Need some advice with memory selection and 2 vs 4

1Wolf

Limp Gawd
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Jul 10, 2007
Messages
364
This is my first AMD build and I'm trying to determine which of these 64GB G.Skill memory kits/configurations would serve me best. 2 vs 4 sticks. I've got 3 4x16GB and 2 2x32GB options below. 2 sticks would sure make it easier to fit an AIO water block. 4 sticks would probably be tight. On the other hand, I've read that the 5950X might do better with 4 sticks vs 2. What would you advise?

CPU is 5950X
Mobo is ASUS Crosshair VIII Dark Hero X570

Trident Z Neo
4 x 16GB, 3600 Mhz, CL16-16-16-36, 1.35V
G.Skill F4-3600C16Q-64GTZN

Trident Z Neo
4 x 16GB, 3600 Mhz, CL16-19-19-39, 1.35V
G.Skill F4-3600C16Q-64GTZNC

Trident Z Neo
4 x 16GB, 3600 Mhz, CL18-22-22-42, 1.35V
G.Skill F4-3600C18Q-64GTZN

Trident Z Neo
2 x 32GB, 3600 Mhz, CL16-22-22-42, 1.45V
G.Skill F4-3600C16D-64GTZN

Trident Z Neo
2 x 32GB, 3600 Mhz, CL18-22-22-42, 1.35V
G.Skill F4-3600C18D-64GRZN

(There were some options with tighter timings but they don't seem to be as available and they are much more expensive)
 

dasa

Limp Gawd
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Messages
497
First kit is Samsung b die so it will be the best for overclocking and probably capable of ~4000 16-16-16 1.5v i the CPU IMC allows.
 

1Wolf

Limp Gawd
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Messages
364
Thanks.

Forgive me for asking but, what does "Samsung b die" mean? As I'm looking through these threads and trying to learn about this I see terms like that used alot and I'm not sure what that means.
 

dasa

Limp Gawd
Joined
Feb 19, 2012
Messages
497
It is the brand\model of memory chip used on the RAM stick.
The other kits are likely using chips made by Hynix or Micron.

Some Micron kits OC rather nicely although timings will be loser. If they are using the newer Micron m die they will have half the number of chips on the 16GB sticks and the same chips used on the 32GB kit just half\twice as many of them.
The up side to this is the 16GB sticks will be single rank and although the 32GB sticks will be dual rank they will be easier on the memory controller as you are only running two sticks vs four dual rank sticks which is what you get with the old Samsung b die chips.
I would still take the risk that the memory controller is good enough to handle 4x16GB b die at high speeds especially when paired with such a high end overclocking MB.

On the other hand do you really need 64GB and if you are new to overclocking then maybe the ASUS Crosshair VIII Dark Hero X570 is not worth the high price to you.
 
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1Wolf

Limp Gawd
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It is the brand\model of memory chip used on the RAM stick.
The other kits are likely using chips made by Hynix or Micron.

Some Micron kits OC rather nicely although timings will be loser. If they are using the newer Micron m die they will have half the number of chips on the 16GB sticks and the same chips used on the 32GB kit just half\twice as many of them.
The up side to this is the 16GB sticks will be single rank and although the 32GB sticks will be dual rank they will be easier on the memory controller as you are only running two sticks vs four dual rank sticks which is what you get with the old Samsung b die chips.
I would still take the risk that the memory controller is good enough to handle 4x16GB b die at high speeds especially when paired with such a high end overclocking MB.

On the other hand do you really need 64GB and if you are new to overclocking then maybe the ASUS Crosshair VIII Dark Hero X570 is not worth the high price to you.

Thank you dasa. That helps alot and its greatly appreciated. Thank you for taking the time to explain that. This is my first AMD build and I've just run into more memory questions that I've had with builds in the past - such as the whole "AMD performs better with dual rank" thing and past stories I've read about of issues with previous generations of AMD and memory controllers and such. I've never really been "team blue" or "team red". Don't really care. Best tool for the job. Its just always been intel for my uses up until now. Now its AMD that is the best tool for the job. So I knew I wanted 64 Gigs but I just wasn't sure, with an AMD CPU and Dark Hero mobo, whether I was better off with 2x32 or 4x16.

Thanks again for your help.
 

