Question Unable to load XMP profile for 64GB 3600 CL18 RAM on Skylake

Jan 1, 2021
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Introduction
Hey @All,

I am struggling with upgrading my RAM from 16GB to 64GB since three whole 12-hour-days and are out of ideas, maybe you can help me, I would be really, really happy.
I never did anything with the following settings before and might not have understood everything yet, but am capable of googling and reading instructions, so feel free to tell/ask anything and I will try to answer as clearly as possible.

Hardware Setup

Mainboard: MSI Gaming Pro Carbon Z170A
CPU: Intel Core i7 6700K
Memory: 64GB Patriot Viper 4 Blackout, DDR4-3600 DIMM, CL18, Dual-Kit (2x32GB), (PVB464G360C8K)

The RAM is installed in DIMM Slot 2 and 4. The chip manufacturer is Samsung.


Compatibility Insights
The msi website states that my mainboard supports a RAM frequency up to 3600.
There is a "(OC)" behind this statement, I suppose it means that this frequency can also be overclocked, or ist only achievable by overclocking, I am not quite sure - but either way, running with 3600 should work, I guess.
The compability list does not have ANY 64 GB (2x32) RAM listed, but the specification states that the mainboard supports up to 64GB RAM, so I suppose they just don't have tested that (since 64 GB seems to be used rarely anyway).


Problem Description
No matter what I do, I can only boot into the OS (Windows 10) with settings that seem to be the default DDR4 settings.

According to CPU-Z, Version 1.94.8.x64, this works:
Frequency 1333 MHz (so 2666 in total since its Dual-Channel) - CL 19.0 - tRCD 19 - tRP 19 - tRAS 43 - tRFC 734 - CR 2T - 1.20V

Target frequency is the advertised 3600 with CL 18 - 20 - 20 - 40, so I expect CPU-Z to show something close to 1800 as current frequency.
I don't mind about overclocking at this point, just want it to work with the advertised XMP settings.

Trying to set ANY other values (even lower ones than advertised) via BIOS will cause a failure to boot into the OS , throwing me back to a BIOS screen, stating that there were some failures due to the overclocking settings, so all settings were reset to default values.



Things I tried so far (settings in BIOS/UEFI):
  • Updated to the newest BIOS/UEFI version
  • Running 3 Passes of Memtest86 (with the default low settings) to check the hardware, no errors found (skipped the 4.th one cause it already took about 6 hours and a hardware defect is very unlikely anyway)
  • Operating with one RAM instead of both, tried both individually on different slots
  • Resetting CMOS - this will load the "auto" settings described above
  • Adjusting frequency / timing / voltage settings manually
    • even a slight increase from the default 2666 Mhz to 3000 Mhz will not work
    • also tried 3333 Mhz since my old RAM was operating at that frequency (with CL 16, 2x 8GB) perfectly for the past years
    • increasing voltage to the recommended 1.35V (for 3000/3333/3600 Mhz)
    • also increasing to 1.45V does not help
  • loading the XMP profile
  • enabling MSIs "Memory Try it!", which seems to enable SDP profiles, where I selected Samsung and the advertised 3600 MHz
.. I've also read somewhere that the CPU might be limiting the RAM (in general, did not find anything specific to my setup), so I looked through the beginner's CPU overclocking thread that I found on tomshardware too (this is why I signed up here now)
.. and applied the basic recommendations to begin with
  • set CPU core ratio to "per core"
  • changed to multiplier from 40 to 42 (since 4200 is the turbo speed for my CPU)
  • disabled any automatic turbo boost settings
  • did not perform any stability tests with OC CPU settings (since I only wanted to know if this enables my RAM to work in XMP settings, I do not want to overclock the CPU if not neccesarry)
I can successfully boot with the new CPU settings, but the RAM settings are still always thrown back to 2666 Mhz.


None of this worked, I always get the "All settings were reset to default values. The previous overclock settings have failed." screen.
Can you guide me in any direction? (even if it is "it will not work, buy a XXXX Mhz XX GB RAM instead".

Thanks in advance!
 
Last edited:

jojesa

Illustrious
Introduction
Hey @All,

Compability Insights
The msi website states that my mainboard supports a RAM frequency up to 3600.
There is a "(OC)" behind this statement, I suppose it means that this frequency can also be overclocked, or ist only achievable by overclocking, I am not quite sure - but either way, running with 3600 should work, I guess.
The compability list does not have ANY 64 GB (2x32) RAM listed, but the specification states that the mainboard supports up to 64GB RAM, so I suppose they just don't have tested that (since 64 GB seems to be used rarely anyway).
First you won't see any difference in performance going from 3200MHz to 3600MHz on that platform.
The higher the speed, the less chances you have for the RAM to work.

Yes, MSI states that it does supports 3600 OC, since anything above 2400MHz is considered OC.
Also you might have seen that MSI recommended several kits at 3600MHz, but did not listed any 64GB kits.
MSI listed 64GB kits @ DDR4-3333MHz or below only... and that could be because it might be hard to get 64GB at 3600MHz to run stable or at all on that motherboard.

By the way, you should not have to increase increasing voltage abobe 1.35V for 3600MHz RAM
 

boju

Titan
Ambassador
3600 might be possible with a pair of 8gb or 16gb sticks, though playing around with dual rank 32GB dimms may be near impossible. The speed you have them running at is still very good. If really want 3600, might consider trying 2x 16GB instead.

3200MHz is possible with that cpu though, userbench reports several tests done with 3200 ram on the same board; https://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Intel-Core-i7-6700K/Rating/3502 albeit smaller size dimms.
 
