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GDDR3 memory sticks plugged into motherboard??

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June 17, 2010 5:27:56 PM

My friend recently bought an Acer Aspire AM3300-E1222 desktop for gaming (we're gonna upgrade the video card), which is advertised as having 4GB (2x2GB) of DDR3 memory. I was suspicious from the beginning, since although the CPU it comes with (Athlon II X4 635) is an AM3 CPU, which should support DDR3 memory, I didn't think the chipset it was spec'ed with (AMD 780G) was an AM3 chipset, so I was surprised about the DDR3.

CPU-Z confirmed the modules as DDR3 and "PC-10700". I still wasn't convinced and decided to open up the case to look. The sticker on the modules actually say GDDR3, which I thought was actually based on DDR2.

Now, I don't know if anyone's actually seen GDDR3 DIMMs. If they DO exist, I would suspect that even if they run at higher clock speeds than regular DDR2's, they would have the same physical layouts (e.g. key notch) as DDR2's rather than DDR3's. Can I actually expect the same level of performance between GDDR3 1333 and DDR3 1333? Especially on an 780G (DDR2) chipset?

This makes me very wary of false advertising... selling GDDR3 as DDR3. I'll go home tonight and actually examine the key notches to confirm the physical layout. Any info would be appreciated. Thank you!

More about : gddr3 memory sticks plugged motherboard

a b } Memory
a b V Motherboard
June 17, 2010 8:56:47 PM

That's very wierd... the G stands for Graphics - it's specifically meant to be in graphics cards. I can't see how they have GDDR3 in a mobo. Hmm trying to think how to test it. I guess it could just be a mislabelling on the sticks. Can you get info on them like brand, model #, or anything?

Don't know if this is the board, but check it out, mentions GDDR3 in the mobo
http://www.digital-daily.com/motherboard/gigabyte_ma78g...
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June 17, 2010 9:57:47 PM

Thanks Wolfram, I'll look up that info when I get home.

Checked out the link you pasted. It does mention GDDR3, but that seems to refer to "soldered-in" chips for the integrated Radeon HD 3200 to access, rather than DIMM sticks to be plugged in as system RAM. The DIMM slots still seem to accept only DDR2.

If it's mislabeling, it seems to be deliberate in order to fool mainstream customers into thinking they're getting more than they actually are.

I'll post again tonight once I find the info.
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June 17, 2010 10:12:35 PM

Interestingly, some Googling and Wiki'ing revealed that the Xbox 360 uses 512MB of GDDR3 clocked at 700MHz (so effectively 1400MHz or PC-11200?) as SYSTEM memory. Though it seems that 512MB is shared between the CPU and GPU.
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a b } Memory
a b V Motherboard
June 18, 2010 1:49:09 AM

greatsave7 said:
My friend recently bought an Acer Aspire AM3300-E1222 desktop for gaming (we're gonna upgrade the video card), which is advertised as having 4GB (2x2GB) of DDR3 memory. I was suspicious from the beginning, since although the CPU it comes with (Athlon II X4 635) is an AM3 CPU, which should support DDR3 memory, I didn't think the chipset it was spec'ed with (AMD 780G) was an AM3 chipset, so I was surprised about the DDR3.

CPU-Z confirmed the modules as DDR3 and "PC-10700". I still wasn't convinced and decided to open up the case to look. The sticker on the modules actually say GDDR3, which I thought was actually based on DDR2.

Now, I don't know if anyone's actually seen GDDR3 DIMMs. If they DO exist, I would suspect that even if they run at higher clock speeds than regular DDR2's, they would have the same physical layouts (e.g. key notch) as DDR2's rather than DDR3's. Can I actually expect the same level of performance between GDDR3 1333 and DDR3 1333? Especially on an 780G (DDR2) chipset?

This makes me very wary of false advertising... selling GDDR3 as DDR3. I'll go home tonight and actually examine the key notches to confirm the physical layout. Any info would be appreciated. Thank you!

You're overthinking it. CPU-Z says it's DDR3-1333 because...it's DDR3 1333. There IS NO SUCH THING AS A SOCKET AM3 CHIPSET.

