SK Hynix releases details on the upcoming DDR5-6400 RAM standard
The DDR5 standard is almost upon us, and Samsung, SK Hynix and Micron are readying their manufacturing facilities for production. It looks like SK Hynix could be the first to release DDR5 modules, as the company recently presented additional details on its upcoming 16 Gb DDR5-6400 memory chips at the International Solid State Circuits Conference. SK Hynix already revealed a few general specs last year, including the 10 nm 4-metal manufacturing process and theoretical speeds of up to 6.4 Gbps/pin at 1.1 V (6400 MT/s), but now, the new information focuses on structure and density.
First of all, the die size is set at 76.22 square mm, so it is towards the higher end of historical DRAM die sizes. For 16 Gb chips, this means that the manufacturing prices will be quite high, but the 8 Gb version should be more cost effective than the current DDR4 chips. The structure of the 16 Gb chip includes 32 banks or 8 bank groups of 4 banks each.
Since the new standard is operating at double the current 3.2 GHz frequencies, the memory chip performance could be affected by increased clock jitter and clock duty cycle distortion. In order to reduce these problems, SK Hynix had to implement additional circuitry including a new delay-locked loop (DLL) that uses a phase rotator and an injection locked oscillator, plus a new forward feedback equalizer (FFE).
The first DDR5 RAM modules were supposed to launch in early 2019, but, apparently, the market was not ready for this. Granted, neither AMD, nor Intel have announced any DDR5 support for now. Thus, the first DDR5 modules will most likely launch in late 2019 and will be sold to enterprise customers, while the consumer versions should be launched in 2020.
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