Buying new ram in 2 hours!


I'm running a stock intel i7-950 on an asus sabertooth x58 mobo. I currently run 1 6 gig kit of corsair xms3 7-8-7-20 @ 1600mhz 1T ram.

I plan on upgrading ram tomorrow morning to 12gigs. Should I:

1) Get another 6 gig 7-8-7-20 kit at 1600mhz [...] id=0328198

2) Return my 6 gig kit at get a 3 stick 12 gig kit of patriot viper 2 sector 7 9-9-9-24 1600 mhz ram? [...] id=0342669

It's for gaming 99% of the time only. Some multitasking while gaming might happen.

Cost on the ram is about the same. $300 for x2 6 gig kits vs $300 for 1 12 gig kit with 3 sticks.

I would really like to run my ram at the rated speeds of 1600mhz at 1T is possable. I have heard that running 1T or OCing your cpu might be problematic with all ram slots full. I have also heard that some bios don't work perfectly with 4 gig ram sticks.

I really want to get the best timing at a 1T rate if possable. Is there any concern on populating all 6 slots?

What should I get and why?
7 answers Last reply Best Answer
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  1. If you can return the 3X2GB for a 3X4GB then go that route; the Tri Channel is the most efficient and leat problematic {powering 6 DIMM slots}. Otherwise if you cannot return then yes get a second set of "6 gig kit of corsair xms3 7-8-7-20 @ 1600mhz". Don't get Patriot RAM; most problematic RAM in this forum. I would recommend: Corsair, G.SKILL, Mushkin, or Kingston.

    Corsair -

    G.SKILL -

    Kingston -
  2. I can return the ram only if I buy a 12 gig kit. It's way past 30 days and the manager is doing me a small favor with this exchange.

    The only problem here is that Microcenter only carries patriot and OCZ 12 gig kits. Nothing else. I would have no choice but to get 6 sticks of ram if I wanted 12 gig in any other brand.

    I agree with the brands you picked out, i'm a fan of all of them.

    My big concern is running 6 sticks. Because I have never done it before, is there anything I should know? looser timings? 1T vs 2T? More voltage? I want stability more than anything.
  3. I haven't run across 1T vs 2T {N} directly causing an OC instability. Based upon the choice then OCZ but without knowing the exact OCZ I'm 'guessing' which I don't like guessing. As I mentioned 6 sticks just require extra power and the BIOS 'may' need to be adjusted; increase QPI voltage 1.3v~1.4v.

    Looking at their website, I assume which are compatible and should be fine.

    If you have problems then post again here and I'll walk you through the BIOS to adjust the RAM.

    Good Luck! :)
  4. Jaquith,

    Thanks for all the help. I decided on the 6 sticks for the lower timings. I have them all installed and are configured via the X.M.P profile.

    When I previously had 6 gigs, it set my timings to 7-8-7-20 1T. With a QPI voltage of 1.4v.

    Now with all 12 gigs installed, my settings are 7-8-7-20 2T @ a QPI of 1.4v

    I believe my motherboard set it to 2T for stability, which is fine with me so long as i'm getting the timings i wanted at 1600mhz. Which for now, I am.

    I have been told that using the xmp profile is junk and I should manually adjust my settings. If my ram is suppose to run at 1.65v, and the XMP profile set it to 1.4, is this bad? How can I test to see if it's perfectly stable like this? Should I try to force a 1T setting?

    I'm just not used to the X58 chipset settings or bios configurations for anything really. CPU included.

    Any suggestions for settings for max stability would be awesome!

    Here's my complete config: (for gaming only)

    Intel i7-950 @ stock 3.07GHZ
    Noctura dh-14 cooler
    ASUS Sabertooth x58 motherboard
    x2 EVGA 580 SC in SLI
    Corsair HX1000 PSU
    On-board sound (because I cannot decide on one for max fps.)
    Samsung 24x DVD Burner
    300 GB WD Velociraptor
    1TB WD Black sata3 HDD for music/videos/pictures/downloads
    Some random yet awesome midtower case.
  5. Best answer
    It's only 'bad' if it doesn't work. In general XMP works fine 'if' both the BIOS and RAM is recognized as XMP. The 'problem' is when >3 DIMMs are used or for OC'ing which can cause the DRAM Voltage to get too high via 'AUTO' or XMP 3 stick limits with some RAM. Sometimes XMP RAM isn't supported in the BIOS -> Post Failure/BSOD/Instability therefore manually setting the BIOS is the only option.

    Please keep in mind a QPI of 1.4v is on the upper side of voltage; incorrect QPI can easily cause instability and with 3 sticks is rarely needed at 1.4v {1.3v~1.35v}, and the 1T vs 2T could come from an Auto vs XMP setting.

    More isn't better, I lost count how many posts I've come into where everyone tells the OP 'crank-up' the DRAM and QPI when I can see a meltdown in the works and needless heat. Even OC'ing the RAM requires little effort and can be from simply setting the RAM Speed higher and or lowering the CAS -- leaving DRAM voltage manually set at stock.

    I OC quite a bit and please remember higher Voltage = higher Temps; therefore 'I' look for the lowest stable voltage and then add 1~2 notches above that minimum.

    All your components look good; SATA3 HDDs was about the only out of place items. Keep in mind the 3 v 6 Gb/s only refers to the interface and has nothing to do with the R/W speeds of the platters. If in the future you get a SSD then move the 1TB to the SATA2 ports and don't give it a second thought. The newer SSDs are breaking the SATA3 limit of 600 MB/s per device limit; they're so fast that only a PCIe can handle the speeds because there's not 'SATA4' {or whatever they'll call it} interface.

    Good Luck!
  6. Best answer selected by Wickedsnow.
  7. I understand, thank you for all your help and advice.
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