As we can see, the differences between two channels and three channels are not as big as you might think. Also the latencies are much lower with only two channels populated. Because the Intel board was not able to run with 1600MHz at CL8, we switched to the MSI Eclipse SLI which did work well. It is not always possible to achieve higher memory speeds on the 1366 platform, because it is board and CPU dependent. Some CPUs may work better, while others will not. Socket 1156 CPUs are much easier to overclock and also can run higher memory speeds without too many problems. Also the performance increase comes mostly from the overclocked QPI.
two channels, 1600MHz:
three channels, 1600MHz:
Lets test with some applications:
Let's see how two and three channels setups do in power-consumption tests. Please note that the MSI board which we used for 1600MHz CL8 does consume much less power compared to the Intel board. Also, you can see if you active the turbo mode on the 1366 platform, it gives you only a slight performance enhancement, but it does increase power consumption a lot. Also two channels do consume less power and make this configuration also more efficient.