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Real benefits of faster ram?

Last response: in Memory
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October 28, 2010 6:42:36 PM

Hello,
So, im going to buy new memory, I'm currently at 4 GB 1333 mhz ddr3 cl9 ram, and i was curious, what are the benefits of going with faster ram? is there really any at all?
The new ram that I've been checking out is 1600 mhz cl9, it was on sale, so it was at the same price as the 1333 mhz, and the cl8 version of the 1600 mhz was about 70% more, so, strange...

Anyhow, i guess I'm really confused about the whole ram thing, since the price diffrence between CL7vCL8vCL9 is pretty hugh, i guess there would have to be a difference, but i fail to see it with my limited memory experience, anyone feeling like filling me in?

Is it even remotely sensible to go with 4 GB's of 1600 mhz ram instead of just getting 8 GB 1333 mhz? Its not so much that i mind the price premium, but if the gain is nil its sort of void.

Thanks in advance,
744687

PS.
1600 mhz CL9 vs 1333 mhz CL7/CL8 ect? There has got to be some method to this madness...
a b } Memory
October 28, 2010 6:51:30 PM

Hello and welcome to the forums
Well the timings and speed barely make a noticeable difference in games.They are mainly important for OC'ng.
So if you don't want to OC,then a good 4GB DDR3 1333MHz RAM(CL9) suffices and can handle everything fine.
However, if you can find a 1600MHz model with the same price,then go for it.
a b } Memory
October 28, 2010 7:38:35 PM

Well let's look at a typical i7-920 (1366) system to answer your question

BCLK = 133
BCLK 133 x 20 CPU multiplier = 2.66 GHz
BCLK 133 x 8 Memory multiplier = 1066 MHz

BCLK = 166 (25% OC)
BCLK 166 x 20 CPU multiplier = 3.33 GHz
BCLK 166 x 8 Memory multiplier = 1333 MHz

So with DDR-1333, you could do a 25% OC while maintaining the standard 8 memory multiplier. With DDR-1600, however

BCLK = 200 (50% OC)
BCLK 200 x 20 CPU multiplier = 4.00 GHz
BCLK 200 x 8 Memory multiplier = 1600 MHz

Now as to the memory timings or CAS number, the lower the number, the better the performance. That margin may be significanbt or not depending upon what is bottlenecking the system. In gaming, the CAS doesn't have great effect but it would be wrong to say it has no effect.

However, there are some real deals out there and it's often a minor price increase to drop CAS number. I'll switch to 1156

CAS 6 - $82 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
CAS 7 - $79 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
CAS 8 - $65 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
CAS 9 - $75 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Given the above, it would be hard to justify (brand preferences aside) the CAS 9 stuff. To me the CAS 6 is a no brainer at that price. Note: If ya do ya research (THG articles are a good source), you will often find that higher CAS rated modules can easily run at lower CAS settings. But again, at today's prices, why bother ?
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