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Question about RAM Speeds and Gaming?

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July 15, 2011 7:40:12 AM

Hey guys, I'm currently running on Windows Vista Ultimate x64 Bit SP2 on my Dell XPS400. I just recently upgraded my HD to a 1 tb, as well as my ram from 3 gigs to 4gigs. On top of that I'm running the Asus Geforce GTX 460 768mb card which too was recently installed, along with an Antec 530 w PSU.

I'm running games such as Mass Effect, and Crysis 2 and I'm noticing they are running very sluggish. I think I read somewhere that having different speed RAM can cause this issue.

Here is my Comp. Specs.

Processor: Intel Pentium D CPU 2.80 GHz Dual Core

RAM: 3 of my 1 Gig sticks are PC2-5300 (333MHZ) while the last 1 gig stick in there is a PC2-4300 (266MHZ).

My question is, is that 1 stick screwing up my gaming performance? If so should I just pull it and replace it with another matching stick like the rest?

If this isn't the case, then can someone please try and inform me why I am experiencing low end performance on these games?

Thanks in advance guys.

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July 15, 2011 9:36:55 AM
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First try running memtest online its free and will tell you if you have any failing RAM. Secondly your hardware is just a tad below the requirements to run games like Crysis 2. I know finances can be tough today and I'm not quite sure if you would be willing to drop some cash on some better hardware but if so thats what I would suggest.
Thirdly to answer your question on different RAM speeds. No different speeds shouldnt hurt your performance. From what I understand and I'm not an expert here but your computer will only run as fast as your slowest RAM. It wont hurt it though. There are a load of threads for gaming systems you can throw togeather for a reasonable price. Check em out here on Tom's if you can afford it. If not your probably stuck in slow mode gaming with your current hardware. Best of wishes
Brian
a b } Memory
July 15, 2011 1:30:54 PM

Your problem is the Pentium D. Its a poor, poor gaming CPU by todays standards and simpley does not have enough raw processing power to run your GPU to its full potential. Not even close.
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July 15, 2011 3:12:27 PM

Thanks for the replies thus far guys, is there any thing I can do to upgrade my Processor with the current motherboard I have or should I just throw down for a whole new mother board and processor?

**EDIT: Chipset is i945P
Socket 775 LGA


***EDIT AGAIN: After some searching here on Tom's I realize that buying a whole new mobo and processor would be the way to go. Can any of you recommend a Mobo + Processor that would be in the $700 dollar price range and able to use the hardware I specified in the OP? I'm trying to do a search on new egg but this might take awhile since I'm not exactly sure what I'm looking for other than a MOBO that can support PCIExpress, DDR2 (maybe I should be looking for DDR3 too?), new Antec 530w PSU I bought, and my SATA 1 TB HD. +I'll probably be looking for a new tower too lol
July 16, 2011 8:29:29 AM

Best answer selected by ahbrown4057.
July 17, 2011 2:05:42 PM

If I were you I would buy a new motherboard and processor. Make sure you look at the Motherboard manufactures website and do a thorough check on its CPU compatibility. Many will snuff at this but it can make a world of difference when it comes to performance. Most likely you'll go down the route of purchasing a DDR3 supported Mobo and so youll have to buy ram too. And please please please make sure you're in for a new power supply also IF NEEDED. If you're serious about running games they way they were created to be played its gonna cost ya. I know years ago pretty much any computer would run games to some extent. Today its a whole new ball game. Oh one more thing. I would suggest going down the road of highly considering a solid GPU also. A Graphics card and good processor is the #1 hardware priorities when going for a better gaming experience. Getting expensive. Check out some of the gaming build threads here on Tom's you'll be amazed at what some of the deals these guys find. OH ONE MORE THING!!! AMD or INTEL? Hmmm.
Gonna have to make an educated decision because without paying hundreds of dollars on single hardware items you're gonna have to decide. You cant always run AMD hardware and intel base hardware in line so to speak. So make sure you do your homework. Be more than happy to help ya out.
Brian
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