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G.Skill Trident Z 3000MHz 16GB Kit Review

January 12th, 2016 James Leave a comment Go to comments



It’s been some time since we last looked at Memory/RAM, especially DDR4, in fact we took a look at some modules when we were tested DDR4 on X99 prior to the launch of Skylake. Well now it’s all about DDR4 as Skylake doesn’t support DDR3! Today I will be taking a look at a new Range of RAM modules from G.Skill in the form of this G.Skill TridentZ 3000MHz 16GB Kit (F4-3000C15D-16GTZB).

This Dual Channel 16GB kit comprises of two 8GB modules with a rated maximum speed of 3000MHz and that actually makes it the fastest memory modules we’ve seen here at pcG! But bear in mind that Trident Z modules are available at up to a whopping 4266MHZ! These 3000MHz modules support Intel XMP 2.0 (Extreme Memory Profile) and are equipped with timings of 15-16-16-35 @ 1.35v. In addition to this the RAM modules are also equipped with a Lifetime Warranty.


G.Skill Logo
‘Building on the strong success of G.SKILL Trident series, Trident Z series represents one of the world’s highest performance DDR4 memory designed for the latest 6th generation Intel® Core™ processor on the Z170 series chipset. Using only the best-in-class components and featuring dual-color construction aluminum heat-spreaders, Trident Z series is the state-of-the-art DDR4 solution that combines performance and beauty for PC enthusiasts and extreme overclockers to build an ultra-fast PC or achieve new overclocking records.’


G.Skill Trident Z - box front G.Skill Trident Z - box back


The G.Skill Trident Z 3000MHz 16GB Kit arrived at pcG in a smart looking glossy, predominately black box enbalzened with an oversized Z. The front of the box highlights the brand, the product name and its DDR4 signature as well as G.Skill’s tag line ‘Performance for the Truly Extreme’. In addition to this there’s a couple of images of the modules themselves as well as an an Intel Core Inside logo in the bottom right.

The back of the box features the same tag line as the front and also a long description of the Trident Z modules as well as a sentence highlighting G.Skill’s Lifetime Warranty and high levels of support!


G.Skill Trident Z - packaging G.Skill Trident Z - packaging open


On opening the box we find that the two modules are protected within a plastic wallet. The sides of the wallet simply clip together making for some trouble free packaging, for a change! Within the plastic wallet we find the modules themselves and a small G.Skill sticker, of course! 😉

At the time of review, the G.Skill Trident Z 3000MHz 16GB Kit (F4-3000C15D-16GTZB) is available from Amazon for approximately £111 and comes with a lifetime warranty.



courtesy of G.Skill

Series Trident Z
Memory Type DDR4
Capacity 16GB (8GBx2)
Multi-Channel Kit Dual Channel Kit
Tested Speed 3000MHz
Tested Latency 15-16-16-35-2N
Tested Voltage 1.35v
Registered/Unbuffered Unbuffered
Error Checking Non-ECC
SPD Speed 2133MHz
SPD Voltage 1.20v
Fan lncluded No
Height 44 mm / 1.73 inch
Warranty Limited Lifetime
Features Intel XMP 2.0 (Extreme Memory Profile) Ready

* Additional details available here



First Impressions


G.Skill Trident Z


First impressions of the G.Skill Trident Z modules are along the lines of; these are some of the best looking modules that I’ve seen! Yes, really they are, the design is unique and striking and I’m sure my photos don’t do them justice. As a slight downside though (and I’ll tell you now to put you out of your misery) there’s no illumination! 🙁


G.Skill Trident Z - front G.Skill Trident Z - back


Luckily though there’s an argument for these Trident Z modules not having illumination as they really look so damn nice as they are. The front of the module is dominated by a brushed aluminium heatsink with a groove about half way across the surface (odd that it’s not inline with the PCB cutout though!). Although once the module is fitted this becomes somewhat irrelevant! Top left we see a nice simple white G.Skill logo on the red plastic section, while on the right we have the Trident Z name and a couple of aggressive looking slices removed from the top of the heatsink. The quality of the machining is very high as is the grainy surface of the aluminium itself. The material is also surprisingly thick, giving the module a weighty, quality feel.

The backs of the modules in contrast, feature the same design as the front, but the heatsink on this side has been anodized black. This two tone effect is really rather cool and I really like the overall aesthetic the modules have. Unfortunately, on this side we have the specifications sticker and (somewhat annoyingly) we also find the words ‘Warranty Void if Removed’, really!?


