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what ram do I to choose?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by wolfee, Aug 13, 2006.

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  1. wolfee

    wolfee Thread Starter

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    Hi, I have an asrock k7s41 m/board with 1 stick of 512 ddr , i'm thinking of sticking another in but do not know what kind it is. Does it matter? My m/board manual says this:-
    Max. 2GB DDR
    2 x DDR DIMM
    DDR400/333/266, so not knowing (is there a way to find out) whether i'm currently using 400/300 or 266, would it make a difference if one was say 333 and the other was 400? I'm guessing it's 400mhz but not sure. Also I see some have different numbers of pins how do I know which I need? or is DIMM something to do with that? While I'm here I may as well ask, is it worth me even bothering? I only have an athlon 2800+ processor so would extra ram improve performance of games etc?

    Cheers

    Wolfee
     
  2. raybro

    raybro

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    Apr 26, 2003
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    I recommend you go here and enter your mobo. Crucial will tell you all you need to know about your RAM needs.

    Additionally, I suggest you get SIW here (free download) which will provide all the info about the RAM you have currently installed.

    Raybro
     
  3. steveb1492

    steveb1492

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    Douwnload cpu-z and run. Click on the SPD tab. It should show what you already have. Ideally, you should have matched dimms, but its probably not totally necessary. Make sure the replavcement is 184-pin ddr (not 240-pin ddr2 or 168-pin sdram). If one stick is at a lower speed, both will probably run at the lower speed. Finally, it should help. An athlon 2800+ isn't extremely old and, although you might not be able to play the newest games at full quality with 1000000fps, it shouldn't be that limiting (your video card would probably limit you more than either your processor or memory). The additional ram will help though (especially with multi-tasking).
     
  4. wolfee

    wolfee Thread Starter

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    Thanks guy's but i'm still unsure as to mhz. SIW is telling me I have DIMM SDRAM (should I be concerned? is it different to DDR?) but is not telling me anything in mhz. CPU-Z tells me max bandwidth PC3200 (200mhz) then in timings table - frequency 166mhz in one column 200mhz in another, not sure what these figure mean so maybe you could help me.
    I paid the guy who put this in for me for DDR, or at least I thought I had. I had serious problems at the time and my pc wouldn't boot at all. He reckoned my hdd, mobo and ram had all gone at the same time and having no reason not to believe him paid him to replace the lot. I previously had 384 ram (1 128, 1 256) and hoped my pc would be a little quicker, but noticed no real difference after 512 upgrade. Has this guy ripped me off or am I just being paranoid? Thanks for your help

    Wolfee
     
  5. steveb1492

    steveb1492

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    Whats SIW? The CPU-z data should mean you have ddr400. The columns are for memory timing thats usually (hopefully) set automatically by the mobo. There probalby wouldnt be a huge difference between 384 and 512 mb of ram in terms of performance.

    You should probably get ddr400 if you choose to upgrade.

    Sounds a little suspicious. If everything that he said went bad, then that likely means either your PSU went out and took all of that stuff with it (did he replace the PSU) or that he had extra parts that he needed to sell.
     
  6. wolfee

    wolfee Thread Starter

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    SIW is the system information tool raybro suggested I download in the post prior to yours. Is there a difference between sdram and ddr I was under the impression Sd was single dynamic and dd was double dynamic or so I was told, is that not the case? I thought this was gonna be simple lol, but now i'm even more confused. oh and btw no the psu had not gone at that time and he claimed it was fine and i'd probably had some kind of power surge or something although i have surge protection. I asked him if i needed the psu changing as i had the same concerns as you but he said it was fine. It went bang about a fortnight later!
     
  7. batharoy

    batharoy

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    As the motherboard only supports DDR ram it is VERY SAFE to assume you have DDR memory installed if the system runs.
    On to the next part, look at the CPU tab in CPU-Z bottom left under the clocks heading.
    Look for the FSB speed (should be 133, 166, 200).
    Multiply that number by 2 (DOUBLE data rate memory) and that is your memory speed.
     
  8. wolfee

    wolfee Thread Starter

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    Thanks batharoy, seems strange that 2 different system information tools (SIW and fresh diagnose) both show the current memory type to be DIMM sdram. As for fsb speed under clocks i'm getting 168.0 mhz so that must mean i'd be better off getting a 333 mhz stick right? I might as well ask is there much difference between this and a 400? would I be better off just replacing current ram for 1 stick of 1 gig 400 mhz?

    Cheers

    Wolfee
     
  9. wolfee

    wolfee Thread Starter

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    Thanks for the help guy's. I found this which answers my own question in terms an diot like me can understand..

    SDRAM stands for Synchronous Dynamic Random Access Memory. DDR is short for "DDR SDRAM" and stands for Double Data Rate. Therefore, the main difference between SDR and DDR memory the doubled speed: DDR can transfer data at roughly twice the speed of SDRAM. For example, PC133 SDRAM runs at 133 Mhz, while 133 Mhz DDR effectively runs at 133 Mhz x 2 = 266 Mhz.

    SDRAM has 168 pins and two notches at the connector, which prevents it from being used in a DDR SDRAM motherboard and vice versa. It comes mainly in PC66, PC100 and PC133; the bus speeds of the RAM in MHz.

    DDR SDRAM has 184 pins and a single notch at the connector. It comes in speeds of PC1600 (166 MHz), PC1800 (200 MHz), PC2100 (266 MHz), PC2700 (333 MHz), PC3200 (400 MHz), and PC4400 (550 Mhz). The numbers represent the theoretical maximum bandwidth of the DDR SDRAM in Megabytes per second (MB/s). For example, PC2100 has a theoretical maximum bandwidth of 2100 MB/s.

    Just thought i'd post it in case anybody else was reading this that was as confused as i was lol
     
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