Installing DDR2 on my mobo

By wernertk
Feb 27, 2007
  1. Hello all.

    This is my first post here, and thank you for the opportunity to do so.
    I hope this was not asked before:

    I bought an Asus P5N32-SLI Deluxe mobo. It states that it supports 667/533 DDR2 memory.
    I can get 2x 1GB 800MHz on special in my country {Patriot}.

    Now, question one:
    I need {and I mean REALLY} to know, will my board support them, and if it does, will it just downgrade the speed to 667? I have an idea it might.

    Question two:
    If it supports it, and downgrades the speed, will it still run dual channel?

    Can anyone give me an idea to one/both of my questions? I woulds really really appreciate it.
  2. zephead

    zephead TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,569

    DDR2 800 modules are backwards compatible with slower motherboards. the ram will work, but it will run at the slower DDR2 667 spec. you would, however be paying a higher price for the DDR2 800 modules than you would for DDR2 667. your motherboard will run two DDR2 sticks in dual-channel mode, provided that they are installed in accordance with the manual's specifications for dual-channel operation.
  3. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    welcome to TechSpot wernertk :)

    yes, your motherboard controls the speed at which your RAM sticks will operate at. the 800MHz rating is simply the fastest speed that the manufacturer guarantees it to run stable.

    since your motherboard does not officially support speeds above 667MHz, you will not gain any performance by using 800MHz rated memory unless you manually raise the speed to 800 (overclock) in the BIOS. if you don't plan on overclocking, then you may be better off finding 2 matched sticks of DDR2-667 with lower latency (which will perform better than DDR2-800 with higher latency), if you can find them for a similar/less price.

    to run in dual channel, the sticks just have to match. the rated speed doesn't matter.

    cheers :wave:
  4. wernertk

    wernertk TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Guys, you are the best!!!

    Thank you soo much for the fast reply.
    The thing is that the special I'm buying these two is cheaper than 667. To be precise, they are Patriot PC2-6400. I'm on a budget here, and don't mind if my modo downgrade them. They will come in handy when I upgrade my system again

    Patriot PC2-6400 Specs:
    Tested at Low Timings of 4-4-4-12 at 2.2V
    SPD Programmed to standard 5-5-5-15 values

    Not so clued up on what this means... {I just play games and don't get too technical}

    FYI, I do not overclock at all, but will they still have the same timings?
  5. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    no, they will have different timings.

    what are timings?... simply put, when the CPU requests data from the system RAM there is a delay between when the request is made and when the data is delivered. the timings refer to the number of clock cycles it takes for the RAM to deliver that data. the faster/lower the timings > the quicker the CPU gets the data it needs > the faster your system is.

    the RAM you are looking at has 2 sets of timings, the SPD is what they will run on by default. patriot says that they will operate at the lower values, but you will have to manually set those in the BIOS.

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