The days when flashing LEDs were confused for some sort of style statement by component manufacturers are for the most part behind us, but there is one piece of illuminated kit that was worth indulging in. Crucial's Ballistix Tracer RAM graced any PC with its activity lights, which strobed on and off along the length of a DDR2 module to indicate activity.
After a brief haitus which began after the introduction of DDR3 – in the UK at least, it looks like the older style Tracer modules have continued to be available in the US – Crucial is relaunching its Orac -inspired RAM, and about time too.
This may be old news for some, but I'm just clearing through a load of Christmas period emails and stumbled across a message from UK retail site Overclockers which has bagged an exclusive on the new Tracer sticks. On sale now, an 8GB kit of Ballistix Tactical Tracer (as it has been newly branded) will cost you just under £65 – a reasonable price considering it's specced to run at 1600MHz with tight 8-8-8-24 timings.
You'll need to manually set it to the optimal speed as the SPD is set for 1333MHz, or use the built in XMP profile with an Intel motherboard, but even at the default setting it's only around £10 more expensive than competitive kits.
Besides the decent performance, there's also extra lights. The sticks are available with Blue/Orange or Red/Green lines of LEDs on the top, and an extra row of 'ground effect' bulbs on the bottom. Using Crucial's MOD software utility you can also alter the blinking pattern, colour and brightness from within Windows. There's also a temperature sensor under the heat spreader which will report to MOD.
The Tactical Tracer modules were originally shown off back at the Intel Developer Forum back in the autumn, and will apparently be going on sale elsewhere soon.
If you have a windowed case, it's almost a must buy.