Double-check RAM settings


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Message 1253622 - Posted: 30 Jun 2012, 6:31:38 UTC

Jason told me to look a the RAM voltage in a computer I was having some RAM issues with. It had been so long since I had been in that machine that I had to pull a stick and look at it to be certain that it was 1.5v and not 1.65v "

It was 1.5v, cheap RAM.

But I knew that I bought RAM that was DDR3-2000 and I knew that I didn't know what computer it was in.

So I went looking. Looking at CPU-Z and the BIOSes told me nothing.

As it turns-out, it's in the computer with the dual GTX 460s in it (which is where it needs to be for video editing, and that computer's running "Professional" so it can use all 16GB).

The sad thing is that I had to crack the case to discover this. CPU-Z wasn't telling me the correct numbers for the RAM and the BIOS kept telling me the RAM was one thing when it was another. (I don't know why... some built-in table?) In fact, I was getting flashing warning messages when I manually set the RAM outside what the BIOS approved-of, but that setting was exactly what the RAM had printed on it.

I know you guys are a lot smarter than I am and you'd NEVER let something like this happen to you.

I was running 2000MHz RAM at 1066MHz AND I was running it at 1.5v instead of 1.65v because I believed "Auto" was "Auto."

(and I wondered why the computer was blue screening on me every once in a while)

If you *know* that you bought expensive, high-performance, RAM, and you went "Auto" in the BIOS and just because the computer started you thought everything was okay, you might want to double-check.

This was a Gigabyte motherboard, but I had an issue with two different models of ASRock boards, even though they had "commodity RAM" in them.

Like I said, I'm sure you guys/gals would never let that happen to you, but I let it happen to me three times just because I didn't check.

It's been running at the wrong voltage and the wrong speed for more than a year.

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Message 1253695 - Posted: 30 Jun 2012, 11:05:43 UTC

All ram has inbuilt settings that it will work with if set to AUTO,
SPD - which is something safe, slow and shure to work anywhere
JEDEC - There can be several of these, each giving a small improvment in performance.
And then the motherboard BIOS has EXPERT Which i take as meening `you know what you are doing` and like mesing with cas, ras, twt, clocks and stuf,
but dont mess with the IRS they always get you in the end . .

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Message 1253786 - Posted: 30 Jun 2012, 17:23:41 UTC

interesting problem. I have something similar going on with my Biostar 990 board. I have ddr3 1600 and only wants to run on at 1333 which really is annoying
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Message 1253807 - Posted: 30 Jun 2012, 17:55:04 UTC - in response to Message 1253786.
Last modified: 30 Jun 2012, 17:57:28 UTC

interesting problem. I have something similar going on with my Biostar 990 board. I have ddr3 1600 and only wants to run on at 1333 which really is annoying


Had this happening on an INTEL DP67BG mobo, DDR3 1600 running @ 1333MHz. and
had to raise the 1.5V to 1.65V thus not using the AUTO function.

Depending of the CPU has an internal Memory Controller, you might
have to raise other voltages as well. (PLL; North and/or South-Bridge, etc.)

ADDED
Pro does not mean 64bits!
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Message 1253824 - Posted: 30 Jun 2012, 18:54:08 UTC - in response to Message 1253807.

interesting problem. I have something similar going on with my Biostar 990 board. I have ddr3 1600 and only wants to run on at 1333 which really is annoying


Had this happening on an INTEL DP67BG mobo, DDR3 1600 running @ 1333MHz. and
had to raise the 1.5V to 1.65V thus not using the AUTO function.

Depending of the CPU has an internal Memory Controller, you might
have to raise other voltages as well. (PLL; North and/or South-Bridge, etc.)

ADDED
Pro does not mean 64bits!


The issue does seem to be related to the onboard memory controller. It doesn't help that AMD changed the officially supported RAM speeds as they went.

From my recent reading, I'm surprised I can get four sticks of RAM to run at speeds greater than 1333, but I can.

What have I learned?

I have learned Phenoms can be problematic, especially if you try to go exotic with RAM, but even if you don't.

I have learned nothing useful that I can pass-along; except that it's probably a good idea to double-check settings, especially voltages on 1.65v RAM.

I owe Jason for that.

If I get instabilities I will keep your advice about other voltages in mind.

Thank you.

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Message 1253826 - Posted: 30 Jun 2012, 19:16:38 UTC - in response to Message 1253786.

interesting problem. I have something similar going on with my Biostar 990 board. I have ddr3 1600 and only wants to run on at 1333 which really is annoying


I don't know which of your computers that's in.

I've been reading around about the Phenom's internal memory controller. The internet is so full of misinformation (googlegook) that I never really found an answer to my question. Real technical documents might be reliable, but they didn't tell me what I wanted to know.

