• Welcome to TechPowerUp Forums, Guest! Please check out our forum guidelines for info related to our community.

Which is better? 2 sticks 4 sticks?

Joined
May 1, 2007
Messages
320 (0.08/day)
Likes
4
System Name Windows XP Pro 32 bit
Processor Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
Motherboard Asus Striker II Formula
Cooling XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 cpu heatsink
Memory 2x 2gb Crucial Ballistix ram
Video Card(s) Geforce 280 GTX 1gb
Storage Seagate 200 GB - ST3200820AS / 120gb Western Digital HD
Display(s) ViewSonic VX922
Case Antec 900
Audio Device(s) Creative X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Professional
Power Supply HIPER 880W Power Supply
#1
So i'm looking to by some better ram, and i have a lot of options. But i wanted to know which is better, 2 sticks for a total of 4 gig (3.25 on xp) or 4 sticks

basically

2x 2 gig of ram
or

4x 1gig of ram

thanks for your help guys!

also if u could explain to me your reasoning, that would be helpful :)
 
D

Duxx

Guest
#2
2x2 tends to be easier to overclock and many suggest it over 4x1. However I have 4x1gb Tracers and seem to be running them fine. 2x2 also allows for you to upgrade to 8 if need be ever.
 

sneekypeet

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Apr 12, 2006
Messages
24,698 (5.75/day)
Likes
9,436
System Name His
Processor Intel i7 5930K
Motherboard Asus Maximus V Extreme
Cooling Thermalright True Spirit 140 BW Rev.A
Memory Corsair Dominator Platinum ROG
Video Card(s) nVidia GTX 1080 SLI with EVGA Hybrid coolers.
Storage Samsung 960 Pro / Crucial MX300 750GB / Seagate 1TB Spinner
Display(s) Sony 43" 4K 60hz
Case SilverStone Temjin TJ11
Audio Device(s) Realtek on board > Sony Receiver > Cerwin Vega's
Power Supply Thermaltake TPSG 1050W
Mouse Always Changing
Keyboard Always Changing
Software Windows 10 Pro 64
#3
IDK I was always told that 2X2GB was the way to go, but then I got a good deal on another 2GB kit. Now I am running 4GB in 4 stix.

Clocked to 1080MHz, not a studder. 3.25GB in windows(lol)

<<<<check specs
 
Joined
Jan 19, 2007
Messages
1,073 (0.27/day)
Likes
52
Location
Chicago
System Name Blue by you
Processor Intel Core i5 4690K Devils Canyon
Motherboard Gigabyte GA-Z97MX-G1 Gaming 5
Cooling Cooler Master D92 MX-4 4 Corsair 120mm Blue led case fans 2 intake 2 exhaust
Memory G.Skill Trident X DDR3 2666 2X8gb
Video Card(s) Gigabyte G1 Gaming Geforce GTX 970
Storage Sandisk Extreme Pro 240GB boot drive Samsung 950 Pro NVME 256gb Seagate 1TB platter
Display(s) Benq GW2765 2560X1440 27 inch
Case Corsair 88R Carbide SFF
Audio Device(s) nada
Power Supply Corsair HX 850i watt Professional
Software Windows 10
#4
If your starting from fresh, go 2x2 4gig.
 

hat

Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 20, 2006
Messages
18,569 (4.56/day)
Likes
3,190
Location
Ohio
System Name Starlifter :: Dragonfly
Processor i5 2400 :: Athlon II x4 630
Motherboard MSI H67-G43-B3 :: GIgabyte GA-770T-USB3
Cooling Corsair H70 :: Thermaltake Big Typhoon
Memory 4x2GB DDR3 1333 :: 2x1GB DDR3 1333
Video Card(s) 2x PNY GTX1070 :: GT720
Storage Plextor M5s 128GB, WDC Black 500GB :: Mushkin Enhanced 60GB SSD, WD RE3 1TB
Display(s) Acer P216HL HDMI :: None
Case Antec SOHO 1030B :: Old White Full Tower
Audio Device(s) X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Pro - iLive IT153B Soundbar (optical) :: None
Power Supply Corsair CX600w :: Unknown
Software Windows 10 Pro - Plex Server on Dragonfly
Benchmark Scores >9000
#5
4x1 or 2x2 it doesn't matter that much anymore. I would still reccomend 2x2 though because if you ever have a problem, espically with the memory, you will save time troubleshooting...
 