Dan_D

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Messages
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This is my first AMD build and I'm trying to determine which of these 64GB G.Skill memory kits/configurations would serve me best. 2 vs 4 sticks. I've got 3 4x16GB and 2 2x32GB options below. 2 sticks would sure make it easier to fit an AIO water block. 4 sticks would probably be tight. On the other hand, I've read that the 5950X might do better with 4 sticks vs 2. What would you advise?

CPU is 5950X
Mobo is ASUS Crosshair VIII Dark Hero X570

Trident Z Neo
4 x 16GB, 3600 Mhz, CL16-16-16-36, 1.35V
G.Skill F4-3600C16Q-64GTZN

Trident Z Neo
4 x 16GB, 3600 Mhz, CL16-19-19-39, 1.35V
G.Skill F4-3600C16Q-64GTZNC

Trident Z Neo
4 x 16GB, 3600 Mhz, CL18-22-22-42, 1.35V
G.Skill F4-3600C18Q-64GTZN

Trident Z Neo
2 x 32GB, 3600 Mhz, CL16-22-22-42, 1.45V
G.Skill F4-3600C16D-64GTZN

Trident Z Neo
2 x 32GB, 3600 Mhz, CL18-22-22-42, 1.35V
G.Skill F4-3600C18D-64GRZN

(There were some options with tighter timings but they don't seem to be as available and they are much more expensive)
You generally want to avoid using 4x DIMMs with AMD CPU's. It negatively effects the clock speeds you can achieve due to a variety of factors such as the motherboards largely having a daisy chain trace layout for the DIMM slots. The whole 4 module thing came about recently and it's really only applicable to single ranked modules if I recall correctly.
 

1Wolf

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Messages
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You generally want to avoid using 4x DIMMs with AMD CPU's. It negatively effects the clock speeds you can achieve due to a variety of factors such as the motherboards largely having a daisy chain trace layout for the DIMM slots. The whole 4 module thing came about recently and it's really only applicable to single ranked modules if I recall correctly.

Thanks Dan_D. Thats what I was afraid of.

Yup, I watched a video from Gamers Nexus about the whole single rank vs. dual rank thing. They said go with 4 DIMMS or, if I go with two, I think its fine if the 2 DIMMS are dual rank. I'm not sure how to tell whether or not a selected DIMM is dual rank though? I read somewhere that dual rank DIMMS have chips on both sides of the silicon and single rank has chips only on one side. However, on the product page over at G.Skill I didn't see any info on single rank vs. dual rank and I couldn't tell in their photos due to the heat spreader.

So I'm guessing you are saying that I'm better off with 2x32 as long as they are Dual Rank. Is that correct? I just need to understand how to tell if they are dual rank. I've also read that the mobo support for 32 Gig DIMMS is often more "quirky" then others and can sometimes cause issues that a person wouldn't have with 16 gig Dims. Ever heard of anything like that?

I know that the timings are a bit looser on 32 Gig DIMMS but, I'm not really knowledgeable enough to know whether those looser timings will make a large performance hit or not?

Are there any other downsides to going with 2x32? I'm guesing that you'd recommend the 2x32 then?
 

Dan_D

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To be clear, going to four modules makes achieving higher clock speeds more difficult on the AMD platform than it does the Intel platform. Both can achieve higher clock speeds using two modules instead of four. However, there are some benefits to going with 4x single ranked modules vs. 2x dual ranked modules. You can see better 1% lows and even higher frame rates in some cases. Ryzen really only benefits from memory speeds up to around DDR4 3800MHz. If you can manage a 2000MHz FCLK, then upwards of DDR4 4000MHz is possible. The problem that you would face wanting 64GB of RAM is that few 16GB modules are single ranked. The other problem is that 32GB DIMMs are higher density and therefore, higher cost. They will also be considerably more expensive when looking for higher clock speed modules. Here are my takeaways of your situation:
  • A 4x16GB configuration will likely have to be done using 4x16GB dual-ranked modules. This isn't ideal for either clock speed. It's also potentially problematic to make it work.
  • Single-ranked 16GB modules exist, but manufacturers rarely state whether or not memory kits are single or dual-ranked. Given the rarity of these modules, expect poor availability and high prices.
  • A 2x32GB module configuration is going to be easier to make work but the cost of such modules will be extremely high. Finding them in lower latencies and at decent clock speeds will also increase costs.
Furthermore, some of the test data I've found indicates that a 2x2R setup works about as well as 4x1R. Thus, in your situation 2x32GB (dual-ranked) and 4x16GB (single-ranked) would work about the same. Again, there is potentially added difficulty in making 4x16GB modules work on motherboards with a daisy chain memory topology. So, 2x32GB would be ideal for 64GB of RAM, but only if you can find modules with the same clocks and performance characteristics you are looking for. Data I've seen also suggests that the 4x1R vs. 2x2R debate only really matters at 1920x1080 for gaming. It's less of an issue at 2560x1440 and meaningless at 3840x2160.
 
