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Two MSI motherboards only ones to support future 16GB modules? Creative marketing?

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July 26, 2013 8:02:32 PM

MSI lists the X79A-GD45-Plus as having 8 DIMM slots, supporting 128GB max. http://us.msi.com/product/mb/X79A-GD45-Plus.html#/?div=...

MSI lists the X79A-GD45 (base) as having 8 DIMM slots, but only supporting 64GB max. http://us.msi.com/product/mb/X79A-GD45.html#/?div=Basic

Will the Plus really support more memory than the base, once 16GB modules are out? Or is this creative marketing calculating based on 16GB modules on the Plus description while only calculating based on 8GB modules on the base?


Power searching on NewEgg for an Intel (desktop class) motherboard that supports 128GB only results with the MSI X79A-GD45 and the MSI Big Bang-XPower II.

Do those two motherboards have capabilities that other X79 chipset motherboards don't have for future memory support? Or, are all the other manufacturers just advertising 64GB since the largest out right now is only 8GB?


... I work with very high res imagery. A single 7GB PSB file (PSB = Photoshop large format, since PSD maxes at 4GB) causes a lot of disk swapping on my maxed out system with 16GB. And, I'd like to be able to have quite a few other things open while working on one of these.

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July 30, 2013 9:15:43 AM

Well, that's an interesting observation. According to Intel, the i3/5/7 processors support up to 64GB of RAM. However, Intel's given specifications are not only based on theoretical limitation, also on practicable limitations.

The theoretical limitation of DDR3 is 16GB per module (and thus 128GB for 8 modules). However, such modules are not on the market yet (they require 2x8x8GBit ICs and not very likely to be released very soon). The largest non-EEC DDR3 modules are 8GB and therefore the 64GB limit is a practical limit. Interestingly, as you can see in the MSI's certified memory list (http://us.msi.com/file/test_report/TR10_2765.pdf) there are no 16GB modules at all so MSI doesn't have an idea either how to get 128GB RAM on that board!

I assume it is some marketing thing of MSI but practically there's zero difference between in the boards regarding the maximum memory.

If you, like me, however require a large amount of memory I would go for a different build. Something with a workstation/server- CPU, registered RAM etc. The Gigabyte GA-7PESH3 board, for instance, actually supports 128GB RAM and the Asus Z9PE-DP WS Supports up to 256GB (I actually made a quote for a customer build on this board last week).
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