What's a good brand of RAM?

Discussion in 'Computers' started by Clinton McClure, Sep 4, 2004.

  1. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    I'm going out this afternoon in a couple hours to pick up a 512 stick of PC2100 DDR RAM. (My 128M stick is a bit anemic when it comes to gaming.)

    Best Buy has Viking 512M listed for $99.

    What brands should I look out for and what brands are good?
     
  2. Scott L

    Scott L Producer

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    The value brands will all work but if you want to overclock you'll need a good name brand that offers non-value modules like Crucial, Corsair, Kingston, OCZ, or Geil.

    Out of 13 memory modules tested Tom's Hardware found that Crucial had the highest tolerance rate for 14 different motherboards used. (Link)

    My friend and I have pretty much the same PSU, motherboard, and P4 but he can get stability problems when he overclocks during games because of his no-name ram. Because of this he just stays at stock now (trying to convince him to get new ram!). I use Crucial and overclocking the same amount has never been a problem.

    But in the end if you don't overclock the Viking will probably work fine.
     
  3. brentl

    brentl Cinematographer

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    Also look at DDR400 ram, it's quicker than the ram you have since it 200 Mhz double pumped while your is 133Mhz double pumped.

    You may also look at "dual channel" stuff so when you move up you can be ready.

    Most MOBOs can handle faster ram, it just clocke it down.

    B
    Look around, in Canada I can get 512 meg of DDR400 ram for $100Can!
     
  4. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    Since I'm not going to overclock, I picked up a 512 stick of Centon PC2100 DDR266 for $100. It's Comp USA's value brand. I thought about picking up a 512 stick of PNY 2700 and clocking it down, but it was about $30 more. If they are still running their current special next week, I may go back and get a 256 stick of Centon 2700/2100 for $30. Then again, I may wait a few weeks and bump up to 1G for another $100. [​IMG]

    On a related note, my PC used to take about 90 seconds to fully boot up. That time is now down to about 35 seconds. [​IMG]
     
  5. Mike_J_Potter

    Mike_J_Potter Second Unit

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    I would probably just the extra 256 that should be more then enough, and going from 512 to one gig will only give you a slight increase in performance. (My PC benchmarked under 1% faster from 512 to 1024) Unless your doing allot of video editing, graphics work, or are really into games then the extra 512 would help. I would spend the extra 70.00 towards on a fast SATA drive, if your motherboard supports it.
     
  6. Drew Bethel

    Drew Bethel Screenwriter

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    Newbie here: I'm in the process of building my first AMD pc. Would the Crucial OEM version be ok for a newbie to install? I'm looking at a 512MB PC3200 DDR SDRAM DIMM.
     
  7. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Crucial makes good memory. I notice you say "a 512MB . . ." Check to see if your MB supports Dual-Channel. If so, you'd be better off getting 2 dimms of 256MB.
     
  8. Drew Bethel

    Drew Bethel Screenwriter

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    Thanks Seth. I think I have everything picked out. The mobo is the MSI K8N Neo Platinum, it supports single memory channels.
     
  9. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

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    A question about RAM: I know that games need huge amounts but they don't interest me. Is 512mb enough for a HTPC (DVD/CD burning, streaming audio & DVD playback mainly?) Would adding another 512 benefit anything that I mentioned?
    Thanks
    Grant
     
  10. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Grant:

    I would personally want another 512MB for anything involving video (burning, editing, etc). You could certainly get away with 512MB, but don't ever try to do anything else while you're burning as you'll likely burn a coaster.
     
  11. Mike Fassler

    Mike Fassler Supporting Actor

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    512 is fine for pretty much everything, unless your doing heavy video editing etc its more than enough. its doesnt take more than 512 megs to keep from burning coasters, it just requires a better burner [​IMG]
     
  12. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    Not meaning to hijack my own thread, but I'm also going to be looking for a new video card pretty soon. It has to be PCI and at least 128M. What is good for around $150? I'm looking for a chipset which is supported by a lot of games like SW Galaxies, Knights of the Old Republic, City of Heroes, etc...