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TheSlySyl

[H]ard|Gawd
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Single-ranked 16GB modules exist, but manufacturers rarely state whether or not memory kits are single or dual-ranked. Given the rarity of these modules, expect poor availability and high prices.
Weirdly enoughl, the 2x16GB modules I got for black friday were single ranked. Was not expecting that.
Not bad for $99
Clipboard01.jpg


https://www.newegg.com/xpg-32gb-288-pin-ddr4-sdram/p/0RN-00KG-000F0?Item=9SIAJNUBWY3713
(Wow they went up in price.)

I'm only running DDR3200 and it works flawlessly on my board, so I don't know about higher speeds.
 
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1Wolf

Limp Gawd
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To be clear, going to four modules makes achieving higher clock speeds more difficult on the AMD platform than it does the Intel platform. Both can achieve higher clock speeds using two modules instead of four. However, there are some benefits to going with 4x single ranked modules vs. 2x dual ranked modules. You can see better 1% lows and even higher frame rates in some cases. Ryzen really only benefits from memory speeds up to around DDR4 3800MHz. If you can manage a 2000MHz FCLK, then upwards of DDR4 4000MHz is possible. The problem that you would face wanting 64GB of RAM is that few 16GB modules are single ranked. The other problem is that 32GB DIMMs are higher density and therefore, higher cost. They will also be considerably more expensive when looking for higher clock speed modules. Here are my takeaways of your situation:
  • A 4x16GB configuration will likely have to be done using 4x16GB dual-ranked modules. This isn't ideal for either clock speed. It's also potentially problematic to make it work.
  • Single-ranked 16GB modules exist, but manufacturers rarely state whether or not memory kits are single or dual-ranked. Given the rarity of these modules, expect poor availability and high prices.
  • A 2x32GB module configuration is going to be easier to make work but the cost of such modules will be extremely high. Finding them in lower latencies and at decent clock speeds will also increase costs.
Furthermore, some of the test data I've found indicates that a 2x2R setup works about as well as 4x1R. Thus, in your situation 2x32GB (dual-ranked) and 4x16GB (single-ranked) would work about the same. Again, there is potentially added difficulty in making 4x16GB modules work on motherboards with a daisy chain memory topology. So, 2x32GB would be ideal for 64GB of RAM, but only if you can find modules with the same clocks and performance characteristics you are looking for. Data I've seen also suggests that the 4x1R vs. 2x2R debate only really matters at 1920x1080 for gaming. It's less of an issue at 2560x1440 and meaningless at 3840x2160.

Dan_D, thank you so much for taking all the time to explain all of that. Its really helpful and it at least gives me a leg-up on trying to wrap my noggin' around this and figure out what I need to get for my build. If I'm understanding you correctly then you are not ruling out 4x16 but are saying there are trade offs between 4x16 and 2x32. 2x32 would be best, but only if I could find it with the right timings.

I hopped over to Newegg and went through alot of memory. If I focus on 3600 memory and even disregard price it seems that my choices are pretty much limited to the 4x16 and 2x32 G.Skill Options listed along with their timings in the initial post above. I did find a set of Crucial memory 2x32 memory to add to what was already listed:

Crucial Ballistix RGB Kit, 3600
64 Gigs
16-18-18-38
1.35v

So which would you go with? Are the timings good enough on the G.Skill 2x32 options or that Crucial 2x32 option to make the upsides outweigh the down? Or, even after tradeoffs, would I be better off with the 4x16 options listed above that have tighter timings?
 

dasa

Limp Gawd
Joined
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Messages
497
It also depends a bit on how much time you are willing to spend tuning the RAM.
The IMC on Ryzen 5000 is rather strong and capable of ~DDR5000 with 2x8GB so ~3600 with 4x16GB dual rank should be no problem even with a good daisy chain MB but it may take some work to get a 3733-4000 OC with 4x16GB dual rank stable especially with such a complex MB as the dark.

