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Windows 7: RAM and other queries (prices and specs). Help!


29 May 2012   #1

Windows 7 enterprise
 
 
RAM and other queries (prices and specs). Help!

I am new here to this forum and I'm glad I found you guys. Anyway, I'm planning to build my own PC now and I have some questions.

But before that, recently I've heard someone said that "all RAM comes from the same TWO factories but just have different labels and prices depending on the Factory and end supplier who is actually selling the stuff."

So first, what brand of RAM do you think offers the cheapest price?

Secondly, I am still not sure of my choices regarding my build.

CPU: AMD Athlon II X2 250 Regor 3.0GHz AM3 65W
MoBo: ASRock 880GM-LE FX AM3+ AMD 880G Micro ATX
RAM: G.Skill 2 x 2GB DDR3 1333 Mhz /7-7-7-21 /1.5V Ripjaws X-black

Those are just some of my choices. Please tell me if it's good. I'm not building this for primary gaming. Most of the things that I do is Graphic designs (photoshop cs4), watching movies, downloads, web browsing, moderate gaming. And I'm on a budget.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

29 May 2012   #2

Windows 7 Pro X64 SP1
 
 

It's a microATX board, with only 2 RAM slots. If that's OK with you, then go for it.

Asrock publishes a QVL (memory qualified vendors list) for the board. The QVL tends to be out of date, but if you wish to be conservative, you can choose RAM from it.

http://www.asrock.com/mb/memory/880GM-LE%20FX.pdf

As regards the CPU, more cores might be helpful for some applications, but at a higher cost. An X3 might be a good compromise: significantly better performance than an X2, but at a lower price than the quads.

What do you intend for the OS? A System Builder (generic OEM) license is the cheapest, but it's not supposed to be transferable to a new motherboard.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 May 2012   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ekzchan View Post

But before that, recently I've heard someone said that "all RAM comes from the same TWO factories but just have different labels and prices depending on the Factory and end supplier who is actually selling the stuff."

So first, what brand of RAM do you think offers the cheapest price?
You could go to Newegg and get a pretty good answer to that.

But that's not how I would buy RAM.

Certain companies make the RAM chips. Others make the circuit board to which the chips attach. Others may assemble the chips onto the circuit board. Others sell the assembled product. There is some overlap among these functions.

So, if you look at a stick of X brand RAM, there may be 2 or 3 companies involved. And some companies will have better quality control than others.

Some companies may do all of those functions or at least more than others---Crucial maybe, or Samsung? I don't think Samsung sells RAM at retail.

I wouldn't agonize much over who made the individual components. If you get a bad stick, you will have to deal with the seller or the brand name.

I'd buy from a reliable vendor and get a brand with a good reputation--G Skill, Crucial, or Corsair would be my choices. Generally, there is no need to get high-priced RAM if you are not overclocking it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


30 May 2012   #4

Windows 7 enterprise
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
It's a microATX board, with only 2 RAM slots. If that's OK with you, then go for it.
Ok. First, what's with microATX Board? Is it bad? I mean, I really don't have much idea on this cause I'm not an IT or someone like that. I'm still in the process of exploring technical things. Secondly, I'm OK with 2 RAM slots.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
Asrock publishes a QVL (memory qualified vendors list) for the board. The QVL tends to be out of date, but if you wish to be conservative, you can choose RAM from it.

http://www.asrock.com/mb/memory/880GM-LE%20FX.pdf
So what RAM would you suggest from the list?

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
As regards the CPU, more cores might be helpful for some applications, but at a higher cost. An X3 might be a good compromise: significantly better performance than an X2, but at a lower price than the quads.
I guess X2 is fine with me. I don't intend this for gaming anyway. And I'm on a budget for now.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
What do you intend for the OS? A System Builder (generic OEM) license is the cheapest, but it's not supposed to be transferable to a new motherboard.
I'm kinda lost here. What's generic OEM?

Thank you so much for the response. Appreciate it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 May 2012   #5

Windows 7 enterprise
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post

You could go to Newegg and get a pretty good answer to that.

But that's not how I would buy RAM.

Certain companies make the RAM chips. Others make the circuit board to which the chips attach. Others may assemble the chips onto the circuit board. Others sell the assembled product. There is some overlap among these functions.

So, if you look at a stick of X brand RAM, there may be 2 or 3 companies involved. And some companies will have better quality control than others.

Some companies may do all of those functions or at least more than others---Crucial maybe, or Samsung? I don't think Samsung sells RAM at retail.

I wouldn't agonize much over who made the individual components. If you get a bad stick, you will have to deal with the seller or the brand name.

I'd buy from a reliable vendor and get a brand with a good reputation--G Skill, Crucial, or Corsair would be my choices. Generally, there is no need to get high-priced RAM if you are not overclocking it.
I've been in newegg this past few days searching for components. Now, I guess I'll have to choose between G.Skill, Crucial, and Corsair. I thought Kingston is also one of the reliable vendors. Anyway, I've read the term "overclocking" many times but still not sure what does it really mean. What does overclocking really do?

