Question basic DDR3 question, I am getting confused

shooby73

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Jun 25, 2016
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Sorry guys I can't find a simple answer to my problem. I am trying to buy more memory for my computer which has an older motherboard. I can't find the receipt for the original memory I bought so I am relying on the website to tell me what kind.

(https://www.gigabyte.com/us/Motherboard/GA-Z97X-UD3H-rev-10/sp#sp)

"Support for DDR3 3100(O.C.) / 3000(O.C.) / 2933(O.C.) / 2800(O.C.) / 2666(O.C.) / 2600(O.C.) / 2500(O.C.) / 2400(O.C.) / 2200(O.C.) / 2133(O.C.) / 2000(O.C.) / 1866(O.C.) / 1800(O.C.) / 1600 / 1333 MHz memory modules "

Ok so I go to ebay or google and nearly every result has somethings like 'PC3-10600R' or 'PC3-10600E'. I don't really understand what that is or how much it matters?

here's one on ebay: "G.SKILL Ripjaws 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3-1333mhz PC3-10666 SDRAM F3-10666CL8D-4GBRM, A7". I have no idea what is important here.

Thanks for any help!
 
So the type of memory you can use is known as DDR3 Unbuffered Non-ECC. So if it says buffered or ecc, you can't use it.

The ram you need will sometimes have a 'U' after it's specifications, eg, PC3-10600U, but this isn't always the case.

However the ram you don't want will have a letter after, for example PC3-10600R (registered aka buffered ecc), or PC3-10600E (unbuffered ecc).

Now on some systems you can use ecc memory since it will just ignore the ecc part, but this doesn't always work. Also, it seems that unbuffered ecc has gotten more expensive lately as well.

Base on what you listed above, you would see PC3-10600/12800/14900/etc corresponding to the various memory speeds (speed x8, eg 1333x8=10664 ~ 10600, 1600x8=12800, 1866x8=14928 ~ 14900, etc)

If you have any existing memory, you will want to just pull it out of the system and search for that exact same memory. You don't really want to be mixing memory speeds or types.
 

shooby73

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Jun 25, 2016
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So the type of memory you can use is known as DDR3 Unbuffered Non-ECC. So if it says buffered or ecc, you can't use it.

The ram you need will sometimes have a 'U' after it's specifications, eg, PC3-10600U, but this isn't always the case.

However the ram you don't want will have a letter after, for example PC3-10600R (registered aka buffered ecc), or PC3-10600E (unbuffered ecc).

Now on some systems you can use ecc memory since it will just ignore the ecc part, but this doesn't always work. Also, it seems that unbuffered ecc has gotten more expensive lately as well.

Base on what you listed above, you would see PC3-10600/12800/14900/etc corresponding to the various memory speeds (speed x8, eg 1333x8=10664 ~ 10600, 1600x8=12800, 1866x8=14928 ~ 14900, etc)

If you have any existing memory, you will want to just pull it out of the system and search for that exact same memory. You don't really want to be mixing memory speeds or types.
Thanks! I really couldn't figure out that 1333x8=10664. It makes sense now. The only issue with buying the 'same' memory is I don't know if it still exists. I guess I'll have to hope there is a close match or is it better/safer to suffer with mediocre RAM?
 
Thanks! I really couldn't figure out that 1333x8=10664. It makes sense now. The only issue with buying the 'same' memory is I don't know if it still exists. I guess I'll have to hope there is a close match or is it better/safer to suffer with mediocre RAM?
I'm sure it still exists. I've found performance DDR ram that has been discontinued for a decade, so I'm sure yours will exist too. What it will come down to is price though because if you can get a newer faster whole kit for the same money--upgrade. :)

RAM speeds won't make much of a difference when going from like 1333 to 1600. But bigger jumps like 1333 to 2133 will be somewhat noticeable. And with ddr3 plentiful in the used market, even for performance pieces, it can be an easy upgrade. However, I would check what you already have first because if that's a performance piece, you already have part of what you want.
 

DeauteratedDog

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Dec 11, 2013
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My best guess is that it is going to be next to impossible to match your existing RAM. If the budget allows, you might be better off swapping out the old RAM and installing a new set.

That motherboard is old enough that your memory choices for new memory is pretty limited.

Here is a search on Newegg that should list compatible and appropriate memory:
https://www.newegg.com/p/pl?N=100007611 600551113 600006069 600006073 600006072 600083963
(I hope I got that right).
 
Run cpu-Z.
One of the tabs will identify the ram you have.
If you want to take a chance on compatibility, buy a stick or kit with the same specs of ddr3, speed, voltage and timings.
I put your odds of success at 95% if you buy closely matching ram.
What is your plan B for the other 5%?

What do you have now, and how much ran do you need?
 

shooby73

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Jun 25, 2016
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Run cpu-Z.
One of the tabs will identify the ram you have.
If you want to take a chance on compatibility, buy a stick or kit with the same specs of ddr3, speed, voltage and timings.
I put your odds of success at 95% if you buy closely matching ram.
What is your plan B for the other 5%?

What do you have now, and how much ran do you need?

8054 Megabytes Usable Installed Memory

Slot 'ChannelA-DIMM0' has 4096 MB
Slot 'ChannelA-DIMM1' is Empty
Slot 'ChannelB-DIMM0' has 4096 MB
Slot 'ChannelB-DIMM1' is Empty

I don't 'need' more but it would be sexy. Thanks to all for the info!I'll look around but I think it might be easiest to just get a whole new set. It might cost a little more but time is money and it might be smarter to play it safe.
 
This is really plain jane memory and you shouldn't have a problem with another pair that is of the same specs. However since used full kits are just double the price and you could sell your existing set for as much as you'd pay for another pair of ram, you could make out even buying a full set and selling off the existing one.

The other thing you can also do is sell off your set and get a set of 2x8gb. You could even try the 2x8gb with your current set and if it works, you'll have 24gb. If not, you can just sell off the 8gb set.
 

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