(I posted this under motherboards but I figured I should've posted it here)
I am planning on buying a A7N8X mobo (not deluxe). I am going to equip it with CORSAIR MEMORY XMS Extreme Memory Speed Series 512MB 32MX8 PC-3200C2 With Heat Spreader memory. This is my first time building my own PC, but I'm sure I can do it. Only thing I am confused on is the memory speed. Can I just put in the memory and it will run at 400mhz? Or is there something "dual" about it? Something I have to do in the BIOS to set it up? Also, if I want to overclock the 400mhz past that, is it as simple as going to the bios and cranking it up a few notches till its stable or what? And ONE MORE Q! Would it be better to buy two 256MB (PC3200) sticks instead? And what's the difference between CAS2, CAS2.5, and CAS3? Not familiar with that...And I heard you can change that in the BIOS with certain boards and memory sticks. Just need that clarified! Thanks in advance
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With the nforce board you'll get best performance with 2 identical sticks of memory.
With the Current crop of XP's the memory will only run at the CPU FSB speed, typically 333Mhz. The memory it'self won't appear any faster but the bus width to the memory controller is twice as wide. This is like having an 8 line highway as opposed to a four. The speed limit is the same but you can carry twice the volume of traffic. Unfortunately it's still 4 lanes from the memory controller to the CPU so the dual setup at 333 with low latency memory should perform well.
Furture XP's will be 400Mhz FSB so the Nforce should be able to run the 400Mhz DDR in sync with the new CPU FSB as it unofficially supports the 400Mhz CPU FSB.
You'll pay a little more for 400Mhz but might not gain very much in the short term. With overclocking you may be able to up the CPU and Memory to 400Mhz in sync by lowering the multiplier ... as ever it's a gamble.
0o0oH I get it. I'm not a HUGE overclocker...well, the only thing I have overclocked is a graphics card! Well I'm on a budget...So I might be better off with PC2700...But then again, what if I want to upgrade? Haha that wont be anytime soon after this upgrade. At least I have that 400mhz capability sitting there for the future! Well I can go for the PC2700 (256x2) and overclock things a little! And I'll save quite a bit of money and get max performance!
thats a nice thought about having the 400 sitting there for the future. but dont wate to long like more that 6months or so because it will all be obsolete. os will require better hardware. so on it goes. always forcing us to upgrade harware at an incradable rate so we can run the latest but only slightly feture enhanced software.
The thing that should determine the speed of memory to buy is your processor. If you only have a 266 fsb athlon then 400mhz memory won't be much faster than 266 mhz memory. If you are going to get 400 mhz memory than make sure that you get an amd chip with the 333 mhz fsb to get the most speed from the memory. Also if you get the asus a7n8x board make sure you buy a good brand of memory because the board is really picky. You might want to read this post to hear what people say about it: http://www.hardwareanalysis.com/content/topic/4426/
I just ordered the stuff, got it today. I haven't got my case (SS WARRIOR http://www.xoxide.com) but I got my AMD ATHLON XP 2500+ "Barton" with 2 sticks Corsair 256MB DDR PC3200 (400mhz). So the CPU FSB is actually 333mhz. So I think it'll work out good. That hard part I'm facing now is partitioning the harddrive so i can install all this...