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Help me understand RAM types.

Last response: in Memory
June 4, 2009 7:32:14 PM


I'm buying the "Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD4" motherboard and the reason i don't buy the more
expensive version of it is because of the pci and pci-ex 1 spots. The reason i don't buy
the cheaper version is because it only has 4 ram slots.

But, not going for the more expensive version "the Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD5", i cannot use
ddr3 12800 ram it says, so i have to do with 10666 or 16000.

now i wish someone could help me understand. I basically understand that 16000 ram
is faster than 10666 but there is also the understanding of. 7-7-7-20 and 8-8-8-24 and 9-9-9-24 etc.

You have ram that cost a fortune, OCZ Blade Series DDR3 2000MHz 7-8-7-20.
But also have much cheaper 16000 ram like OCZ Reaper HPC DDR3 2000MHz 9-9-9-30.

And offcourse you have OCZ Platinum XTC DDR3 1333MHz 7-7-7-20, which is very cheap.

Now i don't want to spend money on something i don't need. That is why i need to understand
or at least get the meaning of the different kinds of ram. I have had a problem finding proper
test sites for this or a very good detailed description.

I'm going to buy a Core i7-920 with Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD4 and GTX-295 card.
i'm going to be playing a lot of games but more importantly i'm going to make machinima
and such which require using of FRAPS etc. in games that already uses a lot of resources.

What kind of ram am i looking for ?. And why ?
And remember, it says that the motherboard cannot take 12800 ram.

More about : understand ram types

June 4, 2009 8:23:41 PM

Thanks. but sorry, that link didn't help me much :( 
And it does not mention ddr3.

I'm trying to get the very main basics. like.. can a 10666 7-7-7-20 be faster than 16000 9-9-9-30 ?
Related resources
June 4, 2009 10:05:50 PM

Every memory controller works a little different in preferring higher performance RAM.
For the triple-channel DDR3 controller found in i7 you can read this article to get an idea of how freq. and timing affects performance under different usage.

Just note that the synthetic results do not affect real-world performance, they're just there for raw data purpose.
June 5, 2009 2:31:50 PM

Thanks for the help fellas.

What i get from these new links is that.. well first of all they don't test 16000 (2000mhz) ram. But
compared to 12800 (1600mhz) ram the 10666 cl7 seem to win.

But still in confusion. So i will ask you guys directly.

Is it necessary for me to buy the 2000mhz cl7 ram ?

I will choose between.

2000mhz cl7 - about 500$ for 6 GB
2000mhz cl9 - about 180$ for 6 GB
1333mhz cl7 - about 150$ for 6 GB

If the 2000mhz cl9 is like twice as fast as 1333mhz cl7, i will offcourse buy that.
And the 2000mhz cl7 is extremely expensive, so it better perform amaaaaazing.
June 5, 2009 7:45:09 PM

Is it necessary for me to buy the 2000mhz cl7 ram ?

I will choose between.

2000mhz cl7 - about 500$ for 6 GB
2000mhz cl9 - about 180$ for 6 GB
1333mhz cl7 - about 150$ for 6 GB

Even if 2000 7-8-7 added almost 1% performance increase to real-world app, would you be willing to shell out $500 for it?
Those 2000Mhz 7-8-7 are what we use in the world of extreme benchmarking where there's no cost limitation. They are highly speed binned of latest Elpida DDR3 chips.

1600Mhz or 1333Mhz 7-7-7 is more than enough for typical overclocks.
June 5, 2009 8:48:38 PM

No i never thought the 2000mhz cl7 was worth the money..

But the 2000mhz cl9 and the 1333mhz cl7 is very close in price. only 30$ diff on 6GB.

And i want value for buck. So if the 2000mhz is twice as good as the 1333mhz cl7. Well then the
choice is obvious. but if the 1333mhz CL7 is about as fast as the other one. Well i will buy that.

It is just for me to find value for money. As i said, i don't want to buy something i don't need. :) 

Thanks again
a b V Motherboard
June 5, 2009 10:53:37 PM

I WOuld buy the 2000 cl9 once the reviews are good just to be able to tell my friends my ram runs at 2.0GHZ
a b V Motherboard
June 5, 2009 10:57:04 PM

June 5, 2009 10:58:46 PM

2000Mhz 9-9-9 is an exact duplicate of 1600Mhz 7-8-7 kits so go for whichever one has the lower price.

CaptivA, 1333Mhz 7-7-7 is the best in value for what you're aiming for.

FYI, some of us benchers even find 2x2GB in dual-channel to be faster than under triple-channel for the same speed & timing, with certain benchmarks. The triple-channel on Core i7 just has way too much bandwidth for any desktop app. to make full use of.
June 5, 2009 11:22:28 PM

Thanks again btw :D 

Yeah well. The UD4 motherboard does not support 1600MHZ 12800 ram..
So it is either 2000mhz cl9 or 1333mhz cl7...

Price difference is 30$ for 6 GB.

damn... hard one.. xD
a b } Memory
a b V Motherboard
June 6, 2009 5:42:16 AM

I bet it would support 1600MHz just fine if you tried it.
June 6, 2009 5:47:08 AM

All the gigabyte models in the i7 series above this one has the 1600mhz ram in
the support list. but this one does not.. I'm not sure i want to take that chance :p 
June 6, 2009 5:53:22 AM

You can always clock BCLK a bit higher like 166, drop multiplier to keep same overall CPU clock to allow you to use higher QPI and RAM speed.