New quad core processor?

I currently have a Gigabyte G31M-S2L, an intel E5200 (2.5GHz dual core) with 4GB of DDR2 1066 memory (two 2gb modules).

I am interested in upgrading to a quad core but have several questions before i make the purchase. I do NOT want to overclock!

My memory is identified by CPU-Z as only being PC2-6400. Will purchasing a new processor with a 1066 (or higher) rating correct this automatically?

The mainboard shows many different processors that are compatible with this board:

right now i am inclined to go with the Core2 Extreme QX6800 because it is the fastest chip listed that matches the FSB of the memory I have now.

However if i can get full performance of the Q9550 (which exceeds my memory 1066 rating) i would like to go with this chip. how much of a detriment will 1066 memory have on a 1333 FSB processor?

I only want to upgrade this computer one more time. I hopefully want to get 2-3 good years of use from it before finally resigning myself to purchasing a new pc.

thanks in advance!
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  1. Best answer
    Hey Matt! the QX6800 will work, but I cannot guarantee that the RAM will *automatically* adjust to 1066 MHz. Go into your BIOS > MB Intelligent Tweaker, and select the proper CPU:Memory ratio. It should probably work automatically, but just in case not, go into MIT.

    A Q9550 will be your best bet. A 1333MHz FSB will handle DDR2 1066 RAM, and handle it well. It's also pointless to get an Extreme Edition processor if you do not want to overclock.

    Hope this helps!
  2. Get the Q9550 if its cost effective your ram will be fine bus speed and ram dont work the way you think. The Q9550 has a 1333 fsb and a core clock of 3.0ghz. The FSB runs at 333 mhz quad pumped which gives you a bus speed of 1333 mhz and then it has a multiplier of 9 which gives it a 3.0ghz core clock. Now lets just say your ram would run at 1:1 ratio at 1:1 your ram will only actully be running at 667 mhz. But you can change the ratio to make it run faster. I know im prob over your head on this so just trust me it will work and it will work great. :-)
  3. Wow! fast responses! both suggest the Q9550, so i think that is the way I am going to go. i can pick one up tomorrow at a local retailer:

    As for the 1066 ram, i would just like to see that its actually performing at the level i paid for... if cpu-z showing 800 but its actually 1066 is the whole system 25% slower than its potential?

    EDIT: what is a good benchmark program to compare what i currently have to the q9550 so i can see (and rate), the upgrade that i am paying for?
  4. well, i picked up the Q9550 like what both zenosys and saaiello recommended.
    haven't really had too much time to play around yet, but i did go into cpuid and i see the memory is still showing pc2-6400 (400 MHz). part number OCDZ2G10662G.

    How do i get the memory to run at its rated 1066? how do i change the "ratio" to get it up to what its rated for? how much of an increase can i expect in performance, its there any risk to doing this like overclocking a processor?
  5. Best answer selected by r_manic.
  6. hello again matt!

    You can go ahead into your BIOS > MB. Intelligent Tweaker > and change the memory:CPU Ratio. I'm not entirely sure how vast the gap of performance is between 800MHz and 1600MHz. If you clock high (beyond the rated speed of 1066MHz), then you are effectively overclocking the RAM. The same rules apply to OCing a CPU, give or take.

    Cheers, and thanks, r_manic. :)
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