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Thread: About Memory(RAM) latency timings

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    Default About Memory(RAM) latency timings

    What does memory latency timings mean actually?it is shown in x-x-x-x format generally.how does it affect in pc performance?which is better : tighter or looser timings?if cpu is overclocked then what should be the memory timings: auto or manually selected?which are the best performing timings for 2 X 2=4GB 800Mhz rams?up to which voltage Transcend rams are safely(without decreasing lifespan) operable when overclocked?I know all the questions above are very technical and require a experienced overclocker to answer them accurately.please give me right answers of my questions.I am looking forward specially @ Mazhar,@marex,Murad9,black neon to get my answers



    Isn't there anyone to answer my questions?

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    Default Re: About Memory(RAM) latency timings

    To answer you questions properly, a lot of entry level explanation is needed.

    Quote Originally Posted by dramaviewer View Post
    What does memory latency timings mean actually?it is shown in x-x-x-x format generally.how does it affect in pc performance?which is better : tighter or looser timings?
    What is Memory Latency:

    Column Address Strobe (CAS) latency, or CL, is the delay time between the moment a memory controller tells the memory module to access a particular memory column on a RAM memory module, and the moment the data from given array location is available on the module's output pins.

    Memory latency is almost always designated in one of two ways. It's either a single number denoting the CAS latency, or a string of four numbers denoting several latencies. CL=2.5, CAS=2.5, or C=2.5 would be common "single number" listings for RAM with a CAS latency of 2.5 cycles, for instance. A four-number designation would be something like 3-4-4-8, in which the four numbers relate to CAS – tRCD – tRP – tRAS. That's a lot of weird abbreviations, so here's the basics of what they mean:

    CAS

    Column Access Strobe (sometimes Column Access Select). This is actually the last stage in finding where data is physically located in RAM. Data is stored in an array of columns and rows–the row is selected first, then the column is selected and the data in memory is either read from or written to. CAS is the amount of time, in cycles, between receiving the column access command and acting upon it. It is usually a value of 2, 2.5, or 3.

    tRCD

    RAS (Row Access Strobe) to CAS delay. This is the delay, in number of cycles, between finding the row of a location in memory, and finding the column. This value is usually between 3 and 5 cycles, but it doesn't tend to have a huge impact on performance. Sequential bits of data are usually stored along the same row in memory, so rows are not re-selected nearly as often as columns.

    tRP

    RAS precharge. This is how much time it takes for the memory to stop accessing one row and start accessing another. Like tRCD, this value is typically between 3 and 5 cycles for modern memory systems. It can have an impact on performance when programs use large blocks of memory that span several rows.

    tRAS

    Active to Precharge Delay. This is the delay, in cycles, between the pins of the memory module electronically receiving a signal and the module starting the Row Access Strobe to locate and retrieve (or write) it. This is generally a pretty big delay, from 5 to 8 cycles on most DDR memories. But it also doesn't have a huge impact on performance, and should only make a big difference when memory access patterns change dramatically.

    That's probably all still a bit confusing, so here's the chronological sequence of events: First the pins receive a request to, let's say, retrieve memory at a certain address. The first latency measurement that comes into play is tRAS, as the memory waits to activate the row where the data resides. Then tRP comes into play if the requested data resides on a different row than the one previously accessed. After the row is selected (if necessary), you have the tRCD delay before the column is selected. Then CAS is the time it takes to select the proper column of memory and retrieve data stored there. To recap, listed chronologically, it's tRAS -> tRP -> tRCD -> CAS. And CAS has the biggest impact on performance, since new columns are accessed more frequently than anything else.

    =>> so its really that simple that lower latency is better.The lower latency equates to shortened system delay times and faster read/write speeds.

    Help taken from: Wikipedia and Extremetech.

    Quote Originally Posted by dramaviewer View Post
    if cpu is overclocked then what should be the memory timings: auto or manually selected?
    A good overclocker would never trust his OC settings as auto. Going for manual gives you ultimate control. Of course you would want to set the RAM multipliers by your self to increase the CPU clock more and keep the RAM clock in safe range.

    Quote Originally Posted by dramaviewer View Post
    which are the best performing timings for 2 X 2=4GB 800Mhz rams?up to which voltage Transcend rams are safely(without decreasing lifespan) operable when overclocked?
    Theres not much need of latency change unless you are volt modding. Forcing the RAM to work with lower latency only works with some high quality RAM brands and of course within a very very low range. I pushed Transcend RAMs upto +0.3 without any problem. But its recommended to stay max +0.2. Lifespan is a noticeable matter when it comes to RAM OC. Thats why you shouldn't push far unless you have kit RAMs (with heat-spreaders). Check for errors using memtest also keep an eye on temp after OC.

