• Guest, The rules for the P & N subforum have been updated to prohibit "ad hominem" or personal attacks against other posters. See the full details in the post "Politics and News Rules & Guidelines."

Running 4 RAM sticks on Z170?

MajinCry

Platinum Member
Jul 28, 2015
2,488
560
136
This computer's on the fritz, and it feels fairly long in the tooth, so it's time for an upgrade.

Trouble is, I'm looking to have the full 64GB of RAM supported by Skylake, but 2x16GB to begin with. Was told by AsRock that Z170 can't run RAM at it's full rated speed, when using all four channels. How bad is the hit to the memory clocks?

The RAM in question: http://www.ebuyer.com/743003-corsair-vengeance-lpx-32gb-2-x-16gb-pc4-24000-3000mhz-ddr4-dimm-c15-cmk32gx4m2b3000c15

Would be a shame if I had to run the RAM at both 2600Mhz as well as 2T. Kinda want that 3000Mhz for the added performance, and afaik, there's no 32GB 3000Mhzsticks that run at 1.2v.

The motherboard I'll be using is the AsRock z170 Pro4. Already going over budget with £570 for RAM + Mobo + i5 6600k, so I can't spend a dime more on a fancier board if that'd make any difference.
 

UsandThem

Elite Member
Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
15,303
6,087
146
That's pretty common amongst z170 boards. My Gigabyte board is the same way.

In all honesty, it really isn't a huge difference unless you are the type that likes running synthetic benchmarks all the time. In fact, I run lowly DDR4 2133 with my 6700k. And although it has been "tough", I've made it through 16 months with it. ;) Most reviews show little to no "real world" difference, but there are a few sites that show a big increase. I guess it just comes down to which hardware sites you trust the most.

The only time faster RAM really helps without dispute is with integrated graphics. This is about the only result the "slow" RAM vs. fast RAM camps really ever agree upon. :)
 

MajinCry

Platinum Member
Jul 28, 2015
2,488
560
136
I pretty much only play Bethesda's open world games, with Fallout 4 and Skyrim Special Edition showing huge gains with fast ram, at least on Intel's architecture.

http://www.techspot.com/review/1089-fallout-4-benchmarks/page6.html


Is there any way to tell how much the motherboard will downclock memory, when all four channels are filled? The end-game plan is to put the game, that I fancy playing at the time, entirely onto a RAMDisk, and will be wanting to do that with Skyrim SE and Fallout 4, at least when I can get another pair of sticks.
 

UsandThem

Elite Member
Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
15,303
6,087
146
I pretty much only play Bethesda's open world games, with Fallout 4 and Skyrim Special Edition showing huge gains with fast ram, at least on Intel's architecture.

http://www.techspot.com/review/1089-fallout-4-benchmarks/page6.html

Is there any way to tell how much the motherboard will downclock memory, when all four channels are filled? The end-game plan is to put the game, that I fancy playing at the time, entirely onto a RAMDisk, and will be wanting to do that with Skyrim SE and Fallout 4, at least when I can get another pair of sticks.
It differs with every board, but you can go to Corsair's website, enter your motherboard model, and it will show you what RAM, what quantities, and at what speeds will be certified to work with your motherboard.

http://www.corsair.com/en-us/memory-finder

But just so that you are aware, 64 GB, or even 32 GB for that matter, of RAM for gaming will be a waste. 16 GB is more than enough for the foreseeable future. But if you are set on running the higher amounts of RAM, if you go down to 32 GB (4 x 8 GB), Corsair lists three DDR4 3000 kits that will work properly with your board. That will be plenty even for a RAM disk in the future, or you could also just buy a fast NVMe drive in the future at some point, and not even worry about the RAM disk.
 

MajinCry

Platinum Member
Jul 28, 2015
2,488
560
136
It differs with every board, but you can go to Corsair's website, enter your motherboard model, and it will show you what RAM, what quantities, and at what speeds will be certified to work with your motherboard.

http://www.corsair.com/en-us/memory-finder

But just so that you are aware, 64 GB, or even 32 GB for that matter, of RAM for gaming will be a waste. 16 GB is more than enough for the foreseeable future. But if you are set on running the higher amounts of RAM, if you go down to 32 GB (4 x 8 GB), Corsair lists three DDR4 3000 kits that will work properly with your board. That will be plenty even for a RAM disk in the future, or you could also just buy a fast NVMe drive in the future at some point, and not even worry about the RAM disk.
RAM's far and away faster than SSDs, including the PCIE ones. No point going for something substantially lesser. To detail why I need so much RAM:

I'll be decompressing the .bsa archives for Oblivion and Fallout New Vegas (with TTW installed, so +Fallout 3's archives), to further reduce cell loading stutters. This requires even more RAM, than if I were to have the fully compressed archives. My modded Skyrim (non-Special Edition, no HD textures) alone, with archives fully compressed, is 19GB.

