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Memory upgrade on my homebuilt

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July 4, 2011 5:21:02 PM

I currently have in place 3 x 2GB OCZ Platinum 1600 memory, with 7-7-7-24 timing. I'd like to upgrade to 12GB from 6GB. With my budget, I plan to get another 3 x 2GB triple channel kit and use 6 sticks of ram; rather than replacing my current RAM with a new 3 x 4GB triple channel kit. I have a few questions about doing so. Below is the archived link to my memory:

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

1) Is mixing two brands even possible?

2) It seems that OCZ is no longer producing RAM, so I'm in need of a new brand. When I was shopping two years ago for my current build, Corsair, Mushkin and G.Skill were all fairly comparable to OCZ, are these still the best three brands available?

3) Is finding new ram that is not only 1600, but also 7-7-7-24 timings crucial? Or as long as it's 1600, will 8-8-8-24 do? Can I get 8-8-8-24 and manually slow down my current ram to match?

4) Is the added number of ram sticks in my case detrimental (increased heat, for example) to the point that I should just wait until I can afford to get a 3x 4gb kit and forget about filling all 6 slots on my mobo?

5) If my budget increases and I can afford a 3x 4GB kit, am I only able to use the new 12 GB of RAM, or can i use the other 3 memory slots for the original memory and utilize 18 GB?

Thank you as always for your help.
a b B Homebuilt system
July 4, 2011 5:47:38 PM

1) Yes.
2) Never realized that, hmm. Guess they allocated all their flash into SSDs. Corsair/G-Skill/Mushkin are still good RAM.
3) Timings and speed are both factors of RAM performance, so 1600 at CAS7 is still faster than 1333 CAS8. You can always downclock, though manually setting the timings lower is viable also.
4) RAM doesn't contribute much to heat and power, so no worry on that. 12GB is plenty of RAM already and in very rare cases will you need more than that. (or even close to that actually)
5) You can use 18GB, and triple channel shouldn't be much affected.

Why would you want 12GB in the first place though? For gaming 6 is already plenty and I doubt you'll see any improvements with 12GB.
Anyways, heres a 6GB set, http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Being 1.5v RAM, CAS 7 @1.65v shouldn't be a problem.

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July 4, 2011 5:57:19 PM

thanks for the quick reply... the "memory" board has resulted in 0 in over a week...

my system runs pretty hot, so i am generally concerned about adding anything at all was my worry there. i don't intend to go 1333 no matter what, i plan on 1600 (i'd consider 1800 but that is probably just a price jump for no added benefit).

my main concern was with getting 1600 CAS8 and mixing it with my 1600 CAS7, would that cause a problem? i'm also considering getting a 12gb kit and adding it to my current 6gb, not because i need 18 over 12, so much as then i can, in the distant future, go from 12 (or 18) up to 24 without making my recent purchase useless.

just to make sure that i'm all set before making a purchase: is it true that i can combine my current memory (linked above) with a new kit, such as

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

The two products differ in that they are different brand (ocz vs g.skill), different size sticks (2gb vs 4gb) and different timings (cas7 vs cas9) ... if i do mix these, do i need to make any changes in bios to the cas7 memory to match the cas9?
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July 4, 2011 6:00:11 PM

and to answer your question why i want more, with my dual monitor setup, i commonly am running a variety of apps at a time, gaming while watching video and surfing the internet on two browsers and using word/excel, all at the same time, is not uncommon for me. a.d.d. is RAM-intensive i suppose.

i should also probably look into a better or 2nd graphics processor, since mine is a bit older now as well. i'm sure my processor/mobo are fine, but a better vid card might not hurt.
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a b B Homebuilt system
July 4, 2011 6:23:23 PM

lehighace06 said:
thanks for the quick reply... the "memory" board has resulted in 0 in over a week...

my system runs pretty hot, so i am generally concerned about adding anything at all was my worry there. i don't intend to go 1333 no matter what, i plan on 1600 (i'd consider 1800 but that is probably just a price jump for no added benefit).

my main concern was with getting 1600 CAS8 and mixing it with my 1600 CAS7, would that cause a problem? i'm also considering getting a 12gb kit and adding it to my current 6gb, not because i need 18 over 12, so much as then i can, in the distant future, go from 12 (or 18) up to 24 without making my recent purchase useless.

just to make sure that i'm all set before making a purchase: is it true that i can combine my current memory (linked above) with a new kit, such as

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

The two products differ in that they are different brand (ocz vs g.skill), different size sticks (2gb vs 4gb) and different timings (cas7 vs cas9) ... if i do mix these, do i need to make any changes in bios to the cas7 memory to match the cas9?

How hot is your system? You might be able to improve cooling.
Brand is not an issue, CAS shouldn't be, but with X58 you might need to add voltages as the sets you looked at are all 1.65v. Size isn't an issue either, you might get a bandwidth hit, but you still get the full 18GB.

24GB is a bit "overkill" no matter how crazy you might multitask, FF with 100 tabs uses only 3GB of RAM. Besides, Intel's nest flagship platform uses quad-channel RAM so 3 would be "outdated" again.
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July 4, 2011 6:34:06 PM

wow, they're moving to quad channel? neat.

my temps are (currently)
CPU: 130 deg F
GPU: 170 deg F
HDD: 90 deg F

However, not long ago my temps were much higher, due to warmer weather and an my a/c unit in the room not being turned on... Then, it looked like:

CPU: 180 deg F
GPU: 210 deg F
HDD: 120 deg F


My comment about 24gb was indicating that in a few years, when that much is not overkill, a 3x 4gb kit would be less obsolete than a 2nd 3x 2gb kit. that way, even though 18gb (now) vs 12gb (now) is not necessarily worth the extra cost, the ability to keep the 3x 4gb kit when upgrading later would be worth the added cost now. also, that way if mixing my old kit with the new did not work, i at least still have 12gb rather than just newer sticks still totalling 6gb.

You mention "add voltages" how do i do that? And it looks like my new ram (if i buy what i'm looking at buying) is going to be 1.5 v, and my old ram is 1.65v.
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July 4, 2011 9:44:00 PM

should i get memory with the same 1.65v voltage as my current ram? or is a lower voltage better? For example,

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

The first is 1.65 volt, but an older model, whereas the second is the newer model and lower voltage, since they're currently the same cost, which should i get? i usually assume that newer is better, but is matching voltages adventageous? Also, is G.Skill better than Mushkin? Because the below linked item is again the same cost, and on paper the exact same ram as the newer mushkin.

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

which of the three should i go for?
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a b B Homebuilt system
July 4, 2011 11:00:32 PM

X58 is stcok at 1.65v so 1.5v RAM needs a voltage bump for most boards, however, lower voltage and same speed/CAS means its a better set of RAM, so decide if you want to do the tweaking or not.
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July 5, 2011 1:57:34 AM

what is involved in the tweaking? what does it take to "give it a voltage bump"? Is this something that I can do easily in bios or with my hardware monitoring software? am i reading you correctly that the 1.5v ram would need to be tuned to receive a higher voltage than it is set up for? that just seems sorta backwards that i'd give it more voltage than it's designed for without overclocking.

i assumed lower voltage/same cas meant better ram, so my initial reacion is to go with the newer mushkin or the g.skill that i've linked above, rather than the older mushkin with the higher voltage; i dont mind making alterations in bios as long as they are simple and safe.

if the alterations are more complicated, or if there is a way that i can do them wrong and fry something, please tell me, and i'll just get the older mushkin and accept that i have slightly less than cutting-edge components, in trade for not risking my entire rig.
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July 8, 2011 12:56:25 PM

bump hoping for more info on changing my voltage (refer to above)
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