Dual Channel Memory


#1

Hi,

Im trying to buy some memory, my motherboard supports dual channel and I want to know something: if I put 2 dimms of the same size and buffer that is going make a dual channel configuration or dual channel dimms are different from simple ddr
Thanks, bye


#2

The dual channel thing is a motherboard feature and it uses the standard memory.
However, if you plan to install yourself, and the board has 3 or more memory banks, be sure to read the documentation of the mainboard. The actual position of the memory cells enables or not the dual channel option.


#3

Thank you so much, I will do what you have sayd. One thing, Im on a doubt: I can buy two dimms of 256mbs 400mhz or two 512mb 333mhz. What is more important the size of the dimms or the buss speed?

Thanks


#4

It depends on what your doing, but I would say that size is more importaint than speed. If your memory is a little slow you get a 10% drop in performance. If your low on memory you get at least a 500% drop in performance. But if 512mb total is enough for you you will never run out. So it just depends.

Also when you run dual channel sometimes your system wont boot up. This is often because a motherboard will only support dual channel at a lower speed than single channel. If this happens to you take out a dimm and run on one stick. Then set your speed lower and plug in the other stick. Then it should work fine. As a rule its usually quite a bit faster to run dual channel at a slower speed than single channel at a higher speed. If you want to see actual numbers and make sure things are running correctly go to www.memtest86.com and download it.

boy that was long. hope it helps


#5

Hi thank you for your answer, another thing that I want to know is if you have to make a change in the BIOS or in any software configuration to allow dual channel to work or it runs by automatically when you put two identical dimms where the manual tells you?


#6

The correct memory-speed depends upon the requirements of your motherboard. I’d also guess it’d be smart to make sure it’s all the same. But the bottom line is: if the memory is slower than required, it will (at the very least) introduce unwanted wait-states, effectively slowing the CPU down as much as to half-speed. If the memory is faster than required, there is no advantage and simply slightly-higher cost.

Personally, I don’t “skimp” on RAM. This resource is the single biggest determinant of system speed. I want gobs of it, and I want it to run fast. I’ll “save money” elsewhere.

Provided that the memory is fast-enough for the motherboard, as a rule of thumb you should buy as much of it as you can afford. The reason is, “RAM is the only thing in the system that can keep up with the CPU.” Hard drives are literally millions of times slower. Probably nothing slows down a computer more than paging. The more RAM you have, the less likely it is that the system will slow down for that reason. It’ll obviously have to page material into RAM once, but having done that, it won’t have to page stuff back out to make room for other material during the course of normal, memory- and computer-intensive work (like all 3D-graphics work).


#7

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