If you want to take the time to fine tune timings a kit with Samsung b die would probably be best despite being 4x16GB dual rank.
If you want something easier then that Crucial kit in your last post would probably be best and you likely wouldn't be able to tell the difference without measuring it.
 

1Wolf

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Messages
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It also depends a bit on how much time you are willing to spend tuning the RAM.
The IMC on Ryzen 5000 is rather strong and capable of ~DDR5000 with 2x8GB so ~3600 with 4x16GB dual rank should be no problem even with a good daisy chain MB but it may take some work to get a 3733-4000 OC with 4x16GB dual rank stable especially with such a complex MB as the dark.

If you want to take the time to fine tune timings a kit with Samsung b die would probably be best despite being 4x16GB dual rank.
If you want something easier then that Crucial kit in your last post would probably be best and you likely wouldn't be able to tell the difference without measuring it.

I can't say that I've ever tuned RAM before and have never overclocked beyond whatever the XMP setting was. I've always just set it to the XMP setting. I've never done any tuning of timings or OC beyond those profiles. Based on what I've read, I'd certainly like to give tuning/tweaking that memory a shot down the road. I've got alot to read, watch, and learn before then though.
 
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1Wolf

Limp Gawd
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I've spent some time over the past few days trying to read up so that I could better understand the advice you guys were giving me. Thanks :) I've posted here and another place and its alot to take in. Dual rank vs. Single rank, Dual Channel vs. Single Channel, Infinity Fabric, T-Topology vs. Daisy chain on a motherboard...I think I understand more of the absolute basics that you guys were talking about.

So, based on what I've read and the responses in this thread and other places, I've been comparing paper statistics and reading reviews on various 64GB memory kits. The popular advice here with a Dark Hero mobo is to stick to 2 Dual Rank DIMMS at the best timings I can get. Which of the 64GB RGB kits would be best for an Dark Hero Mobo? In past builds I've only ever used GSkill memory so I don't know if Crucial makes good memory and is a good option as well. Some of the reviews I've read seem to speak well of it.

Crucial Ballistix RGB 2x32, 3600, 16-18-18-38, 1.35v
Crucial Ballistix RGB 64GB Kit (2 x 32GB) DDR4-3200 Desktop Gaming Memory (Black) | BL2K32G32C16U4BL | Crucial.com

GSkill Trident Z Neo 2x32, 3600, 16-22-22-42, 1.45v
F4-3600C16D-64GTZN-G.SKILL International Enterprise Co., Ltd.

GSkill Trident Z Neo 2x32, 3800, 18-22-22-42, 1.45v
F4-3800C18D-64GTZN-G.SKILL International Enterprise Co., Ltd.

Team Xtreem 2x32, 3600, 18-22-22-42, 1.35v
XTREEM ARGB DDR4 GAMING MEMORY
 

Dan_D

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I've spent some time over the past few days trying to read up so that I could better understand the advice you guys were giving me. Thanks :) I've posted here and another place and its alot to take in. Dual rank vs. Single rank, Dual Channel vs. Single Channel, Infinity Fabric, T-Topology vs. Daisy chain on a motherboard...I think I understand more of the absolute basics that you guys were talking about.

So, based on what I've read and the responses in this thread and other places, I've been comparing paper statistics and reading reviews on various 64GB memory kits. The popular advice here with a Dark Hero mobo is to stick to 2 Dual Rank DIMMS at the best timings I can get. Which of the 64GB RGB kits would be best for an Dark Hero Mobo? In past builds I've only ever used GSkill memory so I don't know if Crucial makes good memory and is a good option as well. Some of the reviews I've read seem to speak well of it.

Crucial Ballistix RGB 2x32, 3600, 16-18-18-38, 1.35v
Crucial Ballistix RGB 64GB Kit (2 x 32GB) DDR4-3200 Desktop Gaming Memory (Black) | BL2K32G32C16U4BL | Crucial.com

GSkill Trident Z Neo 2x32, 3600, 16-22-22-42, 1.45v
F4-3600C16D-64GTZN-G.SKILL International Enterprise Co., Ltd.

GSkill Trident Z Neo 2x32, 3800, 18-22-22-42, 1.45v
F4-3800C18D-64GTZN-G.SKILL International Enterprise Co., Ltd.

Team Xtreem 2x32, 3600, 18-22-22-42, 1.35v
XTREEM ARGB DDR4 GAMING MEMORY

I've got two of the G.Skill 3600 kits. They've been great, but do not overclock well.
 
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