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Advice regarding memory upgrade

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February 21, 2012 7:36:30 AM

Hello,

On my motherboard (Gigabyte GA-P55A-UD3 P55 Chipset) I currently have 2 memory sticks (Transcend 4GB Kit (2GBx2) DDR3 1333Mhz Core I3 I5 I7). I'm thinking about upgrading my memory for gaming purposes, but not sure what is supported by my MB and whether I should go with an one extra bigger stick, add 2 smaller sticks (dual channel) or just replace the old ones with new better ones.

I'm looking to spend around 50$ ( depending on the cost-efficiency).

Any advice or comment will be welcomed.
Thank you. :) 

More about : advice memory upgrade

February 21, 2012 8:01:07 AM

2 identical sticks is the way to go, look for a 2x 4GB ddr3 1600 kit, would be perfect for your system
February 21, 2012 8:43:46 AM

Thanks. Any recommended brand? Specific recommended sticks?

Should I add them to the existing 2X2 or replace them as the old might slow down the new?
Related resources
February 21, 2012 9:17:16 AM

abekl said:
These will work fine. Just add them into the two unused ram slots:
Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 996770
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Thanks.
Like I said, I need the upgrade for gaming. Does it affect my selection of brand or speed? Is there an advantage for 1600 vs 1333 for example?
a b } Memory
February 21, 2012 10:49:53 AM

The selection of brand is basically sticking with the well known and respected companies. The speed selection is based on matching what is supported by your system, as well as 1333 MHz memory being the fastest memory your system supports.
February 21, 2012 10:54:31 AM

Got it, thanks.
February 22, 2012 4:06:46 AM

Thanks for all the suggestions, but is can you provide links to other sites than newegg? They only ship to US and I'm not a US resident...

Will appreciate it. :) 
a b } Memory
February 22, 2012 4:09:34 AM

Telling us where you live would be helpful................
February 22, 2012 4:15:26 AM

That would be Israel. :) 
February 22, 2012 6:37:45 AM

kcsmacker said:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
or
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

those are 1600 speeds.

Someone correct me if im wrong but these would clock default at 1333 but if he goes into his bios he could speed them to the correct speed of 1600. If his board really can only have 1333 then maybe

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

BTW, is this true? Can I change it from the BIOS or is it not recommended for any reason?
February 23, 2012 11:06:57 AM

Anyone? Is this statement true?
February 23, 2012 12:48:03 PM

ekmo said:
BTW, is this true? Can I change it from the BIOS or is it not recommended for any reason?


I have a similar Gigabyte H55 LGA1156 Mobo. You shouldn't have to change anything in your BIOS for them to work at 1600MHz. Check your BIOS version at the Gigabyte site and download any newer version available (using @BIOS). If you do have the latest version installed they should work at their deticated speed.
When the P55 and H55 Mobos came out Gigabyte specs were 1066/1333/O.C.1600MHz after a few BIOS upgrades they now support up to 2000MHz RAM.
As the others are pointing out a 2x4GB dual channel kit will be super for about $50.
February 23, 2012 12:51:41 PM

BTW @BIOS is a Gigabyte BIOS updating tool you can find at the Gigabyte site under Downloads for your Mobo model. It will check online for a newer version, download it and install. When it's done you just reboot and you're set! No FDDs and junk like that!
February 23, 2012 3:22:38 PM

Thanks, that's a lot of good info.
Always was afraid of messing with the BIOS, but if it's a simple as you say it is... Why the hell not? Should I worry about it affecting anything? Or is it completely idiot proof?
February 23, 2012 5:08:08 PM

ekmo said:
Thanks, that's a lot of good info.
Always was afraid of messing with the BIOS, but if it's a simple as you say it is... Why the hell not? Should I worry about it affecting anything? Or is it completely idiot proof?


The only thing you should worry about is a power failure during the BIOS upgrade otherwise you're good!
Here's the link to the download (for Gigabyte GA-P55A-UD3 all OS):
http://www.gigabyte.com/MicroSite/121/tech_a_bios.htm
February 26, 2012 6:49:29 AM

I was told that while I can upgrade my BIOS, my processor can't hold more than 1333MHz because of the BUS. Is that true?
We are talking about Intel Core i5 760 Socket 1156 8MB 95W 2.8Ghz Tray.
February 28, 2012 4:36:14 AM

Here's the deal: I bought A-Data 2x4GB 1333MHz and added them to my older Transcend 2x2GB 1333MHz. 4 slots full.

Checking the computer properties it says 8GB while I should have 12. Any idea why this happens?
February 28, 2012 6:58:36 AM

What do you see in the BIOS?
When adding ram to an existing set, you should ALWAYS get an identical pair! If thats not possible, at least get the closest set available (same brand). If it is possible, try to returning for another pair of Transcend.
Have you installed one pair on DDR3_1 and DDR3_3 and the other on DDR3_2 and DDR3_4? If not do that and see how it goes!

Out of curiosity. why didn't you get faster RAM like 1600MHz?
February 28, 2012 7:18:40 AM

Not possible for me to get the same set. I don't see why they shouldn't work together.
What do you mean by DDR3_1 and DDR3_3?

