(PRODUCT MANAGER OF DRAM AT CRUCIAL)
Welcome to Impulse Gamer!
Tell us about you become involved in Ballistix?
was fortunate enough to become Product Manager of DRAM at Crucial several years
ago, which included the Ballistix high-performance DRAM product line. The
Ballistix product line is my personal favourite, as Iíve been a gamer and
technology enthusiast since I was young and so itís been a hobby of mine for
What kind of gamer are you?
got my start in PC gaming many years ago Ė I wonít tell you how old I was, but
letís just say PC monitors only had 16 colours or less back then. I still enjoy
the nostalgia of retro games (including emulators), but I now like many of the
newer independent titles, FPS, and RTS games too. I also particularly enjoy
co-op mode games that I can play online with friends and family.
Tell us what you are most excited about with
your new range of products?
have two new additions to our high-performance line of DRAM Ė Ballistix Sport XT
and Ballistix Sport SODIMMs. Both provide higher speeds and lower latencies
than standard modules, and theyíre also armed with several additional features.
Ballistix Sport XT, for example, has really aggressive styling that complements
popular gaming motherboards. Itís also faster than our standard Sport modules
with speeds up to 1866 MHz.
terms of the new Ballistix Sport SODIMMs, Iím looking forward to utilising them
in the new Haswell-based gaming laptops that have recently hit the market. These
modules feature speeds up to 1866 MHz, which helps increase frame rates on new
laptops that utilise integrated GPU. Not only are these modules faster than
standard SODIMMs, they offer lower latencies, too. In terms of increased energy
efficiency, Ballistix Sport SODIMMs have the ability to support
1.35V, which results in reduced power consumption Ė and longer battery life.
How did your company boost performance for
At Crucial, we have a proven track-record of offering high-performance memory
offerings going back to DDR. As our memory offerings have evolved from DDR2 to
DDR3, and now looking forward to DDR4 in the near future, we consistently strive
to provide memory with higher speeds, lower latencies, and extra bandwidth to
reduce any memory bottlenecks and provide a more responsive system. Even with
early DDR high-performance memory, Crucial has had a history of helping gamers
push their system performance to the limit through the ability to over-clock
DRAM. When combined with fast CPUs, GPUs, and SSDs, Crucial Ballistix memory
enables systems to reach their maximum performance level for a better gaming
experience including faster load times, higher frame rates, and better overall
What do you think your products offer that
other companies don't to gamers?
We offer a wide range of products for the novice gamer to the extreme
over-clocker. Where some companies limit their testing or motherboard list to
just a single chipset or configuration, we test a wide range of chipsets (old
and new) to ensure the best compatibility for someone upgrading an older gaming
rig all the way up to a brand new system build. We also offer one-of-a-kind
products like the Ballistix Tactical Tracer, the only module that has
multicolour activity-indicating LEDs that the user can control via a software
With the ability to change colours, select a preset pattern, monitor
temperatures, turn LEDs on or off, and more, it is truly a specialty product.
Our Ballistix Elite modules offer a temperature sensor, so when theyíre combined
with our Ballistix M.O.D. utility, users can see module temperature in real
time. The same M.O.D. utility allows the user to control Ballistix Tactical
Tracer memory too. At Crucial, we strive to provide exceptional, unique memory
offerings with the highest degree of reliability available to users.
Name a challenge that your company faces when
One challenge we face when developing Ballistix products is the ever-changing
technology landscape in the PC marketplace. Whether itís new platforms and
chipsets hitting the market, major technology transitions (DDR3->DDR4), or
trying to obtain the fastest speeds, we strive to build and develop products
that will be suitable for a wide range of users while ensuring the best
performance, compatibility, and reliability. Our endeavour to stay on the
forefront of technology requires many engineering resources, time, and support
all throughout the product lifecycle.
In your experience, is it possible to play
games on a laptop?
Absolutely! With the latest mobile platforms, powerful processors and discrete
graphics, itís possible to run most PC-intensive games at higher resolutions and
fantastic frame rates. Combined with our new Ballistix Sport SODIMMs, gamers
can have a portable gaming system they can take just about anywhere. Actually,
these systems have been out for several years now, but for a price of course.
My son and I recently attended a LAN event where we brought a 17Ē gaming laptop
for him to use, and it was much easier to travel with. He was able to play the
latest games with no problem, and had a great time!
If gamers want to upgrade their gaming rigs,
where should they start?
Great question! Sometimes the best upgrades are also the easiest to install. We
all know that gaming performance comes down to CPU, GPU, memory, and storage
speed. Depending on the current system configuration, it may be easiest to
upgrade memory if thereís only a couple of GB of DRAM installed. With a memory
upgrade, there are no drivers and depending on the case, tools may not even be
required. A GPU upgrade is a big benefit if thereís an older graphics card
installed, as again it is relatively easy to install and only requires a driver
update to be up and running. An SSD is one of the best options for a
performance upgrade, providing great game load times, system boot speed, and
noticeable improvement in overall system response time too. An SSD is a great
choice for those willing to convert. Crucial offers a software option that
clones the current system and enables users to easily backup and restore their
OS to their new SSD. With over 250,000 upgrade options available, Crucial has
memory and SSD upgrades for nearly any system.
What do you think is the most important element
in a PC for gamers?
If weíre talking about PC components and also taking budget into account, Iíd
have to say the GPU can have the biggest impact on frame rates and the user
gaming experience. With that said, itís important that the other system
components can handle the load too, and thatís where having the right amount of
memory and a fast SSD will boost your PC performance.
Lastly, what are you playing at the moment?
Right now, Iím taking advantage of some recent deals on Steam, catching up and
finishing Borderlands 2 in co-op mode, playing FEZ and a few other titles with
my younger kids. I also made a custom-built arcade cabinet that I occasionally
fire up to play some old school classics.