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K6-2 Performance Guide

Summary Memory Speed

Please take into account that the differences between EDO and SDRAM can vary on other motherboards (and with other chipsets as well) and the results aren't necessarily the same. These tests are meant to show you the practical differences. It could become even more interesting with motherboards equipped with 2 MB of L2 cache.

You can see that the L2 cache is the most performance relevant factor. As you know that is also the reason for the Pentium II not performing really much better at 100 MHz memory clock instead of 66: The L2 cache already runs at a much higher level and makes the memory question today not as urgent as Intel wants us to believe. The benefits of a higher memory bandwidth can be interesting for very memory intensive applications or the AGP bus, which should be able to gain from the higher bandwidth.

For socket 7 systems you should select your key components (motherboard, CPU, RAM) according to this order:

  • External clock speed (system clock speed)
    The higher, the better. But be careful with 112 MHz bus speed; I can only recommend this setting for people who know what they are doing.
  • CPU clock
    Again, the faster, the better.
  • Memory clock speed
    As you have seen, 100 MHz of course is faster. It depends on you whether this is worth buying new memory or not.