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Help with Dell XPS 400 (Dimension E9150)


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I'm new to the gaming computer world, and am trying to get my foot in the door with some quality products. I have a Dell XPS 400 w/ Pentium D 3.2 processor, and have already upgraded the video card to an ATI Radeon X850 XT Platinum Edition. The system came with PC2-4200 DDR2 memory (2x256mb), and I'm looking to trash that for some quality performance pieces totalling 2GB. It has four slots and is upgradeable to 4GB total. I know for a fact that PC2-5300 memory is compatible with my system because Dell sells it as a direct upgrade, but like I said, I'm looking for "performance and quality", which is why I'm looking at Corsair.

 

My questions: What options do I have as far as memory goes? I did the memory configurator, but it only shows the CMSS1GB-533 as the only available 1GB upgrade for my system. Which is better? Going with four 512mb sticks, or two 1GB sticks? Next, what's the baddest memory I can put in this thing?? I was looking at the 667mhz modules (PC2-5300). I figured if 533mhz is better, than the 667mhz would be even better yet. ?? Please point me in the right direction. Thank you!

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After reading quite a few posts on this site (which is awesome by the way), I think I have come to the conclusion that buying aggressive memory for my system would be a waste of money. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

 

I actually ended up buying a pair of matched Value Select 1GB (2GB total) PC2-5300 memory sticks from newegg.com. I hope this was the right decision.

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After reading quite a few posts on this site (which is awesome by the way), I think I have come to the conclusion that buying aggressive memory for my system would be a waste of money. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

 

That is because OEM systems have no provision at all whatsoever to adjust memory timings or memory voltage. What's more, OEM systems always run memory at JEDEC-reference timings and voltage (CAS 5-5-5-15 and 1.7V for DDR2-667 memory).

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That is because OEM systems have no provision at all whatsoever to adjust memory timings or memory voltage. What's more, OEM systems always run memory at JEDEC-reference timings and voltage (CAS 5-5-5-15 and 1.7V for DDR2-667 memory).

That's exactly what I read about another member with a Dell computer. So, now I ask the question, did I do the right thing by ordering the Value Select 2GB PC2-5300 kit? Is this pretty much the best memory I can have in my machine??

 

 

This has nothing to do with my questions, but I found it funny. Normally, PC's seem to be very particular about memory configurations, but I had extra memory lying around, so I throught it all in my system to see what it would do, and it worked. I actually have two slots occupied by 2-256mb PC2-4200 sticks, one slot with a 1GB PC3200 stick, and the last slot with a 512mb PC3200 stick. My system is obviously running at the slower 400mhz speed, but has recognized all 2GB of the memory. Am I hurting anything by using this configuration just until the correct memory arrives?

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I would check with the MB maker but as far as I know you cannot mix DDR2 and DDR1 memory on these newer MB, if they support both.

I have no idea, but I don't intend to keep it like this anyway. So, RAM GUY, what do you think about the Value Select 2GB kit in my system? Is that a good choice, or would you pick something else?

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Wired, thank you for the reply. I'm not worried about being compatible with the Dell memory because I'm pulling it out anyway. The Dell memory is PC2-4200, and I'm upgrading to PC2-5300. Correct me if I'm wrong, but the system will recognize and operate at the slowest available memory, correct? IOW, if I leave the PC2-4200 memory in there, than even my 5300 memory will only act like 4200?
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Okay, I got the Value Select 2GB kit today (VS2GBKIT667D2) and I'd have to say that it has increased my PC's performance nearly 25%.

 

I am comparing it to what I had in the PC before, which was a combination of PC2-3200 and PC2-4200, all totalling 2GB. Even though, that combination produced a total speed of 400mhz (defaults to the slower speed automatically), it was still faster than the factory 512mb PC2-4200 @ 533mhz.

 

I was really wanting to buy a Twin XMS2 Kit of some kind but you guys talked me out of it. Even though I wouldn't have any control over voltage or timing, would I have noticed any difference by going with something like a TWIN2x2048-5400C4 or TWIN2x2048-6400 vs. the VS kit I bought?

 

Bottom line, anyone with a Dell XPS system, I am living proof that the Value Select line works beautifully when the factory Dell memory is removed. I was warned about Dell/Corsair VS compatability so I didn't even try to put them together, besides, I wanted the faster 667mhz speed anyway, so by using the OEM stuff, that would have defeated the purpose.

 

Thank you guys!:laughing:

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  • Corsair Employee

Thank you for taking the time to let us know, that will be helpfull to other I am sure!

 

And we would not suggest using our XMS modules with any OEM system as you stated mainly because OEM systems do not offer many if any bios options and our XM2S modules all have minimu Voltage requirements. But I think what you have now will give the best Value and performance with your system.

 

Would you have been able to use our Twin2x1024-5400C4 in this system? Maybe, but if it did not work I am sure you would have been mad at us right?

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Mad? Probably not. Disappointed that it didn't work....probably. Regardless, I am so happy right now with my current configuration using your Value Select memory, I couldn't ask for anything more anyway.

 

Thank you very much for all your help. Corsair rocks!

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