DaMulta

My stars went supernova
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
16,162 (3.86/day)
Likes
1,419
Location
Oklahoma T-Town
System Name Work in progress
Processor AMD 955---4Ghz
Motherboard MSi GD70
Cooling OcZ Phase/water
Memory Crucial2GB kit (1GBx2), Ballistix 240-pin DIMM, DDR3 PC3-16000
Video Card(s) CrossfireX 2 X HD 4890 1GB OCed to 1000Mhz
Storage SSD 64GB
Display(s) Envision 24'' 1920x1200
Case Using the desk ATM
Audio Device(s) Sucky onboard for now :(
Power Supply 1000W TruePower Quattro
#7
You don't have them listed:)
 
Joined
Jun 29, 2006
Messages
423 (0.10/day)
Likes
10
Location
Infront Of PC ... Perth, WA
System Name NINJA ASSASSIN
Processor Intel Core i5 2500 @ 3.3GHz
Motherboard Asrock H61M/U3S3
Cooling Stock
Memory 8GB DDR3 1600MHz
Video Card(s) Gigabyte Windforce OC GTX 760 4GB
Storage WD Green 1TB :: WD Green 2TB
Display(s) 32" Teac LED TV
Case BitFenix Shinobi w/ Window
Audio Device(s) Creative SB VX 5.1
Power Supply XFX PRO 650W
Software Windows 7 Ultimate 64Bit
#9
<<<<=== Check my specs.

I use 4x1GB ... 2x 2 pair so they both run in dual channel. TBH unless the memory timings are different theres no other difference I guess ... someone correct me if I'm wrong ?!?!

:D
 

FreedomEclipse

~Technological Technocrat~
Joined
Apr 20, 2007
Messages
17,204 (4.38/day)
Likes
5,388
Location
London,UK
System Name Codename: Rapture X Mk.VI {Still....MoonPig Edition}
Processor Intel 3930k@4.5Ghz
Motherboard Asus P9X79 PRO
Cooling Corsair H105 {2x Corsair ML 120 Pro}|VRM: Antec Spotcool 100
Memory 32GB DDR3 Kingston HyperX Beast 2400Mhz {8x4GB}
Video Card(s) MSI 1070 Gaming X (Samsung)
Storage 512GB Samsung 850 Pro (Boot)|1x 512GB Crucial MX100|2x 3TB Toshiba DT01ACA300
Display(s) Asus PB278Q 27"
Case Corsair 760T (White) {1x140mm NB PK-3, 2x Corsair AF140}
Audio Device(s) Creative SB Z {Speakers: Logitech Z-5500 }
Power Supply Corsair AX760
Mouse Logitech G900 Chaos Spectrum
Keyboard Duckyshine Dead LED(s) III
Software Windows 7 7600 x64
Benchmark Scores ( ͡°( ͡° ͜ʖ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)ʖ ͡°) ͡°)
#10
having 4x ram (full ram load) usually stresses out the CPU's memcontroller when overclocking. making the overclock unstable
 
Joined
Jun 5, 2005
Messages
4,640 (1.01/day)
Likes
415
Location
Toronto, Canada
System Name old school / new school
Processor 3.0e C0 @ 3.6 / e5200
Motherboard p4p800e-dlx / p5q-DLX
Cooling custom water see sig / air
Memory 2x1g oczPC4000EbPl / 2x2g ocz2rpr1066
Video Card(s) 3850AGP / 4890vaporX
Storage 36g raptor+120g wd / wd 1001fals 1tb
Display(s) BenQ / sharpAQUOS LC-37D64U
Case modded antec plusview / generic
Audio Device(s) audigy 2zs / ASUS Xonar HDAV1.3
Power Supply fan/cable modded powerstream 520 / OCZ 700mxsp
Software Xp pro SP2 / VISTA ultimate OEM
#11
doesnt four stix put you at 2t? or is that only with the older sys?

i was always told 2 stix is better than four :confused:
 
Joined
Dec 5, 2007
Messages
5,073 (1.37/day)
Likes
1,817
System Name Addison Clark / HTPC
Processor I7 7700k @ 5GHZ 1.35v / I7 6700k
Motherboard Asus Z270 ITX / Asrock Z270 Taichi
Cooling Custom loop for CPU and GPU / Be Quiet Dark Knight
Memory Corsair 16GB DDR4-3600 / G.Skill 16GB DDR4 - 2400
Video Card(s) Zotac 1080 TI F.E. under EK block / Asus Turbo GTX 1080 w/ Corsair H55
Storage Plextor M8Pe 1TB M.2 / 256GB and 512GB WD Black NVME's
Display(s) Asus 28" 4K / Samsung 55" 1080p
Case Corsair 380T / Silverstone GD10
Audio Device(s) Creative Omni USB / Onboard Realtek
Power Supply EVGA G3 Supernova 1KW / Rosewill 750W
Mouse G.Skill 780
Keyboard MS Sidewinder x4 / Logitech K400 combo
Software Win 10 Pro / Windows 8.1 w MCE and Win 10 Pro
#12
I would go with 2Gb x 2 sets over 1Gb x4 just because the sets are so cheap. I couldn't see which OS you are running but just so you know a 32 bit OS will not see all 4Gb. It maxes out at 3.25Gb and goes down from there due to all of your other peripherals.
 
