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Guest Lobaeux4

Another memory question, buying today need help

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Okay, I'll make this easy. Mobo will support both, running an AMD 2400XP, not 333Mhz.Need to buy some memory, the PC2100 are being taken out of my computer to go into my son's computer.PC2700 or PC3200? AMD2400XP, Gigabyte GA-7VAXP mobo with three memory slots. One stick of 512 or two 256 sticks. How about Mushkin? A good brand? The price diff between the PC2700 and 3200 is only a few bucks, but will I see much of a difference between the two? Especially since I've only got an AMD 2400?Thanks,Lobaeux

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I assume you have the 266 MHz FSB version of the Athlon XP 2400. That means the FSB runs at 133 x 2 MHz. PC2700 would suit this fine, Samsung and Mushkin are good brands. Higher than PC2700 is suitable for those people who want to overclock the FSB's on their motherboards to pretty high values (around 200 MHz) since they need high speed RAM to support these high FSB's. So unless you're planning to do this, you don't really need RAM higher than PC2700. You would hardly notice a difference between 2700 and 3200 at stock settings.One stick of 512 would suit you fine for this motherboard. Unless 2 of 256 is cheaper..

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I would highly recommend going with PC3200 at CL2. The new Barton's will shift to a 400MHz FSB within a month or two of its 333MHz release and that will be perfectly matched to PC3200.Assuming no overclocking, your 2400XP is actually matched with PC2100. This is important to think about because on the Athlon platform (as opposed to the new SiS 655 Intel chipset), matching FSB speeds to memory speeds is the only way to get top performance. Asynchronous speeds between FSB and memory actually gives you worse performance on the KT400 and NForce2 platforms (although its far less of a loss on the NForce2).The beauty of DDR is you can get the best DIMMs available now and run them at whatever is currently best for your box. Get PC3200 at CL2 now and you won't have a problem dropping in a Barton at some point in the future (assuming your motherboard is from a good manufacturer that updates its BIOS's regularly).Just make sure you get CL2 memory, regardless of its speed. Running PC3200 at CL2.5 is slower than running PC2700 at CL2. Whatever you do, don't skimp on your memory choice. Since the price difference is so low between all of the options available, there's no reason to do so and very much of a reason not to.I recommend one or more 512MB sticks of Corsair CMX512-3200C2 if not overclocking or one or more sticks of 512MB Corsair CMX512-3500C2 if you plan to overclock. Here are links and prices from NCIX:CORSAIR CMX512-3200C2 DDR 512MB ($313.82 Canadian)http://www.ncix.com/canada/productdetail.php?sku=8243CORSAIR CMX512-3200C2 DDR 512MB ($203.78 US)http://www.ncix.com/usa/productdetail.php?sku=8243orCORSAIR CMX512-3500C2 DDR 512MB ($389.13 Canadian)http://www.ncix.com/canada/productdetail.php?sku=8786CORSAIR CMX512-3500C2 DDR 512MB ($252.68 US)http://www.ncix.com/usa/productdetail.php?sku=8786Just remember that if you're running an NForce, you need at least an identical matched pair of DIMMs to support its dual-DDR design. Two 512MB DIMMs that make 1GB would be my recommendation, but if you are short on cash, two 256MB DIMMs would of course work just fine ( / [link:www.ncix.com/usa/productdetail.php?sku=8242|CMX256A-3200C2 $106.98 US] or [link:www.ncix.com/canada/productdetail.php?sku=8784|CMX256A-3500C2 $193.76 CAN] / [link:www.ncix.com/usa/productdetail.php?sku=8784]CMX256A-3500C2 $125.82 US). On the KT400, its better to use one DIMM unless you plan on higher amounts of memory.You *can* find lower cut-rate prices for Corsair online, but I highly recommend NCIX for their excellent service and good prices.Good luck,Elrond

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I just read somewhere that a stick of 512 of SDR or DDR memory(any FSB range) is a better option than two modules of 256.It seems to be the way the Memory Bus addresses the read-write cycle. Less latency.RDRAM does not have this issue.It's not really an 'issue' in that the operator probably wouldn't know the difference. It only comes down to benchmarks. One half blink of an eye more-or-less, LOL.Mitch R.

