This article highlights several key DDR4 features that will be critical for delivering higher performance and power efficiency within the memory subsystem. Using a dedicated DDR4 protocol analyzer such as the Teledyne LeCroy Kibra 480 allows faster analysis, verification and tuning of key system operating parameters.
The new DDR4 standard represents a substantial upgrade to JEDEC’s dynamic random access memory (DRAM) standard, with numerous changes designed to lower power consumption while delivering higher density and bandwidth within the memory subsystem.
DDR developers are targeting this new technology at a range of applications from high density blade servers, to high performance workstations to power-conscious mobile devices. Deploying general purpose memory in systems with specialized power and performance requirements mean the designer must evaluate the cost/benefit of these new DDR4 features within the context of the target application. New techniques for analyzing and testing DDR operation in a live system will be essential to gain this visibility. Balancing the promise of faster memory IO with the goal of lower power consumption at the system level will require tuning of features, timing, and design.
DDR4 is expected to deliver significantly higher performance via faster data transfer rates reaching at least 3200 MT/s over time. In addition, the new specification introduces a number of enhancements used to improve both power efficiency and reliability. These features can add significant verification for system designers, firmware developers and software designers. As one would expect, engineers are expected to march through the natural progression of the technology validation including signal integrity, timing analysis and specification compliance, performance tuning and power management modeling.
This article explores methods to verify initial design and compliance with the new DDR4 JEDEC specifications along with techniques used to take advantage of DDR4 features to maximize system performance. While there are many potential instruments that can be used, a new generation of dedicated DDR bus analyzers now provide comprehensive timing and protocol analysis making them an important tool for accelerating DDR4 system validation and design. Substantially lower in cost than a logic analyzer, these systems can be used to qualify different memory DIMM components, as well as help sustaining engineering groups verify system operations over the entire product life cycle.
Click here for the complete article and read more about:
– DDR4 Technical Overview
– Managing DDR4 JEDEC Specifications
– DDR4 Configuration Starts with MRS Commands
– Maximizing DDR4 System Performance