Despite being one of the more seasoned hardware brands in the industry, most casual users have never heard of Colorful. It’s hard to blame them as colorful products are rarely available outside of the Chinese market. In recent times, Colorful has made an effort to get out of its comfort zone, and proof of that is the availability of Colorful graphics cards from US retailer Newegg. Like countless other hardware brands, Colorful has ventured into several hardware segments, including the memory market. While the company has a number of memory kits, the iGame series offers a decent range of memory kits that could soon be competing for a spot on our best RAM list.
It’s easy to see that Colorful’s iGame Vulcan memory is aimed at white builds – the memory modules come with a white PCB and a matching aluminum heat spreader. Colorful has opted for a design consisting of geometric lines with matching silver accents. The outside of the iGame Vulcan looks clean and the only traces of marketing come in the form of the iGame logos.
The iGame Vulcan memory module has an irregular RGB diffuser, so it’s a little tricky to measure. The iGame Vulcan measures 48.75 mm (1.92 inches) high at its lowest point and 49.40 mm (1.94 inches) at its highest point. Unfortunately, Colorful does not supply software to control the RGB lighting, but we think that’s a pro because you can simply use the software from your motherboard. The memory module’s RGB lighting is compatible with Asus Aura Sync, ASRock Polychrome, Gigabyte RGB Fusion, and MSI Mystic Light.
The iGame Vulcan memory modules come with a capacity of 8 GB and a single-rank design. Two memory modules make up the dual-channel 16GB memory kit. Colorful has equipped the memory modules with Samsung’s acclaimed K4A8G085WB-BCPB (B-die) integrated circuits (ICs), which are still the ICs of choice for many enthusiasts and overclockers.
Right out of the box, the memory runs on DDR4-2133 with 15-15-15-36 timings. When XMP is enabled or the memory is configured correctly, it will run on DDR4-4266 with the timing set to 18-19-19-39 and draw 1.4V. For more information on timing and frequency considerations, see our PC Memory 101 feature, as well as our story on how to buy RAM.
|Memory Kit||part number||Capacity||data rate||Primary times||Tension||Guarantee|
|Thermaltake ToughRAM XG RGB||R016D408GX2-4600C19A||2x 8GB||DDR4-4600 (XMP)||19-26-26-45 (2T)||1.50||Lifetime|
|Thermaltake ToughRAM RGB||R009D408GX2-4600C19A||2x 8GB||DDR4-4600 (XMP)||19-26-26-45 (2T)||1.50||Lifetime|
|Predator Apollo RGB||BL.9BWWR.255||2x 8GB||DDR4-4500 (XMP)||19-19-19-39 (2T)||1.45||Lifetime|
|GeIL Orion RGB AMD Edition||GAOSR416GB4400C18ADC||2x 8GB||DDR4-4400 (XMP)||18-24-24-44 (2T)||1.45||Lifetime|
|Patriot Viper 4 Blackout||PVB416G440C8K||2x 8GB||DDR4-4400 (XMP)||18-26-26-46 (2T)||1.45||Lifetime|
|Colorful iGame Vulcan||IGPC08G4266D4R8||2x 8GB||DDR4-4266 (XMP)||18-19-19-39 (2T)||1.40||Lifetime|
|TeamGroup T-Force Dark Z FPS||TDZFD416G4000HC16CDC01||2x 8GB||DDR4-4000 (XMP)||16-18-18-38 (2T)||1.45||Lifetime|
|Klevv Cras XR||KD48GU880-40B190Z||2x 8GB||DDR4-4000 (XMP)||19-25-25-45 (2T)||1.40||Lifetime|
|Thermaltake ToughRAM XG RGB||R016D408GX2-4000C19A||2x 8GB||DDR4-4000 (XMP)||19-26-26-45 (2T)||1.45||Lifetime|
|TeamGroup T-Force Xtreme ARGB||TF10D416G3600HC14CDC01||2x 8GB||DDR4-3600 (XMP)||14-15-15-35 (2T)||1.45||Lifetime|
The Intel test system is based on the Core i9-10900K and Asus ROG Maximus XII Apex. The latter is currently on the 0901 firmware. The AMD testbed, on the other hand, uses the Ryzen 9 5900X and Asus ROG Crosshair VIII Dark Hero, which runs on the 3501 firmware. MSI’s GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Gaming Trio graphics card can handle our gaming RAM benchmarks.
