Question Problem with upgrading laptop RAM ?

okjak808

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Feb 23, 2018
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Hello everyone on Tomshardware.

So my friend has an Asus Tuf gaming laptop with a

core i5 (don't know the model)
8gb micron ram DDR4 (2300mhz I think, timings are unknown) and a
GTX 1650TI 4GB
some NVME SSD 256 (don't know brand as well, guessing from Samsung or Adata.

So my friend needed help with upgrading his laptop especially his ram. Today we went to Best Buy and saw the PNY 8gb DDR4 2400mhz cl17 ram, I suggested he could just mix the ram like buy the PNY one from Best Buy and use the current one within the Laptop in order to gain at least 16gb of ram since he wanted to extend his ram. I've talked to one of the Best Buy employees and not the geek squads and we were told that "You can't mix ram and it has be the same sticks, like buying the 16gb kit instead." Although not bragging but I knew that mixing ram won't work IN MOST CASES but I've done it many times before within my builds and it worked but this is for desktops and laptops are different I assume. For examples if 2 sticks of ram had different timings and different speeds and while 1 being faster than the other, your bios would run both sticks at the slowest one of which ram has the slowest speeds.

I didn't tell them this and my friend of course being new so I had to help him. He instead bought a 16gb kit PNY from Best Buy for 37.99 dollars so both being around 70 dollars, he also bought an WD black NVME SSD 500gb for extra storage that was easy to know as long as it has a NVME slot.

Although when I got to my friends house we first tried to mix up the ram to see if the Best Buy employee were right and what do you know it booted up just fine, even in task manger it showed 16gb of ram but both running at 2400mhz, but wait I thought the laptop would run it at 2300mhz since it's the max speed it'll run but it's running at the highest speed of which the PNY has (2400mhz)????.

After that we turned off his laptop and tried to run both the PNY sticks he bought from Best Buy, yeah it booted up fine, BUT it Blue screened giving out this error something to do with "Memory." I don't get it why did the laptop ran fine when using mixed ran but when trying out both the PNY sticks same speeds and timings is wouldn't function correctly, no matter what after a few seconds of the log in screen it blue screened, I couldn't even open up task manager. and remind you the employee told us to not mix ram since it wouldn't work correctly or post and suggested us to buy a kit instead but in this case it's the opposite??

I'm not very experienced as well, but this is soo strange???

Anyone mind telling me what's happening here???
 
Hey there,

Can you list the exact model of laptop? This will help us diagnose.

First thing though. There are no ram modules that run at 2300mhz. You are mistaken there.

Typically ram runs in straps of 266mhz increases. Default ram DDR4 runs at 2133mhz. The next strap up from that is 2400mhz.

In terms of mixing ram. Both you and the Best buy guys are right. For the most part, it can be a bad idea to mix ram from different manufacturers. Sometimes they don't mix well because of timings, and/or voltage requirements. However, this applies more to desktop ram configurations, and not so much with laptops. Laptops are much more forgiving, and so mixing ram modules will work just fine most of the time, as you have found out. If you mix ram modules with different speeds, it generally defaults to the speed of the slowest ram DIMM. So if you mixed lets, say 2666mhz ram, with a DIMM that runs at 2400mhz, it will run both DIMMS at the lower speed of 2400mhz, and it will run fine.
This is why when you mixed the original DIMM with one of the new ones, it worked.

It's very possible that the reason the two PNY kit didn't work, is perhaps because one may be faulty.

You can test for this by using memtest86+ and testing both DIMMS outside of Windows environment. I suspect one of the DIMMS might fail. If so, return the kit. The BSOD's typically point to a mem problem, If the mixed DIMMS work fine, and given they were so cheap, it might just be an idea to keep the 16gb working, and just be done with returning the kit for a replacement. At least the 16gb is working as expected.
 
Reactions: okjak808

okjak808

Reputable
Feb 23, 2018
190
26
4,640
6
Hey there,

Can you list the exact model of laptop? This will help us diagnose.

First thing though. There are no ram modules that run at 2300mhz. You are mistaken there.

