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Memory: How's Yours?

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No matter what kind of PC you have, you need memory, and there has to be enough of it. With Windows Vista having minimum requirements of 512 MB for the most meager install, you just know that will never be enough. The recommendation is to start with at least a gigabyte of memory and work your way up from there! And now Microsoft has thrown another wrench in the works, with fairly stiff requirements for video memory in order to run their latest and greatest operating system, Vista. But that's another story, and it will be addressed later. all memory
There are several popular manufacturers of memory, and each seems to have a quality product. Most of the O.E.M. memory comes from quality manufacturers, but it usually lacks all the bells and whistles that make the after-market products so desirable. For instance, Kingston, Crucial, Micron and others build products for the tweakers who love to overclock everything. This is very high quality memory that will allow you to change basic parameters such as timings without so much as a hiccup. But these same companies, and others such as Dell, Samsung, and Toshiba, also manufacture the O.E.M. stuff that refuses to run if you try to alter the timings in any way and may even balk at having the CPU running at higher than normal clock speeds. Check out the products below before you drop your hard-earned cash. In modern computers, memory needs to fit the job it was purchased for.
Crucial Ballistix memory comes in speeds up to PC2-8000, and can bee purchased for just about any newer machine. Crucial has a one-of-a-kind memory "configurator" that allows you to enter your manufacturer's name and the type of product you are seeking memory for, then displays a very comprehensive list of Crucial high performance memory products that will be suitable for that device. Crucial Ballistics 240-pin DIMM kit All Crucial upgrade memory products come with a limited lifetime warranty, guaranteed compatibility and free technical support. This company has a reputation for supplying an excellent part and standing by it. The Crucial website also gives lots of information on the best ways to choose memory and how to purchase and install memory for maximum performance. Ballistix is Crucial's high-end line. But less expensive memory is available from them. What kind of memory you choose, just as with every other part in your PC, should be geared to the intended use of the machine.

Kingston has been a favorite of mine for many years. This is partially due to the kind of service I have recieved when there has been a problem, which has been rare. Nontheless, service from Kingston has, in my experience, been outstanding. My first SIMMs from Kingston were for an old Packard-Bell computer in 1994, and despite all best efforts, there were problems with compatibility. Kingston went out of the way Kingston Hyper-X Moduleto have new modules delivered to me overnight, and followed up with me to be sure I was satisfied. Every experience since then with this company has been just as pleasant, whether seeking obscure memory modules or just trying to get the right configuration for a machine with special needs. As with the Ballistix, the Hyper-X is a top line product, of interest to overclocking enthusiasts and gamers. But Kingston's line of general use products is excellent, and there is memory available for almost any machine worthy of an upgrade today. Kingston also provides an outstanding lifetime warranty, which is limited to the original owner of the memory product.

Samsung offers DIMMs with speeds up to PC-3200, but it is not typically an enthusiast product, which may account for the fact that I am less than totally familiar with it. However, they make memory for many kinds of computer products, including MP3 players, cameras, games, flash memory, and many other items. They also provide lots of memory to O.E.M.s, to be sold as part of a finished machine. Samsung offers a large variety of computer memory, with less than impressive speeds and timings, and whereas these parts won't win any speeds records, they are reliable and well-warranted.Samsung MemoryThe Samsung website is quite confusing to navigate, seeming to send one into an endless loop, Taking you right back where you just came from. But once the loops have been conquered, ther is plenty of information available on their products. Just don't expect to see any fancy heat spreaders or read about aggresive timings. Stock is stock. On the other hand, if you've got a dozen or so machines in a small office, there is no reason why you should not buy this product.
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SimpleTech claims to have memory for more than 15,000 systems. With a 100% compatibility guarantee and a lifetime warranty, these people are serious about quality. SimpleTech also provides free, unlimited tech support, which is something rare in these days of $35.00 telephone calls. This company has a variety of products that range from SDRAM to DDR2 for PC memory, in sizes from 128 Megabytes all the way up to 4 Gigabytes. Speeds run from the very old 100MHz SDRAM to a refreshing 800MHz on the newest PC2-6400 configuration. SimpleTech MemorySimpleTech is a major supplier of memory to O.E.M.s, and maintains an assurance program with manufacturers for on-the-spot replacement or refund for any problem that arises, and has similar policies for end users. Most of the retail prices I have found for SimpleTech seem a bit high, but I think that is probably at the hand of the vendor rather than the manufacturer, considering that prices start in line with other comparable products. Though there appears to be a solid quality program in place with this company, I cannot recommend this product to enthusiasts based on the information I have. No doubt that at stock speeds it will serve anyone well for many years, but overclocking stresses any part, and if a part isn't specifically built for it, it won't hold up. However, future information my change my mind. SimpleTech

Corsair claims to have the best memory in the world. I wish I could say that! Corsair started out as a supplier of specialty SRAM memory before SDRAM appeared. Being in the high-speed memory business already, they just followed industry leads to become one of the most well known suppliers of SDRAM computer memory around. The tight specifications to which Corsair builds their memory makes them very popular with gamers and those who operate mission-critical systems. Corsair is also very diligent in their quality control, testing modules under temperature extremes and every kind of stress they can think to throw at them, including multiple hardware platforms and various OSs and applications, before they leave the manufacturing area. Attention to detail, tested heat management methods, and a determination to build the best keep this company strong. Corsair TwinX DDR2 XMSThe Dominator Series Twin2X2048-10000C5DF is Corsair's premier product. This product is tested and packaged in pairs to assure the customer gets a matched set. These units are tested at 1250 MHz, 2.4 volts, with 5-5-5-18 timings. They include Corsair's Dual-Path Heat Exchanger technology and Enhanced Performance Profile (EPP), which allows aggressive automatic overclocking. These modules also come with the Dominator Airflow Fan system to provide the maximum thermal transfer available. Corsair also provides a lifetime warranty. Though the modules mentioned are the obviously the high-end of what Corsair sells, there is memory available from this company for any possible configuration one can imagine. If you don't mind paying more in the pursuit of the finest, this memory should certainly find it's way into your path.

Ferrell-PC · ·Franklinton, NC
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