|Intel System||AMD System|
|Processor||Intel Core i9-10900K||AMD Ryzen 9 5900X|
|Motherboard||Asus ROG Maximus XII Apex||Asus ROG Crosshair VIII Dark Hero|
|Graphics Card||MSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Gaming X Trio||MSI GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Gaming X Trio|
|storage||Critical MX500 500GB, 2TB||Critical MX500 500GB, 2TB|
|cooling||Corsair Hydro H115i Pro||Corsair Hydro H115i Pro|
|power supply||Corsair RM650x 650W||Corsair RM650x 650W|
|case||Streamcom BC1||Streamcom BC1|
The iGame Vulcan was the best performing memory kit in the benchmarks of Microsoft Office and Adobe Premiere. It was respectively 8.6% and 4.6% faster than the slowest memory kit in the above workloads.
On the AMD platform, the Colorful memory kit delivers its best performance in Cinebench R20, where it took first place with a score of 8,279 points. Overall, the iGame Vulcan finished last in the application charts, as our Ryzen 9 5900X simply couldn’t run the FCLK in a 1:1 ratio to memory. As you know, running the FCLK in asynchronous mode suffers a significant latency penalty.
Tune overclocking and latency
Overclocking on Samsung B-die ICs was a cinch. A small voltage surge from 1.4V to 1.45V was more than enough to get the memory on DDR4-4400 up and running. We just needed to loosen the CAS Latency (CL) from 18 to 19 to achieve stability.
Lowest stable timing
|Memory Kit||DDR4-4000 (1.45V)||DDR4-4000 (1.50V)||DDR4-4133 (1.45V)||DDR4-4266 (1.45V)||DDR4-4300 (1.50V)||DDR4-4400 (1.45V)|
|Colorful iGame Vulcan DDR4-4266 C18||AFTER||AFTER||AFTER||17-17-17-37 (2T)||AFTER||19-19-19-39|
|Klevv Cras XR DDR4-4000 C19||18-22-22-42 (2T)||AFTER||AFTER||AFTER||AFTER||19-25-25-45|
|TeamGroup T-Force Dark Z FPS DDR4-4000 C16||AFTER||15-15-15-35 (2T)||AFTER||AFTER||17-17-17-37 (2T)||AFTER|
|Thermaltake ToughRAM XG RGB DDR4-4000 C19||17-22-22-42 (2T)||AFTER||19-23-23-43 (2T)||AFTER||AFTER||AFTER|
The XMP timings for the iGame Vulcan on DDR4-4266 weren’t bad, but there’s room for improvement if you’re willing to increase the DRAM voltage to 1.45V. We reduced the primary timing by one clock cycle and the tRAS by two clock cycles.
The colorful iGame Vulcan DDR4-4266 C18, similar to other very fast memory kits, will not reach its full potential on most AMD systems. It’s not that memory kit’s fault, as Ryzen’s design makes it difficult to use very fast memory without losing performance. Even the best Zen 3 chips hit the wall at 2,000MHz FCLK (DDR4-4000). However, you might have better luck with one of AMD’s Zen 3 APUs or Intel’s latest Rocket Lake chips.
The memory kit is currently only available on AliExpress for $228.89 (opens in new tab)† The price tag alone is enough to scare off potential customers. Even at its $199 MSRP, the iGame Vulcan DDR4-4266 C18 is a tough sell. In comparison, the T-Force Dark Z FPS DDR4-4000 C16, which is faster, only has a price tag of $164.99. In its defense, the iGame Vulcan DDR4-4266 C18 shows off a sleek, white design with flashy RGB lighting, two very valid reasons a buyer would look to the Colorful’s memory kit in the first place.