AMD 939 & DDR Memory Question

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by Slimfady, Dec 5, 2005.

  1. Slimfady

    Slimfady OSNN Dino Addcit

    Messages:
    41
    Hello People,
    I have an AMD Athlon 64 3200+ (Venice) system. I haven't seen the performance I expect from this CPU ever since i purchased it. I assume that the reason for that is my memory sticks (TwinMos).

    I thought about purchasing a better quality memory sticks. I thought about getting Corsair XMS ProSeries. Is this a good choice? Any pieces of advice i should follow when i purchase RAM?

    Thanx
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2005
  2. ray_gillespie

    ray_gillespie Moderator Staff Member Political User

    Messages:
    1,692
    Location:
    Birmingham, UK
    To be honest, I wouldn't be able to tell the difference between using TwinMos RAM and Corsair XMS Proseries, as long as they were both working correctly. You may be able to o/c better with the Corsair RAM, if this is what you want to do, it's supposed to be excellent for that. If you just want to tweak latencies etc then I don't know what difference you can make. Hardcore gamers might be able to give you a different story, but that's about it for me.
    I have heard in many places that 2GB of RAM will slow your system for a lot of games and applications except for stuff like BF2.
    What makes you feel unhappy with the performance anyway? Slow games? Against what benchmark are you comparing your system performance?
     
  3. Slimfady

    Slimfady OSNN Dino Addcit

    Messages:
    41
    well,
    Games are working just fine with me. It's my desktop performance. It's near horrible, my computer can't handle starting two applications at the same time. Switching in between two applications is also slow and can momentaly freeze the PC. I'm not sure, but i think this has to do with my RAM.

    Is there a way to figure out where my bottleneck is?
     
  4. ray_gillespie

    ray_gillespie Moderator Staff Member Political User

    Messages:
    1,692
    Location:
    Birmingham, UK
    Oh right, that definitely doesn't sound right for what you have in your sig. Hmm... Have you looked at the Task Manager, under the Performance tab? What's your CPU and RAM usage like? Are you definitely running in dual-channel mode too? Tho even if you weren't your computer shouldn't be running like you say it is. Maybe your RAM timings or something aren't set properly. I can't really help any more than that really, I'm not that clued up on RAM. Guys like Mlakrid and Kcnychief know a lot about RAM, hopefully one of them will stop by and give you their opinions :)
     
  5. Shamus MacNoob

    Shamus MacNoob Moderator Political User

    Messages:
    4,199
    Location:
    L'Ile Perrot Quebec
    I would look also at the amount of things running on bootup, ram timings if set to the bios's default should be fine for a start point, then if needed some small adjustments can be made, but the type of problem you mention I think has nothing to do with ram timings for the moment. You might try a good spyware cleaner, junk file remover,virus scan, defragment the hard drive, for starters, When did this all start? Have you installed something new?
     
  6. Slimfady

    Slimfady OSNN Dino Addcit

    Messages:
    41
    I doubt it would be a spyware/junk/startup problem. I do cleaning very often and I take care of all those things. I even defrag regularly. In fact, the performance is that this level even after a clean windows install. I will restart now to check the RAM timing and get back to you guys.
     
  7. LeeJend

    LeeJend Moderator

    Messages:
    5,291
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    Brand of RAM will make no observable difference. Your memory is fine.

    When you put the AMD 64 in did you do a clean install or did you use an old hard disk with Windows already in it?
    - If an old HD then the new hardware (MB) may not have installed properly.
    You can try to clean up the install which may or may not succeed or you can back up your data and do a clean install.

    If you already did a clean install then I would start looking at advanced settings:
    -During boot up does the right CPU speed show up? should say xp3200 in the upper left. If the screen passes too quickly in bios disable fast memory check.
    Or you can download cpuz.exe and run it. It will tell you memory speed, CPU speed, memory timings etc.