Thank you so much for the response. I appreciate it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 May 2012   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ekzchan View Post
What does overclocking really do?
Improved performance, in exchange for more heat, more money, and more tinkering.

Normally done by "hobbyists" rather than the average PC user.

You can overclock a CPU or RAM or both.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overclocking

I can't recall hearing bad things recently about Kingston.

Nothing wrong with micro ATX. It's all most people need. A micro ATX motherboard typically is slightly smaller and does not have full-length PCI slots---which most people don't need. A micro ATX case should fit fine in any micro ATX or full ATX case. They are usually a bit cheaper than full ATX motherboards.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 May 2012   #7

Windows 7 Pro X64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ekzchan View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
It's a microATX board, with only 2 RAM slots. If that's OK with you, then go for it.
Ok. First, what's with microATX Board? Is it bad? I mean, I really don't have much idea on this cause I'm not an IT or someone like that. I'm still in the process of exploring technical things. Secondly, I'm OK with 2 RAM slots.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
Asrock publishes a QVL (memory qualified vendors list) for the board. The QVL tends to be out of date, but if you wish to be conservative, you can choose RAM from it.

http://www.asrock.com/mb/memory/880GM-LE%20FX.pdf
So what RAM would you suggest from the list?

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
As regards the CPU, more cores might be helpful for some applications, but at a higher cost. An X3 might be a good compromise: significantly better performance than an X2, but at a lower price than the quads.
I guess X2 is fine with me. I don't intend this for gaming anyway. And I'm on a budget for now.

The larger number of cores would probaly more useful for real-world tasks than gaming.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
What do you intend for the OS? A System Builder (generic OEM) license is the cheapest, but it's not supposed to be transferable to a new motherboard.
I'm kinda lost here. What's generic OEM?

Thank you so much for the response. Appreciate it.
microATX is a small board, 244 mm (9.6") square or smaller. A full-sized ATX board is 305 X 244 mm (12 X 9.6"). microATX has less area, fewer peripheral (PCI, PCI-E) slots, etc. Nothing bad there if it meets your needs.

I probably wouldn't buy RAM from the QVL. One option is to follow the RAM manufacturer's recommendations, such as:


G.SKILL-SEARCH BY MANUFACTURER MODEL NAME

Generic OEM is a license that's intended for manufacturers, but not customized for any manufacturer, and sold as a single copy. Example:


Newegg.com - Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32-bit - Operating Systems


(Newegg sells this without hardware.)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 May 2012   #8

Windows 7 enterprise
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post
Improved performance, in exchange for more heat, more money, and more tinkering.

Normally done by "hobbyists" rather than the average PC user.

You can overclock a CPU or RAM or both.

Overclocking - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I can't recall hearing bad things recently about Kingston.

Nothing wrong with micro ATX. It's all most people need. A micro ATX motherboard typically is slightly smaller and does not have full-length PCI slots---which most people don't need. A micro ATX case should fit fine in any micro ATX or full ATX case. They are usually a bit cheaper than full ATX motherboards.
I see. Ok. So here's my follow-up question. Is it OK if I don't overclock my CPU or RAM? I always believe that overclocking is only and mostly recommended for gaming PC only. Correct me if I'm wrong. Also it's kind of risky for me to overclock my PC considering that I'm not an expert into this.

Thanks!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 May 2012   #9

Windows 7 enterprise
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
The larger number of cores would probaly more useful for real-world tasks than gaming.

microATX is a small board, 244 mm (9.6") square or smaller. A full-sized ATX board is 305 X 244 mm (12 X 9.6"). microATX has less area, fewer peripheral (PCI, PCI-E) slots, etc. Nothing bad there if it meets your needs.

I probably wouldn't buy RAM from the QVL. One option is to follow the RAM manufacturer's recommendations, such as:


G.SKILL-SEARCH BY MANUFACTURER MODEL NAME

Generic OEM is a license that's intended for manufacturers, but not customized for any manufacturer, and sold as a single copy. Example:


Newegg.com - Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32-bit - Operating Systems


(Newegg sells this without hardware.)

I'll check my budget first if I can go with X3. It's a $25 difference between X2 and X3.

Anyway, I'm planning to buy 2pcs of (Newegg- Kingston HyperX Blu 2GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333) instead of G.Skill. This seems more cheaper. And all the review is 5/5. What do you think?

Also, I am planning to have a Windows 7 Enterprise OS. Is it good? What's the best windows 7 OS for you?

Thanks!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 May 2012   #10

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ekzchan View Post

I see. Ok. So here's my follow-up question. Is it OK if I don't overclock my CPU or RAM? I always believe that overclocking is only and mostly recommended for gaming PC only. Correct me if I'm wrong. Also it's kind of risky for me to overclock my PC considering that I'm not an expert into this.

Thanks!
Absolutely OK not to overclock. I'd guess over 90% of PCs are not overclocked. I don't overclock. It's done mostly by gamers and people who like to experiment. It's like hot-rodding a car. It is risky to some extent and is not something you learn to do overnight.

If you don't overclock, just get ordinary speed RAM--probably 1333 or 1600 in your case. No heat spreaders needed, no extra fans needed, no overclocking to be done.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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