Computers & Electronics

2 GIGS vs 3 GIGS vs 4 GIGS of Ram

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  • Jan 19th, 2008 11:47 am
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Jul 2, 2007
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2 GIGS vs 3 GIGS vs 4 GIGS of Ram

Is there much difference between 2 Gigs of Ram vs 3 Gigs of ram? Would my system actually run slower because of one pair is at dual channel and the other is not? and for 4 gigs ? I know in 32 bit xp not all 4 gigs show up...
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Jun 27, 2004
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Markham
It all depends what you're doing. For gaming 2GB should be fine for the foreseeable future ... but if you're doing content creation (3d work, animation, large file image editing, etc) the more ram is always going to help.

For 3GB you should run 2 x 1GB and 2 x 512MB ...
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Aug 13, 2002
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timings would be slower on 4x1GB but you should not notice any real difference.

btw, I have 6GB on my system, helps out for photoshop on x64 :D
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Dec 9, 2003
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Toronto
noname wrote:
Jan 3rd, 2008 11:00 am
timings would be slower on 4x1GB but you should not notice any real difference.

btw, I have 6GB on my system, helps out for photoshop on x64 :D
Not just timings I'm afraid. With 2x1GB of Crucial Ballistix Tracer DDR2-1066 I would also get amazing 9500MB/s read speeds and high write speeds.

I put in another identical kit, so then it became 4x1GB. Speed dropped like a stone in the ocean - read went down to around 7800MB/s.

Once I replaced those 4 sticks with 2x2GB Mushkin DDR2-800, despite the modules being rated slower, I hit over 7500MB/s which is beyond factory specs.

The morale of the story is: run as few sticks as possible.

In general 2GB is good enough for any task. You have to be doing something special for the need of 4GB of RAM. Exceptions exist of course - Flight Simulator X would crash several times on me with the error stating that Windows had run out of physical memory.

Ever since I'm running 4GB on Vista Business 64-bit I never saw this error again.
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May 13, 2005
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Toronto
Depends on what you do.
I can easily use 4GB since I do heavy gaming.

And yeah, the less sticks you have, the better. It wouldn't be a big performance hit, but a hit nonetheless.
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Aug 29, 2001
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Waterlooo
Using Vista x64 on a pc shared by the whole family it makes a huge difference. With 4Gig there is a *lot* less disk swapping going on. Each user has their own login, they don't always log off... this can consume lots of memory.
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Jul 25, 2006
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Can't windows only address 3.3 gigs?!
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Jan 5, 2004
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GTA
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/555223/en-us

32bit windows
1. 2 GB of shared virtual address space for the system
2. 2 GB of private virtual address space per process
3. 660 MB System PTE storage
4. 470 MB paged pool storage
5. 256 MB non-paged pool storage
6. 1 GB System cache
7. 16,000 GB pagefile size

64bit windows
1. 8 TB of shared virtual address space for the system
2. 8 TB GB of private virtual address space per process
3. 128 GB System PTE storage
4. 128 GB paged pool storage
5. 128 GB non-paged pool storage
6. 1 TB System cache
7. 512 TB pagefile size

and then
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/929605/en-us
something like 4GB-video card memory-other reserved address space
therefore ... to avoid potential driver compatibility issues, the 32-bit versions of Windows Vista limit the total available memory to 3.12 GB
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Sep 8, 2004
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In XP i notice no difference between 3.4 gigs of ram (xp recognizes up to that even though 4 gigs is installed), and 2 gigs of ram.

All gaming benchmarks for xp indicate 2 gigs is the sweetspot. For ordinary OS there is no difference.

Think ahead though - prices of ram is at or near bottom, and will never ever get to this low price in your lifetime after this summer if not spring.

Grab 4 gigs while it is still a steal.
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