    -Check in device mangler to see if the HD's are installed and detected at the right speed. UDMA 100/133 for the PATA. not sure how a SATA shows up.

    -If you have upgraded to SP2 recently defrag your system HD. SP2 install fragmented mine horribly and slowed my system way down.
     
  8. Heeter

    Heeter Overclocked Like A Mother

    Messages:
    2,732

    LOLOL, I like that one,

    Must make sure to use that one from now on..........

    Heeter
     
  9. Slimfady

    Slimfady OSNN Dino Addcit

    Messages:
    41
    ok, sorry for the late reply since i've been away for a couple of days. When I installed athlon 64, i used the same old HD but i formated the C partition and did a clean installation. I do defrag every once in a while.
    I checked the device mangler and the disk drives are all at the correct speed (like they show in the BIOS)

    The CPU speed does show correctly at boot time (i'm using 10x multiplier and 200 FSB so it shows 2.0Ghz)

    But i think i found a fault, the memory does not appear to be working at the right rate. It is operating at 200Mhz instead of 400Mhz as you can see in the screen shots below:
    http://www.geocities.com/bool_feez/cpu-z1.JPG
    http://www.geocities.com/bool_feez/cpu-z2.JPG
    http://www.geocities.com/bool_feez/cpu-z3.JPG

    Any idea on how to fix that?
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2005
  10. ray_gillespie

    ray_gillespie Moderator Staff Member Political User

    Messages:
    1,692
    Location:
    Birmingham, UK
    200Mhz is correct, you couldn't actually run it at 400Mhz on a 200Mhz bus, but because it's DDR RAM it effectively operates at 400Mhz compared to SD-RAM of the same 'clock speed'. Put that into dual-channel and you get quite a boost over SD-RAM (though not double again).
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2005
  11. Shamus MacNoob

    Shamus MacNoob Moderator Political User

    Messages:
    4,199
    Location:
    L'Ile Perrot Quebec
    In the bios you will read as 200mhz like the FSB it is really at 400mhz , as I stated I really do not think your problem is RAM related.
     
  12. mlakrid

    mlakrid OSNN BASSMASTER Political User Folding Team

    Thanks for the knowledge base respect...

    hes right I know how to tighten up the timings, but this doesnt sound like a memory issue... and if you have corsair, which is the ONYL memory I use, I doubt VERY seriously its your memory....

    With that said, do the obvious run memory tests, check your taskmanager, run HIjack this to make sure something else isnt hogging resources you arent aware of, and if it has been a while since you last defraged I would definately do that...

    Lastly, you said since you bought it, well that could point to another problem, a bad setting, check to make sure your system is optimized turn off anything in the BIOS you dont need, and one other thing, and this may sound wierd, remove your audigy, do a restart, and then see if you can open and run the programs without any problems... There have been many, many, MANY... problems with audigys conflicting with other devices...

    on another note, look in your event logs and see if you get anything other than regular smaller errors in your event log.. all of this can help us diagnose your problem...

    EDIT: well I need to read ALL the thread before posting... Hmm Ok well, your speed is correct. I would try one more thing, I had a similar problem a LOONG time ago... in my first PC... I would make sure your memory are parsed out in the slots, normally 1&3 and 2&4 for the TWO PAIRS... even if they are the same speed and manufacturer... SPECIFFICALLY, the XMS seriers twins, are tested in pairs for the best stable pairs, and while 1 stick may be stable with anoter, it might not be with the other two.. try that, and verify the matching DIMM sockets with the pairs and post back...

    EDIT #2: Also, I would check what the reccomended specs for your memory are, and if they say they work best with tighter timings then try it that way, XMS odly enough work better under slightly tighter timings and high voltages than they say on their website, because they are made to go into higher end / overclocked systems...
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2005
  13. LeeJend

    LeeJend Moderator

    Messages:
    5,291
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    The memory sticks are working in dual channel mode according to the cpuz screen shot and your timings are the same as my corsair. But rereading your first post something just clicked in my decrepit old memory.

