Mixing RAM - - Will it work?

CaptainSaint

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Jan 25, 2017
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Right now I have 8GB DDR3 1600mhz CL11 RAM, it's product code is CT102464BA160B, can I buy 8GB DDR3 1600mhz CL11 RAM with a prodcut code of CT102464BD160B, the only difference is one letter, but the specs seem to be the same? Can they work, so i can have 16GB of RAM? (if you can't spot after the numbers one has BA the other BD)
 
I should follow that up to say the only evidence I have for my "9 times out of 10" figure is my own anecdotal experience... which is just that. So take that for what it's worth.

All I can say is that I've had really good success getting dual channel running on mix and match DDR3 sets... but success has always come with bog-standard RAM (used to be 1333mhz, more recently 1600mhz for DDR3), with thoroughly normal voltages and subtimings - which I've always matched carefully when buying new sets. Maybe I've just been really lucky, I don't know. But I tend to think it's worth a shot in your situation, given you seem to have a pretty standard 8GB 1.5V 1600mhz CAS11 DIMM.

But of course... get another Crucial DIMM and match those specs properly.
 
it might it might not. Best case scenario your bios see's it as the same ram and it performs great. Worst case it doesn't work at all. Most likely scenario is that your ram will run in mixed mode which can hinder performance. I suggest you find the EXACT same make and model ram...not on number or letter different. Because even then as stated above it may not work but it is the best chance of working and working at full speed.
 
Well I had a whole bunch typed up about how I think you'd be just fine 9 times out of 10 mixing stock 1600mhz RAM but then googled the product codes you put in...

Unless I'm badly mistaken the new RAM you're looking at is DDR3L RAM, the "L" meaning low voltage (for 1.35 instead of the stock 1.5V for DDR3). Don't get that. You ideally want to get something as close as possible to what you already have. At very least get the same voltage, frequency and sub timings.
 
I should follow that up to say the only evidence I have for my "9 times out of 10" figure is my own anecdotal experience... which is just that. So take that for what it's worth.

All I can say is that I've had really good success getting dual channel running on mix and match DDR3 sets... but success has always come with bog-standard RAM (used to be 1333mhz, more recently 1600mhz for DDR3), with thoroughly normal voltages and subtimings - which I've always matched carefully when buying new sets. Maybe I've just been really lucky, I don't know. But I tend to think it's worth a shot in your situation, given you seem to have a pretty standard 8GB 1.5V 1600mhz CAS11 DIMM.

But of course... get another Crucial DIMM and match those specs properly.
 

CaptainSaint

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Jan 25, 2017
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you're absolutely correct, the new one has 1.35V and mine has 1.5V, thank you
and as i was reading your comment, i found the exact same RAM as i have now on ebay, so they will work?
 

You've got a much better chance with identical RAM.

Just to clarify, no one can guarantee that non-matched RAM will play happily. There's a reason they're sold in matched pairs (or quads, or sets of 8), because they're tested and validated to work together.

I'm more optimistic than others in this thread... maybe I've just been luckier, I don't know. My view is you'd be very unlucky if it didn't work. But I can't give you any more assurance than that.
 

compprob237

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Right now I have 8GB DDR3 1600mhz CL11 RAM, it's product code is CT102464BA160B, can I buy 8GB DDR3 1600mhz CL11 RAM with a prodcut code of CT102464BD160B, the only difference is one letter, but the specs seem to be the same? Can they work, so i can have 16GB of RAM? (if you can't spot after the numbers one has BA the other BD)
This question has essentially been answered by @rhysiam but I do want to point to Intel's article on mixing RAM/multi-channel/Flex:
https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/articles/000005657/boards-and-kits.html
The most pertinent part in that article is this:
"Rules to enable dual-channel mode
To achieve dual-channel mode, the following conditions must be met:
  • Same memory size. Examples: 1 GB, 2 GB, 4 GB.
  • Matched DIMM configuration in each channel.
  • Matched in symmetrical memory slots.
Configurations that do not match the above conditions [can run in Flex mode or] revert to single-channel mode. The following conditions do not need to be met:
  • Same brand
  • Same timing specifications
  • Same speed (MHz)
The slowest DIMM module populated in the system decides memory channel speed."
I've edited the article's quote, in [ ], since it's actually wrong about it reverting to single channel. In almost all cases the memory controller will attempt to run in Flex mode if the sticks are not matched and/or not the same size. Obviously, the rest about speed etc is accurate.

I have anecdotal examples but I know from many dozens of computers I've personally worked on that mix-n-match works most of the time unless the motherboard refuses to work with the stick itself. My signature PC, called "Gramps", has three different models of ram, three different densities (dual vs single rank), two different sizes (8GB & 2GB), two different speeds (1333 and 1600), and from 4 different kits but yet runs full triple channel.
 
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