Joined
May 1, 2007
Messages
320 (0.08/day)
Likes
4
System Name Windows XP Pro 32 bit
Processor Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
Motherboard Asus Striker II Formula
Cooling XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 cpu heatsink
Memory 2x 2gb Crucial Ballistix ram
Video Card(s) Geforce 280 GTX 1gb
Storage Seagate 200 GB - ST3200820AS / 120gb Western Digital HD
Display(s) ViewSonic VX922
Case Antec 900
Audio Device(s) Creative X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Professional
Power Supply HIPER 880W Power Supply
#13
thanks guys! i guess 2x is the way to go, seems to be more pros with that than cons anyway. now... i was going to get 4x 1 gig ballistix tracers, but i don't think ballistix makes 2 gig sticks, at least i didn't see any on newegg... not to mention, i'm guessing i will eventually have to upgrade, and i am all about saving money in the long run. So..

what ram is good, thats 2x 2 gig.. and i'm overclocking..
 

sneekypeet

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Apr 12, 2006
Messages
24,698 (5.75/day)
Likes
9,436
System Name His
Processor Intel i7 5930K
Motherboard Asus Maximus V Extreme
Cooling Thermalright True Spirit 140 BW Rev.A
Memory Corsair Dominator Platinum ROG
Video Card(s) nVidia GTX 1080 SLI with EVGA Hybrid coolers.
Storage Samsung 960 Pro / Crucial MX300 750GB / Seagate 1TB Spinner
Display(s) Sony 43" 4K 60hz
Case SilverStone Temjin TJ11
Audio Device(s) Realtek on board > Sony Receiver > Cerwin Vega's
Power Supply Thermaltake TPSG 1050W
Mouse Always Changing
Keyboard Always Changing
Software Windows 10 Pro 64
#14
Joined
May 1, 2007
Messages
320 (0.08/day)
Likes
4
System Name Windows XP Pro 32 bit
Processor Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
Motherboard Asus Striker II Formula
Cooling XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 cpu heatsink
Memory 2x 2gb Crucial Ballistix ram
Video Card(s) Geforce 280 GTX 1gb
Storage Seagate 200 GB - ST3200820AS / 120gb Western Digital HD
Display(s) ViewSonic VX922
Case Antec 900
Audio Device(s) Creative X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Professional
Power Supply HIPER 880W Power Supply
#15
Last edited:
Joined
Oct 7, 2006
Messages
1,335 (0.32/day)
Likes
90
Processor e8200 3.93mhz@1.264v
Motherboard P5E3 Pro
Cooling Scythe Infinity
Memory 4gb of G.Skill Ripjaw 6-7-7-18@1404 and 1.62v
Video Card(s) HIS 5770 v2 940/1275mhz stock volts
Storage 1TB Hitachi
Display(s) Acer 22" Widescreen LCD
Case Blue Cooler Master Centurion
Audio Device(s) Onboard audio :(, and Klipsch 5.1 Pro Media's
Power Supply 650 Watt BFG
Software Vista 64 Ultimate
#17
I read the new single sided 2x1gb batches of Ballistix are crap, I don't know about the 2x2gb. I ordered a set of 2x1gb from Newegg guess I will find out, the first set I got are the old dbl sided.

Still seems like if the 2x1 is bad the 2x2 has a chance at it to.
 
Joined
Aug 30, 2006
Messages
6,377 (1.53/day)
Likes
984
System Name ICE-QUAD // ICE-CRUNCH
Processor Q6600 // 2x Xeon 5472
Memory 2GB DDR // 8GB FB-DIMM
Video Card(s) HD3850-AGP // FireGL 3400
Display(s) 2 x Samsung 204Ts = 3200x1200
Audio Device(s) Audigy 2
Software Windows Server 2003 R2 as a Workstation now migrated to W10 with regrets.
#18
Unbuffered memory suffers from "noise" and "latency" on the memory bus. More sticks = more variation in chip tolerances = more trouble.

