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Memory Issue??

Last response: in Components
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August 26, 2012 1:51:53 PM

Hi All,

Thanks for the opportunity to hear from you!

I have a Gigabyte GA-MA78GMH-S2H motherboard w. an AMD Athlon 64 5400 in my older computer (2008 build). When I put it together, I put in a pair of Corsair Dominator 1 GB memory modules rated at 2.1 volts. Not sure how this happened, but now as I research, the MB only calls for 1.8 volt memory. The computer has been sluggish loading larger-file graphics for most of its life. Could this be the problem??

Additionally, I have been thinking of putting in another couple of GBs of memory, to try to solve this problem. Should I get rid of the 2.1 volt ones and start fresh, or just match what I already have, i.e, 2.1v?

I suspect this may be a no brainer...???

More about : memory issue

a b } Memory
August 26, 2012 2:16:56 PM

CORSAIR DOMINATOR 2.1V is incompatible with your motherboard.

Your mobo has 4 x 1.8V DDR2 DIMM sockets supporting up to 16 GB of system memory. It is Dual channel memory architecture. It has support for DDR2 1066/800/667 MHz memory modules.

You have to get something like that http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...
August 26, 2012 3:25:57 PM

Thank you, Jemm,

My thought was that maybe the memory wasn't functioning correctly, hence taking forever to load something as simple as Google Earth. So, you're thinking, as I did, that the difference b/w 1.8v and 2.1v is enough to cause problems?

I have to wonder if I saw the memory listed somewhere as compatible.

Thanks for the thoughts!
Related resources
a b } Memory
August 26, 2012 4:17:34 PM

Yes, it is more than enough for causing problems. Also this voltage can permanently damage the memory controller.

a b } Memory
August 26, 2012 4:22:10 PM

When you buy a motherboard it list the compatable memory that goes with it and by just buying any old memory sticks is not going to work. You do need to take those out and put in the new compatible set that is recomended by Jemm. Also being an older computer you don't have a good selection to choose from. By putting in 4 gb of memory you will increase the performance of your Pc.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
August 30, 2012 9:56:24 PM

Yes, but...

If my MB requires a 1.8v memory, why does the BIOS allow one to alter the voltage? I have the thing set to match the voltage of the installed memory, which is 2.1v. What am I missing here?

Plus, if I acquire another memory or two, that are rated at 800mhz, rather than the 1600 that I currently have installed, will this be a big step down in potential memory performance? There are few 1600s still available, and they're expensive. Plus, the CAS is 7 for most that are still available, in comparison to the CAS 5 that my current memory has. Will this be a noticeable degradation?
a b } Memory
August 30, 2012 11:47:36 PM

The Bios allows you change the voltage for overclocking reasons -- basically you have to increse the memory voltage to be able to overclock. On the other hand if you overclock the CPU, the you have to downclock the memory frequency, thus the voltage.

As you could see by yourself, setting higher voltage, and/or frequency cause problems.

For your mobo, the best memory frequency is 1066MHz [DDR@] @ 1.8v., and not 800MHz. See the link I provided you above.

When looking for memory kit the best is to get one with the lower latency [CAS] possible. MOst of the 1066MHz kits come with CAS 7.

There will be a decrease in performance, but it´ll be too much, and in some cases you won´t notice it.



August 31, 2012 12:44:13 PM

Thank you, Jemm, for your thoughtful responses! I really appreciate it!

I'm narrowing down taking action with this error. I have new info...

My processor, an AMD Athlon 64 X2 5400+ Brisbane, is made for an AM2 socket. My MB is made for both AM2 and AM2+ CPUs. Somewhere, I thought I recently read that only AM2+ CPUs can run a memory w. 1066.

Plus, my MB is defaulting an 800mhz speed for my 1066 installed modules, and also defaults at 1.8v. So, my memory is operating at a lower frequency and voltage.

So... my (likely) last questions are... can I actually even take advantage of a 1066 memory module w. this CPU and MB? There's not even a field in BIOS for 1066 adjustment, indicating the CPU may not support the speed.

Plus, I'm confused about the timing specs. I used to know what these were, but not sure how to handle these for this situation.

Sorry for all of this. I can't imagine I didn't do all this research 4yrs ago, when I put this thing together, but my aging brain seems to not recall a bunch of this!
a b } Memory
August 31, 2012 8:26:08 PM

Sorry, in my last post I wanted to say that the difference won´t be too much.
October 20, 2012 11:32:55 AM

O.k.,

I replaced the memory with an appropriate choice, and my computer is STILL very sluggish, and still loads dense web pages painfully slow, compared to my laptop, which is on the same internet connection, although wireless. It's no faster than it was with my mismatched memory. What gives?

What else could I be missing? I'm wondering if my power supply is perhaps a culprit? My gut tells me to just scrap the whole computer and start from scratch. What would YOU do? Any shots in the dark?

Thanks for your help!
a b } Memory
October 20, 2012 12:07:25 PM

You have an almost 5 years old computer with old DDR2 architecture (tough 64 bit).

Yes it is time for a whole change!

I advise you open a new thread for a new building, and mention what you have from your old build, perhaps you could use some of the old parts, for instance, HHD, perhaps case, etc.
!