Need advice for upgrading RAM for GA-P55A-UD3 (Core i5 750)

Hello all, I've been in need of some advice about what to do with my RAM in regards to my current setup.

First off, here are my current specs:

Intel Core i5 750 @ 2.67 Mhz (stock, not OC'd) has Hyper 212 cooler
Gigabyte P55-A-UD3 LGA 1156 mobo
4 GB G.Skill DDR3 1333 PC3 10666 (F3-10666CL8D-4GBHK)
EVGA Geforce GTX 275
Corsair TX750W PSU

I usually use this PC to play games on a 2048 x 1152 resolution, btw.

Recently, one 2 GB stick of my RAM is starting to go bad, giving me a couple BSODs and gave me over 1 million errors on Memtest86. The other stick is working fine and I'm currently running that stick, bringing me down to 2 GB RAM at the moment.

My question is, should I just RMA that damaged stick back, or upgrade to 8 GB?

Now, if I were to upgrade, what speed RAM would be best? I've read that my mobo can't handle speeds over 1333 without essentially OC'ing the CPU. I've looked at some 8 GB RAM that runs at 1333 speeds, but its Cas latency and timing seems worse than the one I currently have now (9-9-9-24-2N vs. my current 8-8-8-21), but would having more RAM be better even though it's less efficient?

About going for 1600 RAM, I don't mind OC'ing my mobo since I already have a Hyper 212 cooler installed (just been too lazy/scared to OC), but I'd like to know what to tweak in the BIOS or how to set the correct voltage and XMP profile.

I'm interested in getting the G.Skill Ripjaws, and I'm torn between three models:

Should I just get 8 GBs of 1333 RAM?

Or would it better to go with the 8 GBs of 1600 RAM?

Or pay more $$ and go for the Ripjaws X series for better latency?

Or should I just RMA my old RAM stick and continue using the 4 GBs I'm currently using?

Sorry if this so long. I'm just trying to be as thorough as I can. Like I wrote earlier, this is primarily a gaming PC and I usually play games like Diablo 3 or the upcoming Guild Wars 2 on 2048 x 1152 resolution. Any help in this matter would be very appreciated. Thanks!

tl;dr: 4 GB RAM went bad, RMA it, or upgrade to 8 GB Ripjaws. If upgrading, which speed would be best for GA-P55A-UD3 mobo with i5 750?
5 answers Last reply
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  1. Well, my take on it is to simply RMA the memory, get it back, and be happy with the 4 GB of ram. An extra 4gb won't buy you much in terms of performance.
  2. Thanks for the swift reply. I guess you have a point there. Maybe it's me though, but after going down from 4 to 2 GB, I notice things were a lot slower, so I thought to myself maybe if I doubled my RAM things would be even more faster. I suppose going from 4 to 8 GB wouldn't make that much of a dramatic difference to go through all that trouble OC'ing and spending money for? Especially for games that could run fine already on 4 GB.

    Also, I'd like to add, would using one 2 GB stick on a dual channel mobo be alright for a few weeks? I'm paranoid it might cause some harm since I'm assuming the RAM is designed to be run in pairs.
  3. Oh no, it won;t cause any harm to run with a single 2gb stick for a while.
  4. I noticed a difference going from 4GB to 8GB. I even discussed this a lot and had tonnes of references.

    Your choice of memory isn't going to matter that much since it won't be a bottleneck in a system like yours.

    I'd go for the G. Skills Ripjaws for $47.

    Your bottleneck for gaming is mainly going to be your graphics card. I have an i7-860 which is identical in performance to your i5-750 when I disable hyperthreading (which doesn't benefit games anyway). I have a GTX 680 and I estimate roughly 85% of my games don't benefit from an overclock of my CPU.

    Just FYI. Diablo 3 is very efficient and upgrading your graphics card likely wouldn't make much difference but Guild Wars 2 and many other games will benefit from a better graphics card.
  5. Thanks for the reassurance, abekl. I won't be running on that one stick for that long though, but it's nice to know that it won't cause any harm.

    Your impressions going from 4 to 8 GB made me want to consider upgrading, photonboy, since RAM's relatively cheap nowadays, so why not have more?

    While I'm glad that bottlenecking in regards to RAM speeds and latency won't matter much, what I'm mostly concerned about is long-term stability, which is why I've considered the slower 1333 RAM ($43) in addition to the 1600 RAM ($47), which you said you'd go for. I feel like I'd have to worry more about OC'ing, XMP settings, and making sure things are tweaked right if I go for the 1600 RAM, since from what I understand, my processor doesn't support speeds over 1333, so for it to run at 1600 speed, I'll have to OC the processor, basically.

    That's why I also considered the 1333 speed 8 GB ram. It's a bit cheaper and less efficient RAM than the one I'm currently using, but the speed is supported by a stock, non-OC'd i5 750, so I wouldn't have to worry about it as much? But would having more RAM vs my current 4 GB make up for the higher latency? We're talking about a difference between an 8 and 9 at 1.5V.

    Come to think of it, if the 1600 speed RAM will be brought down to 1333 speed on my stock i5 750, wouldn't it make more sense to purchase the 1333 RAM over the 1600 speed RAM? They both have the same timing and latency too.
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