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How much of a difference is there between 533, 667, 800?

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Anonymous
November 5, 2006 1:16:21 AM

Hey, my first question is do I NEED 2 sticks of DDR2 ram to run an socket AM2 system? I would like to get just 1 1GB stick for now, then upgrade to 2GB in a few months.

My second question is how much of a difference is there in performance wise between 533, 667, and 800 ram?
I will be doing medium gaming, MAYBE little OC, but thats not the main point for me.

This is going to be my first build and I want to make sure that its cheap and runs good, and easy to install.

Any suggestions? 1.8v is preferred, I want it to run without me having to change anything in BIOS for now.

More about : difference 533 667 800

Anonymous
November 5, 2006 1:39:09 AM

Do I need to have one stick, or two?
November 5, 2006 1:45:47 AM

well, either 533 or 800, because 667 isnt really useful because of the latency, if you overclock a little, and drop the ram multiplier so that you can actually tighten the latencies and be somewhere between 533-667 then it wouldn't be a problem, but 667 isn't really significantly faster then 533. otherwise 800 is a no stress no hassle good buy. honestly tho, you wont be able to tell the difference at all while gaming. it will just be usefull for overclocking
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Anonymous
November 5, 2006 8:00:00 PM

What if I were to get 4x256mb 533 sticks and have them in "quad channel", I think. That would be for now. I can't upgrade until about 6 more months, but then I will get 2x1gb sticks. It also helps me to find if slots are bad or something.

I can get 4 of these.
Wintec w/HS
November 5, 2006 8:45:27 PM

I suggest going with the ddr2-800 and get two 1gig modules for dual channel and overclocking.Although the 533 is not bad,it will not oc appreciably.So ya I recommend the 800.Goodluck.

Dahak

AMD X2-4400+@2.4 S-939
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November 5, 2006 8:57:08 PM

both am2 and c2d only rly need 533 to function properly, but the higher speeds help in oc'ing, so, if i were u, id get either 533 or 667
Anonymous
November 5, 2006 9:01:28 PM

I wont be OC at first, and that is not my main concern.
November 5, 2006 9:47:51 PM

-You do not need two (or more) sticks of RAM for an AM2 system to work, you will just not be able to run your ram in dual channel (as mentioned before approx 15% gain)

-As far is I know, four sticks of ram will not run in quad channel, and depending on your motherboard, may not even run in dual channel. However they will still all work.

-Buying a 2x1gb kit will be slightly cheaper then buying 1gig now and 1gig later so if possible get the kit.

-You only need DDR2-533 to run without overclocking.

-Personally If i was in your situation I would buy 1x1gb stick of quality DDR2-800 and then buy another stick later for 2gb and DC.

EDIT: In regard to the question in the threads topic, it depends on a number of things, mainly what your cpu is and whether or not your overclocking. From what I've seen AM2's benefit from higher rated ram even at stock speed, while conroe's run more or less the same with any ram until you overclock. Get 533 if your not overclocking and 800 if you are, 667 looks irrelevent unless you only want to overclock only a bit and can get it on the cheap.
November 5, 2006 11:00:37 PM

Quote:
What if I were to get 4x256mb 533 sticks and have them in "quad channel", I think. That would be for now. I can't upgrade until about 6 more months, but then I will get 2x1gb sticks. It also helps me to find if slots are bad or something.

I can get 4 of these.
Wintec w/HS


there is no such thing as quad channel ram in the desktop market. its pretty simple, 533 if you just need ram that is decent in speed and timing, 800 if you are going to overclock, honestly tho there is like a $20 difference in price between the two.
Anonymous
November 6, 2006 12:47:11 AM

Are any of these boards good? I have heard good reviews, but cannot decide.

AM2 ATI 3200s

I know Asus has a board like these, but its a little pricey. Is Gigabyte or anyone making this kinda board? I like the ECS right now. I plan to upgrade to CF maybe. It looks nice, I am just afraid of the brand. This will be my first build by the way, so I think it will suffice if I get a non-DOA.

Also, what does flash the BIOS mean?
Anonymous
November 6, 2006 9:47:17 PM

Bump, please someone help me on my decision.
November 8, 2006 12:17:51 AM

bump
November 8, 2006 12:19:54 AM

Quote:
Are any of these boards good? I have heard good reviews, but cannot decide.

AM2 ATI 3200s

I know Asus has a board like these, but its a little pricey. Is Gigabyte or anyone making this kinda board? I like the ECS right now. I plan to upgrade to CF maybe. It looks nice, I am just afraid of the brand. This will be my first build by the way, so I think it will suffice if I get a non-DOA.

Also, what does flash the BIOS mean?


well, as long as its a good brand name, and its got the features you want, and a decent warranty, any should be fine. not everyone needs a DFI Lan party, much less want to spend $200+ on one, when they wouldn't even use half of the features.
November 8, 2006 12:26:59 AM

Quote:
Well, two sticks can run dual channel, which can be about 10-15% faster than single channel.

