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K9A2 Platinum memory help please

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  • MSI-Microstar
  • Platinum
  • Memory
  • Motherboards
Last response: in Motherboards
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October 25, 2009 10:05:21 PM

Hi everyone I have the msi k9a2 platinum ver.1.0 motherboard
amd quad core 9950
4870 1gb video card
1000 wattt power cooler power supply


It is currently running vista 32x with 4gb ocz memory

I'm about to order windows 7 64x from newegg.com since im gonna have a 64bit os now I feel like i ought to up my memory. I want to get 8gb of memory but I dont really understand how to pick what memory will work with my system. When I go to newegg.com and enter my mobo into the memory configurator it only gives me a few choices and they are all 2x1 and what i need is 2x2 so i can get 8gb in my 4 slots... How do I know what ram will work in my system can someone recommend some mem? I'd like 8gb for $260 or less. Please post a link if you know of any.

THANKS!

More about : k9a2 platinum memory

a b } Memory
a b V Motherboard
October 26, 2009 12:40:30 AM

Here is the spec page for your MB
http://www.msicomputer.com/index.php?func=prodmbspec&ma...

One thing to do is to list the OCZ memory you have now. The part number is a good start! There's no point in buying 1066 RAM if you have 800 now, for example.

The general answer is, your computer will support any modules listed as PC2-8500 or DDR2 1066. Beyond that, you should always buy the lowest voltage - 1.8V - 1.9V - and lowest Latency - CL=6 or lower.

These are all compatible with your system:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...

I would recommend these:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Note the tall heat-spreaders - only an issue if you have a huge cpu cooling system.
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October 26, 2009 1:16:00 AM

Mongox said:
Here is the spec page for your MB
http://www.msicomputer.com/index.php?func=prodmbspec&ma...

One thing to do is to list the OCZ memory you have now. The part number is a good start! There's no point in buying 1066 RAM if you have 800 now, for example.

The general answer is, your computer will support any modules listed as PC2-8500 or DDR2 1066. Beyond that, you should always buy the lowest voltage - 1.8V - 1.9V - and lowest Latency - CL=6 or lower.

These are all compatible with your system:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...

I would recommend these:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Note the tall heat-spreaders - only an issue if you have a huge cpu cooling system.





Good thing I never throw anything away... I found the package my ram came in and i dont see any kind of part number but next to the bar code is ocz2p800r22gk

another question for you... what about 6400? can i use that with my board? and i like the one you recommended but I have a zalman cooler and i think the tall heat spreaders on those will make installation impossible. Also, howcome when I put my info in the site i didnt come up with all of these? Could I possible get another recommendation and please remember that I'm new and dont know anything about changing bios settings so i really need something plug and play.
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a b } Memory
a b V Motherboard
October 26, 2009 5:55:55 AM

Nothing wrong with the RAM you have, here's the specs page on it:

http://www.ocztechnology.com/products/memory/ocz_ddr2_p...

It does list 1.9V to 2.1V of voltage - have you ever changed/set that in the BIOS? Does it come up and display the 800 speed during bootup POST? You can chk the set speed of RAM using CPUz from www.cpuid.com It'll show what it's set at now and the SPD info that shows what it can do.

Your current RAM has nice fast 4-4-4-15 timing/latency. That exact RAM isn't available generally anymore, but you might track some down if you want. But anything you add to it you should also like the 1.9V-2.1V this RAM uses. Normally, I'd recommend some 1.8V RAM. When you fill out to 4 modules, even if you didn't adjuts the DRAM voltage in BIOS, you may find you need to now. So check your BIOS for these settings.

So... this link now shows RAM all DDR2-800 / PC2-6400 (these mean the same thing) and 2 - 2GB kits
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...

Here's the cheapest I'd recommend, at CL=4 and 1.9V-2.1V
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
All these look good too:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

You may not be getting the spec performance now from your RAM. Review what CPUz says about it and you might experiment with the latency timings in BIOS. But that's up to you - but do chk that voltage when buying and after installing the new.
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October 26, 2009 5:58:21 PM

ok im lost... can someone explain or fw me to a site that will explain why voltage is important how to know what voltage to look for?

Also, I have no idea what to do in bios last time i fooled around in there i ended spending over $1100 for new hardware and a system build at frys electronics... is there anyway i can get good performance with ram i buy (8gb) without fooling around in the bios?
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Best solution

a b } Memory
a b V Motherboard
October 26, 2009 7:49:05 PM

LOL, sorry.

I am trying to point out RAM which won't require you to do any fancy changes in your BIOS. And remember that any changes you make to the BIOS - other than failing attempts to update it - can be undone in a few seconds by clearing the CMOS - the thing that saves changes to the BIOS.

Let's compare the 4 RAM slots in your motherboard to 4 light bulbs in a simple bathroom light fixture above the sink! Right now, you have two bulbs in the row and you get pretty good light from it. The light is even because both bulbs are the same wattage and brightness. But you'd like more light to see by at the mirror. So you add a couple of new bulbs. Well, these new ones are actually a higher wattage and they make the new brighter light uneven. This is annoying - but at least you have brighter light. You can avoid the problem by getting new bulbs that match the old ones properly, at least being the right wattage. They might not match perfectly and have a tiny bit of difference from the old bulbs - but it's much better. You now have brighter and even light. (The only way to get perfect light is to get 4 new bulbs, a greater expense and poor choice.)

So... we want the same voltage on your RAM because many people have problems using 2 modules of one voltage and 2 modules of another voltage. I think all RAM should be 1.8V but I'm not making the rules. Normal DDR2 modules require anywhere from 1.8V to 2.3V to operate. There are settings in the BIOS of newer motherboards to adjust this voltage to get the proper "light" out of the RAM. Since your currect modules want 1.9V to 2.1V, we'd like to make sure your new modules are similar.

