Nooby question about RAM

Can someone please plainly explain me the difference between single and dual channel and DDR, DDR2, etc?


I know it’s a dumb question.

DDR2 is the newest hardware, not compatable with DDR. It’s still pretty unknown, but is supposed to be pretty fast.

DDR stands for “dual data rate”. In a nutshell it means the memory runs at 2x the FSB speed. Hense “DDR400” memory is running on a 200MHz FSB.

Dual channel means 2 sticks of RAM running at the same time in a “dual channel” configuration. It sounds nice, but the speed advantages are not as great as it sounds. Newer motherboards and on-chip memory controllers have increased the benefits of running dual channel quite a bit. Typically, you would use 2 identical sticks, (or 3 or 4 depending on the memory controller), to make dual channel work right. Most all board offer the option of running single or dual channel even with 2 sticks, simply by placing them in the correct slots, hense color-coded RAM slots. Most memory also comes in “matches sets” that are intended for dual channel setups. The best feature of these sets is usually a small price break for 2 sticks, it’s really not necessary to use “matched sets”, 2 identical sticks will suffice. Mixing different RAM in dual channel usually spells trouble, so they need to be the same.

O’righty then. Thanks for your time.

But again … another question. I measured the timing for my RAM with Everest and it shows 3-3-3-8.

I don’t have any experiences with this, but I want to put my two stick in dual channel mode (which means slot 1 + slot 3 or 2 + 4). Since the timings are important for dual channel mode, how do I measure the speed of both sticks? Should I measure the RAM timings with only one stick in slots at the time?

However, the brand is the same (Viking) and the type should be also (PC3200), but Everest says that tested memory is PC3600. I really don’t get it.

A little help needed.

If your 2 sticks are the same, they will each run at the same timings. This is good. Your motherboard sets the timings based on the RAM itself. You can adjust those timings in BIOS, if you have BIOS that allows that. But unless you know what you’re doing, it’s best to leave such things alone.

Just put the sticks in the correct slots and you should be good to go. When you boot up (POST) there should be a confirmation that you are in dual channel mode, occasionally a board will require a BIOS setting to allow dual channel mode.

CPU-Z is a good free tool to confirm the actual memory settings, Everest is a bit confusing.

I haven’t noticed any confirmation on boot. Any experiences with IC7-G?

Boards vary. Look in BIOS for a “quick-boot” or “quiet-boot” setting and turn that off. You should see a message during the memory test right at the start of POST. CPU-Z can also tell you if you’re in dual channel mode.

I use Everest and cpu-z

are all the numbers on the viking the same? on the ram sticks?

:confused: :confused:

Okay, I disabled the quick power on, no sing of confirmation. CPU-Z says that my RAM modules are in single channel mode, even though I have them in the right slots. Any clue, rdgrimes? :wink:

I only use matched sticks bought in pairs, with one exception.
Cpu-z will tell the story with it’s spd tab.
If the spd’s don’t match then dual channel is something I wouldn’t

of course I push things a little
CPU Properties:
CPU Type AMD Athlon 64 4100+
CPU Alias Venice S939
CPU Stepping DH-E3
CPUID CPU Name AMD Athlon™ 64 Processor 3000+
CPUID Revision 00020FF0h

CPU Speed:
CPU Clock 2610.50 MHz
CPU Multiplier 9.0x
CPU FSB 290.06 MHz (original: 200 MHz, overclock: 45%)
Memory Bus 186.46 MHz

CPU Cache:
L1 Code Cache 64 KB (Parity)
L1 Data Cache 64 KB (ECC)
L2 Cache 512 KB (On-Die, ECC, Full-Speed)

Motherboard Properties:
Motherboard ID 63-1408-000001-00101111-063005-K8T800P$A0036001_BIOS DATE: 06/30/05 17:34:14 VER: 08.00.09
Motherboard Name Asus A8V Deluxe (5 PCI, 1 AGP, 4 DDR DIMM, Audio, Gigabit LAN, IEEE-1394)

Chipset Properties:
Motherboard Chipset VIA K8T800Pro, AMD Hammer
Memory Timings 2-2-2-5 (CL-RCD-RP-RAS)
Command Rate (CR) 1T

SPD Memory Modules:
DIMM1: GeIL CL2-3-3 Ultra-400 256 MB PC3200 DDR SDRAM (2.0-3-3-6 @ 200 MHz)
DIMM2: GeIL CL2-3-3 Ultra-400 256 MB PC3200 DDR SDRAM (2.0-3-3-6 @ 200 MHz)

BIOS Properties:
System BIOS Date 06/30/05
Video BIOS Date 04/08/11
DMI BIOS Version 1014.008

Graphics Processor Properties:
Video Adapter ATI Radeon 9600 XT (RV360)
GPU Code Name RV360 (AGP 8x 1002 / 4152, Rev 00)
GPU Clock 500 MHz (original: 500 MHz)
Memory Clock 297 MHz (original: 300 MHz)

If thay’re in 1 & 3, try 2 & 4, or vice versa. Doublt check that you’re using the right slots, some boards use 1&2. Also check in BIOS for a dual channel setting.

Nope, no change at all in 2 & 4 combination. BIOS has no settings for dual channel. Dual channel is set only with putting modules into the slots I did.

Well, if there are no jumpers on the board for dual channel, then you’ve pretty much covered the bases. Time to contact Abit.

Some boards are just WAY too picky about RAM and dual channel. That said, it’s also true that you may not see much gains from dual channel anyhow. Especially with slower RAM such as that.

Since the dual channel is auto implemented, what’s the mem bus running at?
Is the overclock of cpu auto or manual? What’s the dram ratio set at?
That memory is not very overclockable.
If you change remember to force update escd.