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Old November 21, 2008, 10:31 PM
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Default Looking for advice on RAM upgrade

So my system current has 2GB of DDR2 RAM (Corsair XMS2 PC6400, 2 sticks of 1GB each) and I'm considering getting more.

My first option is to get another 2GB kit to use in addition to my current RAM, ending up with 4 sticks of 1GB each. The second option is to just get a 4GB kit to replace my current RAM, and end up with 2 sticks of 2GB each.

The first option will be less expensive, but I understand that the 2 stick option will offer better performance. I'm not sure exactly how much of performance difference it gives, hence my asking for advice.

The 2GB kit I'm looking at is this one: NCIX.com - Buy Corsair XMS2 DHX TWIN2X2048-6400C4DHX 2GB DDR2 2X1GB PC2-6400 DDR2-800 CL 4-4-4-12 Memory Kit - TWIN2X2048-6400C4DHX In Canada.
And the 4GB kit I'm looking at is this one: Newegg.ca - CORSAIR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Desktop Memory

The 2GB kit is the DHX version while the 4GB kit is not, but I'm not very concerned about that. I'm not an extreme overclocker, so I've mostly selected these because they're on sale.

Any thoughts?
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Old November 21, 2008, 11:01 PM
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Look at getting the 2x2GB 4GB kit, main reason I say this is so you'd still have the ability to upgrade to 8GB in the future if you like, with 4x1GB you've hit a wall unless you replace everything. Performance wise, there will be no noticeable difference of 4x1GB or 2x2GB, BUT it is easier on the north bride to run 2 sticks rather than 4 sticks. I mention this because I have come across many issues where a system won't boot with 4 sticks in till you modify and put up the voltages on ram/northbridge.

That being said if your looking to save a few dollars and don't ever plan on upgrading to 8GB, go with the 4x1GB sticks, it will work well, it did for me before I went to 4x2GB - 8GB.

If you do look at going for the 2x2GB, look at these great stick, not only are they faster, but shipping is gonna be *much* cheaper, plus depending on where you live, NO PST!

G.SKILL PC2-8000 4GB 2X2GB DDR2-1000 CL5-5-5-15 - if you dislike MIR's like me, or
Mushkin XP PC2-8000 Redline 4GB 2X2GB DDR2-1000 CL5-5-5-12 - if you trust MIR's

Last edited by Chilly; November 21, 2008 at 11:08 PM.
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Old November 22, 2008, 03:15 AM
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Do not do MIRs, the company that runs them is tits up, just filled for Bankruptcy protetion. Unless Mushkin steps up like BFG you won't see your money ever.

Chilly gave you good advice, all though over voltage memory should not affect you NB, its entirely handled by the voltage regulator just set though the bridge. Your memory may have a shorter life though being over voltage. Here's the key in my humble opinion:

If you are looking at either new Intel or AMD in 09 if things all work out financially and your just tryen to eek by while you wait and save, go for 4x1GB, leverage your current investment. How ever if you are under no budget (must be nice) or your sticking with your ststem base (ie mobo and DDr2 memory) for a while then I'd go with Chilly and get 2x2GB so you can go Vista x64/windows 7 x64 with 4x2GB later on.

Most systems will require overvoltage on 4x any size stick, JEDEC can't write IEEE specs, maybe they should invest in help from IEEE. It all comes down to price vs perf for me, I dont let it totally drive my buys, but its a big factor. I won't pay 200% for 10% increase. I have limited funds and the wiser i use them the better system i have. Some NBs will auto over voltage a certain percent with 4 or in case of intel, 6 sticks.

either way, you will be happy with 4GB of memory, for many modern games it is an improvement.
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Old November 22, 2008, 04:06 AM
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I would buy a completely new 2x2GB kit...giving you less chance of any compatability issues between 2 different sets. You can then try and sell the 2GB kit(though you won't get much), or keep them around as a backup set... should you have to RMA the new set. I would go for this G.Skill PC2-8000 2x2GB kit, if you don't want to mess about with MIR's. You can price-match it to NCIX for $70. The Mushkin Accents are great as well, but are ~$20 more after rebate. GL

Last edited by 1Tanker; November 22, 2008 at 09:35 PM.
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Old November 22, 2008, 06:21 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions. I'm not sure yet what I'll do, but now that I know the pros and cons of each option I can mull it over.
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