Hell, Fallout 4 alone, without mods, with archives fully compressed, takes up 37GB. Can't fit that in 32GB of RAM.

Then factor in mods and such, with Fallout 4's process using 8GB of RAM on a completely vanilla install...Yeah, gonna need that 64GB once I got the money for another set of 32GB.

I'll check that wee site out. Wonder if the other RAM manufacturers have something similar.
 

UsandThem

Elite Member
Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
15,303
6,087
146
RAM's far and away faster than SSDs, including the PCIE ones. No point going for something substantially lesser. To detail why I need so much RAM:

I'll be decompressing the .bsa archives for Oblivion and Fallout New Vegas (with TTW installed, so +Fallout 3's archives), to further reduce cell loading stutters. This requires even more RAM, than if I were to have the fully compressed archives. My modded Skyrim (non-Special Edition, no HD textures) alone, with archives fully compressed, is 19GB.

Hell, Fallout 4 alone, without mods, with archives fully compressed, takes up 37GB. Can't fit that in 32GB of RAM.

Then factor in mods and such, with Fallout 4's process using 8GB of RAM on a completely vanilla install...Yeah, gonna need that 64GB once I got the money for another set of 32GB.

I'll check that wee site out. Wonder if the other RAM manufacturers have something similar.
They're all going to be similiar. The more RAM you run, the maximum speed drops. I don't think the Skylake memory controller could handle running 64 GB of very fast RAM. Remember, it officially only supports DDR4 2133 - everything over that is considered an overclock.

And as far as speed goes with NVMe drives, some of them aren't that much slower than RAM anymore, and will only continue to get faster. The 960 PRO is up to 3,500 MB/s read and 2,100 MB/s write. Run two in RAID, and you are right there as far as speed.

Anyways, good luck in your search.
 

MajinCry

Platinum Member
Jul 28, 2015
2,488
560
136
They're all going to be similiar. The more RAM you run, the maximum speed drops. I don't think the Skylake memory controller could handle running 64 GB of very fast RAM. Remember, it officially only supports DDR4 2133 - everything over that is considered an overclock.

And as far as speed goes with NVMe drives, some of them aren't that much slower than RAM anymore, and will only continue to get faster. The 960 PRO is up to 3,500 MB/s read and 2,100 MB/s write. Run two in RAID, and you are right there as far as speed.

Anyways, good luck in your search.
D'aww hell, Skylake's got an anemic default memory speed? Great job there, Intel. You're probably right about Skylake not handling 64GB of the fast stuff, GSkill's memory finder only showed the 2600mhz kits working @ 1.2v with four sticks.

I'd have to spend £700 on those SSD's though. Bit much if ya ask me.

Guess I'll be sticking with 2x16GB, for a while at least. See if I can use symbolic links with Fallout 4's archives, to get a close-enough effect.
 

escrow4

Diamond Member
Feb 4, 2013
3,338
121
106
Kaby Lakes default RAM speed is 2400MHz and there is little difference beyond 2666MHz. There is a large difference in some games between 2666MHz and 2133MHz. You should just get the 16GB kit version of that RAM which should run at 3000MHz. There is zero reason for 32GB of RAM today for anything but heavy rendering/VMs.
 

MajinCry

Platinum Member
Jul 28, 2015
2,488
560
136
Kaby Lakes default RAM speed is 2400MHz and there is little difference beyond 2666MHz. There is a large difference in some games between 2666MHz and 2133MHz. You should just get the 16GB kit version of that RAM which should run at 3000MHz. There is zero reason for 32GB of RAM today for anything but heavy rendering/VMs.
As I already said, I need all that RAM for holding an entire game. Shove SkyrimSE on a RAMDisk, and the stutters'll be gone. With 16GB of RAM, like I have now, I can fit about 2/3rds of the original version into RAM, and god forbid I have mods. Need at least 32GB in my motherboard for storing TTW or Skyrim.
 

escrow4

Diamond Member
Feb 4, 2013
3,338
121
106
As I already said, I need all that RAM for holding an entire game. Shove SkyrimSE on a RAMDisk, and the stutters'll be gone. With 16GB of RAM, like I have now, I can fit about 2/3rds of the original version into RAM, and god forbid I have mods. Need at least 32GB in my motherboard for storing TTW or Skyrim.
The stutters are due to rubbish old Gamebryo. You want to spend all that money for a game?
 