The difference between an AM2+ and AM3 motherboard is the type of memory slot. The chipsets are the same because the memory controller is on the CPU, not the chipset. Both types of motherboards support the later, higher-speed HT link, and that's the only thing that separates them even from AM2.
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June 18, 2010 3:18:14 AM

Here is the info pulled off CPU-Z (SPD tab) and verified against the sticker on the modules themselves:

Part number - GU512303EP0202
Module size - 2048 MBytes
Max Bandwidth - PC3-10700 (667MHz)

The Memory tab shows the following:

Type: DDR3
Channels #: Dual
Size: 4096 MBytes
DRAM Frequency: 665.3 MHz

Which seems to match up with the aforementioned PC3-10700.

However, as you mentioned, Crashman, the memory slots would be different between AM2+ and AM3 mobos. Therefore, shouldn't DDR3 DIMMs be rejected on an AM2+ (780G) mobo? I understand that the mem controller is on the CPU itself and all, but even if it's an AM2+ board with an AM3 CPU, it still physically cannot accept DDR3 DIMMS, no?

Or is this the workaround? To use GDDR3 chips on a DDR2 DIMM physical format, to achieve higher clock speeds than DDR2 chips would have? If so, are there other differences that would make this GDDR3 solution inferior to a true DDR3 implementation?

Voltage-wise, CPU-Z is showing 1.5V, which again indicates DDR3...

So what does it mean? That with a) an AM3 CPU (w/ DDR3 controller), b) an
AM3-supporting, DDR2-slotted mobo, and c) modules of DDR3-rated (for example, GDDR3-speed) memory on an DDR2 physical layout, one is able to achieve true DDR3 performance without buying true DDR3 DIMMs?
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June 18, 2010 6:27:55 PM

After looking at some mobo pictures of DDR2 vs. DDR3 slots, I'm starting to think I read the key notchings incorrectly. This Acer mobo might indeed have DDR3 slots.

Of course, it'd be simplest to just find myself a stick of DDR2 or DDR3 DIMM to confirm. :p 

If it IS indeed just DDR3 DIMMs mislabeled as GDDR3, then we should have no problems here. It's still interesting because I've not been able to find any other 780G mobos with DDR3 slots. All the 780G mobos I've found only have DDR2 slots. But it sounds like it's possible for a manufacturer to design an AM3 CPU-ready (or just plain having an AM3 socket) mobo with 780G and DDR3 slots, since mem controller is on the CPU. It just means that this particular mobo will NOT work with AM2+ CPU's even if the socket was AM2+, because the AM2+ CPU is incompatible with the DDR3 slots.

Does that sound about right?
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a b } Memory
a b V Motherboard
June 18, 2010 7:02:55 PM

I guess it depends on the Integrated Memory Controller. I can't say what hardware differences there would be on the mobo itself between DDR2 and DDR3... it could be very minimal and so long as the CPU knows how to handle it then maybe whichever the CPU wants to use can work. To be honest this whole thing sounds a bit wierd. Particularily that it's GDDR3. I wonder if the GPU is sharing some of that RAM... it might be worthwhile, if you can, to try sticking DDR3 sticks in and see what happens. Sorry I'm not a big help, most of my knowledge is based around my i5 and the Intel boards in general.
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December 3, 2011 12:33:01 PM

I upgraded my Gateway desktop a few months ago with two sets of G.Skill F3-10600CL9D-8GBNT, i ran the first set with the 6gb of memory installed by gateway and had no problems. I now have two sets running together 16gb and no problems, this computer has an Acer MB and intel chipset, the memory modules installed by Gateway were also labeled GDDR-3. The G.Skill tech support suggested possibly that the G was added to designate "Gateway".
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December 29, 2011 2:40:43 AM

I have a Gateway DX4860-UR32P that has Win 7 Home Premium with i5 CPU. 6GB RAM in 3 of 4 slots. They are labeled GDDR3-1333 2GB 128MX8. These are made by Unifosa in Taiwan. The part no. is GU512103EP0202 and they are supposed to be fully buffered. What is my low cost way to increase my RAM to 12or 16 GB? Can I remove the card in slot 3 and use a pair of 4 GB DDR3 unbuffered in slots 3 & 4?
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a b } Memory
a b V Motherboard
December 29, 2011 4:23:50 AM

Gateway put 3 sticks of RAM into your i5 machine? Wow what a fail, those retards. You need to use either 2 or 4 sticks in order to take advantage of dual channel RAM. With 1 or 3, you end up running in single channel which of course is slower.

If the Gateway motherboard can support up to 12 or 16 gb (check the website specs) then just remove the default stuff and add 2x2gb+2x4gb, 4x4gb or 2x8gb I guess.
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