Is there a noticeable difference between 665MHz RAM and 1600MHz RAM?

Osama Javaid September 20, 2012
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My DDR3 RAM is rated at 665MHz. I was browsing the Kingston website where I found memory with 1600MHz speeds. I want to ask is there really a noticable difference between these 2 types?

  1. Dimal Chandrasiri
    September 20, 2012 at 6:01 pm

    yeah! there is a lot of difference in this clock speeds! higher rated RAMS make your resource intensive software to run smooth like photoshop, games, 3D modeling, nd stuff. so if you are trying to go for a better clocked RAM go for it! you'll exp it!

  2. Rob Hindle
    September 20, 2012 at 5:33 pm

    Take a broader look at the question.
    Upgrading an existing PC with an individual faster component, be that memory, CPU, disk doesn't necessarily help. Whatever the component it needs to be compatible - if not it doesn't work. If it is compatible it will (should!) work but may still deliver no benefit.

    Think about something where the situation may be a bit clearer. Lets suppose you had an external disk drive with an original USB connection. You could plug it into the USB2 port on a newer PC, it would be compatible but it would only work at USB1 speeds (and probably if you did the other way round, a USB2 disk on a USB1 connection, compatible but you'd only run at USB1 speed).

    Moving to the specifics of memory speed - faster memory might deliver some benefit but you need to do your homework. Can the motherboard and CPU take advantage of the faster memory? There may be switches or jumpers on the board needing to be changed to enable it but maybe it's just not compatible. Suppose that's all OK then are you running memory intensive programs that will be able to benefit?

    Then when in the life cycle of a PC does it make sense to upgrade anything? If you are upgrading one aspect of an ageing PC, how long before you need to upgrade another component? How much will you extend its life by? Is it worth it or should you be saving for a complete replacement? The answer to all those is of course "it depends..." How much benefit, for how long and at what cost.

  3. Patrick Jackson
    September 20, 2012 at 8:41 am

    More frequency, means more faster working of your RAM, which shows better hardware performance in a way.

  4. Srinivas N
    September 20, 2012 at 7:13 am

    Yes, As Mike said it would be DDR3-1333 which you're referring to 665MHz but peak transfer rates vary between the two versions while DDR3-1333 has 10666? MB/s, DDR3-1600 has 12800MB/s which can have a performance variation only if you use your RAM to that extent. But if you're using Modest programs which use very less resource you cannot see a considerable performance variation but if you use memory hogging applications like photo editing or video editing you can observe a change

  5. Mike
    September 20, 2012 at 5:42 am

    I'm not sure what application you use to look up the speed of your RAM but it is misleading you.

    There is no DDR3 running at 665MHz per se.
    In this case this is the none-Doubled Ram Rate.

    Translated:
    Your DDR3 running at 665MHz are actually DDR3 1333MHz (2x665)
    Or the DDR3 1600MHz would be shown to you as DDR3 800MHz (1600/2).

    Overall there is not a big difference between them. Certainly not to make an upgrade worth it just because of the MHz.

    If you want to upgrade because of the amount of RAM (e.g. 4GB to 8GB) chose the MHz that compliment your CPU's clock speed.

    • Osama Javaid
      September 20, 2012 at 8:02 am

      How can I check this compatibilty ?

      • Mike
        September 20, 2012 at 11:07 am

        First and foremost you have to check which RAM your motherboard supports. Then you just have to check your processors specifications. For newer CPU's there should be stated which RAM are supported/preferred.

        For Intel you could look them up at http://ark.intel.com/
        Not sure if AMD has a similar database

        If the supported RAM is not stated you should look at the Front Side Bus (FSB). If your CPU happen to have FSB 800Mhz you should use RAM that "line up" with that e.g. 800, 400 or 200(MHz). If they are out of sync (e.g. 533, 333, 166) there would be times where half a cycle is wasted.

        • Osama Javaid
          September 20, 2012 at 6:46 pm

          My current motherboard is DH61WW and from its homepage, I read that it supports 1066/1333MHz memory

        • Mike
          September 21, 2012 at 11:42 am

          That is correct – it also means that you already have the fastest supported DDR3.

  6. Bruce Epper
    September 20, 2012 at 3:34 am

    Systems that support faster RAM have noticable differences in performance especially when gaming or in computationally heavy applications. If all you are doing is surfing the web, checking email and social networking sites, you won't see much of a difference.

    • Jacob
      October 4, 2012 at 4:55 am

      Yes I agree with this.Games and heavy applications need quick response.So the more the better.

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