9-9-9-24-2T 1.65v
Timings at 1333Mhz 9-9-9-24-1T 1.5v
Speed DDR3 1600Mhz
Size 2X4Gbg Kit (8 Gb Total)
Voltage Range 1.5v ~ 1.65v
Type 240 Pin Non-ECC Un-Buffered
Warranty Lifetime

We were told by Topower support that the 1600Mhz speed may work at 1.5v (motherboard dependent) and to try that before raising to 1.65v, so as the testing process moves forward we will try that out.


Our reply from Topower Tech Support instructed us to use timings of 9-9-9-24 and a command rate of 2T and to try those settings anywhere from 1.5v to 1.65v. Being that we are testing this Topower Black-X kit on the Sandy Bridge platform we decided to give the 1.5v setting a try. While 1.65v memory should run without issues on the Sandy Bridge platform it’s well documented that the best option is a 1.5v kit. To further push the envelope we set the command rate to 1T instead of the recommended 2T. At these settings the Topower Black-X BD316008GK16 kit had no problem running all the benchmarks we could throw at it as well as completing an hour of Prime95 blend test. It appears that Topower underestimated the potential of the memory at 1.5v in there response to us, but this is great news!

We pulled a few G.Skill memory kits from the on-hand inventory to compare against the Topower kit we are reviewing today. Two of the G.SKill kits are rated for DDR3 2000 speeds and are of the 2X2Gb variety. The other G.Skill kit is DDR3 1867 and a 8Gb kit. We set all of the kits at 1600Mhz during the benchmarking runs for a fair comparison. Here are the kits tested for this review:

  • Topower Black-X DDR3 1600Mhz (BD316008GK16) 9-9-9-24 1T 2X4Gb
  • G.Skill Ripjaw-X DDR3 1867Mhz (F3-14900-CL9-8GBXL) 9-10-9-28 1T 2X4Gb
  • G.SKill Ripjaws DDR3 2000Mhz (F3-16000CL9-4GBRH) 9-9-9-27 1T 2X2Gb
  • G.SKill Trident DDR3 2000Mhz (F3-16000CL9D-4GBTD) 9-9-9-27 1T 2X2Gb

The rest of the testing system was comprised of the following:

  • EVGA P67 FTW Motherboard
  • i7 2600K Overclocked to 4.5Ghz
  • OCZ Vertex 2 240Gb SSD
  • Corsair TX850W Power Supply

We’ll start off the benchmarks with some compression and rendering tests using WinRar and Cinebench 11.5. As we weave our way through all the benchmark results you will find that the G.Skill Trident memory will perform better in most of the tests we are running today, but that comes at a much steeper price (50% or more) than the other kits. The Topower kit, the G.SKill Ripjaw-X and the G.Skill Ripjaws are all priced pretty close to each other, so keep this in mind as you review the results. As you navigate through the test results, click on any image to get a larger view.

The WinRar compression test clearly shows the Topower Black-X kit can hold it’s own against the G.Skill kits priced similarly and actually beat out both of those. The Trident kit was ahead of the pack, but only by a slight margin. The Cinebench 11.5 OpenGL test showed very little difference between all four kits and the same can be said for the Cinebench CPU test, with all four kits scoring in the 56 range.

Next up is a run of wPrime 32M and 1024M. In the 32M test the Trident just barely beat out the Topower kit but not near enough to justify the price difference! In the wPrime 1024M test the Topower actually beat the Trident kit lending even more credence to it’s value.

SuperPI 1M and 32M testing was next on the list and as expected the Topower kit showed very good results. There was very little difference here between all four of the kits we tested with less than a half of a second between them all in the 1M test. In the 32M test the Topower Black-X beat out both comparably priced kits and fell just short of the Trident kit. Another great showing by the Black-X!

Our final set of tests include AIDA64 and MaxxMex. These two benchmarks will test the memory copy, read, write and latency performance. First let’s have a look at the MaxxMem results. The memory write test is where the Topower Black-X shined the most, beating the Trident by a substantial margin. The rest of the MaxxMem tests were as expected with little difference between the four kits and the Topower Black-X holding it’s own against the competition.