I don't know whether your BIOS is currently giving the old RAM the voltage it really wants! But the best way to make sure the new RAM works, is to buy modules like the ones you have - that's what I recommended above.

Why does some RAM use more voltage? You may have noticed that the folks who talk about "overclocking" their computers often talk about giving the parts more voltage. Generally, a tiny bit more voltage delivered to an electric device makes it run faster - or makes it able to run faster. Give it too much voltage and it burns up or wears out faster. The RAM manufacturers are basically doing this. In order to make their RAM faster, they take modules really designed for 1.8V and tell the user to give them a little bit more in order to achieve faster/better performance. If you don't give 1066MHz RAM that says it wants 2.1V all that voltage, then it drops down and works like 800 RAM.

Anytime you have a lot of devices in a row there's a loss of efficiency. So that 4 modules may require a bit more Umph of voltage than 2 modules.

----------------

Ignore everything explained above if you want. You came and asked for advice in selecting some new RAM for your system. I gave you very specific advice on what to get to be sure it worked. Take the advice and I'm sure you'll be happy!!!
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October 27, 2009 12:35:07 AM

Mongox said:
LOL, sorry.

I am trying to point out RAM which won't require you to do any fancy changes in your BIOS. And remember that any changes you make to the BIOS - other than failing attempts to update it - can be undone in a few seconds by clearing the CMOS - the thing that saves changes to the BIOS.

Let's compare the 4 RAM slots in your motherboard to 4 light bulbs in a simple bathroom light fixture above the sink! Right now, you have two bulbs in the row and you get pretty good light from it. The light is even because both bulbs are the same wattage and brightness. But you'd like more light to see by at the mirror. So you add a couple of new bulbs. Well, these new ones are actually a higher wattage and they make the new brighter light uneven. This is annoying - but at least you have brighter light. You can avoid the problem by getting new bulbs that match the old ones properly, at least being the right wattage. They might not match perfectly and have a tiny bit of difference from the old bulbs - but it's much better. You now have brighter and even light. (The only way to get perfect light is to get 4 new bulbs, a greater expense and poor choice.)

So... we want the same voltage on your RAM because many people have problems using 2 modules of one voltage and 2 modules of another voltage. I think all RAM should be 1.8V but I'm not making the rules. Normal DDR2 modules require anywhere from 1.8V to 2.3V to operate. There are settings in the BIOS of newer motherboards to adjust this voltage to get the proper "light" out of the RAM. Since your currect modules want 1.9V to 2.1V, we'd like to make sure your new modules are similar.

I don't know whether your BIOS is currently giving the old RAM the voltage it really wants! But the best way to make sure the new RAM works, is to buy modules like the ones you have - that's what I recommended above.

Why does some RAM use more voltage? You may have noticed that the folks who talk about "overclocking" their computers often talk about giving the parts more voltage. Generally, a tiny bit more voltage delivered to an electric device makes it run faster - or makes it able to run faster. Give it too much voltage and it burns up or wears out faster. The RAM manufacturers are basically doing this. In order to make their RAM faster, they take modules really designed for 1.8V and tell the user to give them a little bit more in order to achieve faster/better performance. If you don't give 1066MHz RAM that says it wants 2.1V all that voltage, then it drops down and works like 800 RAM.

Anytime you have a lot of devices in a row there's a loss of efficiency. So that 4 modules may require a bit more Umph of voltage than 2 modules.

----------------

Ignore everything explained above if you want. You came and asked for advice in selecting some new RAM for your system. I gave you very specific advice on what to get to be sure it worked. Take the advice and I'm sure you'll be happy!!!




wow dude thanks a lot for that explanation I was really confused... and I really appreciate what you did in taking the time to help a noob like myself out... Another question for you... I should have mentioned earlier that I have 4x1 or 4 one gb sticks right now to make a total of 4. So, when I buy one of the new sets you recomended I will need to buy a total of 4 that are 2x4 or four two gb sticks to make a total 8gb.... Since I am buying all four of exactly the same ram will the voltage still matter since they are all the same? Also, how do i know what voltage my mobo needs? Or will it work with any voltage as long as they are all the same?

And again... thanks a lot im going to pick one of the ones you recommended for me for sure!
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a b } Memory
a b V Motherboard
October 28, 2009 6:39:36 AM

The base voltage of your motherboard - and all DDR2 motherboards is 1.8V

And if you're tossing the old RAM, no need to worry about matching it. Which means, I'd recommend totally different RAM, LOL!

I still like low-voltage (1.8V) RAM because it is newer design and better quality. My favorite is this one:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Note that it is a "tall" RAM, not good if you have some massive after-market cooler on your CPU which I doubt you have.
If you want low-profile RAM, these are good also.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Any of these are compatible with your system and have low/fast latency:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...
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October 28, 2009 11:12:26 AM

wow I really like the first ones you picked but I have a Zalman cooler and its pretty big and sits right next to my memory im pretty sure the taller heat sync models would fit but they would almost cover my zalman cpu fan and im afraid they would restrict air flow or the 1st one would actually touch it... I'm going to order these today... http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... allthough now that i know a little about voltage, i see that these are actually 2.0 to 2.1 what makes them any better than any of the others that are the same speed and voltage?
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a b } Memory
a b V Motherboard
October 28, 2009 4:13:08 PM

The Latency numbers, 5-5-5-15, make them good RAM, along with the manufacturer - a top-tier company. Latency or timing is the delay built into RAM when it communicates with your CPU - the lower the basic numbers, in this case, CL=5, is faster because it means less delays. All the RAM in that last list has CL=5.

Good luck and let us know how the RAM works out! (What happens in a thread with questions like this is that others may read it but not comment because they see you're being helped with reasonable advice.)
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