How Do I Know What Type Of Ram I Have – RAM Terminology – Part 1. How to Identify Laptop and Desktop RAM Specs by the Description on the Module By Mike January 12, 2021

In a previous post, we shared how to find compatible RAM for your computer by looking at system specs. In this post, we’ll cover how to find compatible RAM in your system – but here we’ll take a different tack – we’ll show you how to determine what type of RAM you have by breaking down the specifications that are listed on it. Installed RAM modules for both laptops and desktops.

How Do I Know What Type Of Ram I Have

How Do I Know What Type Of Ram I Have

We’ll focus on laptop and desktop RAM; The following post will focus on high-end workstations and servers (since those devices typically have additional features due to their performance requirements). Before you know it, you’ll be a RAM tech whiz!

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**ECC and Registered RAM are almost always found in RAM designed for servers and high-end workstations. We’ll cover this in more depth when we focus on choosing RAM for a server or workstation.

Hot tip! We suggest matching the RAM specs as much as possible. While in theory, you can’t match the exact specifications of RAM modules in the same system, doing so can affect system performance by putting extra stress on your system to accommodate the differences.

Our techs are always on standby to help you with upgrades or any questions about system memory – or any other questions you may have!Not only are there many different types of RAM modules but also many types of motherboards. And finding compatible RAM for the specific motherboard you own can make your head spin.

Fortunately, there are a few things that will help you find compatible RAM in time, and I’ll go over each of them in this article.

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The first step in finding compatible memory (RAM) for your motherboard is to know what type of motherboard you have.

If this is a motherboard you already have and it’s installed in your PC, here’s how to find its product name:

Open ‘System Information’, and a new window will appear with a summary of your computer and its components.

How Do I Know What Type Of Ram I Have

If the above method doesn’t work and you’re still having trouble finding your motherboard model, there’s one more technique that involves using third-party software:

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After you download and install it, launch the program and navigate to the ‘Mainboard’ tab. From there, you can see which motherboard you have.

In my case, I would go to “” and search for my Prestige X570 Creation motherboard. Or you can just do a quick Google search for your motherboard’s name, which will also take you to its product page.

After searching the product page and looking at the ‘Specifications’, I found that my motherboard has four DDR4 DIMM slots and supports up to 5000+ MHz (via XMP).

The most important feature to note is the type of RAM your motherboard supports. This is because there are several generations of DDR RAM, from DDR (1) to DDR5.

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Many PC enthusiasts and manufacturers refer to DDR RAM simply as ‘DDR’. Stores like Best Buy or Newegg mainly sell DDR4 and DDR5 RAM.

DDR is the new generation of (Non-DDR = SDR) SDRAM and stands for double data rate because it transfers data twice per clock cycle.

The screenshot above is how it is represented on my motherboard’s detailed product specifications tab, and my motherboard supports 4x DDR4 RAM up to a frequency of 5000 MHz (if I’m using a 3rd generation or newer Ryzen CPU. For the 2nd generation , I will be limited to a maximum of 3600Mhz RAM).

How Do I Know What Type Of Ram I Have

It is important to know your motherboard’s supported RAM specifications because different generations of RAM (eg DDR4 and DDR5) are physically incompatible.

Types Of Ram Memory In Computers & Laptops

Unfortunately, each motherboard manufacturer will structure their product pages differently. The information will most likely be located in the ‘Tech Specs’ or ‘Specifications’ tab next to the ‘Memory’ section. Or as a last resort, consult the manuals available online for each motherboard.

For example, ASUS PRIME X570-PRO motherboard ‘4 x DIMM, Max. 128GB, DDR4’ under its memory specifications.

This means that the Asus motherboard in the picture above has 4 RAM slots and 128 GB is the maximum supported RAM capacity on the Asus motherboard. It is also only compatible with DDR4 RAM.

Consumer motherboards will have one to eight DIMM slots, but most modern consumer motherboards have four DIMM slots.