    Here is a basic OC guide with some important RAM OC info
    Last edited by AmareX; January 6th, 2010 at 22:35.
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    Default Re: About Memory(RAM) latency timings

    Quote Originally Posted by dramaviewer View Post
    What does memory latency timings mean actually?it is shown in x-x-x-x format generally.how does it affect in pc performance?which is better : tighter or looser timings?if cpu is overclocked then what should be the memory timings: auto or manually selected?which are the best performing timings for 2 X 2=4GB 800Mhz rams?up to which voltage Transcend rams are safely(without decreasing lifespan) operable when overclocked?I know all the questions above are very technical and require a experienced overclocker to answer them accurately.please give me right answers of my questions.I am looking forward specially @ Mazhar,@marex,Murad9,black neon to get my answers



    Isn't there anyone to answer my questions?
    ok, I may not be efficient like Murrad, Mazhar, @mareX & BN bhaiya, but here goes:

    What are "RAM timings"?
    =>The so-called RAM timings generally refers to the memory being ready for access by both the CPU & the memory controller

    What are "RAM timings like"?
    =>Generally they are numerical numbers spaced by a dash. E.g=> 2-3-2-5

    What happens when the "RAM timings are modified"?
    =>The RAM timings (2-3-2-5) refer to the number of ticks (CPU cycles) it takes for memory to get ready to do something on behalf of a request from the system

    Usually, you'll hear statements like: "you need to loosen your timings" & "you need to tighten up those timings"
    Now, these refers to the modification to the timings or the numbers either by increasing or by decreasing
    Increasing means loosening up the timings(or increasing the numbers) & therefore when increasing the timings the ticks get slower & overall performance is decreased, but there's a catch: the system would turn more stable if you are overclocking the speed of the RAMs(MHz)...Loosening up the RAM also turns down the responsiveness & the system may feel a bit sluggish but not always

    On the other hand, decreasing or tightening up the timings (decreasing the the numbers) means the ticks get faster & the system will become more responsive & the overall performance will increase & the whole system will feel a lot quicker, but as with all good things, there's one bad: the stability of the system is hampered

    If the modules can cope with decreased timings, then there wouldn't be any problems, usually Corsair, OCZ,Mushkin modules(or other good brands) can sustain this kind of overclock whereas our Transcends even fail to overclock the module's speed(MHz)

    Then there are:CAS-Column Address Strobe
    RAS-Row Access Strobe
    RAS to CAS Delay
    RAS Precharge

    but frankly speaking, you dont need to know these in detail & they are just the parts of the numbers of the timings

    Last but not least:
    Command Rate
    Meaning=>Command Rate is sometimes referred to as DRC (DRAM command rate). This is the setting that selects the speed of your RAM signal controller. If it is set to 1T, then the controller will run in synchronization with your bus speed. Higher settings will result in slower overall RAM speed, which translates to less bandwith. Most decent RAM modules will run at 1T, but some have to be set to 2T & the overall speed is decreased & are these 2T modules are also known as Value-RAMs
    One good example of a Value-RAM: TRANSCEND

    Last of my blabbering, & if you are tinkering with these settings, be sure to check it out with prime & memtest, in these cases IBT wont be of much help
    & if you need more explanation, I am sure the pros are their to guide you..I am just a n00b hehe

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    Default Re: About Memory(RAM) latency timings

    @marex & dipanzan Thanks a lot.Great explanation.I think this thread will be helpful for all the BG members.......
    আমি এখন আর গেম খেলি না...

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    Default Re: About Memory(RAM) latency timings

    i have 6-6-6-18 for my 2 gb apacer oc [email protected] 972 mhz(i really have to lower the muttiplier as i give my cpu a higher fsb

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    Default Re: About Memory(RAM) latency timings

    i have Verico ram 6-6-6-18 @ 2T. If i switch to transcend what are my gains? i mean it ll cost me some more bucks...is it worth the money?

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    Default Re: About Memory(RAM) latency timings

    Im not sure if the transcend RAM's are 1T. If they are 2T, then from 5-5-5-18 to 6-6-6-18 will net around 1% performance difference in general day to day applications. If the transcend are 1T, then the difference can extend to as much as 2% to 4%

    Note that some applications, eg file extraction, is more sensetive to memory bandwidth (ie may be slightly more than 1% in the first case and around 4% for the second case)

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