DDR Ram - Advice required.

  ANDY-212408 23:59 10 Mar 04

I am looking to buy a new system which will have an Athlon 64 3200 processor with 512mb ram. A friend has said that i should request 2 x 256 sticks due to the make up of the system and that this will perform better than one stick of 512. However on the crucial website it mentions that a 64 bit processor should have one stick of ram?

I am very confused by all of this and would appreciate any comments or info that would help clear this up for me.

Also i am considering whether to upgrade when purchasing to 1gb, would this be over the top if i'm not a great game player? or is it advisable bearing in mind that the 64 bit software that will eventually come out might require it?(please don't say upgrade in the future as i would not have a clue what to do inside the case!!)

Quite a few questions i know but your views would be most helpful.

  Chegs ® 00:05 11 Mar 04

Some motherboards have a "matched pair" of RAM sockets setup within BIOS,its not something I know much about as my mobo hasn't got this facility,so I simply bunged in 3 sticks of 512 RAM.

  temp003 07:03 11 Mar 04

The Athlon 64 3200+ does not support dual channel memory (only the FX does), so it shouldn't make any difference whether it's one stick or 2. Tweakers might try out the 2 configurations and tell you whether it makes any difference, but I doubt you need to concern yourself with that sort of difference, if any.

512MB is more than enough for most people. You're not into gaming, so no need for more, unless you're going to do digital video editing.

I know you don't want to think about future upgrade, but I can assure you that adding memory is the easiest part of any computer upgrade you can do (or someone else can do it for you, or you might become a computer guru).

You should get 1 stick of 512MB RAM.

There's another reason why you should get one stick not 2. I assume you're buying DDR400 RAM. If so, with this CPU, you can only use max 2 sticks of DDR400 RAM. If you use 3 sticks (assuming there are more than 2 memory slots on your motheboard), the memory will run at a lower speed. So if you get 2 sticks now, you can't add memory in future without either ditching one of the existing modules, or running the memory at a lower speed.

So getting one stick of 512MB RAM at least leaves you the option (which you don't have to exercise) of adding another one in future.

  Gongoozler 07:38 11 Mar 04

The Kingston memory assessor is a useful guide to the optimum amount of memory for your computer click here

  ANDY-212408 09:34 12 Mar 04

Thanks for the advice. 1 stick of 512 it is.

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