G.Skill is a well-known brand in the PC market for its highly binned memory and overclocking potential. Continuing this practice, the company has released its Trident Z Royal DDR4 memory kits on the market.
But are these premium memory modules worth their premium price tag? Or are they just all show and no go?
Let’s take an in-depth look at the G.Skill Trident Z Royal DRAM module to see how much value for money it brings to the table.
G.Skill Trident Z Royal: Glistening Lightshow with Blistering Performance
G.SKILL’s Trident Z Royal DDR4 memory brings 4000MHz operating frequency with XMP support and uses the Samsung B-die ICs. The model that we’re reviewing is the F4-4000C17D-16GTRS dual-channel 16GB kit that comes in two 8GB sticks.
Model number: F4-4000C17D-16GTRS | Capacity: 16GB(2x8GB) memory kit | Memory Speed: DDR4-4000MHz | CAS Latency: 17 | Rated Timing: 17-18-18-38 | Voltage: 1.35V | Format: Non-ECC Unbuffered 288-pin DIMM
- »Amazing build quality with mirror finish heat spreaders.
- »Great for gaming.
- »Excellent RGB implementation with software support.
- »Strong XMP performance for both Intel and AMD.
- »Good overclocking potential allows users to push it up to CL15.
- »Bit expensive.
Most of the high-end memory kits on the market often come with sloppy timings and not-so-great ICs. As a matter of fact, it requires a lot of time and effort to pick the best ICs and ensure that the high-speed memory isn’t held back by loose latency timing.
This is why G.Skill’s memory kits are highly regarded among PC enthusiasts, as they invest resources to make sure their high-speed DRAM modules excel in both latency and IC quality. And this G.Skill Trident Z Royal kit is no different.
The Trident Z Royal comes in an array of configurations, starting from 16GB(2x8GB) all the way up to 128GB(4x32GB). The CAS latency and frequency of the memory kit can also span from C15 to C19 and 2666MHz to 4800MHz, respectively.
For this review, I’ve picked the 16GB(2x8GB) DDR4 4000MHz module with C17 latency.
Here’s a closer look at how the G.Skill Trident Z Royal memory kit excels in various important aspects:
Build Quality & Design
As soon as you get your hands on the memory kit, you can tell right away that this is a premium piece. Each DRAM module has CNC-cut aluminum heat spreaders with a mirror-like silver or gold finish.
The most eye-catching aspect of its build quality is the use of a crown jewel crystalline design for its 8 RGB zone. This is a big departure from Trident Z’s typical design. Such a unique implementation works so well with the shiny silver/gold design even when the RGB lighting is disabled.
And when I lit up the RGB on the memory module, the sparkling crystalline light bar started to shine with bright and vibrant RGB colors. Yes, looks are subjective, but you can’t deny the bling bling factor that the crown jewel design and the mirror finish heat spreaders can introduce.
In fact, this bling bling factor might be too bling bling for some users who wants an incredibly fast DDR4 DRAM for their minimalistic PC. Even the unboxing experience was satisfying, especially while peeling off the plastic protector from the shiny heat spreaders.
Speaking of unboxing, the memory kit comes with a sticker and a branded microfibre cloth. Even G.Skill knew that the mirror finish would require a cleaning cloth after handling due to being an absolute fingerprint magnet.
The DIMM modules were contained in high-density foam for protection during transit.
All I can say is the solid build quality and aesthetic of the G.Skill Trident Z Royal can add a bit of flare to any PC build.
The Trident Z Royal is compatible with DDR4-4000MHz supported Intel and AMD motherboards. It’s also equipped with Samsung B-die chips which are well known for greater OC ability with a wide range of compatible motherboards that have a good memory controller.
Although, keep in mind that the Trident Z Royal can struggle with the AMD platform due to the nature of Zen architecture. I had to run the memory module in 3800MHz for the 1900MHz fabric clock at 1:1 with the memory controller clock. However, the 4000MHz XMP profile works absolutely fine for the 2:1 memory controller divider.
Another noteworthy aspect is that AMD CPUs prefer an even number for latency when running higher-frequency memory kits. So despite our test kit putting CL17 timings through the AMD motherboard, it was operating at CL18, leading to added latency.
As for the physical size, the large aluminum heat spreaders don’t cause any issues with installation in smaller ATX chassis. The RGB lighting draws power from DIMM slots, so you don’t have to think about any additional cables.
Furthermore, the lighting can be customized via G.Skill’s Lighting Control software or the motherboard’s software, such as Aura Sync, RGB Fusion, Polychrome Sync, etc.
For a memory kit that has such an incredible on-paper config and build quality, you’d expect it to deliver uncompromised performance. And guess what? It does just that, both in stock and overclocked profiles.
After doing multiple extended performance testing of the G.Skill Trident Z Royal, I can now confidently say that this high-end memory module is perfect for those who are aiming to extract every bit of performance out of their system.
