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How do I change memory voltage and timing?


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#1
APCSystems

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I'm looking at buying new memory. I'm looking for recommendations but so far have been thinking of picking up 2GB of Crucial Ballistix memory. In reading the reviews about the memory it says that it's good memory but you have to adjust the voltages and timings. Is there other memory that I wouldn't have to do this with? I need DDR2 533 or 667 and I'm looking for at least 2GB. If it must be done, then how do I make the adjustments to voltage/timing? I'm assuming it's something done in the BIOS. Is it easy to do? Is it different for every PC since every motherboard has a different BIOS? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
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#2
Titan8990

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It is different and specific to each motherboard. Some MOBOs can detect the timings and change them automatically. Some require configuration. Check the web documentation on your motherboard for supported RAM modules. It should automatically detect the voltages and timings of any RAM listed as officially "supported" but IMO this should not limit your choice in what you want to buy.
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#3
james_8970

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but so far have been thinking of picking up 2GB of Crucial Ballistix memory.

Do not buy this RAM. The failure rates are quite high and Crucial has responded to this with a revision of the memory modules that'll require 2.0V opposed to 2.2V. You are not guaranteed to get the revision, therefore I highly recommend you do not purchase the sticks. Most, if not all RAM should work fine at it's SPD values (default). Simply put, if you don't adjust the timings, you won't get the optimal performance out of your RAM. Typically, the stock voltage (1.8V for DDR2) is sufficient for the SPD values.
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16820231108
The memory sets above will work without any adjustments to your BIOS, guaranteed.
James

Edit: Removed incompatible RAM kits.

Edited by james_8970, 19 July 2008 - 05:35 PM.

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#4
baseballstud1547

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Depends on your MOBO. What kind of MOBO do you have?
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#5
james_8970

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He is talking about a feature called E.P.P.
Both your motherboard and your memory need to support it. What motherboard do you have?
James
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#6
Titan8990

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James, I know you selected those modules because of the standard 5-5-5-15 timings. I will agree that is a guarantee that these modules will work but I have personally found that with my Gigabyte DS3L and my Corsair XMS2 5-5-5-15 RAM my motherboard wanted to set it to 5-5-5-17. It works and the performance difference between 5-5-5-17 and 5-5-5-15 is basically non-existent but personally, I am a bit picky when it comes to settings being perfect.
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#7
james_8970

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There is no reason what so ever to worry about a 5-5-5-15 memory module running at 5-5-5-17, you're looking at a .01% difference in synthetic benchmarks, no difference in real world tests. The modules I have selected will work fine.
James
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#8
APCSystems

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I'm not sure what type of motherboard I have. It's whatever is the OEM motherboard for a Dell Dimension 9100. My BIOS version is Phoenix ROM BIOS PLUS Version 1.10 A01 if that helps any. I pulled that from doing a dxdiag in case anyone is wondering where I came up with it. Are the memories listed above of good quality. I'm willing to pay a little extra money to have better quality memory like the XMS instead of the Value Select. Maybe I don't need the better memory? Will I not notice the difference? You guys are the experts so I'll go with your recommendations.
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#9
baseballstud1547

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I would personally not try to change the timings on a Dell or any other type of computer that you are not very familiar with because your failure rate will be very high. I would recomend getting new mem and then leaving it on stock settings. If you are looking for something that will boost your computer performance I would look into replacing your cpu, but you really need to find out what kind of mobo you have.
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#10
baseballstud1547

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If you really want to upgrade your mem what specific type off 667 are you looking for? DDR2 667 (PC2 5400), DDR2 667 (PC2 5400), or DDR2 667 (PC2 5300)?
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#11
APCSystems

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I don't know what the difference is? Could I get either one?
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#12
baseballstud1547

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I would say that you should be able to get any of them but you need to find out your exact specs. Did you get this custom built from dell or is it a common built computer that you picked up at a store?
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#13
APCSystems

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Common Dimension 9100. I think they also call it an XPS400. I think it's a socket 775 and I know the motherboard has a dual core 2.8ghz if that helps. Are there any websites that I can go on and enter in my model that will tell me my motherboard? I actually opened it up and there is absolutely no indication of what kind of motherboard it is on the motherboard itself.
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#14
baseballstud1547

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Here is a web site that can tell you more about your mem that I found, if you have anymore questions feel free to ask. http://www.edgetechc...e.asp?cid=29966

Also it looks like the common processor that comes with that computer is a Pentium D 820 2.80GHz, see this website for more info. http://reviews.cnet....7-31530074.html
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#15
APCSystems

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So then my motherboard should be: Intel 945G ?? How do I know if my system will recognize the maximum memory which is 4GB? Does my motherboard/bios support it? Will Windows recognize the full 4GB. For around $40 I might as well get the maximum upgrade. I think I'm going to go with the G Skill Memory above per James' suggestion.

Edited by APCSystems, 18 July 2008 - 09:53 AM.

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