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Okay, here's what I bought off the recommendations. One 512mb stick of Mushkin memory from BestBuy (had a gift certificate). Let me know what you think.LobaeuxPRODUCT FEATURES Doubles data output and boosts memory bus efficiency 512MB of memory to improve performance 333MHz operating speed 184-pin DDR dual in-line memory module (DIMM) Memory Size 512MB Type of Memory PC2700 DDR DIMM Speed 333MHz

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CORSAIR CMX512-3200C2 DDR 512MB ($203.78 US)CORSAIR CMX512-3500C2 DDR 512MB ($252.68 US):~P Holy smokes, Elrond, how can you live with these ripoff prices!!www.newegg.com quotes these,CORSAIR CMX512-3200C2 DDR 512MB $178.00 (vs. 203.78)CORSAIR CMX512-3500C2PT DDR 512MB $193.00 (platinum silver heat spreader)CORSAIR CMX512-3500C2 DDR 512MB $204.00 (vs. 252.68)I've been a customer at newegg for many months, nothing but excellent service as well. They offer Federal Express shipping that ranges from overnight (about 20 bucks) to 3-4 day saver rate (free for most products). You can see the complete Corsair XMS series lineup available here:http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProduct.asp?...rtby=14&order=1And the Mushkin CAS2 latency PC2700 RAM is $110.00 for 256 MB. The cheaper Muskin PC2700 version (what I suspect Best Buy may have sold you) is 85 bucks.-AV

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Hi AV,Its clear you've never been a Canadian :-). I could have sworn the gentleman I was responding to wrote he was from Canada, but I see that I was mistaken if he ended up buying from BestBuy (which doesn't exist in Canada). In his (and your) case, it is indeed better to buy directly from a US seller such as NewEgg. I apologize for the mixup.- Begin Canadian Class -That doesn't apply to Canadians (or Americans living in Canada like myself :-)), however. NCIX is a Canadian business based in British Columbia. Because the majority of Canadians on this board live in Ontario or outside of BC, buying from NCIX is ideal. If you lived in BC, then buying from Ontario or another province is ideal, etc. Almost never is it ideal for a Canadian to buy from the US. The reasons: taxes, shipping and exchange rate.Unlike the US, Canada has a 15% retail tax rate depending on province - 8% provincial in Ontario and most provinces (PST or Provincial Sales Tax) and 7% federal for almost all of Canada (GST or General Sales Tax). If you buy from within Canada but outside your province, you don't pay the Provincial Sales Tax. If you buy from within province or from the US, you have to pay the full provincial and federal tax - yes, that includes from the US (don't ask). Also unlike the US so far, this applies regardless if its an online or brick/mortar purchase. To top it off, the combined item+tax is calculated *after* the shipping costs are added (which are almost always double the price or more if shipped from the US to Canada - charged in US dollars of course).This brings us to the US exchange rate: Canadians are always bitten by the low value of our Canadian dollar (an average of 50 cents on the US dollar). So, that great sounding $178.00 US price, if bought from NewEgg and shipped to Canada today, translates to:178.00+35.00 Shipping (less than double to be generous, which it rarely is)------213.00+31.95 PST+GST------244.95x1.4910 Exchange Rate------365.22 CanadianCompare that to what it would cost living in Ontario to buy from NCIX today:313.82+ 9.98 Shipping------323.80+22.67 GST------346.47 CanadianThats a savings of $18.75 CAN for the "ripoff price" from NCIX. And of course, since its a totally Canadian transaction, the package will be delivered in one or two days instead of being held at the US border for up to a few weeks while it waits for Customs red tape (even worse since 9/11).The higher the price and weight of product(s) shipped to Canada, the higher the loss is to buy US from Canada. In a very few circumstances, it can be advantageous to buy from the US (specially if you run a business and source your bulk materials there), but for the vast majority of Canadians, buying Canadian (and out of province) is the best answer.- End of Canadian Class - Just thought I'd shed some light for your Americans (living in the US :-)). Sorry for getting off-topic here Lobaeux.Take care,Elrond

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Ok when you put it that way it makes sense now. In anycase newegg doesn't even ship to Canada. Which is kind of unfortunate, since from newegg the Fedex saver shipping is usually free.-AV

