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Longevity of Corsair PC3200

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GM1010

Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2001
Right now I have 512mb of Corsair XMS PC3200 and I'm considering buying another stick to make 1gb. My question is, with the future AMD's being locked, is it a smart idea to invest in PC3200? I probably won't be buying a new mobo or processor for at least 6 months, but when I do, it also could be an Intel. So I'm wondering if PC3200 is enough for the future AMD processors or Intels (because I am not knowledgable on them and have no idea what they require).

Also, if I do decide to buy another stick, is it a bad idea to mix speeds and/or brands? Could i buy something like 3700 so that in a worst case scenario, in the future if my 3200 isn't fast enough I can use the other stick that's faster? Thanks.
 

Speed_Mechanic2

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2003
Location
Ft. Hood, TX
Do you have an idea how old the sticks of Corsair XMS PC3200 is? What is the revision on the product code?

The longevity of DDR memory depends on whose roadmap your looking at. On the Intel side, they are going to be pretty aggressive in trying to get DDR2 into the big picture by the end of 2004. While AMD is going the mainstream path and sticking with DDR for most/all of 2004.

As for higher speed memory, there isn't going to be much development of regular DDR memory that will make PC3200 become obsolete or anything like that. Currently, basically all DDR memory is at a standstill with 5ns chips. Of course, as time goes on the chips scaling ablity improves. This is why we are seeing the introduction of faster DDR products recently (OCZ's DDR533 followed by Corsairs DDR550). But these are all forced to use high-latencies which stunt their performance increase.
 
OP
GM1010

GM1010

Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2001
I wouldn't be able to give you a product code as the computer I'm talking about isn't in front of me right now. I know the ram is no more than a year old. I see what you mean about DDR2 coming into the picture. I should have stated my question better with emphasis on the 3200 part. Basically if I buy an AMD 6 months from now and it's locked, and I need, say, 220-230 fsb (just to pick a number), this ram is going to be useless isn't it? I guess what I'm asking is, is it worth it to buy PC3200 (extra ram that I don't absolutely need) these days with the future of locked processors coming?
 

Speed_Mechanic2

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2003
Location
Ft. Hood, TX
Winbond CH-5 or BH-5/BH-6 memory (which are the memory chips found on your Corsair - a product code would identify which) are capable of running 220-230MHz (DDR440-460) w/ higher-end voltage (2.9V+; possibly less). The memory certainly will not be useless.

If your going to purchase an AMD processor in the next 6 months it depends on what processor that is, it's locked multiplier, and it's scalability. The Socket 754 Athlon 3200+ (1Mb L2) and 3000+ (512Kb L2) both use a 10X Multiplier, and have the capability to scale high enough to require DDR466+ speeds. But the Socket 754 Athlon64's are hampered by chipset issues right now, and arn't favored over the future Socket 939. Though the capabilities of Socket 939 processors (as far as their scalability is concerned) isn't knowned well enough yet to recommend memory, other then that they will be using DDR (DDR1) memory.

Back to your original question, if you purchase PC3200 memory that uses the same memory chips as your Corsair XMS PC3200 (which might be either Winbond's CH-5 or BH-5/6) then it will not be obsolete any time soon.

Higher speed memory (PC3700+) suffer from high-latency operation that hampers performance enough to put aside any increased performance that the increased bandwidth (higher speeds) offers.