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Upgrading laptop to 8gb ram and matching ram


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#1 Allybee

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 07:49 AM

Hi I currently run win 7 pro 64-bit os and have 2 ram slots in my laptop.1x4gb stick of ram is currently occupying 1 slot in my laptop with a spare slot.

I would like to upgrade to 8gb but have been reading that ram should be bought in pairs etc.

Could I not just buy another 4gb stick as long as I find the correct speed and if I could does it have to be the same brand?

I could save myself alot of money by buying just one additional stick.

Any advice appreciated.



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#2 bassfisher6522

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 08:39 AM

Hi I currently run win 7 pro 64-bit os and have 2 ram slots in my laptop.1x4gb stick of ram is currently occupying 1 slot in my laptop with a spare slot.

I would like to upgrade to 8gb but have been reading that ram should be bought in pairs etc.

Could I not just buy another 4gb stick as long as I find the correct speed and if I could does it have to be the same brand?

I could save myself alot of money by buying just one additional stick.

Any advice appreciated.

 

Yes you can buy just one stick of RAM.

Just make sure you purchase the exact brand make/model ram like the current one is in your laptop and you can't go wrong. 

 

It's rocommended to buy match pairs when filling the 2 or more RAM slots at one time...takes the risk out of mix matching RAM sticks....eg brand, voltage and timings.



#3 Allybee

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 08:54 AM

thanks,I just have one more question....my current ram runs @ 667mhz.

If I were to buy a matching pair of 2x4gb sticks @1600mhz would this be faster and better ram or does the speed in mhz not matter in ram?



#4 OldPhil

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 09:15 AM

You need to see what your system supports check the vendors site.


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#5 jonuk76

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 09:51 AM

667mhz is almost certainly DDR2 while 1600mhz RAM will be DDR3.  The two types are different standards, and aren't physically or electrically compatible.  If your laptop uses DDR2 (which it sounds like) then you can't install DDR3.


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#6 Allybee

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 10:27 AM

Hi jonuk76,

My laptop is a dell e5420 i5 2520m.

It has two slots and supports ddr3 1333 mhz sdram and 1066mhz sdram

in either 1,2,4,8maximum capacity

I haven't opened underneath yet to check but it sounds like I have the wrong ram installed at the moment!



#7 jonuk76

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 12:33 PM

Thanks for clarifying.  I guess it's probably got the right memory otherwise it wouldn't work :)

 

A common cause of confusion is that 1066mhz or 1333mhz are "effective" speeds.  The actual speed is 533mhz or 667mhz respectively.  DDR (double data rate) RAM passes two 'bits' of information per clock cycle, so the convention is to take the true speed, double it and call it the effective speed.  Some software might report the true speed while others will report the effective speed.  For example, the application CPU-Z shows the true speed rather than the effective DDR speed.


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#8 Allybee

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 12:47 PM

Thanks Jonuk76,

I was worried there for a bit thinking I had ddr2 and the wrong speed installed.

Would buying one stick of 4gb ddr3  pc3 1333mhz sodimm be okay as long as it is the same speed and same manufacturer?

Can you tell me what timings mean eg.2-2-2-6 and what dual channel means?



#9 jonuk76

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 02:53 PM

Yes I would say as long as it was the same type and speed of memory it should work.  Some memory suppliers offer a guarantee that RAM will work with a specific system (or no quibble refund if it doesn't!) if you use their memory selector tool.  Crucial is one company that does this.

 

Timings are kind of complicated - I would suggest having a read of this article which gives some explanations.  In general, lower timing numbers equal lower latency (latency being the time the CPU has to wait doing nothing while information it needs is retrieved from the memory), but they need to be considered along with the memory speed also.

 

Dual channel is simpler to understand.  Most CPU's have dual channel memory controllers which means they can interface with two banks of memory at the same time.  This should increase system speed as it theoretically doubles the memory throughput.  For this to work there needs to be a minimum of two memory modules installed.


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#10 Allybee

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 05:42 PM

Thank you!

I'll try and find 1x4gb stick the same as the one installed.

thanks for the link on timings,much appreciated.



#11 AlexSmithFanning

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 06:05 PM

Before replacing it, make sure you have BOTH of them taken out while the computer is off. Then insert one at a time.


I prefer Linux. Windows 10 is just to invasive for me.





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