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You don’t want to buy a 32 GB RAM stick and find out later that your motherboard only supports 8 GB RAM sticks per DIMM slot.

For my MSI Prestige X570 Creation motherboard, I found the number of DIMM slots and MAX RAM capacity in the specification table:

RAM comes at different frequencies, so it’s important to choose a RAM frequency that your motherboard is compatible with.

How Do I Know What Type Of Ram I Have

RAM speed is expressed in MHz and refers to the number of transfers per second. For example, RAM rated at 3200 MHz performs 3.2 billion transfers per second. RAM frequency affects how quickly data is stored and read.

How To Check Your Ram Frequency

This means that faster (higher bandwidth) RAM provides better performance because many of the CPU’s subsystems (latency, cache, etc.) are directly tied to the RAM’s frequency.

But you shouldn’t get too excited and buy the fastest RAM in the market, because once you go 3200/3600 MHz the returns in RAM speed are diminishing.

The motherboard spec sheet officially states which RAM frequencies it supports out of the box. On top of that, of course, you can try custom XMP profiles to go above what the motherboard is officially tested for.

We’ve written an in-depth guide on whether you need ECC RAM or not, you can check it out here.

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The bottom line is that for mainstream workloads like gaming, general productivity, browsing, text-processing, content creation, video and photo editing, you probably won’t need ECC RAM, and the motherboard you own probably won’t either. Support him.

If you’re running high-end workstation or server-grade hardware where error correction might make sense, that’s an entirely different matter and you might need ECC RAM.

The easiest way to find out which RAM is compatible with your motherboard is to check your motherboard’s memory QVL list.

How Do I Know What Type Of Ram I Have

As you browse for your motherboard’s RAM specifications on the manufacturer’s website, look for a page or section called “Memory QVL” or “RAM Support List.”

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The Memory QVL (Qualified Vendors List) is a manufacturer-provided list of manufacturer-tested RAM modules that are guaranteed to work with your motherboard.

If you’re looking to upgrade your setup or build a new PC, QVL makes it easy to find out what type of RAM stick you should buy.

However, because motherboard manufacturers only test a limited amount of RAM modules, the general consensus among PC builders is that it’s perfectly fine to use RAM sticks that aren’t on the QVL list as long as you’re using the correct type and speed. of RAM.

There is no way for the manufacturer to test every existing RAM module for QVL, especially when new RAM modules come to market after the motherboard has already been released.

How To Choose Ram Type And Frequency For Motherboard

If you already have a RAM module and are considering adding more RAM, be aware that mixing RAM brands, frequencies, delays, capacities, or ranks can cause instability and reduce the overall performance of your RAM. At worst, mixed RAM modules may not even work.

Here is a summary of the steps you should take to find out which RAM modules are compatible with your desktop PC’s motherboard:

If you want a RAM module that is not listed in the QVL, check that the RAM module you want to buy matches the motherboard:

How Do I Know What Type Of Ram I Have

If you want to upgrade the RAM on your laptop, instead of using the motherboard’s QVL list, use the laptop manufacturer’s QVL list. These may be more difficult to find (if they exist), and you may have to contact support.

How To Choose The Right Ram For Your Desktop Or Laptop Pc

For example, if you have 8 GB of RAM and you’re hitting the ceiling of your RAM capacity, more RAM is better.

Hitting the RAM capacity ceiling means that RAM usage is near 100% or at 100% while running your workload. If this happens, you will hit your swap file, slowing down your system significantly.

Check your RAM usage levels as your system is under load to determine if you need more RAM or faster RAM.

SO-DIMM RAM sticks are for laptop and nano-PC builds. They have a very small form factor at 2.66 inches in length.

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8 GB RAM is ideal for casual PC users who want some extra RAM for light gaming and light editing.

With 16 GB of RAM, you can do simple video editing, play video games and multitask between different programs.

What kind of RAM are you thinking of buying? Do you have any questions about which RAM you should get? Let me know in the comments below or on our forum!

How Do I Know What Type Of Ram I Have


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