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>I just read somewhere that a stick of 512 of SDR or DDR memory(any>FSB range) is a better option than two modules of 256.Well, I'm reading just the opposite, at least as far as the nForce2 mobos are concerned, with their dual memory controllers. Alas, I didn't realize that when I bought my components, and bought a single stick of 512 MB PC3200. Well, I'm getting such good results with what I've got, that I cannot really complain. But there's always got to be something to moan about, right? :-smile12 -Basil

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Memory is one area where I have always tended to skimp a bit. I've never bought any of the pricier brands. For the past several years, I've been buying mwave.com's "house label." For my current upgrade, I bought a single stick of 512 MB DDR 400 (e.g. PC3200), for half the price you're quoting. I'd settle for CL2.5 at those prices. But the thing is, I'm running it with the mobo's "turbo" timing settings -- 2-2-2-7 -- and a FSB of 190, and am rock solid. Not to mention wickedly high benchmark scores.You suggested a pair. Would it make any noticeable difference? Isn't 512 MB plenty for FS2002? (I'm running Win2KPro, not XP, for whatever that's worth.)-Basil

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The only reason I routinely recommend (and sell - and use for that matter ;-)) the "high end" Crucial is because of its track record and stable PCB design. With most generics and even some brand names, a batch here may indeed run at excellent ratings like yours - even if it was lower spec'd at something like 3-3-3-7. Usually, its the other way with generics however: they spec high and can't obtain it but on a few special batches (which usually go to reviewers) the majority of the time.There are two big differentiators when it comes to memory sticks: the chips used and the PCB design. For years, Samsung has been supplying top notch chips that can obtain some excellent speeds - usually much higher than they are actually rated for. This was the case with the superb (for its time) Crucial PC2100. While low priceded and spec'd at CL2.5, almost every stick ran at CL2 with great timings. This was mainly due to their use of Samsung chips, but it also was highly tied to their very mature PCB design.Many generics these days use the excellent Samsung chips as well... But its their PCB design that usually makes them falter. Indeed, while it sounds like you lucked into a great batch, I'd bet that the majority don't clock as well as the stick you bought (although I can't say that with certainty since I've never used mwave.com's boards - maybe they resell a great brand or simply have great unknown memory).As far as recommending a pair of DIMMs, I only do so for the NForce (and NF2) boards on the AMD side - and some newer Intel chipsets. The reason is its dual-memory controllers. When you only use one stick, the second memory controller is shut down and unused. On the NForce1 series, that was actually faster than using its dual-controllers (a flaw in the design). On the NForce2, the flaw was fixed and it runs like a champ with both enabled. Limiting those boards to one DIMM is basically limiting it to the memory speed of a KT400 chipset... While not exactly bad (far from it actually), its not giving you the performance its capable of. In high bandwidth circumstances (such as a ton of textures in PhotoReal sceneries in FS2002 and like demanding games), that would hurt you. In most normal circumstances, however, you'd be hard pressed to notice.Hope that helps,Elrond

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Thanks a bunch. I may just order a second stick of mwave memory in a couple of weeks. It cannot hurt. But I find it hard to believe that I can improve much on the performance of the system I have in its current configuration.-Basil

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I'd be more than interested in hearing your personal experience with it after (and if) you upgrade.Just remember that its like running dual CPUs: there are some circumstances where it makes a great difference, but most of the time the second CPU sits little used. The same goes with dual memory controllers like the NForce2. Only in high bandwidth situations will you notice a marked difference (such as the above instance - loading times for heavy PhotoReal sceneries will be reduced, as well as stuttering while flying one). A good test for us sim lovers is the before and after of just such a scenery.You will, of course, notice far less HD thrashing once you bump up to 1GB as well. On XP, swap file use is greatly reduced in demanding games and sim scenery development with 1GB (with our large images and the like).Take care,Elrond

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You guys are great!Thanks for the info. I'm expecting my memory in a few days. I kinda wish I hadn't gone with BestBuy, but when you've got gift certificates and such, well, it's hard to justify to the wife why NOT to use them, lol.Thanks,Lobaeux

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