Quad channel memory in a dual channel mobo


I currently have a GA-Z68-APD3 mobo (rev 1.0) based Intel Core i7 2600K system, with a slow (and inexpensive) DDR3 1333 memory - Transcend. The system has been duly overclocked and is running stably. I use it mostly for simulation projects that I do in my spare time.

I need to improve memory speed on this system.

Now, option 1 - simply buy 16GB of DDR3 1600MHz 1.5 V dual channel memory - or is budget permits, buy DDR3 2133 MHz 1.5 V dual channel memory ...

However, I wanted some advice before I do that. By next year, I will sell off this machine - it appears very fast to many other users with less demanding workloads, so has an aftermarket - and build myself a LGA 2011 based system that may be overclocked to 4.7GHz with liquid cooling.

What I want to do is to buy the memory for that machine early - so buy a 4x4 1.65 quad channel DDR3 2133 memory right away, put that into the existing system, and then, later, sometime mid next year, sell the system but keep these memory modules and use it then - It simply saves me the cost of buying the Option 1 memory (~ $150 ... money I could use to add something more to the system rather than wasting it)

Is this possible? Are there serious problems with putting a quad-channel 1.65V memory modules to a dual channel mother board rated at 1.5V - apart from losing potential performance for some time? Will it at all work? The mother board allows to increase the memory voltage, but I have never tried that.

All advice is welcome and genuinely appreciated ...
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  1. Best answer
    To achieve speeds of 2133, the RAM will most certainly need to be upped to 1.65v. This is considered OCing, and in some cases can void some warranties. But in the spirit of your new system, this probably isn't much of a concern to you given that you're going to water cool it. :)

    For the time being, you could buy a quad channel kit that supports faster, and you just run it slower. Essentially your motherboard will just think it has 2x dual channel kits. As for the speed, run at 1.5v only, and run slower 1333/1600. Any modules capable of running 2133 @1.65v are almost certainly going to be ok at 1600@1.5v. Not guaranteed, but pretty close to guaranteed.
  2. Sure. All a quad channel memory kit is is four identical DIMM's tested to work together. That makes it a little better than a pair of dual channel kits.
  3. Best answer selected by quasar66.
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