    Touching a bit more on RAM, I'm at 640M now (since Saturday's upgrade) and it's one of the best investments I've ever made.
     
  13. Jeff_HR

    Jeff_HR Producer

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    I've done well the sticks that Mushkin sells.
     
  14. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    I may end up taking my 512 Centon stick back tomorrow and paying an extra $30 for a 512 stick of PNY 2700. After having the Centon stick in for a few days, I began to have quite a few crashes while surfing the forum, playing games and opening basic programs. After a day or two, it got to where my desktop icons would be replaced by a program icon and if I clicked on it, I would get a message that the shortcut was unavailable. I opened the case and unplugged then reinserted the RAM stick, but still had the same problems. I completely reformatted my HD (thought maybe my files had become corrupt by all the problems Temple of Elemental Evil was giving me) and I have locked up twice since the reinstall three days ago. My PC will be fine and suddenly, the onscreen image will begin to flicker and jerk up and down very fast. The mouse pointer and keyboard will freeze and the only way to shut down is to hold the power button for five seconds.

    Does this sound like a RAM problem?

    If I take out the Centon PC2100 stick and put in a stick of PNY 2700, will it automatically clock itself down to 200/266 PC2100 speed?
     
  15. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    Has to be PCI? Good luck. You might be able to find Geforce 5200 cards, but I'm not aware of much higher on the food chain then that.. and that's going down a good ways on the food chart, maybe a set cost of $75 or so.
     
  16. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    It has to be PCI because I have no AGP slots.
     
  17. JohanD

    JohanD Stunt Coordinator

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    I have always been a fan of corsair and crucial.
     
  18. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    Ok, I swapped out the ram stick today for a 512M stick of PNY 2700. To keep from conflicting with the factory 128M stick of 2100, I took it out so I'm sitting right on 512 now. So far so good. I'll give it a few days and see if I get any crashes or unusual behavior.

    I also looked at a few PCI video cards today and saw a few I would like opinions about. The ATI Radeon 9200 128M, PNY GeForce 4000 MX, GeForce4 4000MX and the Asylum GeForce 5200 256M.

    A couple people I talked to said go for the Radeon 9200 or the Asylum 5200. (The salesman at Comp USA kept telling me to get the Radeon 9800 SE even though I told him several times I only had PCI slots. Come to find out, he is the head computer salesman and didn't know the difference between PCI and AGP!!!)

    But since I value you guys' opinions over the $6/hr salesman at Comp USA, which one would be the best?
     
  19. DaveGTP

    DaveGTP Cinematographer

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    I had trouble finding PCI cards. Most of the lower-end cards (PCI) are falling behind the times.

    I found this review for you :

    http://compreviews.about.com/gi/dyna....cfm%3Faid=445

    Conclusions:

    http://compreviews.about.com/gi/dyna....cfm%3Faid=445

    Honestly the 9100 does good at Q3, but Jedi Knight the FX 5600 did better. But I had no luck finding a FX 5600 PCI anywhere.

    He said the AIW Radeon VE was a good deal because you get video in/out, or the FX5600 (good luck finding it).


    I did find reference that some PCI 9600 pros were made, including some posts from a few folks who had one (Thoughts were that powercolor made them). But I couldn't find one anywhere, even on Ebay. That would be a lot better than the 5600 even.

    Here's a thread with someone else with the same dilemma and the discussion: http://forums.kustompcs.co.uk/showthread.php?t=19190


    Really, all of the cards are only going to scrape by at a modern game. My 8500 is faster than the 9100, 9200, etc and, although it does play UT2004, C&C Generals, etc, OK - it's not exactly in the prettiest modes. I've got a 9800pro on the way here from newegg, finally upgrading...
     
  20. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    Thanks Dave. Great info! [​IMG] Pretty much all I've been able to find is the GF FX5200 (in various reincarnations), the Radeon 7000, Radeon 7500 (I was looking at this one before and can get a 64M version from Comp USA for about $40.) and Radeon 9200. I like the results of the 9100 but it's DX8. I'll do more research but it looks like I might be stuck with one of the GF 5200 models.
     

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