Carfax83

Diamond Member
Nov 1, 2010
6,087
892
126
Stuttering can be caused by so many things, like shaders compiling, or how the engine handles the CPU, memory management etcetera. That said, if you want a platform that can run large quantities of RAM at high speed, then you should look at the X99 platform rather than the mainstream platforms. The X99 platform combined with a Broadwell-E CPU has some serious bandwidth and the memory controller is robust enough to run the memory at high frequencies.

I just upgraded to a 6900K and this is my RAM and cache benches with my slower 32GB DDR4 3200 backup kit:. My faster kit which uses lower timings is on RMA, but when it comes back, it would be even faster than what you see below.
 

rchunter

Senior member
Feb 26, 2015
933
72
91
Just want to chime in that memory compatibility is going to come down to your CPU, not the motherboard as the IMC is built into the chip itself. Thus, technically, anything over spec 2133 (2400mhz broadwell) on X99 is basically a chip lottery.
 

MajinCry

Platinum Member
Jul 28, 2015
2,488
560
136
The stutters are due to rubbish old Gamebryo. You want to spend all that money for a game?
People buy 4k monitors and SLI 1080ti's. Seems fairly grounded in comparison, and I'll be using the RAMDisk for other games as well.

Gamebryo is shit, but the stutters aren't random. There are two main kinds: cell loading, and the 64hz bug.

The former is when you go to the edge of your current active cell cluster, which causes the engine to load the new cell data, as well as meshes, textures and all that good stuff. This is the most abrupt and annoying. ENB's EnableUnsafeMemoryHacks feature helps reduce the severity of the stutter, by preventing the game from mirroring the VRAM into memory.

But it doesn't get rid of it by any means. To do that, ya need super fast storage. An SSD isn't enough, even if they are the NVMe drives. I posted a guide on getting a RAMDisk running with New Vegas over on the TTW forums 'ere, if you're curious: https://taleoftwowastelands.com/content/moving-bsa-files-ramdisk

The plan is to decompress the archives, load the whole game into RAM, et voila.

As for the 64hz bug, Oblivion, Fallout 3 and Fallout New Vegas have the Stutter Remover Mods, that replace the game's GetTickCount() code with a fairly complex function using TimeGetTime(). This removes the horrible microstutter and frameskipping.

For Skyrim and Fallout 4, we have to resort to capping our FPS to the minimum framerate, and using iFPSClamp=. Give that ini setting the same value as our capped FPS, and we get smooth frames at the cost of the game running faster if we exceed the value, and slower if we go under it.

Stuttering can be caused by so many things, like shaders compiling, or how the engine handles the CPU, memory management etcetera. That said, if you want a platform that can run large quantities of RAM at high speed, then you should look at the X99 platform rather than the mainstream platforms. The X99 platform combined with a Broadwell-E CPU has some serious bandwidth and the memory controller is robust enough to run the memory at high frequencies.
Too expensive. I was planning on going quad core Ryzen R5, but AMD really dropped the ball with the CCX mess. Skylake is the costly alternative, and BW-e's cheaper CPUs take up my whole budget for the platform upgrade. Need a motherboard 'n' RAM to go along with the CPU after all.
 

MajinCry

Platinum Member
Jul 28, 2015
2,488
560
136
Just want to chime in that memory compatibility is going to come down to your CPU, not the motherboard as the IMC is built into the chip itself. Thus, technically, anything over spec 2133 (2400mhz broadwell) on X99 is basically a chip lottery.
So long as I stick to 2 sticks, it shouldn't have any underclocking. At least, that's what AsRock told me.
 

rchunter

Senior member
Feb 26, 2015
933
72
91
So long as I stick to 2 sticks, it shouldn't have any underclocking. At least, that's what AsRock told me.

It should definitely help only having 2 sticks. In my Kabylake 7700k rig i'm running 2 sticks, 32GB g.skill 3333mhz. and it works fine.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY