Micron has updated consumers on the progress of its GDDR5X memory standard. According to Micron, the testing phase is currently showing positive results and certain components are already being manufactured. In addition to that, Micron has also mentioned that it is aiming to mass produce the memory standard come summer this year. GDDR5X is a successor to the already ageing GDDR5 memory standard. Although not as powerful as the upcoming HBM2 technology, GDDR5X does, instead, provide a more economical choice for PC enthusiasts.
GDDR5X was first unveiled to the public on September 2015. Back then, Micron revealed little details about its upcoming memory standard. Interestingly, a few months ago, Micron approached JEDEC – an independent semiconductor trade organisation – regarding making GDDR5X a universal standard.
What makes GDDR5X interesting is the fact that it has twice the bandwidth speed (up to 14Gbps) of a standard GDDR5 memory. As of now, the fastest GDDR5 bandwidth speed availble is only about 7Gbps, although Micron did mention that GDDR5 speeds could reach 8Gbps as well.
Of course, not being as powerful as the highly anticipated HBM2 technology would mean that GDDR5X memory standard will be implemented on mid to low-end graphics cards instead, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Budget-oriented PC enthusiasts and gamers usually tend to opt for the more “value for money” graphics cards that deliver up to par performance without carrying a hefty price tag.
That being said, one may assume that either – if not both – Nvidia and AMD will be unveiling new graphics cards with GDDR5X memory sometime this year. However, it must be said that since GDDR5X is a relatively new memory standard, prices for graphics cards using this standard should be slightly higher compared to the GDDR5 variants. Regardless, with the upcoming release of Pascal and Polaris-based GPUs, 2016 is shaping up to be one interesting year for GPU enthusiasts and gamers as well.