AMD GAMING RAM and the 1600mhz trap

Overclocking AMD systems is different form Intel and your choice of RAM plays a huge part in the success of your overclocked system stability. When you are building an AMD custom gaming PC there are many things that could be considered when choosing RAM. However the most important thing is easily overlooked, and can be catastrophic if ignored.

AMD RAM is managed Differently to intel

The fist and most important thing to understand about selecting RAM for your custom built gaming pc is that the AMD CPU’s and chipsets have a dedicated on die memory controller.  This means that no matter what it says in the BIOS configuration, when you do a custom overclock on your AMD CPU… you are also overclocking the RAM.

The next piece of uncommon truth is when you actually research the specs for the AMD CPUs you'll notice that the on-die AMD memory controller does not support speeds of anything higher than 1333MHz.

Now before you go out and return all your 1600MHz RAM, let me fully explain this situation to you.

I discovered this forum thread from Gigabyte trying to explain the situation. It turns out buying RAM at the higher frequency is still an excellent buy. Especially when you are going to play with custom CPU clocks, because it will give you the headroom you need to overclock the CPU and deal with the resulting RAM overclock as well.

Corsair Vengence 1600MHz this is the good stuff

Corsair Vengence 1600MHz this is the good stuff

The 1600MHz RAM Trap

So what is the most common mistake with all this? You buy your 1600MHz RAM, you plug it in and go into the BIOS menu to set the timings to the 1600MHz settings. You also overclock your CPU a little.

Then... BOOM! random BSOD’s all over the show. The reason why you are getting them is you have just overclocked the RAM past its threshold without even knowing it!