For gaming, we chose our Intel i9 10900K build along with Asus ROG Strix 2080 OC Edition to remove any kind of performance bottleneck. And the performance numbers we saw in these tests were interesting.
In older, more CPU-demanding titles like Civilization VI, we didn’t notice any performance jump compared to other DDR4 offerings. But in more demanding titles, like CP2077, where the faster memory speed does matter, it managed to deliver amazing framerate stability.
The same can be said about productivity performance as well. Bandwidth benchmarks clearly showed a nice performance jump, but that simply doesn’t translate to real-world performance benefits.
File decompression and some rendering tests like handbrake can utilize faster memory and reduce the overall render time, while there was little to no performance gain in Blender.
Whether you opt for it on AMD or Intel, the overall performance will remain top-notch for a DDR4 DRAM, minus the aforementioned issues on AMD platforms. And that’s just the out-of-the-box performance.
Thanks to the Samsung B-Die ICs, which are known for their capability to scale with voltage, I was able to push the memory modules even further by overclocking, albeit by a small margin.
At 1.45V, I could only push it to 4133MHz with 18-19-19-39 timings due to the memory kit already running on its maximum capability. The performance gain after overclocking this DDR4 kit was minor but noticeable in both gaming and productivity.
In a nutshell, the G.Skill Trident Z Royal is a high-end DDR4 memory kit that ticks all the important boxes; performance, compatibility, and aesthetics.
FYI, check out our discussion on how RAM can affect gaming performance.
What We Liked About It
As I’ve mentioned, the Trident Z Royal boasts truly impressive specifications. At 4000MHz frequency and 17-18-18-38 rated timings, this G.Skill DRAM module offers a perfect combination of high data transfer, low latency, and greater compatibility.
The best part about this high-end memory module is that it boasts Samsung B-die memory ICs under its heat spreaders. This allows the DRAM kit to sit comfortably alongside high-end Intel or AMD chip to give impressive performance numbers.
From the crown-jewel design to impressive out-of-the-box performance, everything about the Trident Z Royal screams overkill. It is as good as a high-end memory kit can be. What more can we expect from a DRAM module?
What We Didn’t Like
Yes, the Trident Z Royal can be considered an all-rounder DDR4 module, but the premium price tag makes it hard to recommend this otherwise amazing memory kit. There are other well-performing DDR4 DRAMs available on the market at a much lower price.
Heck, even DDR5 memory kits cost less than Trident Z Royal. Also, availability can be an issue in some regions.
Additionally, I was really scared to touch the mirror finish on the aluminum heat spreaders as it’s an absolute fingerprint magnet and can become pretty nasty when you touch it. So keep that in mind during installation.
Use the included microfibre cloth to clean it off after you’ve installed it on your PC.
Should You Buy the G.Skill Trident Z Royal Memory Kit?
Now that we’ve outlined all the positives and negatives of the G.Skill Trident Z Royal, time to answer the final question; should you buy or consider the premium price tag of this memory kit?
Well, it depends on your budget and use case. If you want the best-looking and best-performing DDR4 DRAM on the market and have enough dough to spend on it, you should definitely consider the Trident Z Royal.
Keep in mind you’d need a motherboard that supports high-speed DDR4 memory modules.
Not to mention, after going through our review, you should now have a good idea about how much performance & value it offers and whether it’s worth it for you. Among all the DDR4 kits we’ve tested, the Trident Z Royal remains the best performer, whether for gaming or productivity.
If you ask me, I’d recommend going for cheaper, better DDR5 variants (if your motherboard/CPU supports it), such as the Trident Z5 RGB DDR5-6400, which not only costs way less than the Trident Z Royal but also gives much better performance and future-proofing.
Why You Should Trust Our Review
Throughout our entire website, our goal has always remained the same, providing the absolute best solution based on extended testing and personal expertise. This review also went through the same process.
And with our long list of tested DRAM modules and years of PC expertise, I’ve scrutinized the review item compared to all the other memory kits and their subsequent performance.
In addition, the memory kit that we tested here was not provided by G.Skill or any third-party re-seller. We personally bought and reviewed the memory module to give you the most unfiltered user experience.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between Trident Z Royal and Royal Elite?
Compared to the Trident Z Royal, the Royal Elite models start and end at a higher memory frequency and have different-looking heat spreaders. For example, the Trident Z Royal DDR4 series starts at 3000MHz while the Royal Elite DDR4 series starts at 3600MHz.
Will there be a DDR5 Trident Z Royal?
At Computex 2023, G.Skill announced that the company would soon offer a DDR5 variant of their beloved Trident Z Royal series.
Is Trident Z Royal compatible with Ryzen?
Yes. The G.Skill Trident Z Royal is compatible with AMD’s Ryzen CPUs.