Triple Channel Memory on Core i5


I recently sold off my Intel Core i7 920 LGA 1366 CPU and the Asus P6T LGA 1366 motherboard together. I am planning on downgrading to the LGA 1156 CPUs due to their integrated PCIe (I don't need 40 PCIe lanes) and lower TDP (planning on using in a Micro ATX cube case). I still have three sticks of triple channel DDR3 memory left. My questions are:

Will I be able to use the triple channel memory on the LGA 1156 motherboard? In addition, could you answer whether the configuration would be using two out of three sticks to form a dual channel configuration or simply forgoing it and adding an extra stick of RAM to a third DIM. Finally, my last question is whether the dual/triple channel configuration is hardware based or changeable depending on the CPU (e.i. triple channel on core i7, dual channel on core i5).

Thanks, any comments or suggestions are welcome.
5 answers Last reply Best Answer
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  1. Best answer
    Dual vs tri channel is determined by the memory controller, not the memory. You can still use the same RAM, but the best performance will be obtained by running it in matched pairs rather than sets of 3. You can use all 3 if you want, but it will not give you triple channel performance. In fact, it will give you single channel performance, since you won't even have it installed in matched pairs.
  2. Thanks. If I used only two of the three modules, will that give me dual channel performance?
  3. Yes.

    (record short answer)

    Of course, if you want to buy a 4th matching module by itself, that really matches, you'll gain the added benefit of twice the RAM plus dual channel.
  4. Great, thanks again.
  5. If A = B and B = C, then A = C.

    Triple-channel sets are usually "matched trios";
    therefore, all 3 "pairs" should be "matched" also
    (graphically, like the edges of a triangle).

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