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  1. #1
    3 Star Lounger
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    Darkest Kent, UK., Kent, England
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    66MHz SDRAM question

    A friend has asked me to source some additional RAM for her Gigabyte GA-686LX3 board. She has one 64Mb stick of 66MHz SDRAM installed. I have been through Crucial and can get her another stick of the same, but I have a 64MB stick of PC100 sitting around doing nothing which I'd like to put to some use if possible.

    Question 1: Would PC100 work in this system, even though the FSB is 66MHz?
    Question 2: Would two different speed sticks work side by side, again the faster presumably running at 66MHz?
    Question 3: I also have a single 128MB stick of PC100 sitting around. Could I swap out the existing 64MB for this 128Mb, again expecting it to run at 66MHz?

    I would try these options, but I won't be seeing her for a few days and would like to do it right first time.

  2. #2
    3 Star Lounger
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    Nixa, Missouri, USA
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    Re: 66MHz SDRAM question

    I'll let you go to Gigabyte and pull up the motherboard specs for the exact information, but here is the theory.
    1.) yes at 66MHz
    2.) yes at 66MHz
    3.) yes at 66MHz
    HOWEVER, I have had systems (66MHZ FSB) that would not take any brand of PC100 regardless of what the RAM sellers (Crucial, MacDonald and Accoc., Kalhon) said. On these systems USUALLY the only RAM that worked was that which was specified by the manufacturer of the motherboard (or in the case of Dell by Dell). This does not appear to be the case in 100 FSB systems using 66MHz RAM. I try to check out the Motherboard specs and then I still try what I have to see if it works.
    I know there is the voltage issue (3.3v and ??) and really need to study it more.

  3. #3
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: 66MHz SDRAM question

    Further to Kent's post - while the theory is that faster RAM is backwards compatible, all RAM sticks must be of the same speed. You can't mix 66 and 100 MHz memory for example.

    Even if the motherboard takes it and runs, be aware that you may still have instability problems. Keep an eye out for them. In particular, all of the NT-based operating systems are very sensitive to memory timing and aren't all that forgiving. Windows 9x will burp and life goes on most times. My personal experience with this was adding PC100 RAM to a 66 MHz bus, and sure, it worked - but it would arbitrarily blue-screen from time to time and freeze up for short periods. Those problems went away when I installed the original memory, so I had a trade-off.

    This is not to say that it WILL happen - just that it COULD.
    -Mark

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