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How much does RAM quality and speed matter?

Discussion in 'Memory' started by Inazuma, 8 Jun 2010.

  1. Inazuma

    Mobster

    Joined: 9 Jun 2006

    Posts: 4,227

    Location: Purgatory

    I am in need of 8gb RAM DDR2 (4x2gb). I've seen prices ranging from £130 for cheapest and £190 as a mid-high end price. Now, my system is OC'd (Q6600 @ 3.4Ghz) and I'd like to keep it that way.

    With the cheaper RAM (happens to be Dell ram), will I still be able to keep this same OC? How much does the quality and speed of RAM matter? Realistically, are we talking just seconds of time saving between low-end RAM and high-end RAM? What difference does the quality of parts make?
     
  2. trentlad

    Mobster

    Joined: 7 Feb 2010

    Posts: 3,682

    For your processor there would no point in purchasing DDR3 ram. A processor able to use DDR3 ram (i.e.Core i7) means it can access three ram blocks at the same time, but since your Q6600 can only access two ram blocks at the same time you would not see any difference in speed between the two.

    So purchasing DDR2 ram will be your largest cost saver.

    (I'll leave the explanation of the timing to someone else since I'm typing on my phone) :)
     
  3. airdrawn

    Associate

    Joined: 5 Nov 2005

    Posts: 61

    So which CPU's can access 3 ram blocks?
     
  4. Guest2

    Capodecina

    Joined: 6 May 2009

    Posts: 17,049

    i7 and I think i5 (at a guess)
     
  5. airdrawn

    Associate

    Joined: 5 Nov 2005

    Posts: 61

    so none of the AMD cpu's?
     
  6. trentlad

    Mobster

    Joined: 7 Feb 2010

    Posts: 3,682

    That's right the 'Core ix' series CPU's can access three RAM blocks at the same time and hence take advantage of DDR3.

    There are also AMD CPUs that can take advantage of DDR3, the phenom II I think is one but that's just off the top of my head.
     
  7. simbady

    Hitman

    Joined: 9 Oct 2008

    Posts: 904

    Location: Somerset, UK

    Have you seen the price of DDR2 today?
     
  8. PermaBanned

    Capodecina

    Joined: 7 Jul 2009

    Posts: 16,239

    Location: Newcastle/Aberdeen

    All AM3 chips have a DDR3 memory controller.
     
  9. RJC

    Don

    Joined: 29 May 2005

    Posts: 28,846

    Location: Kent

    AMD utilise dual channel rather than triple on the i7 9xx series.
     
  10. Inazuma

    Mobster

    Joined: 9 Jun 2006

    Posts: 4,227

    Location: Purgatory

    Ok can we get back to answering my question :p How much does speed matter (i.e. the different clock speeds of DDR2 ram) and how much does the quality of parts matter?

    Basically if I'm OCing, is it ok for me to go for the cheapest RAM or do I need to get the higher end goods?