More RAM - one stick or two? [Archive] - Glock Talk


View Full Version : More RAM - one stick or two?

01-06-2005, 16:15
Tried search, but with all the threads on RAM I couldn't find an answer to my question.

I want to increase the RAM on my comp:
Gateway Pentium IV 2g
256 RAM
60g hd
ATI Radeon 9600Pro graphics card

I play a lot of HaloPC, Battlefield1942, and a ton of other games. I have read and been told more RAM would improve things.

I went to Crucial, used the system analysis, and they recommended;
512mb - CT 258352
DDR PC2100

I noticed that in the "other recommendations", there is a;
1gb - CT 273927
DDR PC2100
for $240.00

Can I get the same performance with two 512 sticks for $170.00, versus the 1gb stick for $240.00?

That a pretty good price difference.


01-06-2005, 16:27
You need to make sure the RAM is supported by your motherboard.

Make sure it supports the clock speed (like PC2100), the type (DDR), error checking (ECC), and whether it supports buffered or unbuffered. Check the manual.

If your MB supports up to a gig with those specs, then go for it.

01-06-2005, 16:43
One stick of 1g will be better than 2 sticks of 512mb.Some motherboards won't work with more than 512mb of memory.If Crucial's sites says a 1g will work it should be okay.

01-06-2005, 17:00
The Crucial site said this about my system:

System Information for the
Gateway E-4000 Series
System Type: Desktop Computer
Maximum memory: 2048MB
Standard memory: 128, 256, or 512MB removable
Slots/banks: 2 (2 banks of 1)
What's best for you?
Crucial Recommends:
We recommend a minimum memory total of at least 512MB. And since your Gateway E-4000 Series supports up to 2048MB of memory, you may want to install even more, especially if you work with several programs at a time or use memory-intensive software, such as image-editing software.
(Keep in mind that sometimes BIOS updates and other hardware configurations can alter memory recommendations

Maximum memory of 2048MB? Is that right?

Anyway... What I want to know is, how much better would one stick of 1g be? Would it be $70.00 better? Would I notice that much of a difference with games?

01-06-2005, 17:01
What operating system are you running?

Win2k will give you the blue screen of death if you change the memory.

01-06-2005, 17:17
Operating system is WinXP

01-06-2005, 17:19
Originally posted by NetNinja
What operating system are you running?

Win2k will give you the blue screen of death if you change the memory.

The Crucial site said this about my system:
Save yourself the headache later and look at the motherboard manual. It will tell you the actual specs.

01-06-2005, 17:31
How many slots are populated with RAM now; 1 or 2? If you have an open slot, you may want to keep the existing 256Mb of RAM and add a single 512Mb or 1Gb stick to it. If both slots are used, I think that it is a toss up. The only advantage to 2 sticks is that if 1 stick STB, you MAY still be able to run on the remaining good stick. This may not work on all MB, but has worked for me in the past, so I usually go for 2 sticks of RAM (ie--2 X 512Mb vs 1 X 1GB).

01-06-2005, 19:38
The big advantage to running one stick is it's all matched.All running at the same temp.One piece a bit faster than two pieces.

01-06-2005, 23:19
Talk about your coincidences!!

Just today I installed a new modem and a PNY 512MB PC2700 stick into a Gateway computer identical to yours, only this one was the 500s model running XP Home.

That PC had a single 256MB PC2100 DIMM in it originally, and with the 512MB PNY DIMM installed (WITHOUT the OEM-installed PC2100 133MHz POS) it now does over 2X in Everest benchmarks.

It ran about 10% faster than previously with both DIMMs installed.

So it can make quite a large difference. That 2.0 GHz CPU has a 400MHz FSB, so getting PC3200 might have been even better.

We went for this RAM b/c Staples has it on sale for under $60 per stick!!! Cheaper than most House Brands and a lifetime warranty to boot? Hell yeah.

Good luck!

PS. The Staples sale ends Saturday night, BTW...

01-07-2005, 08:36
If your motherboard supports Dual Channel DDR, go with 2 sticks. With a Dual Channel DDR platform (MB), performance will be better with 2 sticks of memory.

While we don't see a full 100% boost in bandwidth, we see our memory bandwidth scores go up by 62% by using two DDR modules instead of one.

See also:

01-07-2005, 09:43
I don't think there were any pent 4 w/PC2100 that were dual channel.Crucial's website would have mentioned too.PC2700 will work in it.PC2100 is also called 266mhz DDR and PC2700 is also called 333mhz DDR.PC3200 is the same as 400mhz DDR but that's a bit much for that PC.

01-19-2005, 09:14
Wow. Helps to open up your computer every so often. I opened my computer this morning, and pulled dust from the vents and inside that made a dust ball that was almost as big as my fist. Whew!

Anyway. Turns out I have one stick of 256, instead of what I thought were two sticks of 128. That leaves me with an open slot. I think I am going to be conservative, and just get one stick of 256, to bring me up to a total of 512RAM. That should hold me fine until we get a new computer, which will probably be in a year or two.

Thanks for all your help.