I got the 1333 and not the 1600 simply because that's whatI could find in a reasonable price plus I already had a set of 2x2GB 1333MHz and didn't want them to slow down the new set plus the difference between 1333 and 1600 is apparently not critical for me.
February 28, 2012 8:07:25 AM

Your mobo has 4 RAM slots correct? They should be 2 different colors correct?
As I see your mobo has a blue pair and a white pair.
One pair (Transcend) should be in the blue slots and A-Data in the white slots or vice versa.
If you haven't installed your ram like that, please do.
If you still have the same issue, then loose the 2x2GB pair and keep the 2x4GB pair. I know you can never have too much ram but I'm sure 8 is plenty!
a b } Memory
February 28, 2012 8:14:30 AM

try installing them in this order 2 2 4 4 , see if that helps...worked for me
a b } Memory
February 28, 2012 8:18:15 AM

also maximum memory clock supported by the 1st generation I3/5/7 is 1333 to use higher speed you are gonna have to overclock....the P55ud3 supprts up to 2200 ram speed 4GB per slot and a maximum or 16GB of rams
February 28, 2012 8:54:40 AM

ngrego said:
Your mobo has 4 RAM slots correct? They should be 2 different colors correct?
As I see your mobo has a blue pair and a white pair.
One pair (Transcend) should be in the blue slots and A-Data in the white slots or vice versa.
If you haven't installed your ram like that, please do.
If you still have the same issue, then loose the 2x2GB pair and keep the 2x4GB pair. I know you can never have too much ram but I'm sure 8 is plenty!

They are in dual channel arrangement, i.e. both 4GB in blue slots and 2GB in white slots.

I don't want to lose the 2X2GB so fast, I'm sure it's something that can be fixed.

h3sham said:
try installing them in this order 2 2 4 4 , see if that helps...worked for me

You mean both 2x4GB in blue+white and 2x2GB in blue+white? If not, then I see my reply to ngrego.
And according to what you said I should have no problem having 4 sticks worth of 12GB in 1333MHz, so it should work properly without OC...
a b } Memory
February 28, 2012 9:01:08 AM

yup i mean that ,the MB wont let you run a pair of 2s and a pair of 4s in dual channel mode i tried it and it didn work
February 28, 2012 9:09:41 AM

Perhaps it's a stupid question, but can 2+4 GB work in dual channel?
I know it's not that much of a difference with/without dual channel (correct me if I'm wrong here), but I'm still curious.
a b } Memory
February 28, 2012 9:26:06 AM

If the motherboard has two pairs of differently colored DIMM sockets (the colors indicate which bank they belong to, bank 0 or bank 1), then one can place a matched pair of memory modules in bank 0, but a different-capacity pair of modules in bank 1, as long as they are of the same speed. Using this scheme, a pair of 1 GB memory modules in bank 0 and a pair of matched 512 MB modules in bank 1 would be acceptable for dual-channel operation.

Dual-channel technology was created to address the issue of bottlenecks. Increased processor speed and performance requires other, less prominent components to keep pace. In the case of dual-channel design, the intended target is the memory controller, which regulates data flow between the CPU and system memory (RAM). The memory controller determines the types and speeds of RAM as well as the maximum size of each individual memory module and the overall memory capacity of the system. However, when the memory is unable to keep up with the processor, a bottleneck occurs, leaving the CPU with nothing to process. Under the single-channel architecture, any CPU with a bus speed greater than the memory speed would be susceptible to this bottleneck effect.

The dual-channel configuration alleviates the problem by doubling the amount of available memory bandwidth. Instead of a single memory channel, a second parallel channel is added. With two channels working simultaneously, the bottleneck is reduced. Rather than wait for memory technology to improve, dual-channel architecture simply takes the existing RAM technology and improves the method in which it is handled. While the actual implementation differs between Intel and AMD motherboards, the basic theory stands.
also dual channel gave at best a 5% speed increase in memory-intensive tasks more than single-channel in synthetic and gaming benchmarks
February 28, 2012 9:33:37 AM

You left out the following:
"The difference can be far more significant in applications that manipulate large amounts of data in memory. A comparison by TechConnect Magazine demonstrated considerable gains for dual-channel in tasks using block sizes greater than 4 MB, and during stream processing by the CPU".

;) 

Anyway, I'll try rearranging the sticks once I get home and report back if it did the trick.
Thanks.
a b } Memory
February 28, 2012 9:36:17 AM

lol cant blame me for being too lazy to type all that :p  , hopefully rearranging them will do the trick
February 29, 2012 3:14:38 AM

So after one blue screen, multiple cases of non-responding computer, some minor heart attacks and one tantrum I was able to get my full 12GB.

The solution was to stick the 2 new 2x4GB in bank 0 and the old 2x2GB in bank 1. They work in dual channel as well. Any other setup gave either 2GB in single channel, 4 GB in dual channel or a computer that just won't turn on.

Hopefully I didn't do any damage with all the turning off and on, plugging and unplugging the memory sticks.

So far it looks like all is well in my computerized kingdom. Big thanks to ngrego, h3sham and all the other guys who helped me out.
Have a good day people. :) 
a b } Memory
February 29, 2012 4:22:01 AM

what order did you put em in 2244 or 2424 or what!
February 29, 2012 4:49:19 AM

Like I said: 2x4GB in bank 0 (means 2x4GB in blue slots) and 2x2GB in bank 1 (means 2x4GB in white slots).
Both sets work in dual channel.
a b } Memory
February 29, 2012 5:26:38 AM

cool
February 29, 2012 7:01:54 AM

happy to hear you got the full 12GB working!
!