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Thread: Fast RAM or More RAM?

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    Fast RAM or More RAM?

    I currently have some budget RAM in my PC. 2 X 256MB CAS2.5 Geil stuff.

    I want to upgrade but dont know whether it would be better to get 2x512MB CAS 2.5 budget to match up with my remaining to make 1.5GB or get 2X512MB fast ram and take out the Geil stuff to have 1GB of very fast RAM.

    Does the timings and memory speed make a big noticable difference in games over more RAM?

    Thanks for the Advance

    Stephen

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    Lovely chap dangel's Avatar
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    Personally, I prefer more RAM - sure, faster mem gives you better frame rates, but many games need shedloads of ram BF2 is an example, HL2 is another, for smoother more 'consitant' gamplay - i.e. less thrashing and better load times etc. You be best off selling up and going for a 2gb matched set - most will do respectable timings and overclock quite well anyway.
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    Getting older teachmech's Avatar
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    I agree with dangel upgrade to 2 Gb and everything will seem so much smoother.

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    radix lecti dave87's Avatar
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    The size of the performance boost is dependant on the other hardware you have, but as dangel says, 2gb is probably the best way to go interms of performance, though im running 1.5gb (3x512) in dual channel mode and the performance is fine. (that is on an Nforce2 board however, may vary on pentium/a64). I'm guessing you have 4 slots for ram, but the best in all honesty would be to go for matched pairs of 1gb sticks.

    Dave

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    A shadowy flight. MSIC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave87
    im running 1.5gb (3x512) in dual channel mode and the performance is fine.
    Dave
    Surely 3 sticks means that it can't be dual channel?
    Dont mean to be picky, but you might want to check your motherboard settings.
    Either that or i am really wrong in my knowledge... (willing to be corrected)
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    Treasure Hunter extraordinaire herulach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSIC
    Surely 3 sticks means that it can't be dual channel?
    Dont mean to be picky, but you might want to check your motherboard settings.
    Either that or i am really wrong in my knowledge... (willing to be corrected)
    Nforce 2 supports dual channel with 3 sticks, however only if the size per channel is the same (ie 2x256 and 1x512)

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    A shadowy flight. MSIC's Avatar
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    Wow, didnt know that. Wierd, but cool. Cheers.
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    Going from RAM with the slowest timings you can get to RAM with the fastest timings will make less than 1 percent difference in performance, overclocking RAM, making the bus speed faster will make the same sort of difference. By performance I mean FPS, for the difference it makes it just isn't worth the money.

    Putting more memory in the system can improve loading times by much more than a couple of percent, if data gets cached in memory and your PC doesn't need to access its disk things will be faster. There are diminishing returns so the upgrade from 512Mb to 1Gb will give a bigger boost than the next upgrade from 1Gb to 1.5Gb, but even this is worth doing because it can be a big difference, and the difference will get bigger with newer games that have bigger textures and more complex maps.

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    radix lecti dave87's Avatar
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    Yup, NForce 2 does some wierd things - but that is one of the cooler parts. Iirc the NF7-Sv2 was one of the first to be able to run all 3 sticks at DDR400 with headroom to OC, one of the reasons it was so popular.

    Dave

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    MON
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    AS to duel channel i thought it was 2 sticks only .. nforce 2 only supports 2 sticks at duel channel.. the other nforce are the same i think .. and why is the nforce mbs got the two blue mem holders why not all four (the both blue ones mean duel channel) or am i wrong?

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    Surely you have to have an even number of sticks to run dual channel as that's the point - you read both sticks at once. You can't do that unless they are separate sticks as there simply aren't enough connectors on the modules.

    As for the original question - more is better.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MON
    AS to duel channel i thought it was 2 sticks only .. nforce 2 only supports 2 sticks at duel channel.. the other nforce are the same i think .. and why is the nforce mbs got the two blue mem holders why not all four (the both blue ones mean duel channel) or am i wrong?
    No, as i said, nforce 3 can do dual channel on 3 sticks, as long as theres the same amount of ram in each channel.

    AS to the OP, more ram is better, but what processor have you got? f its an older A64 youre gonna be stuck at DDR333, and may be better with a gig at DDr400

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    A shadowy flight. MSIC's Avatar
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    Wanted to put this to rest, as well as to be clear for my own knowledge.
    NForce2 chipsets work in 64-bit (single channel) mode with 1 stick, or 128-bit (dual-channel) mode with 2 or 3 sticks of memory installed.
    Source: Anandtech
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    Eosamite Rhyth's Avatar
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    There should be a duel channel compatability chart in the mob manual, displaying all the supported combinations.
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    Id sell the memory you have now, and buy and cheap 2GB pair.

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