Which DDR2 RAM?

I have a decision to make. I'm finishing on a build of used components. The old computer is a LGA 775 system with P35 mobo and 4GB of Mushkin DDR2 RAM (800MHz speed and PC2-6400). I think the newest edition is called 'Blackline' and it's only available at that speed in 4GB kits (2 x 2GB).

I wanted to move the 4GB to my new build, also a used LGA 775 mobo, Asus P5Q (P45). The cpu in the first computer will be moved to this one, a Q6600. But, then the older P35 system is missing a cpu and RAM. I was going to buy a Celeron E3300 cpu and maybe 2GB of DDR2 RAM for it. A relative is using it and all the computing is surfing, watching videos, light online games etc.

My question is what DDR2 RAM to get for it. I could get the Mushkin RAM (at same timing) and then split them up with one going into the P35 mobo and then I'd have 6GB in the P45 Asus P5Q mobo. The reason I'd want more RAM in the newer mobo is that I may do some things with virtualization (VirtualBox). However, 4GB might be enough. But, I'm buying RAM anyway so... it was just an idea.

The other idea I had would be to save a bit of money and buy 2GB of Kingston HyperX DDR2 RAM. If I go with a different brand, I'd probably choose Kingston since A) I can find 2GB sticks for $45 to $50 and B) it's widely available so easy to add another stick later if need be. The Mushkin 4GB kit is about $100.

I was going to go with CL4 timings if I bought the Kingston. Or does it matter? Kingston HyperX series has both CL4 and CL5 at the same price approx. The Mushkin, has an odd timings pattern but it doesn't matter because it matches what I have now - I checked.

Which path/route should I go with? I wish I didn't have to invest in more out-dated tech. but I'm not ready (i.e. can't afford) to invest in newer stuff right now.

Thanks, in advance, for any suggestions or advice.
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  1. go to the asus website, look at the motherboard specifications, look at the list of approved memory. Use the approved memory to avoid compatibility problems.
  2. I usually don't find that a good indicator. Although, there's no listing for any Mushkin RAM. Strange. If I was buying for the Asus P5Q mobo and didn't have any RAM for it at all, I'd go for either Kingston or Geil because the testers seem to choose these two brands the most. There's a lot of tests using either.

    I did google Mushkin DDR2 and P5Q and there are some reports of Mushkin DDR2 HP2-6400 working fine (aka Blackline DDR2 now). I don't think I'd have any problems with my current RAM and that mobo.

    Question is, do I want to buy a different brand for the older board or more Mushkin and then just split them up for now.

    I see your point in checking the QVL though. It's a good idea. I just thought that there's overkill of RAM in the current computer (Gigabyte P35 mobo). Windows XP 32-bit is used so not all 4GB is even being utilized, right? So, there only needs to be 2GB really.
  3. I think you are correct, install 4 GB, it uses 3.
    Then I would buy more Mushkin, just because there will always be matching spares to go around. But check your memory voltage to be sure it will run.
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