Always have FEWER sticks, not MORE. EXCEPT when you are using FB-DIMMs (Fully buffered) where extra sticks does not make a problem... but the reverse... the memory controllers are able to run QUAD, HEXA and OCTO channel: meaning the more sticks the more bandwidth.


P.S. i have had problems with 4x DDR in mainboards... some sticks worked... some didnt. Avoid the issue. Get 2 sticks only.
 
Joined
Jan 18, 2008
Messages
68 (0.02/day)
Likes
2
Processor Intel E8400
Motherboard ASUS P5k
Cooling Ninja Plus Rev. B
Memory Corsair 4gb
Video Card(s) evga 8800GT
Storage WD 400gb
Display(s) 22"
Case NZXT Blackline
Software Vista 64-bit
#19
If you want to o'clock, don't get 4 sticks. I finally gave up trying to do it as my 800mhz sticks won't go higher than 667mhz stable. Also, 2 sticks are obviously more expandable in the future.
 
M

MiST91

Guest
#20
having a Pair of 2x2GB or 2x pair 4x1GB really doesn't make a noticable differance to performance, however if buying new, i would go 2x2GB because then you could always upgrade to 8GB in the future (think your computer will have VERY differant specs when you actually NEED 8GB RAM to do everyday tasks)
 
Joined
Nov 8, 2006
Messages
5,052 (1.24/day)
Likes
540
Location
Manchester, United Kingdom
Processor AMD FX 8320 @ 4GHz
Motherboard Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD5 rev1
Cooling Corsair H70
Memory 4 x 4GB DDR3 Ripjawz 1600Mhz
Video Card(s) Sapphire Vapor-X AMD R9 280X
Storage 1 x 500GB Samsung Evo 850, 1 x 500GB Vrap Data Drive, 3 x 2TB Seagate, 1 x 1TB Samsung F1
Display(s) 3 x DGM IPS-2402WDH
Case Coolermaster HAF X
Audio Device(s) Onboard
Power Supply Coolermaster 1000W Silent Pro M
Mouse Logitech G502
Keyboard Logitech G510
Software Windows 10 Pro x64
#21
4x1Gb DDR2 800 at 1100Mhz no issues here.

not entirely sure why people complain, seems like a fantasy to me.

Back when I had DDR, I noticed that 2Gb in 4 sticks was harder to overclock than 2Gb in 2 sticks, but that was back then. DDR2 doesn't seem to suffer from the same ill-effects that DDR does, not from my experience any way.
 

kylew

New Member
Joined
Nov 19, 2007
Messages
604 (0.16/day)
Likes
70
Location
Liverpool
Processor Main: Intel Core 2 Quad Q6700 @ 3.7Ghz / Server: Q6600@ Stock
Motherboard Main: Asus P5E @ Rampage Forumla / Server: P5K Deluxe
Cooling Main: Thermalright 120 Ultra Extreme (8 x 120mm fans inc. PSU + 2 x 92mm fans.) / Server: Stock
Memory Main: 4x2GB Gskill DDR2 1000Mhz / Server: 4x1GB Gskill DDR2 800Mhz
Video Card(s) Main: 2GB 5870 Eyefinity 6 / Server: HD 4850
Storage 8 Internal (SATA) 2 External (USB). Total storage 5.4TB
Display(s) Triple Dell 24" 2408WFP
Case Main: Silverstone TJ07 / Server: Coolermaster Stacker 810
Audio Device(s) Main: Auzentech Xmystique / Server: NI Rig Kontrol
Power Supply Main: Coolermaster Realpower 850w Modular / Server Tagan 600W Modular
Software Main: Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit / Server: Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit
Benchmark Scores 3D Mark 06 19.5k 3D Mark Vantage 12.5k Super PI 13.4s
#22
4x1Gb DDR2 800 at 1100Mhz no issues here.

not entirely sure why people complain, seems like a fantasy to me.

Back when I had DDR, I noticed that 2Gb in 4 sticks was harder to overclock than 2Gb in 2 sticks, but that was back then. DDR2 doesn't seem to suffer from the same ill-effects that DDR does, not from my experience any way.
+1 I have 4 x 1GB Sticks of DDR2 800Mhz which overclocks the same as 2 sticks. Gets my Q6600 to 3.96Ghz easy, though 2 sticks of 2GB will be better as you'll have more scope for upgrades in future. I'm going to go 4 x 2GB soon :D.