I currently have an HP that has 3GB DDR2-800MHz dual channel SDRAM (1x2048,1x1024, both slots used up). I want to upgrade the memory. Can I use DDR3? Is it worth it? Or do I need to stick with DDR2? I won't be attempting to over clock them or anything, just plug and play (unless there's an easy Step-By-Step guide
Can't mix ram. DDR3 has a different notch and different voltage specs. It's not worth changing boards for. Check your hp specs. A 2x2 gb kit of pc6400 will be your best upgrade path. You can sell your old ones to offset the cost. $50 is a good price for the kit.
No. Check your board specs first. You may be limited to 2 gb per slot; You can use another 2x1 gb kit with your old ram or go with a 2x2 gb kit as I suggested, and keep the leftover 1 gb for testing or sell it. If you use a name brand kit of ram, it should work with your old ram: corsair, kingston, crucial, hynix, or gskill. Do not buy the 4 gb stick; you may be wasting your money or the board may only recognize 2 gb of it.
I checked the specs and it will only see 4 gb, thanks for the heads up.
You recommend getting a new pair to ensure that they will work together?
It's not recommended to mix brands? It's would be cheaper to buy (1) 2 gb stick to go along with my current stick.
Is a faster speed available for DDR2, like 1056?
And how much does the latency and timing matter?
I just want the best upgrade since I can only do 4gb max.
Don't waste money on faster ram. Your hp board has no bios adjustments for faster ram. You can mix brands or speeds if they're name branded, like the ones I recommended, but your board will run at the slower of the two speeds. 3-4 gb of ram is enough; the 2x1 gb kit with 2 gb of your old ram is your best bet. I've seen a 2x1 gb kit on craigslist for only $20 recently.