Question XMP/DOCP BIOS Settings Questions


May 26, 2019
Like many PC gamers right now, I am waiting for the PC parts shortage (particularly the GPU) to end. During this wait, I have been refreshing some of my PC building and tech specs knowledge from books and tech experts/enthusiasts on YouTube. I just watched one tech expert/enthusiast JayzTwoCents' video on ways to improve speed and performance on both new and old PCs. One area that he stated was to enable XMP or DOCP on Intel or AMD motherboards to boost the Memory speed on the RAM from the Default 2133 MHz speed on DDR4 sticks to whatever the higher memory speed may be on the RAM sticks (e.g. 3200 or 3600 MHz). From my understanding based on the video, when enabling XMP/DOCP, it is technically an overclock, but if the RAM is rated up to 3000 or 3200 MHz then the system should be fine, but beyond that, there could be issues. Now I am not super knowledgeable in all computer tech specs, but currently both the Intel 11th Gen and AMD Ryzen 5000 series CPUs handle up to DDR4-3200 memory speed. I currently have G.Skill Ripjaws V 32 GB (2 x 16 GB) DDR4-3600 CL16 Memory that I intend to use for my next build after the parts shortage ends. I am not an overclocker, but I try to get the maximum speed from my computer components like the CPU and RAM at or up to their manufacture designed specifications. I will provide links to both my RAM and the video incase it helps to answer my questions.

My questions are:

  1. To get the faster memory speed and remain stable, would the memory speeds as listed on both the CPU and RAM specs need to match (e.g. DDR4-3200)?
  2. Depending on the answer to Question 1, if both my CPU and RAM are rated for DDR4-3200 memory speed, would I just enable XMP/DOCP and that's it?
  3. Dependent on the answers to the previous two questions, both Intel and AMD CPUs are rated at DDR4-3200 memory speed and my RAM is rated at DDR4-3600 memory speed. If the RAM does need to be rated at DDR4-3200 and match the DDR4-3200 CPU memory speed, is there a setting option available in the BIOS to set the XMP/DOCP memory speed to 3200 instead of 3600?
RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws V Series 32GB DDR4 3600 RAM Memory -
Video (at 1:48) : 5 Ways to make your PC Faster for FREE! - YouTube

Best way to ensure a stable system for RAM is to select a kit from the MB QVL that are tested and known to work. Choose a kit the size and frequency that the CPU and MB support.
Some kits do indeed have pre profiles such as XMP or D.O.C.P however these profiles may not work and require manually entering in Bios their SPD Timings and Voltage. Generally the higher the rated frequency of your OC RAM the looser the Timings and the RAM voltage needs tweaking.

I recommend you update your Bios and chipset prior installing your RAM for better compatibility and performance.

1. Very much depends on the quality of the RAM chips (silicon lottery) thats why DIMMs are binned at the manufacturers facility. The binning process matches each module into a single kit to ensure compatibility due to minor differences in Latency/Density. Your CPU will have official support for a certain MHz frequency and beyond that is not guaranteed to work.

2. 3200MHz is indeed OC RAM. The IMC (Integrated Memory Controller) is located on the CPU and will ultimately determine what frequency it can handle. Profiles such as XMP are for simple and easy Overclocking and may not work, You just have to enable it and see. No harm done in trying.

3. You either choose a profile or you manually enter the SPD details in Bios manually. This is done in DRAM timing control and adjustments in DRAM voltage. There will be an ability to set your RAMs rated frequency however there is no guarantee (due to the limitations of the IMC) and the system may default to a lower frequency.