Question NOOB question - does DDR 3 come in different speeds?


May 30, 2009
Dear Anyone.

Just updated my ancient Windows XP computer to 64-bit ancient Windows 7 (spot the hidden dinosaur!)

I know my computer is DDR-3 memory. Right now it's got 3 2-gig sticks in it - that's what it came with when I bought it sometime last century! I want to take advantage of the 64-bit Windows 7 by buying an 8-gig stick of DDR-3 to swap with one of the 2-gig sticks - it's all I can afford right now, too near Christmas, I know I really need a new machine. Anyway.

I vaguely know memory comes in different speeds and if you get the wrong speed, your computer can't 'see' it to use it, am I right so far? If I am, how do I tell what speed I need, or where to look up what speed I need? HOPEFULLY if I have to look it up somewhere, the info. will be in English, not Geekish! It's a Foxconn ADA 2 mobo, Intel core i3 2120 CPU, not sure what the i3 and the 2120 signifies, though. That's just what the system tells me it is!

Why I'm updating is because I love writing music on my computer, tried to use posher software on XP and it kept crashing. So I'm HOPING that's just a memory problem and updating Windows and getting more memory will cure it. Why I chose 7 and not 10 is because my music DAW's 32-bit. I actually UNDERSTAND it, didn't want to have to start using one of these nightmares with windows all over the place and sends and hidden buttons and multiple views and loops all the rest of it. Mine's a pure notation package, I put in all the notes with the mouse, it's just I tried using posher instruments and it kept crashing, pretty sure I just ran the system outta memory. Anyway, wanted to try more memory before coughing up for a new computer! Last question, relevant to the above.

I've found 8-gig sticks of DDR-3 at vastly varying prices all over the place, anything from £10 to £50 or so, roughly speaking. How much does price matter and how much is it just a website trying to rip off a noob, would I be OK with a cheaper 8-gig stick for a couple of months or so till I can afford a new PC?

Sorry for all the questions.

Yours respectfully

Prices vary a lot because DDR3 is older and perhaps is not manufactured as much as it used to be, meaning new prices can be high because of low supply. I would buy used DDR3 to avoid overpaying.

Yes DDR3 comes in different speeds. Your motherboard supports 1333 and 1600mhz.

Can you take a picture of the label on your current ram sticks? We can find the frequency from there.

Mixing ram can sometimes have side effects or sometimes not work at all, even if the ram speeds are the same.