With so much emphasis placed on processors, memory chips often get overlooked as an integral component of system performance. DRAM (dynamic RAM) vendors will start the transition to a new memory architecture this year that will allow chips to run faster in gaming and multimedia PCs. Just about every PC sold these days uses DDR (double data rate) SDRAM (synchronous DRAM) in one of four main speed grades. PC3200 memory is the most commonly used memory in performance systems, with an effective clock rate of 400 MHz, although faster technology exists that has not been ratified by a standards body.
Speed Is the Thing
The next step in the evolutionary chain, the new DDR2 architecture, will allow those memory chips to run faster. DDR2 memory will also be used in servers to help boost performance. DDR2 memory improves the signal quality of data transmissions traveling within a PC, says Dean McCarron, principal analyst with Mercury Research in Cave Creek, Arizona. Memory chips based on the older architecture could not run much faster than the current speeds without suffering a marked decline in signal quality, he says.
News source: PCWorld