I would try to go for 2gb kit.


Only 10-15 percent? I have another 1 gig of 533 mhz memory on the way that should be here tommorrow. I sure hope I get more that 10-15 percent when and if I get dual channel running.
November 8, 2006 12:52:05 AM

Quote:
Well, two sticks can run dual channel, which can be about 10-15% faster than single channel.

I would try to go for 2gb kit.


Only 10-15 percent? I have another 1 gig of 533 mhz memory on the way that should be here tommorrow. I sure hope I get more that 10-15 percent when and if I get dual channel running.

first no thread jacking :p .

secondly, the reason you will only see that 10-15% improvement, is because that is all the bandwidth a processor really needs.

they purposely make ram, and other things that are Dependant on bandwidth (processor cache, video card ram, HTT bus's, FSB ect), with way more bandwidth then they will ever need.

toms did an article on this a bit ago, and it was something like a 2.5 Ghz dual core opteron, was needed to actually use all the bandwidth in DDR400 dual channel ram. so a 5 ghrz dual core opteron (or equivalent) would likely be able to use all the bandwidth in DDR800 dual channel. however intels are different, i do not know the numbers for Pentium's or conroes using a FSB, and bandwidth usage

but its the point that matters it would take processors that don't exist (at this point in time) to use all the bandwidth of DDR800 in dual channel, minus those 5 ghz conroes peeps have been overclocking with phase change cooling 8)
November 8, 2006 2:29:20 AM

Well, I have some memory benchmarks recorded so I will see what happens when I go to dual channel on my D945GPM motherboard that has a Pentium D 840 on it.

I will try to remember to post results back here.
November 9, 2006 1:17:40 AM

Quote:
Well, I have some memory benchmarks recorded so I will see what happens when I go to dual channel on my D945GPM motherboard that has a Pentium D 840 on it.

I will try to remember to post results back here.



please do, remember to post ram bandwidth intensive apps to, not just theoretical bandwidth, but also how much of an impact it makes in real life operation. altho you will find the reason as to why an experienced overclocker would beat you in the head for just overclocking ram for the sake of overclocking ram. (IE it essentially never leads to appreciable gains unless your processor is choking on your current ram, so unless you bought something like DDR2-400 for a Barcelona (faster then 2.5 ghz per core :lol:  )/kentsfield.....(note the stupidity with that combination), its wasteful, expensive, can kill parts that have been historically regarded as easy to break by overclocking)

sry for the rant, but ram bandwidth is by far one of the things that has little impact on your system performance unless your encoding/converting media in some way or another. or you stupidly bought extremely slow ram for a very high end processor.

so in short for the person that started this thread, you are worrying about nothing, ram is easy, for non overclocking purposes, DDR533 is fine, 9 times out of ten. for overclocking or quad cores, DDR800 is a safe bet, and venturing into the DDR1066 speeds and such is only for extreme overclocking.
November 10, 2006 10:18:10 AM

Im not trying to overclock my memory. Some articles suggested I could double my memory bandwidth on an Intel motherboard because the dual channel grabs the data from memory 128 bits at a time instead of 64 bits at a time.

I installed the extra 1 gig of memory and am running dual channel now. The results are nothing spectacular are do indeed seem to fall around 10% improvement. One of the benchmark tests did show that Large memory test doubled but a benchmark is not necessarily the same as real world operation.

I re-installed Windows Vista with the new memory and the Install time of 30 minutes was the same as the original Install time so I do not believe I can really see or feel any improvements in speed. Other benchmarks only improved by 5 to 10 percent after the memory upgrade.
November 10, 2006 3:16:18 PM

Quote:
Im not trying to overclock my memory. Some articles suggested I could double my memory bandwidth on an Intel motherboard because the dual channel grabs the data from memory 128 bits at a time instead of 64 bits at a time.

I installed the extra 1 gig of memory and am running dual channel now. The results are nothing spectacular are do indeed seem to fall around 10% improvement. One of the benchmark tests did show that Large memory test doubled but a benchmark is not necessarily the same as real world operation.

I re-installed Windows Vista with the new memory and the Install time of 30 minutes was the same as the original Install time so I do not believe I can really see or feel any improvements in speed. Other benchmarks only improved by 5 to 10 percent after the memory upgrade.


sry i didn't clarify my point, i was relating overclocking ram to the idea of running dual channel ram for more bandwidth. both have the same intention, get more bandwidth, but either have a very little impact on most apps, and only in a small amount of certain operation's will you even see a 50% improvement, much less 100% (considering your are effectively doubling your ram speed)
Anonymous
November 12, 2006 10:28:37 PM

I am just going to get a cheap AM2 board I guess, like $50-$75 or so. I wont be CFing for a while, so it wouldnt be right to get that kind of board. Besides, its too expensive.
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