Typically ram runs in straps of 266mhz increases. Default ram DDR4 runs at 2133mhz. The next strap up from that is 2400mhz.

In terms of mixing ram. Both you and the Best buy guys are right. For the most part, it can be a bad idea to mix ram from different manufacturers. Sometimes they don't mix well because of timings, and/or voltage requirements. However, this applies more to desktop ram configurations, and not so much with laptops. Laptops are much more forgiving, and so mixing ram modules will work just fine most of the time, as you have found out. If you mix ram modules with different speeds, it generally defaults to the speed of the slowest ram DIMM. So if you mixed lets, say 2666mhz ram, with a DIMM that runs at 2400mhz, it will run both DIMMS at the lower speed of 2400mhz, and it will run fine.
This is why when you mixed the original DIMM with one of the new ones, it worked.

It's very possible that the reason the two PNY kit didn't work, is perhaps because one may be faulty.

You can test for this by using memtest86+ and testing both DIMMS outside of Windows environment. I suspect one of the DIMMS might fail. If so, return the kit. The BSOD's typically point to a mem problem, If the mixed DIMMS work fine, and given they were so cheap, it might just be an idea to keep the 16gb working, and just be done with returning the kit for a replacement. At least the 16gb is working as expected.
Yeah I could be mistaken with the ram speed cause it says pc4-2300 from micron. Although my friend decided to give the other PNY stick to his girlfriend for her gaming laptop as well and yes they both have the same gaming laptop and remember my friend is using the other PNY stick of ram, so basically his girlfriend is going to do the same like mixing the ram.

Again it worked fine even ran Minecraft with shaders, ram being detected in task manager and no BSOD so 2 of the PNY ram sticks work just fine.

I thought laptops were more harsh on ram upgrades but I guess I’m wrong that’s something nice to learn.

Thank you for your time
 
Reactions: keith12
Yeah I could be mistaken with the ram speed cause it says pc4-2300 from micron. Although my friend decided to give the other PNY stick to his girlfriend for her gaming laptop as well and yes they both have the same gaming laptop and remember my friend is using the other PNY stick of ram, so basically his girlfriend is going to do the same like mixing the ram.

Again it worked fine even ran Minecraft with shaders, ram being detected in task manager and no BSOD so 2 of the PNY ram sticks work just fine.

I thought laptops were more harsh on ram upgrades but I guess I’m wrong that’s something nice to learn.

Thank you for your time
Not at all. You're most welcome! :) Happy gaming to all :)

Just on a side note, and so I'm super clear for you/me. The PC4 marking seems odd. For 2400mhz ram, the PC spec is PC4-19200. Other examples would be PC4-21300 which equates to 2666mhz, orPC4-2400 equates to 3000mhz ram. So it's odd to see PC4-2300. for a laptop. Are you sure that's correct? 2800mhz? You can read the specs of the ram with CPU-z, using the 'SPD' tab. I'm just interested to know.
 
Reactions: okjak808

okjak808

Reputable
Feb 23, 2018
190
26
4,640
6
Not at all. You're most welcome! :) Happy gaming to all :)

Just on a side note, and so I'm super clear for you/me. The PC4 marking seems odd. For 2400mhz ram, the PC spec is PC4-19200. Other examples would be PC4-21300 which equates to 2666mhz, orPC4-2400 equates to 3000mhz ram. So it's odd to see PC4-2300. for a laptop. Are you sure that's correct? 2800mhz? You can read the specs of the ram with CPU-z, using the 'SPD' tab. I'm just interested to know.
that's right i forgot about using something like CPU-Z, although I'm not with my friend and I even find it strange to see a ram having 2300mhz because on the ram stick sticker it didn't give me much specs or info just says "PC4-2300mhz." So I'm assuming it's running at 2300mhz, but it might be equal to 2400mhz since it's currently running at that speeds with the PNY ram as shown in task manager, but I do know that Task Manager can be inaccurate sometimes.

I'll try to give it look on my friend pc once I see him again.

Thank you for your time!
 
Reactions: keith12

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