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  • 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

    I was running 2x1gb in dual channel. I added another 1gb stick and cpu-z says I'm still running in dual channel. I thought dual channel could only run with an even number of sticks. Is cpu z wrong?

  • #2
    Re: 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

    Dual Channel - your CPU is not wrong, having run 2 or more memory modules is running dual channel. Especially this is in the case that you use 2 same like 1GB and 1GB, then those run in dual channel. Even though you added 1 more memory stick, it still has to run dual channel. But it all depends on you mobo. Does it show you got 3GB?

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    • #3
      Re: 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

      you get the 2 in dual channel and the other stick is not in dual channel.
      Reapator, overlord of ponies

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      • #4
        Re: 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

        Is it better with or without the extra stick?

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        • #5
          Re: 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

          Originally posted by Hambergler View Post
          Is it better with or without the extra stick?
          It all depends if it counts the extra stick or not, if your mobo (motherboard) only supports dual channels, then it will not recongnise it and it will only count the 2GB that are in dual channel, so you would need to get 2x1GB again or 2x512MB Rams sticks, but if your motherboard supports both, it should show that you have 3GB and that is of course better than having 2GB ;)

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          • #6
            Re: 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

            Comp sees 3GB.

            I'm running benchmarks right now and sandra sees it as 1.5 running in dual. I turned off my paging file also to see what happens.

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            • #7
              Re: 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

              "Better" is kinda relative. You're not running in a proper dual-channel mode, which requires an even number of sticks. However, you have more overall RAM. Trade-off as to which is better really.

              A side note though, unless you're doing some really intensive graphics stuff, extreme multi-tasking or happen to be running Vista, 2GB of RAM + whatever is on your video card should be more than enough for you. I've not even seen COD4 eat up much memory on high settings and it runs flawlessly; I have only 2GB +512mb video on my XP system.
              [squadl]
              "I am the prettiest african-american, vietnamese..cong..person." -SugarNCamo

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              • #8
                Re: 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

                My theory and rule of thumb is that the odd stick will hinder performance, as while the other pair may be running in Dual-Channel mode, it's speed is being reduced to the single channel's speed as it's utilizing all 1.5GB. It only runs as fast as the lowest rated stick.

                It would sound odd to say that the Dual Channel pair are running properly, but only at 400MHz. You didn't specify the reported speed when you told us what CPU-Z came up with. So I can't be 100% sure. And I say "theory" because CPU-Z is pretty accurate in it's reporting, but I also believe data can sometimes be reported erroneously. Again; check the actual running speed reported.

                (for the record: four equivalent sticks allow the system to run in "Interleave" mode which boost performance by a small amount.

                I'd take the extra stick out, and only put it back in if you pair it with another similarly-rated stick. You'll only be hurting performance, whether or not a 32bit OS can only address [email protected]! Physical RAM. If you're able to utilize over 2GB of RAM for one reason or another, it'll be running slower than full speed, but faster than hard disk swap...

                Something like Purgatory.
                "But way back where I come from, we never mean to bother. We don't like to make our passions other peoples' concern." -Dar Williams
                Former Captain of the 55th Infantry Division

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                • #9
                  Re: 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

                  Thanks for the replies, after reading the iffy feelings about the third stick I think Ill be removing it. The system does fell a bit sluggish or something. How about the paging file is it still supposed to be set at 1.5x ram or is it better to not have one.

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                  • #10
                    Re: 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

                    It's not a good idea to be without a pagefile; manually setting it to 1.5x is the general rule of thumb.
                    "But way back where I come from, we never mean to bother. We don't like to make our passions other peoples' concern." -Dar Williams
                    Former Captain of the 55th Infantry Division

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                    • #11
                      Re: 3 Sticks Dual Channel?

                      Windows needs a paging file. You could turn off the paging file, but then when Windows needs it, it'll give you the baloon warning of "low virtual memory" and then turn it back on (temporarily) until you turn it back on from "Performance Options".

                      As far as I can remember, some boards will leave the first 2 sticks in dual-channel and the third in single. Others will just put all 3 in single-channel.

                      Either way, it'll probably operate as if everything is single-channel.
                      |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
                      TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
                      Former 9th & 13th

                      Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
                      Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





                      SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

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