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Jan 1, 2021
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First you won't see any difference in performance going from 3200MHz to 3600MHz on that platform.
The higher the speed, the less chances you have for the RAM to work.
My main goal was to upgrade from 16 GB (2x8) to 64 GB (2x32 GB). Picking the highest possible frequency that my motherboard declared was just a matter of "it does not cost much more money, so why not".

The frequency of my old RAM was 3333 and the current "stable" frequency of the new ram is 2666 - I don't know why you point out the (non)-difference between 3200 and 3600 but yes, I also think that I won't notice a difference.

Yes, MSI states that it does supports 3600 OC, since anything above 2400MHz is considered OC.
Also you might have seen that MSI recommended several kits at 3600MHz, but did not listed any 64GB kits.
MSI listed 64GB kits @ DDR4-3333MHz or below only... and that could be because it might be hard to get 64GB at 3600MHz to run stable or at all on that motherboard.
So the GB do matter in terms of compatibility? I know that more GB typcially have less good latency timings and the technical reason, but do you know the technical reason that it is harder to get 64GB to run on higher frequency when both the motherboard and the RAM itself already support it?

By the way, you should not have to increase increasing voltage abobe 1.35V for 3600MHz RAM
Thought so.... just wanted to see if it would help, to exhaust the possibilites why it might fail.


My main concern currently is that I am not able to change the 2666 Mhz to ANYTHING, not even a slight increase to 2700.
I cannot even change the timings by 1 point and leave the frequency at 2666.
It just seems that every change gets rejected and only the default DDR4 settings are okay.

I also have the chance to send the RAM back and buy a new 64GB kit with 3200-CL16 - but shouldn't it work with the current RAM too, when changing the values in BIOS accordingly? I am afraid that a 3200er 64GB Kit won't be able to boot with more than 2666 Mhz too. I don't know whether it would make a difference to buy 4x16 GB instead ... doing this, I would have to remove one FAN of my CPU, otherwise there is no space left.


3600 might be possible with a pair of 8gb or 16gb sticks, though playing around with dual rank 32GB dimms may be near impossible. The speed you have them running at is still very good. If really want 3600, might consider trying 2x 16GB instead.

3200MHz is possible with that cpu though, userbench reports several tests done with 3200 ram on the same board; https://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Intel-Core-i7-6700K/Rating/3502 albeit smaller size dimms.
I really want 64GB and I really want to understand why it is not possible to change ANY value to anything else than the default values, in my mind it just feels like something is broken. I don't insist on 3600, but higher than 2666 or at least understanding why this won't be possible would be nice.

I know that 3333 Mhz is possible on this particular board since my old RAM did run with it perfectly. I don't understand why 3333 Mhz with 2x8GB is fine, but 3333 Mhz (or 3200, 3000, 2700...) is not possible with 64 GB.

Thanks for your time so far :)
 

jojesa

Illustrious
My main goal was to upgrade from 16 GB (2x8) to 64 GB (2x32 GB). Picking the highest possible frequency that my motherboard declared was just a matter of "it does not cost much more money, so why not".
Because a motherboard supports 3600MHz RAM speeds, it does not automatically implies that any CPU will support it or any brand of memory will work. That's why MSI posted which brands and the speeds that will work with either Sklylake and Kabylake on that MSI Gaming Pro Carbon Z170A motherboard.
You should have selected a RAM kit from the ones listed as compatibles or similar one.
Also your Patriot Viper 4 Blackout 64GB 3600MHz was "Built for the latest Intel/AMD platforms".
If you look at Patriot website, your platform is not listed as tested or compatible with that RAM kit. Quote "Viper 4 Blackout memory kits require specific CPU and Motherboard."..then Viper listed Intel platforms starting from I7-8700K (Coffee Lake)

The frequency of my old RAM was 3333 and the current "stable" frequency of the new ram is 2666 - I don't know why you point out the (non)-difference between 3200 and 3600 but yes, I also think that I won't notice a difference.
I pointed out, so you know that just getting the faster RAM, you could find, won't have any benefits ...on the contrary it could have adverse results.
When I build computers with more than 32GB of RAM, it is to be used mainly for work related tasks, so I prefer stability instead of tiny bit of added speed.

So the GB do matter in terms of compatibility? I know that more GB typcially have less good latency timings and the technical reason, but do you know the technical reason that it is harder to get 64GB to run on higher frequency when both the motherboard and the RAM itself already support it?
Since the Memory Controller (MC) is in the CPU, then the CPU is the main factor on achieving a higher RAM speeds.
Higher frequency puts more stress on the CPU memory controller.
The CPU (i7 6700K) default is 2133 MT/s so you will have to OC the CPU to match the speed of a 3600MHz RAM. Not all CPUs and RAM IC are created equal, so you will have to play around will all settings to match one to the another...and that might not be an easy task.
Even though Intel sells OC "K" CPUs, running a "K" CPU outside the defaults voids the warranty.

I also have the chance to send the RAM back and buy a new 64GB kit with 3200-CL16 - but shouldn't it work with the current RAM too, when changing the values in BIOS accordingly?
Did you manually entered the RAM timings (18-22-22-42) and voltage (1.35) in the BIOS for 3600MHz?

I am afraid that a 3200er 64GB Kit won't be able to boot with more than 2666 Mhz too. I don't know whether it would make a difference to buy 4x16 GB instead ... doing this, I would have to remove one FAN of my CPU, otherwise there is no space left.
If you get a 64GB kit from the list of tested RAM brands and listed speeds, then you will have a greater chance to have it work.
 
Last edited:
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