Apparently the internal memory controller on some late-model Phenom IIs only "goes-to" 1333MHz. That doesn't mean you can't get an overclock on your RAM because I'm doing it on mine: 800Mhz. But don't ask me exactly what I did because I was trying to do something else! (unhelpfully worded BIOS choices)

The question I had was, with a 1:4 ratio @ 800MHz, am I receiving any "benefit" if the internal memory controller "wants" to do things at 1333MHz?

I'm not stressed-out about it since all I really wanted was stability.

With the RAM under-volted and under-clocked it was BSODing once a week or so. It will take a week for me to see if things are better, but so far so good. (knocking wood)

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Message 1253847 - Posted: 30 Jun 2012, 20:51:56 UTC

On my Phenom rig I have DDR2 1066 RAM, but I have to set it as such, else the Auto option just runs it as 800MHz... the 1066 is deemed to be an overclock (OC) for my motherboard. Sometimes a motherboard's specifications will list compatible RAM speeds as 667,800,1066,1333(OC),1600(OC) for example where OC indicates it's an overclock... so I find where the RAM falls into the OC category, you have to specify that in the BIOS.

As for voltages, check that your motherboard supports the voltage stated on the RAM (else damage could occur), and running RAM stated to be 1.5V at 1.65V for example may over-volt the RAM and cause damage, and perhaps undervolting could have similar effects.

Recognised RAM brands often have Value ranges which I find work fine and I prefer these to non-branded RAM.

I hope that helps a little.
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Message 1253919 - Posted: 1 Jul 2012, 0:39:07 UTC - in response to Message 1253847.

Heres the ram I'm running and it doesnt say anything about being OCed
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Message 1253936 - Posted: 1 Jul 2012, 1:21:58 UTC - in response to Message 1253919.
Last modified: 1 Jul 2012, 1:27:33 UTC


Maybe the manufacturer page tells more:
http://www.corsair.com/vengeance-16gb-dual-channel-ddr3-memory-kit-cmz16gx3m4a1600c9.html/

"Corsair Vengeance DDR3 memory modules are designed with overclockers in mind"
"Includes XMP performance profile"

Intel and Overclocking DDR3 Memory - The Intel® Extreme Memory Profile - How Intel XMP works:
http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/gaming/gaming-computers/intel-extreme-memory-profile-xmp.html

"Fail-safe default boot
“First boot” with default JEDEC setting on a platform that supports DDR3 standard JEDEC specification (your standard DDR3 memory frequencies), ensuring base functionality.
Then user can enter BIOS and manually change settings or use the Windows*-based Intel® Extreme Tuning Utility.
"

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Message 1254522 - Posted: 2 Jul 2012, 13:36:22 UTC - in response to Message 1253936.

The motherboard might be a limiting factor too.

After installing 4 more gigs I found that I could only run the DDR2 RAM at 800 instead of the 1066 it was at with only 4 gigs installed. After some searching I found the fine print about memory for this motherboard, "*Due to AMD CPU limitation, DDR2 1200(O.C.)/1066 is supported by AM3/AM2+ CPU for one DIMM per channel only."

So to run 8GB at 1066 I'd have to have 2x4GB sticks.
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Message 1254633 - Posted: 2 Jul 2012, 18:54:40 UTC - in response to Message 1253936.


Maybe the manufacturer page tells more:
http://www.corsair.com/vengeance-16gb-dual-channel-ddr3-memory-kit-cmz16gx3m4a1600c9.html/

"Corsair Vengeance DDR3 memory modules are designed with overclockers in mind"
"Includes XMP performance profile"

Intel and Overclocking DDR3 Memory - The Intel® Extreme Memory Profile - How Intel XMP works:
http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/gaming/gaming-computers/intel-extreme-memory-profile-xmp.html

"Fail-safe default boot
“First boot” with default JEDEC setting on a platform that supports DDR3 standard JEDEC specification (your standard DDR3 memory frequencies), ensuring base functionality.
Then user can enter BIOS and manually change settings or use the Windows*-based Intel® Extreme Tuning Utility.
"

I assume the intel EMP doesn't play well with an AMD chip. I wish they'd be a little more forthcoming when they call something 1600 that it does it out of the box and not some Intel weirdness
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Message 1254667 - Posted: 2 Jul 2012, 19:47:29 UTC

The Corsair XMS memory I bought was listed as PC3-10600 (1333MHz). Which it runs out of the box. Then it has a XMP profile to run 1600MHz. Which wasn't listed anywhere in the specs. So bonus for me there.

I do wish manufactures would start listing the spec tables for the memory. So they could be compared across one another.
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