G.Skill Trident Z - back & front G.Skill Trident Z - top


Unfortunately the images really don’t show off these modules to their full potential, they’re really nicely made and a I really rather like the Ying/Yang Silver/Black design. This colouring also means that these modules are likely to fit in well with many Rig designs.

But what really sets the G.Skill Trident Z modules off from any other on the market is the tops, and let’s be fair that’s the bit you see! Hopefully the image above right goes some way as to why these modules look so cool. The interleaved red plastic section that sits on each side is flanked by both the black and silver sections of the heatsink. Add to this the fin effect that’s set at opposing angles to one another, and we end up with one of the most unique modules I’ve come across! Well done G.Skill, that’s an A+ for design… 😉


Hardware Installation


To install the G.Skill Trident Z modules could not be easier and it is basically the same as installing any other memory modules. Just line up the slot in the connector to the motherboard DIMM slot and carefully push into place. Although the angled tops do make it a little more difficult than usual, good job they’re not too sharp eh! 😮


G.Skill Trident Z - installed


As you can see despite the modules being relatively tall at approximately 44mm, there was still no clearance problems with our ASRock Fatal1ty Z170 Gaming K6 and Noctua NH-U12S setup. Having said that if we were to have had four modules thing would have gotten very tight. I did try it though and they all fitted, just! You might want to check your Motherboard/CPU Cooler setup before purchasing this RAM…


G.Skill TridentZ - installed (side) G.Skill TridentZ - installed (front) G.Skill TridentZ - installed (above)


As you can see from the images above the G.Skill Trident Z modules look very good indeed and complement our test ASRock Fatal1ty Z170 Gaming K6 motherboard well. It’s a shame that the same cant be said for the Noctua NH-U12S CPU Cooler, damn that brown colour… 😉


  • Test Rig Setup

Case Cooler Master HAF XB Power Supply Corsair AX760i 760W
Motherboard ASRock Fatal1ty Z170 GAMING K6 CPU Intel Core i5 6600K
CPU Cooler Noctua NH-U12S RAM G.Skill Trident Z 3000MHz 16GB
Graphics Card EVGA GeForce GTX 980Ti Classified SSD HyperX FURY 120GB


I had no problem booting up my Test Rig and after an initial boot I went into the ASRock UEFI to check the settings for the G.Skill Trident Z 3000MHz modules. You can see from the screenshot below that the two modules were in RAM slots A2 and B2 and they were running at they default frequency of 2133MHz. To rectify this problem and to get the modules running at their maximum speed of 3000MHz, I needed to enable the XMP Profile.

This was done within the OC Tweaker section of the UEFI, where the setting (Load XMP Setting) was modified to XMP 2.0 Profile 1, see screenshot above right. In this screen shot you can also see the Profile listed above the Load XMP Setting – XMP 2.0 Profile 1: DDR4-3000 15-16-15-35 1.35V. Job done! 🙂


G.Skill TridentZ - UEFI G.Skill TridentZ - XMP


Testing Methodology/Setup


The G.Skill Trident Z 3000MHz 16GB Kit was tested on our new Z170 (Skylake) based platform shown above, using Windows 10 64Bit with all relevant Drivers installed. Prime95 (Blend) was used to test stability and the following benchmarks were also used.


Hardware Performance


G.Skill TridentZ AIDA64


  • AIDA64 Benchmark Results
  • Memory Type Platform Read Write Copy Latency
    Patriot Viper DDR4 2400MHz 16GB Kit @ 15-15-15-35 DDR4 X99 40550 37050 45891 71.9 ns
    G.Skill Ripjaws DDR4 2400MHz 16GB Kit @ 15-15-15-35 DDR4 X99 (Quad) 40502 36974 45615 72.0 ns
    G.Skill TridentZ DDR4 3000MHz 16GB DDR4 Z170 42559 44605 40599 53.2 ns
    Crucial Ballistix Elite DDDR4 2666MHz 16GB Kit @ 16-17-17-36 DDR4 X99 35829 19186 32148 73.9 ns
    G.Skill Ripjaws DDR4 2400MHz 8GB Kit @ 15-15-15-35 DDR4 Z170 34439 35588 31274 55.3 ns
    Corsair Dominator Platinum DDR3 2133MHz 16GB Kit @ 9-11-11-31 DDR3 Z97 32180 33437 31298 48.9 ns
    HyperX Savage DDR3 2400MHz 8GB @ 11-13-14-32 DDR3 Z97 33409 34811 29523 48.9 ns
    Avexir Raiden Series DDR3 2133MHz 8GB Kit @ 9-11-10-27 DDR3 Z97 30478 31445 28178 48.9 ns