    I saw something in one of the MB manuals about 4 sticks would not work in dual channel mode. I'll run thorugh the neo2 manual and see if that is the problem.

    In the mean time you could try pulling out 2 of the sticks (make sure you leav 2 in the correct sockets for dual channel) and see if speed improves. The dual channel access is the key to the socket 939 speed. It makes your memory access equivalent to 800 mhz.
     
  14. Slimfady

    Slimfady OSNN Dino Addcit

    Messages:
    41
    i'm currently running on 2 instead of 4. I'm not sure, but it seems that the PC is working slightly better though still far from normal. I noticed something when 4 sticks are used. The ram display on startup is DDR333 instead of DDR400.
     
  15. Shamus MacNoob

    Shamus MacNoob Moderator Political User

    Messages:
    4,199
    Location:
    L'Ile Perrot Quebec
    One thing I know for sure if you use 2 different pairs then with the 939 cpu it will see that they are not the same and reduce the speed, now I know this because I lived the experience with mine, we have 2 computers with 939 pin setups. But again ram at 333mhz will not freeze between programs and feel slow , there is not enough of a difference for us to really notice. The fact that the 2 sets dont run at 400mhz is a bummer, you will need to get another matched pair.
     
  16. mlakrid

    mlakrid OSNN BASSMASTER Political User Folding Team

    Thats the thing kermit, he said previously they are matched pairs as I understood it...

    Also, I have never used a 939 socket but I know LeeJend is right, I read something very similar... something tells me it is right here on OSNN.

    I will see if I can find it
     
  17. Shamus MacNoob

    Shamus MacNoob Moderator Political User

    Messages:
    4,199
    Location:
    L'Ile Perrot Quebec
    Yes he has 2 matched pairs <> but not 4 sticks exactly the same <>brand /speed<> he has 2 different matched pairs. And it is in the exact same situation I found myself one time not so long ago where there is a slight difference in the sticks and the 939 cpu refused to run at 400mhz dc mode. Where the exact same 2 x paired sticks in a 32bit setup ran at 400mhz with DCmode.

    I run dual channel mode and 4 sticks with both our ASUS boards mine is 4 x 512 and the other is 4 x 256 . But it is possible somewhere that he might need a bios update to fix a bug if it is that his mobo cannot run 4 x sticks in dc mode. But the above remains 100% in the 64bit mobo's 939 pins you can get a reduced speed if your 4 sticks are not exactly the same ratings .. you can have 2 matched pairs but they need to be exactly the same ratings. Even if they are different name brands it can work as long as they are exactly the same all around in all areas of speed and timings at rated speeds.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2005
  18. Slimfady

    Slimfady OSNN Dino Addcit

    Messages:
    41
    Thank you everyone for your help, i'm already convinced that my performance has nothing to do with my momory, but i'll still get those corsair sticks and i'll distribuite my memory sticks in between a new computer that I have built recently and my brother's computer.

    I'm now suspecting that my HD could be the problem. I faced this problem before in my previous P4 2.66 CPU but it wasn't this bad. I will run PCMark to check the performance of my HD against similar ones. I might then aim for a raptor in the future.
     
  19. Shamus MacNoob

    Shamus MacNoob Moderator Political User

    Messages:
    4,199
    Location:
    L'Ile Perrot Quebec
    There are tools at most hard drives sites like Maxtor, Western Digital they have tools you can use to find and or repair problems with harddrives
     
  20. LeeJend

    LeeJend Moderator

    Messages:
    5,291
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    Make sure the HD is thoroughly defragged. SP2 install trashed mine and caused a 30% slow down. Defragged twice and it was back to normal.

    Also go into deviec mangler and verify the HDs are set for udma 133 and also in the bios (set for auto detect and they should read udma 100 or udma 133).

    Don't bnlow off the defrag. I did and it turned out to be the problem.