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PC3 8500 DDR3 1066 Computer SDRAM

While the name may seem like a mouthful, there's actually quite a lot of meaning in the name PC3 8500 DDR3 1066 SDRAM. PC3 8500 means that it offers a transfer rate of 8.5 GB per second, while the 1066 number means that the transfers operate at an effective frequency of 1066 MHz. SDRAM stands for synchronous dynamic random access module, and is a mouthful all on its own.

Computer RAM Generations

As computer performance has increased, so has overall computer RAM performance. From the introduction of DDR, Double Data Rate, memory in 2002 through DDR4 in 2014, both the speed and capacity have climbed even as the voltage requirements have dropped. At the same time, the basic packaging has remained unchanged. Yes, the pinouts and notches may differ, but the basic size and design of the DIMMs have not.

DIMM vs. SODIMM

DDR3 RAM comes in two form factors: 240-pin DIMMs for desktops and 204-pin SODIMMs for laptops. The biggest difference is size, the SODIMM is about half the size of a comparable DIMM. However, the extra pins also allow for registered and ECC DIMMs, which offer more stability and reliability than standard memory modules, making them better for use in servers. Note that while a DDR3 DIMM is the same size and has the same number of pins as DDR2, the keys on the sockets are such that the two memory types are not physically interchangeable.

Memory Capacity

As a general rule, the more memory your computer has, the more applications you can have open at any one time. For most 64-bit computers, 4 GB PC3 8500 DDR3 computer RAM is about the minimum you want for day to day use. People who tend to open a lot of browser tabs or play games should start with 8 GB PC3 8500 DDR3 computer RAM to avoid unnecessary slowdowns in performance.

Installing RAM

The best thing about installing your own RAM is that you cannot physically get it wrong. None of the different kinds of RAM will fit in the wrong socket. The combination of keyed slots and varying pin counts means that only the proper RAM will click into place no matter how hard you try.

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