    I have left the DDR3 RAM results in the benchmark results table for comparison purposes as obviously much has changed here (new MB, new CPU and obviously new RAM). The G.Skill Trident Z modules basically split the X99 based tests in half showing that the performance of these modules is better than the outgoing Z97 but still cannot compete with an X99 based setup, despite the memory speed advantage.

    Looking at the results for the AIDA64 memory benchmark you can see that the G.Skill Trident Z 3000MHz modules do indeed perform better than all of the tested Z97 modules and in some cases outperform some of the modules tested on an X99 platform. But the real test here is how the modules perform on the Z170 platform against our test modules of choice, the G.Skill Ripjaws 4 2400MHz 8GB kit. And as you can see (when looking at the combined Copy results) the Trident Z modules do indeed perform well thanks mainly to that 3000MHz speed. But what does this mean when it comes to Gaming, will this higher memory bandwidth make my Games run faster?


  • Gaming Related Benchmarks

    Memory 3DMark (FireStrike Extreme) Unigine Heaven Metro Last Light
    G.Skill TridentZ 3000MHz 16GB 8037 1093 121.00
    G.Skill Ripjaws DDR4 2400MHz 8GB 8023 1097 117.00


    Does more memory (over 8GB) and or faster memory mean you will get better FPS in Games? Well, we’ve looked at this before and as a rule of thumb it’s safer to say No rather than Yes! Why? Well because it depends on the Game, as you can see from the data above in two of the tests the performance of the 3000MHz Trident Z modules shone through, but in one of the pure GPU intensive tests (Unigine Heaven) there was no discernible difference in the results! The bottom line here is, if you want the best (and you’re willing to pay!) then faster Memory/RAM modules are better, but whether that’s really going to give you a noticeable difference in Game, well that’s still unlikely I’m afraid. As the difference between 121 FPS and 117 is hard to detect, but for some (including me) it’s still nice to know that it’s there… 😉


    Final Thoughts


    Memory/RAM is simply not as interesting as it used to be some 5 years ago, but with the Trident Z modules G.Skill have genuinely injected some new life into this component. The Trident Z modules are simply some of the coolest looking and well made made modules I’ve seen. And if you’re looking for the best, they’re fast too!

    The G.Skill TridentZ 3000MHz 16GB Kit arrived at pcG in a smart looking glossy box, with the modules within well packaged. It was also nice to see RAM supplied in frustration free packaging (no scissors needed) too! Once out of the box the sheer quality of the G.Skill Trident Z modules became obvious, and I have to say that I was surprised at just how nice (bad word!) these modules actually are. This is mainly down to the unusual two tone (black/silver) design, the weight and the quality of the modules themselves. I’m happy to say that the Trident Z’s are some of the coolest looking modules I’ve seen. The only possible downside is that at approximately 44mm tall, the modules are somewhat on the tall side. If fitting a Air CPU Cooler you may want to do some checks first to ensure compatibility.

    So they look good but how well do they perform, well thanks to their rated speed of 3000MHz (up to 4266MHz available!), they should perform pretty well, and they do! In our benchmarks the G.Skill Trident Z modules outperformed our test G.Skill Ripjaws 4 modules with ease. The Aida 64 benchmark showed a significant increase in bandwidth with a total Copy speed of 40599 MB/s. But as we always ask here at pcG, what does this mean to Gaming performance?

    Well there’s some discernible difference especially in the Metro Last Light test, but you’ll you’d be hard pushed to tell in Game if you were running our stock (2400MHz) modules or the Trident 3000MHz modules. Unfortunately that’s just the way it is…

    But, that doesn’t mean that the performance isn’t there as it is, and if you want the best in performance these 3000MHz modules, or some of the higher rated Trident Z modules may well be for you. But one thing is for sure the Trident Z modules are one of the best looking RAM modules that I’ve seen. And that, simply makes them desirable…



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    Where possible we always use Amazon’s price for Value…
      Design/Quality pcGameware awards the G.Skill Trident Z 3000MHz 16GB Kit a Gold


    Many thanks to G.Skill for providing this sample for review


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