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RAM and cpu questions

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#1 333nnn


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Posted 13 October 2008 - 05:27 AM

I’m shopping for parts for a computer to build. I will only use the computer for Internet surfing, watching videos on Youtube and typing stuff in MS Word. I will never play a video game on it, do any video editing, PDF file editing, etc. How much RAM should I get? My current computer that I use for the above uses has 1 GB and does fine. I have never gotten a “Virtual memory is low” message with it, but some say to get at least 2 GB of RAM. Since RAM is so cheap now I don’t mind getting 2 GB or even more if doing so would be an improvement. Also, does the RAM brand matter except for the really off brands? Is there a significant difference in quality with RAM these days? Crucial is a common cheaper brand that I’m currently using. Is Crucial good quality? Is it ok to use different RAM brands in the same computer, and does each RAM slot have to have the same sized RAM stick? The processor I’m currently using is 1.6 GHz, and my computer speed is fine. But faster is always better, so would a 2.2 GHz cpu be worth getting or even a 3.2 GHz? Approximately how much do cpu’s increase computer speed i.e. would a computer with a 3.2 GHz cpu be twice as fast as a 1.6 GHz cpu computer? What are the best price versus performance Intel cpu’s? Thanks for any replies.

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#2 tg1911


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Posted 13 October 2008 - 07:07 AM

Most newer motherboards support RAM running in Dual Channel mode.
2 matched sticks of RAM running in Dual Channel mode, will out perform 2 mismatched sticks not running in Dual Channel mode.
RAM is cheap, and the easiest way to increase your computer's performance.
The amount of RAM you should get, will depend on the Operating System you decide to use.
If you're going to use XP, then 1GB should satisfy your needs.
If you're going to be using Vista (more resource intensive, than XP), I'd consider 2GB to be the minimum.

Either way, I would go with 2GB of Dual Channel.
As I said, RAM is the cheapest, and easiest way, to increase your computer's performance.
You never know what the future will hold, as your computing needs, or interests, may change.

You can't go wrong, with choosing one of the name-brand manufacturers of RAM.
When it comes to RAM, don't buy cheap, no-name brands.
RAM is one area where, "you get what you pay for".
Buy cheap, you get cheap.
Buy quality, you get quality.
Some good choices would be:

As far as the processor goes, I'd get a good dual core.
Also, get a motherboard that can support processor upgrades, and the addition of more RAM, than what you think you'll need.
This would be a good way to help "future-proof" your computer.
MOBO: GIGABYTE GA-MA790X-UD4P, CPU: Phenom II X4 955 Deneb BE, HS/F: CoolerMaster V8, RAM: 2 x 1G Kingston HyperX DDR2 800, VGA: ECS GeForce Black GTX 560, PSU: Antec TruePower Modular 750W, Soundcard: Asus Xonar D1, Case: CoolerMaster COSMOS 1000, Storage: Internal - 2 x Seagate 250GB SATA, 2 x WD 1TB SATA; External - Seagate 500GB USB, WD 640GB eSATA, 3 x WD 1TB eSATA

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#3 audioAl


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Posted 13 October 2008 - 07:19 AM

I agree, I have 2 gigs of corsair running in dual config, 320 gig HD Seagate, w/ AMD 4200+ duo-core CPU, e-GeForce 8600 GTS graphics. This custom computer, I built myself is blazing fast, $421.00 !
Windows Vista Ultimate 64 bit/Intel e5300 cpu/ASRock G41M-LE mainboard/G max4500 onboard graphics/4gigs OCZ 800Mhz ram/ VIA onboard HD Vinyl audio/Yamaha RX-V465 HT receiver/ Cambridge SoundWorks and Infinity RS1001 speakers

#4 hamluis



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Posted 13 October 2008 - 01:08 PM

One thing that some don't understand...dual-core and quad-core processors...have changed the game.

You cannot look at a processor's Ghz figure...and have any idea of whether that processor is better than another.

The primary advantage of dual-core processors, IMO, is that they do twice the work...in the same amount of time. They won't necessarily be "faster" but they will outperform based on work done in the same time period.

I tend to think of the Athlon 64 X2s as an inexpensive dual-core play with good value.

I just found this article from about 2 years ago and it's interesting to note that processors that were rather expensive then are rather inexpensive today...with no loss of capability regarding performance.


Edited by hamluis, 13 October 2008 - 01:19 PM.

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