The AIDA64 set of memory tests will again test the read, write, copy and latency performance. Again the Topower Black-X kit shows a lot of strength in these tests. The Topower Black-X kit beat the Ripjaw-X kit in all four tests here and was almost identical to the Ripjaw kit. While the Trident kit scored a tad better the margin was extremely thin in all tests.

Something worth noting during this benchmark testing is that only one other G.SKill kit is also a 2X4Gb kit like the Black-X, that being the Ripjaw-X kit. If you truly want to compare apples to apples, then looking at the two 2X4Gb kit shows the Topower Black-X kit coming out on top in almost every test we ran.


Because we are using a Sandy Bridge platform the overclocking is pretty much limited to the memory ratios available in BIOS. Sure, you can make minor adjustments in the BCLK before stability issues become a major problem but we decided to just set the divider to 1866 and see if we could get that stable. Topower states this memory is overclockable and they were right! It took a little effort but we were able to get the memory stable enough to run the full battery of tests again. We needed to boost the memory voltage to right at 1.7v, raise the VCCIO a few notches and set the timings to 10-10-10-27 2T in order to stabilize things, but it was doable. The table below shows the benchmark scores before and after the overclock.




WinRar 3872 3963
Cennebench OpenGL 56.52 56.52
Cinebench  CPU 8.76 8.76
MaxxMem Copy 22592 24732
MaxxMem Read 20643 22687
MaxxMem Write 21764 22406
MaxxMem Latency 50.2 NS 48.2 NS
SuperPI 32M 466.597 Sec 466.024 Sec
SuperPI 1M 8.331 Sec 8.315 Sec
wPrime 10247M 191.927 Sec 191.394 Sec
wPrime 32M 6.24 Sec 6.24 Sec
AIDA64 Copy 21936 24421
AIDA64 Read 19646 21404
AIDA64 Write 22135 22745
AIDA64 Latency 45.4 NS 45.0 NS

The only gains of note were in copy/read/write/latency scores and the WinRar compression test. The rest of the testing showing minimal, if any gains at all. This is due to those tests being more CPU dependent than memory. Still some nice increases in the AIDA64 and MaxxMem testing were had with the overclocked setting.

Of course everyone’s system is going to be different, but we suppose with some tweaking and a little patience these Topower Black-X modules can be made to run very stable at 1866Mhz on just about any system.


When most computer enthusiasts think about memory, the brands that come to mind do not usually include Topower. Being new on the enthusiast scene, Topower is aiming to change that mind-set and this particular set of Black-X memory should go a long way toward achieving that goal. The memory looks sharp, easily runs at advertised speeds at a low 1.5 volts, and overclocks very well. Our benchmark results show an advantage over a like 2X4Gb kit from G.Skill, a company well entrenched in the enthusiast market. At a current MSRP of just $69.99 you not only get great performance, but a great price as well.

If you are interested in purchasing Topower memory it is recommended to contact Digital Supply Direct or Directron. Digital Supply Direct has the kit available through their Amazon Store Front. Reseller and Distribution inquiries should be directed towards Topower Memory directly, or you can contact Gary Faircloth who is the USA/Europe Regional Representative at [email protected]


  • Good Looks
  • Low Profile
  • Excellent Overclocking Potential
  • Runs at Rates Speeds at Lower Than Advertised Specs
  • XMP Ready
  • 1.5v to 1.65v Range to Accommodate Current Chipset Requirements
  • AMD Overdrive Certified


  • Lack of Product Specifications On Web Site/Packaging/Applied Stickers
  • Limited Availability

The Topower Black-X memory is a great choice for just about any current platform, both AMD and Intel. The performance and overclocking potential make the Black-X very appealing to any computer enthusiast and would be a great choice for your next build. If you are in the market for a great set of DDR3 1600Mhz memory from a company that will have the big boys looking over their shoulder, then the Topower Black-X memory needs to be on your short list of options. The Topower Black-X (BD316008GK16) has earned a 9/10 and the accompanying Gold Award!

Dino DeCesari (Lvcoyote)

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